Ina Fried

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Voyager Mobile, a 22-Year-Old’s Cellphone Start-Up, Launches After Delay

An attack on his Web site pushed things out a few days, but John Mardini says Voyager Mobile is now ready to take orders for cut-rate cellphone service.

Mardini, a 22-year-old entrepreneur and New York University student, is reselling devices and services from Sprint. In fact, Sprint is handling most facets of the business, aside from sales and marketing.

That’s a good thing, since Voyager Mobile consists of about seven employees, mostly family and friends. But though Mardini is only 22, this is his third start-up, having already built up businesses in music equipment and IT services.

Mardini says the goal with Voyager is to offer customers low monthly prices. Voyager is pitching $19 (plus taxes) a month for unlimited talking and texting, and $39 (plus taxes) for talking, texting and Web use.

“I pay so much for my cellphone,” Mardini said in an interview last week. “I was thinking there has to be a better way to make it cheaper for everyone.”

The company was all set to start taking orders on Tuesday, but the Web-site issues forced a few days’ delay.

Things are up and running now, with Voyager offering a range of prepaid devices, including a pair of Android phones at $219 and Samsung’s Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touch for $549.

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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik