Cell phone service

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Sleepydoc99
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2018 10:51 am

Cell phone service

Post by Sleepydoc99 » Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:39 am

Fellow bogleheads, I’ve had Verizon service for a decade. Due to some corporate changes, I’m looking to switch off the company plan. I can choose any personal plan

Here are my criteria:
1. Extremely reliable. I like Verizon for this
2. Must have at least 3GB data/month.
3. Minimal hassles
4. Ideally cheaper than Verizon which is my gold standard

Anyone use tracfone? Or something else they like?
I hear tracfone is a Verizon MVNO. I have new iPhone 11 pro max to switch over.

Thanks in advance for your help.

tazaman
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Feb 07, 2018 11:34 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by tazaman » Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:49 am

I have been using Visible (which is actually Verizon)

https://www.cnet.com/how-to/is-verizon- ... p-removed/

Unlimited data, text, talk. Its been reliable for me for the past year. only $40 per month (this includes all fees/taxes)

https://www.visible.com/

They mail you the sim card in the mail.

surfstar
Posts: 1946
Joined: Fri Sep 13, 2013 12:17 pm
Location: Santa Barbara, CA

Re: Cell phone service

Post by surfstar » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:02 am

I was also going to say "Visible"
Get 4 family/friends together and I believe it is $25ea
Also they are running a $100/$200 promotion to switch, right now. It would require all of us to get new phones, so we're staying with Cricket (same $25, for unlimited 4 lines, but AT&T vs VZW network)

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friar1610
Posts: 1620
Joined: Sat Nov 29, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: MA South Shore

Re: Cell phone service

Post by friar1610 » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:05 am

Other than cell phones that came with my jobs (I'm long retired), I've never had anything other than a TracFone. It has met my needs just fine although I am not a heavy cell phone user. With my current smartphone, I can make all the calls I need to, email, text and access the web either by wifi when in a hot spot or via TracFone's mobile data. I do most of this stuff from home and just use the TracFone when I'm traveling or out doing errands. As a result, I've built up over 2,000 minutes over the years that I may never use. (If I'm sitting in a coffee shop I may surf mindlessly if there is wifi but don't bother if I would have to use mobile data - I hold that for things I really need to do.) Consequently, I spend less than $100/yr on minutes and that's only because the time period is up, not because I need more minutes. If I were a bigger user I might want something else but TracFone has been fine for me.
Friar1610

Cosmic Pony
Posts: 34
Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:56 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Cosmic Pony » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:18 am

Check out Consumer Cellular. Uses the ATT Network but much cheaper. Only downside so far is that you can't use is outside the states.

https://www.consumercellular.com/

Kids tease me because they position the company as being for retirees (old people). (They give an AARP discount.) But they don't complain when I pay their bill every month.

yohac
Posts: 232
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2018 1:42 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by yohac » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:57 am

I had Tracfone on Verizon for awhile. Had cell coverage everywhere, but once when I was traveling and really needed data, it wasn't there. Just one data point of course, and who knows, maybe "real" Verizon would have had the same issue. I just don't expect absolutely the same experience everywhere on an MVNO that I would get from the parent network.

classicindexer
Posts: 76
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 10:43 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by classicindexer » Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:29 pm

If you’re a Comcast Xfinity Internet customer, Xfinity Mobile is $30/mon for 3 GB of data/unlimited text/unlimited phone calls before taxes and fees. They’re a Verizon MVNO. You can probably bring your current phone to them (they’ll mail you a SIM card), there’s an option to check your current IMEI on their web site.

https://www.xfinity.com/mobile/plan

squirm
Posts: 2068
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 11:53 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by squirm » Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:00 pm

Just use mint.

02nz
Posts: 3224
Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2018 3:17 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by 02nz » Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:14 pm

Red Pocket is good and offers a choice of any of the 4 carriers. But their highest plan on Verizon is 2GB (throttled thereafter). There’s a 5GB plan that works on Sprint or ATT. Or go with Mint which is on TMo and offers a 3GB plan.

fru-gal
Posts: 1369
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:48 pm
Location: New England

Re: Cell phone service

Post by fru-gal » Sun Nov 03, 2019 3:52 pm

Cosmic Pony wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:18 am
Check out Consumer Cellular. Uses the ATT Network but much cheaper. Only downside so far is that you can't use is outside the states.

https://www.consumercellular.com/

Kids tease me because they position the company as being for retirees (old people). (They give an AARP discount.) But they don't complain when I pay their bill every month.
CC also uses Tmobile, the customer can choose which they want.

Invest4lt
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Invest4lt » Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:07 pm

TMobile 55+ Plan has unlimited text, data and talk. Two lines $60, including all taxes and fees. Plus international calling and WiFi call. I think they can throttle data speeds at some point around 36 gigabytes. Btw, only one line needs to be for someone over 55. No age restrictions for the second line.

LSLover
Posts: 191
Joined: Thu May 19, 2016 1:39 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by LSLover » Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:09 pm

Invest4lt wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:07 pm
TMobile 55+ Plan has unlimited text, data and talk. Two lines $60, including all taxes and fees. Plus international calling and WiFi call. I think they can throttle data speeds at some point around 36 gigabytes. Btw, only one line needs to be for someone over 55. No age restrictions for the second line.
It’s now $70...

jbuzolich
Posts: 338
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2014 9:52 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by jbuzolich » Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:46 pm

We've been on Total Wireless for a couple years now which is a TracFone company and use the Verizon towers. Two lines are just under $60 total with taxes included on auto pay. Unlimited calls and texts with I think 15Gb data to share but I read they are upgrading that to unlimited data for the same price soon. Data throttle somewhere out at a level way beyond what we use.

Rattlesnake
Posts: 183
Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2008 4:43 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Rattlesnake » Sun Nov 03, 2019 5:01 pm

We travel to Canada 5-6 months each year or so to the cottage and have stayed with Verizon for the plan... Roam off Rogers or Tellus there... If you stay in the States this is not a consideration.... Just my $0.02....
9th Infantry Division LRRP (Ranger) | 1968-69

Bitzer
Posts: 171
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:25 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Bitzer » Sun Nov 03, 2019 5:50 pm

@friar1610 You can purchase one year of service (without adding any minutes, texts or data) on TracFone for $50

I've been using TracFone for years and never had any problems. Data speeds may have been throttled in the past compared to "real" Verizon service, but I believe they no longer are.

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TexasPE
Posts: 247
Joined: Sat Feb 17, 2018 8:41 pm
Location: Southeast Texas

Re: Cell phone service

Post by TexasPE » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:16 am

Sleepydoc99 wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:39 am
Fellow bogleheads, I’ve had Verizon service for a decade. Due to some corporate changes, I’m looking to switch off the company plan. I can choose any personal plan

Here are my criteria:
1. Extremely reliable. I like Verizon for this
2. Must have at least 3GB data/month.
3. Minimal hassles
4. Ideally cheaper than Verizon which is my gold standard

Anyone use tracfone? Or something else they like?
I hear tracfone is a Verizon MVNO. I have new iPhone 11 pro max to switch over.

Thanks in advance for your help.
Purchased this a month ago with good results (the eBay seller is TracFone, which owns Net10)...

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Net10-Prepaid- ... 2749.l2649

looks like it addresses your needs - Verizon network, 5gb data, took one hour to make the switch to my Verizon Samsung S7. $20/ month all-in... no hidden/ extra charges.
At 20: I cared what everyone thought about me | At 40: I didn't give a damn what anyone thought of me | Now that I'm 60: I realize that no one was really thinking about me at all | Winston Churchill (?)

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jeffyscott
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Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 9:12 am
Location: Wisconsin

Re: Cell phone service

Post by jeffyscott » Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:23 am

02nz wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 1:14 pm
Red Pocket is good and offers a choice of any of the 4 carriers. But their highest plan on Verizon is 2GB (throttled thereafter). There’s a 5GB plan that works on Sprint or ATT. Or go with Mint which is on TMo and offers a 3GB plan.
I have never looked at their higher end plans before, but it looks like the $30 per month one does give 3 GB of LTE on Verizon network (CDMA). But is there really much difference in coverage between Verizon, ATT, and T-Mobile anymore? One thing about Red Pocket is there are weird differences in available features depending on network, such as VoLTE is not available on ATT and WiFi calling is only available on T-Mobile.

I know little about it, but since the OP is an iPhone person, I understand that may add additional complications in choosing an MVNO.
Sleepydoc99 wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:39 am
I hear tracfone is a Verizon MVNO. I have new iPhone 11 pro max to switch over.
I don't think Tracfone is necessarily Verizon. About 100 years ago, when we had that I think it could be either Verizon or ATT, I don't know what networks they currently use or how they decide.
Time is your friend; impulse is your enemy. - John C. Bogle

Pigeon
Posts: 264
Joined: Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:50 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Pigeon » Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:46 am

I have never looked at their higher end plans before, but it looks like the $30 per month one does give 3 GB of LTE on Verizon network (CDMA). But is there really much difference in coverage between Verizon, ATT, and T-Mobile anymore?
It depends on where you are. Where I live, there is still a very significant difference between Verizon and T-Mobile, to the point where the latter is nearly useless.

Invest4lt
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by Invest4lt » Mon Nov 04, 2019 10:41 am

LSLover wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:09 pm
Invest4lt wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:07 pm
TMobile 55+ Plan has unlimited text, data and talk. Two lines $60, including all taxes and fees. Plus international calling and WiFi call. I think they can throttle data speeds at some point around 36 gigabytes. Btw, only one line needs to be for someone over 55. No age restrictions for the second line.
It’s now $70...
That’s correct. Looks like my rate is grandfathered in. The rate includes a $10.00 statement credit per month if you sign up for automatic payments.

synthfan23
Posts: 181
Joined: Wed Feb 20, 2019 11:36 am

Re: Cell phone service

Post by synthfan23 » Mon Nov 04, 2019 11:57 am

Now sure if it ticks *all* your boxes. But it does for me, several Bogleheads, & Clark Howard (I think): Mint Mobile. You'd have to be content with being on T-Mobile's network; which is inferior to AT&Ts, Verizon's, TracFone (best coverage I've ever had nationwide as, I believe, they rent space on several excellent networks). Hope this helps. I've been a mostly-happy Mint Mobile customer. Coverage can suck. But I needed to be able to tether my MacBook air--and TracFone, last I checked, didn't offer tethering.

If you're an Android-person (my wife keeps handing-me-down iPhones so that's all I use now) & need tethering, someone here on a thread I'd started recommended getting a cheap-as-hell Android phone & going with... aw hell I don't recall. I'll probably take that advice once I relocate the thread / recommendation, exclusively for tethering.

But first I have around 2 yrs of "Service Hours" left with TracFone & a crap-load of talk-time / texts. So I'll probably purchase, or get for free, a flip-phone & used that before I get an Android phone & use another no-name carrier for tethering.
Sleepydoc99 wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:39 am
Fellow bogleheads, I’ve had Verizon service for a decade. Due to some corporate changes, I’m looking to switch off the company plan. I can choose any personal plan

Here are my criteria:
1. Extremely reliable. I like Verizon for this
2. Must have at least 3GB data/month.
3. Minimal hassles
4. Ideally cheaper than Verizon which is my gold standard

Anyone use tracfone? Or something else they like?
I hear tracfone is a Verizon MVNO. I have new iPhone 11 pro max to switch over.

Thanks in advance for your help.

User avatar
peseta
Posts: 122
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2015 11:40 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by peseta » Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:27 pm

I tried Visible and am not a fan. Way too much data depriortization. I live in the DC area, where most government phones use Verizon, so your experience may be different in another city. The good news is that they were giving away a $100 gift card to try 2 months' service, so it wasn't a total loss.

I went with this deal (AT&T prepaid), which is a good one: https://www.cnet.com/news/at-ts-secret- ... ally-good/

peseta

aristotelian
Posts: 6824
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:05 pm

Re: Cell phone service

Post by aristotelian » Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:56 pm

Mint Mobile has been great for me. It uses T-Mobile's network, which some people hate but is fine for me. 3GB for $15/month if you buy a year in advance. You can do a trial to make sure it works in your area. The only time I've had an issue is a stretch of I-77 between Beckley and Charlotte in the mountains.

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