When optional fields aren’t actually optional

I signed up for Virgin Mobile today, as the answer to my “I’m on the road, and I’m tired of trying to find wifi hotspots”.

Previously I’d had a Sierra Wireless AirCard (595U) with Sprint, and it worked great, but I couldn’t justify $60/month for the occasionally trip to the Bay area.

But Virgin Mobile with its pay-as-you-go plan seems perfect. I can spend $10 for a 10-day plan with enough data (100MB) for my email and light web surfing needs. So I bought the modem, and went to sign up. Which brought me to this page on their web site:

This is the error screen you get when you don’t fill in the address fields. Which aren’t marked as being required.

But after using their Broadband2Go app, I can see that having a polished UI experience isn’t high on their priority list. I’m just hoping the Sprint-provided service works as well as with my old WiMax setup.

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