Author Topic: Who can find the best value cell phone plan???  (Read 1054 times)

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Offline WhiteShepherd

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Who can find the best value cell phone plan???
« on: February 20, 2013, 05:16:10 pm »
Well here in the US cell phone companies have a monopoly meaning they do not have to compete on price.  In fact they often raise their rates twice a year after contract.  When I got into cell phone the average cell rate (call/text/data was around $30).  Now it's often over 100$.

Case in point I have a grandfathered 10+ yr old T-mobile plan that is $59 for 2 phones (includes phone subsidy).  Unlimited calling on wi-fi home and work (actual UMA and not Google voice) and 1000 min of roaming.  However they recently dropped coverage in my area leaving me to contemplate is there any possible way I can get close to the same service for near the same price?  It's so bad when I explained my old plan to a AT&T rep I was rudely (with a friend) kicked out of the AT&T store because he did not believe I was telling him the truth on my T-mobile price and "There is nothing close to that price anywhere.". 

I did some research and found MNVOs!

Enter MNVOs standing for Mobile Virtual Operators http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobile_virtual_network_operator.  These are large companies that buy their voice and data from the big 3 cell providers in large bulk at a discount then resell that service to individuals at a discount. 

Looking for a replacement phone service I have narrowed it down to 3 MNVOs so far with the best price/service value.

1) Straight Talk for AT&T service (they also have T-mobile)
Plan1) $45/month unlimited talk/text/2gb data.
Pros: Bring your own phone.

2) Page Plus for Verizon service
Plan1) $12/month 250 min/month, 250 texts, 10MB data
Plan2) $29/month 1200 min/month, 3000 texts/mms, 250mb/data
Plan3) $39 Unlimited talk/text-mms/200 mb data
Plan4) $55 Unlimited talk/text/2gb data
Plan5) $65 Unlimited talk/text/5gb data
Pros: Bring your own phone

3) Republic Wireless for Sprint service
Plan1) $19 Unlimited Talk/text/2gb data
Cons: Must buy their android phone for $249 + sprint has more limited coverage

Republic wireless is very tempting.  But Verizon has much better coverage then sprint.  So I think I'm going to switch to Page Plus $29 plan.  I'm on wi-fi most of the day and only use Google navigate data on the road so 250mb will be more than enough.

I plan to wait a few more weeks to research as much as I can.  So anyone else find a really good plan?  If so post it here for others to see!

  WhiteShepherd
IRC quotes:

[05:01] <Kai_Misou> We cats sleep when we want and where we want.
[05:01] <WhiteShep> We dogs sleep WHEN we can. :/
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Offline Alsek

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Re: Who can find the best value cell phone plan???
« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2013, 12:19:02 pm »
WS,

The only thing that comes to mind is that you should look up carier reviews for your specific area.

Where i used to live in Texas?  At&t had amazing reception everywhere you went an sprint was laughable.  Where i live now?   When i had at&t here i would lose signal in the middle of the city out in te open...   While my sprint phone gets bars almost anywhere.

Offline Mylo

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Re: Who can find the best value cell phone plan???
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2013, 12:45:16 pm »
WS,

The only thing that comes to mind is that you should look up carier reviews for your specific area.

Where i used to live in Texas?  At&t had amazing reception everywhere you went an sprint was laughable.  Where i live now?   When i had at&t here i would lose signal in the middle of the city out in te open...   While my sprint phone gets bars almost anywhere.

I second this.  AT&T is amazing when I'm back in Texas, but in Boston, it is absolutely awful.  I get at least one dropped call for every three.

As for wireless resellers, the only one I've used is TracFone.  Those phones would get service anywhere (because they used AT&T and T-Mobile I think).  See who gets best service in your area. 

Offline WhiteShepherd

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Re: Who can find the best value cell phone plan???
« Reply #3 on: February 25, 2013, 12:08:43 pm »
I've decided to try Ting.com they have no overages and you pay for what you use. You pay $6/phone then pay for usage.  If you use wifi a lot and you're light on data they are really inexpensive.   Like Tracphone they buy their time from Verizon and Sprint so their voice/text covers both carriers (very good).

For a family plan of two phones 1000min, 100 text, and 100MB data (I only use data for Goggle navigate and a few web lookups) I'd pay $36 for the whole family plan.  Often we are under 500 min so on those months we would pay: $27 (for the whole family plan!).  I could lower the bill to $24 if we use Goggle voice for text messages. ;)

Here is a breakdown of their charges:  https://ting.com/plans

All phones on the family plan come out of this pool of min/text/data.  So for families who are intelligent wifi users they can save a quite a bit of money.   They have really good customer reviews.  So when my phone arrives I'll run some tests around the state and report back with the service/quality. :)

  WhiteShepherd
IRC quotes:

[05:01] <Kai_Misou> We cats sleep when we want and where we want.
[05:01] <WhiteShep> We dogs sleep WHEN we can. :/
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Offline WhiteShepherd

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Re: Who can find the best value cell phone plan???
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2013, 11:36:45 pm »
Been using Ting and the coverage is great.  I also added Groove IP Android app to my phone which lets me use Google voice for free VOIP calling when my phone is connected to wifi.  This plan will not work for everyone especially those who use a lot of data (non-wifi).  But for me it looks like this months bill will be less then $27 for two phones with voice/text/data.  Better than what I was paying. 

Anyone else switch to a plan/provider they found really good?
IRC quotes:

[05:01] <Kai_Misou> We cats sleep when we want and where we want.
[05:01] <WhiteShep> We dogs sleep WHEN we can. :/
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