With prepaid plans, you pay ahead of time instead of at the end of each billing cycle. Prepaid plans let you get wireless service without a credit check, and you're not tied to any contract. The challenge is that there are a lot of prepaid carriers — including many you've likely never heard of — touting a lot of plans.
They also have their own limitations to mobile hotspots, video streaming resolution, and data for tablets and wearables. So to help you figure out what's what, here's a quick rundown of how the current crop of unlimited plans match up. You can scroll down for the full head-to-head.
Virgin Mobile is owned by Sprint and runs on its network. Fortunately, however, Virgin customers benefit from the same level of network performance as direct Sprint customers. That said, Virgin customers are still subject to the same data deprioritization threshold as Sprint users — up to 23GB of high-speed data per cycle before your speeds are throttled.
Customers get access to one of those networks for talk, text and data. Key takeaway: This is the lowest-performing category in the wireless industry and includes the biggest brands. T-Mobile ranks 1 for customer satisfaction for its value and ease of billing, while Sprint finishes last.
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There are lots of options available in the US, from low-cost prepaid plans to traditional two-year contracts and early-upgrade programs. The basics of reception, cost, and phone availability still apply though. I'll go over the different types of plans and highlight my picks for the best of each option.
Compare Metro and Cricket Wireless plans below using our comparison table. You can compare plans by price, features, number of lines, and smartphone compatibility. For example, if you need 2 lines with 1 GB of data each, you would select 2 GB of data with the data slider below. The answer is a bit more nuanced than just one or the other.
Are you tired of forking over the big bucks for a cell phone with a data, talk, and text plan? Luckily, the days of outrageous cell phone bills could be almost over. According to new data, it appears that increased competition from discount carriers has been pushing the price of cell phone plans down over the last few years.