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Tracfone have just introduced selling people ust a Sim card IOW; bring your own device regardless of what it is....well, not quite - if I understand it correctly it must be a GSM phone seeing that sim cards generally are linked only to the GSM technology. This means total coverage with both AT&T, and T-Mobile's 3G 4G networks, using the device of your preference, at tracfone's rates.
StraightTalk/Net10 are great options. Unlimited text/minutes/data (not technically unlimited data) for $45.
Walmart Family Mobile has some amazing prices on family plans (runs off of tmobile's network).
Cricket offers unlimited talk for $35 a month. This is the best deal so far.
It's not true that no-contract phones are only for people who don't use their phones often. It's not your dad's prepaid anymore!There are great plans for basic communicators at payLo by Virgin Mobile, for those who talk. But for those who want a smartphone and use their phone for EVERYTHING, real value is available on Virgin Mobile [unlimited data plans start at $35/month].
True but limited minutes on talk on that plan.
8x8 offers the same plan vonage offers (for less), but you can add a toll free number, music on hold and voicemail to email notification. imagine placing phone calls from your smart phone and your outbound caller ID shows a toll free number. firstname.lastname@example.org or 877 341-1442
8x8 Virtual Office
we give referrals $100 per phone extension. if you find a law office with 10 phones, we'll give you $1000 after 60 days. a check, not credit
Actually, half of this article has some errors. The minimum rate for just voice only with TING is $9, not $3. Checking with their website, I see there's a flat $6 per month charge for each device you use and you have to have at least one. Then you tack on the flat charges for voice, text and data. Figuring with just some basic minimums (5 minutes of voice, 5 texts, 5 webpages/emails per day) TING monthly rates vs. my current Virgin Mobile paygo are actually higher by 8 bucks. VM offer unlimited text and data with 300 minutes of voice for $25 and the phones are cheaper. Next: The REPUBLIC WIRELESS plan is just for one model phone at the moment and with the upfront $199, it would take over a year and a half to even start to be cheaper than the Virgin mobile paygo, so I can't see any reason for any switches mentioned here.
Yeah, as much as I was hopeful that I'd be saving some money by going with another option I didn't see anything that would work for me. I'm sticking with Virgin Mobile's unlimited Beyond Talk plan. Ting ended up costing more & I take solace knowing that there is no limit to reach. Republic Wireless is saying their sign-up is full & when I checked a couple of months back when sign-up was open there was no Philadelphia, PA coverage (which is strange since they use Sprints network. The same as Virgin Mobile who I'm currently with). So looks like I'm staying put...for now. Hopefully someone ended up benefiting from this article.
I don't think this article was written for those of you with pay as you go plans. I think this was written for those people like myself, that pay $200 a month for 2 phone lines, where you are required to have 1500 minutes a month (that is the least amount you can have) and an unlimited everything plan as well as a $10 fee (per phone) for having a smart phone. This was mainly for Sprint and Verizon users and any other phone company that makes you pay an outrageous amount for using there service. However, after reading this, you can bet that I am definately going to haggle, because between the 2 of us, we only use about 300-400 minutes a month, so there is no reason to make us have 1500. That is just crazy!
For those who want free phone service, check out google Voice. They can offer you free VOIP calls. Complete this with a sweet little device that you can buy to have a house phone OBItalk . com can offer a great savings.
I got a Magic Jack + for Christmas and it's great! You hook one end to your ethernet cable and the other to your wall outlet, stick your phone into the other end and you're in business! I have 5 extension phones in the house hooked to this, and don't have to have the computer on. Just like having a landline without the payment. It's like $19.99 a year! People should try this, I think they'll like it!
I just purchased a phone and Unlimited Plan from Platinum Mobile, I got 3 months of Unlimited Talk, Text and Web for only $40 a month! Their customer service was awesome, I was also able to keep my phone number and so far I am really happy with their service, which is also on the Sprint Network. Check them out www.platinummobile.com
The coverage stinks in my area of NC, I would like to find a good one in my neck of the woods.
The author completely missed alternatives like Puretalk and MySimpleMobile. I use my Android-3600 and my MX-31WT with these services (they use AT&T) and I pay $10 a month for my talking and texting. They have all-you-can-eat plans for $40 and I own my phones, none of this subsidy and contract stuff.
Buy your own GSM unlocked phone and go with a cell wholesale provider like I mentioned above and you're set and saving a ton of money.
Yeah, well, guess what. If you have a satellite connection for your internet, VOIP will NOT work. So that's out. I can't fax, use VOIP or Oovoo, GoogleTalk, or Yahoo voice beings I have a satellite connection. Can't WAIT til cable gets hi-speed internet out here and my contract with DIRECTV is finally up.
WOW! Amazing too have mentioned not using a GPS mapping service (usually Navigator) if you don't need it. Google maps is FREE GPS navigation so no need for that expensive app!
Btw Appolicious is trash. It insists on having access to your email contacts and more. So happens my Yahoo email doesn't have any contacts however it's beyond intrusive.
My cellphone bill runs around $40/year.
- Pay as you go: you don't need to go around with your phone glued to the side of your head (and I've noted that people who do most often don't pay attention to what's going on around them.)
- Don't use your cellphone as your primary contact. Let's face it - NO ONE is that busy. And, if you're that important, you probably have someone to answer phones for you.
- Don't give cellphones to minors, that's just gagging for trouble. I still can't figure out why the average ten-year-old would have need of a cellphone or pager.
- No data plan. I don't need news while I'm out and about, I don't care about sports, I'll save online stuff for when I get home or when I can get to a Wi-Fi hotspot and fire up my tablet (even that doesn't happen very often - most email can wait until I get home again.)
- "Just because you have it doesn't mean you have to use it." Why don't I have a phone plan? The lowest ones I see run about 500 minutes/month, and I'm not on all phones combined that much in the space of a year! Why pay for time I don't need?
- Emergency comms. The few people who have the number who are not directly related to me have MD, DO, or PhD after their names. And have instructions that it's for emergencies only.
- Convenience. I have the cellphone for MY convenience, NOT yours. Deal. If you were supposed to have the number, I'd have given it to you already.
- Voicemail. I don't have it. I don't like paying for other people to leave me messages - especially since cellphone numbers are 'recycled' and the messages I've gotten have been more wrong numbers than anything else.
I'd like to see the pay-as-you-go costs drop (I've got to pay about $40/year, but probably only use half of that...) but $40/year is a far cry better than the $80/month I hear people complaining about!
(Ex: When I was in college the second time, I was walking across the quad between classes. I walked past one side of a conversation - some teenage girl complaining about how much she paid for cell service. Thirty seconds later, i walked past what sounded like the other end of the same conversation.
(Having a couple of minutes, I stopped and watched. I hate being right - the two linked up and kept talking to each other - ON THE PHONE - while walking not two feet apart. I must be missing something...)
I agree completely with every one of your points.
Would you mind specifying how to get even minimal phone service for $40/yr? Best I've found (for emergencies only for my elderly mother) is $20 every 3 months with Virgin Mobile prepaid = $80/yr.
I have had T-mobile "pay as you go" for several years - my having a cellphone is a holdover from being a caretaker for my mother-in-law.
Once you've spent $100 on the phone, your minutes are valid for one year. You have to top up once every three months - take the $10 fill. $10 on quarter over one year is $40 per year.
If I use the phone a bit more, I pay a bit more - about the most I've spent on cell service with this is $140 in one year - that was the last year my MIL was alive, and she was in and out of the hospital - I was always co-ordinating activity, staying in touch with the hospital and doctors, and the like. That's STILL better than spending even $30 a month (which is $360/year,) which is tolerable.
Really, the single biggest factor in controlling cellphone costs is controlling airtime - you pay for airtime incoming and outgoing. That's why I've also deactivated my voicemail and texting - the only text messages I get are when I check to see what my balance is, if I've been using my cellphone a lot (and that doesn't happen very often.)
Control access, control traffic, and you control the bill. It's largely a matter of attitude in use.
The best way to lower your cell phone bill is to switch to Revol. $35 per month for unlimited calls anytime, unlimited texts and data, no contracts. Only suckers pay for minutes or sign a contract!
I have page plus cellular in my area, it runs off of Verizon towers, which is what I need where I live, they have several plans to choose from, I currently have the 1200 anytime minutes, 3000 text, and 100 mg of web all for $29.95 (flat)
I have Googletalk and Ftalk installed on my computer. All of my friends and family know that we can now do web chats for free. I do have a prepaid phone for which I spend $80 per year. Can't get much cheaper than that!
Virgin Mobile uses Sprint and has decent phones. Get a Samsung 575 at Best Buy for 70 bucks and get 1500 mins, 1500 texts, and 30 mb of data for 30 dollars a month. You dont get coverage in the sticks, but any decent sized town has ok coverage.
This is easy enough....stop buying new phones every six months!
Or just go old school like me and just have a unlimited minutes, text and email account.
By old school I mean a year ago!
I have BOOST MOBILE they have a $50 per month unlimited plan with shrinkage which means for every 6 months of on time payments your bills drops $5 until you reach $35 they have a great selection of phones and you can choose between two network IDEN(Nextel) or CDMA(Sprint) I have been with this company for 5 years and I am very happy with them they have great customer service
I've been with T-Mobile since 2001 and locked in to a 1000 min, free txt, plan with two lines. My android has WiFi, so I don't use a data plan. My cost is $49 per month. I haven't come across anything better than that to date.
Since I'm not interested in turning my phone into a toy, I think my solution is best. I have no access to the internet. The only thing
my phone can do is make a phone call. Yeah!!!!
I'm in on the Republic Beta, and it is the best thing to hit cell phones since cell phones!
Because there's plenty of options in the cell phone world there would not be one service that trumps them all, they all have pros and cons, it's all about choose the one that works best for you. I use AT&T's Go Phone $50 a month plan that's unlimited talk and text (which comes in handy w/ my gf) and basic web. I'm not a mobile internet person so any internet I need I just find the nearest computer or wi-fi area. Plus their service isn't best everywhere but what matters to me is it's best in my area. Do your research, make a priority list of things you want in a carrier, then go out and look for it. You are online right now aren't you?
Choose the service that fits your needs. Most other providers don't have coverage out East where my family lives, if it wasn't for that I'd have something like Boost or Virgin.
Thanks for including Ting in this article. We noticed a lot of people coming from your site to ours by way of this piece so we decided to share a few more thoughts on the subject on the Ting blog: https://ting.com/blog/five-extreme-ways-to-lower-your-cell-phone-bill/
Have you heard of Solavei yet?
My family just switched from a very limited plan with AT&T, where I used TextPlus to Solavei. I now get UNLIMITED voice, text, & data for only $49/month...and the price will only go down!
I brought my unlocked iPhone and even with breaking my husband's contract (ATT paid $100 of the Early Term Fee, crazy!), we will still be saving more, plus now I get to text & surf as much as I want. Added bonus, I finally get cell service in the grocery store!! (great reception...uses T-mobile towers)
Check it out: www.solavei.com/savecashnow
Contact me if you have any questions. I'm a frugal momma who loves sharing good deals with others!
Nice article. I'm planning to switch to pay as you go once my contract ends. I'm on ATT and plan to swtich to Airvoice which uses ATT's towers and I can bring my existing ATT phone to them. It's only 10c/minute and 10c/text and reportedly has good customer service. ATT has a feature on their site that show graphs of your monthly use(text, data, talk) and I rarely send text messages, rarely use data, and usually don't talk more than 1hr/month. The math looks good to me.
I also limit my use too in that I'm not on the phone all the time, I only text back and forth with my wife, and don't find the idea of surfing the web on a tiny phone screen all that appealing. The only time I've ever used web on my phone is when we had a huricane and the power was out, so I checked the power company webpage on it to see if any progress was made towards restoration.
One other thing that should be mentioned is coverage. I find the idea of Republic wireless to be intriguing, but Sprint's coverage is absolutely terrible here in fact, my mother in law has Virgin mobile(also runs on Sprint) and when she visits, her phone barely works and in fact, doesn't work at all in our house because according to the maps on their site, we sit right in the middle of a Sprint coverage hole and there are alot of those around here. If it ran on anything but Sprint, I might be interested.
Cell Phone Bills are pain and trying to manage them when you have more than 1 on your phone bill is next to impossible. I found a company that is new to the industry but allows you to use your existing cell phones at http://www.nocontractsmartphoneservice.com
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