In a direct shot at its lesser competitors, Verizon Wireless announced today the launch of a new $50 unlimited plan for pre-paid customers. Available starting this Thursday, the unlimited talk, text and web option'll rollout to all of the operator's retail locations, in addition to Walmart, Best Buy and Target. Users who opt for the plan won't get their pick of high-end smartphones, and will, instead, have to choose from a selection of four feature phones from LG, Samsung and Pantech. The move could seriously undercut growth for Sprint -- which operates Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile -- as well as smaller operators, like MetroPCS, that count pre-paid users as the majority of their customer base. It's not really an even fight, but with fellow industry titan AT&T already offering a similar non-contracted service, all's fair in this messy wireless war.

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Verizon intros $50 unlimited plan, takes a swing at pre-paid operators