Social networking startup Sonopia is offering you the chance to start your own Mobile Virtual Network Operator through their website at sonopia.com. I spent some time playing around on the site and designing (though not launching) a Sonopia of my own, and honestly I'm still not 100% clear on how it works.
Basically you can create your owned themed "Sonopia," or social community and launch both a Web site and cellular service provider under your theme. Sonopia leases network bandwith from Verizon, so any customers who sign up for your service will be using Verizon phones on Verizon's network. But they'll also be getting custom content that you create around your theme (sports fans info, knitting tips, recipes, etc).
Seems like the idea is that you create and publish content both to your website and to your mobile deck (i.e. your user's mobile phones), and the more appealing your content, the more people who sign up for your MVNO ... and the more people who sign up, the more commissions you earn. Just like a real service provider - except that Sonopia does all of the back end work and also takes a cut of every penny you make.
I got most of the way through setting up my first Sonopia but balked at actually launching mobile service. Why? First, I wasn't sure exactly what, if anything, I might be putting myself at risk for, or exactly how much I stood to earn per customer activation. And second, the phone choices are pretty limited (and kind of lame) at this point. I know the RAZR is still really popular, but there's no way I'm launching with it as my top of the line handset!
Read more at; sonopia.com