How to Find the Best No Contract Smartphone Plans in 2015 – Part 2

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Last updated 8/14/2015

  

This is the second part of our How to Find the Best No Contract Smartphone Plan 2015 article.

NET10 Wireless

Net10-Logo

Tracfone owns NET10 Wireless. NET10 Wireless has more plans but not the latest Smartphones like its sister company, Straight Talk. NET10 has family plans available.

Coverage – Uses all four networks (CDMA + GSM) depending on the phone and your area.

Best Plans –Unlimited monthly plans. $35/mo Unlimited Talk, Text, and Web (up to 500MB high-speed); $50 gets you 5GB of high-speed data. $5 off discount each month when you sign up for auto-pay - No Contract Smartphone Plans.

Smartphone Selection – A small variety of phones including the Samsung Galaxy S6, but no iPhones.

Bring Your Own – Allows certain GSM and CDMA Smartphones to be brought over.

NET10 is best when:

  • On a budget
  • Want unlimited with a good mix of smartphone selections

Smartphone Deals

  • Samsung Galaxy S7 Unlocked No Contract Smartphone Sale $799.99$628.99Save: $171.00 (21%)eBay

    Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge NoContract Phone Sale $628.99 + Free Shipping

    Over 100 sold. eBay (newegg, 16,000 feedback) has the very popular Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge Unlocked No Contract Smartphone Sale Priced in Black, Silver or Gold only for $628.99 + Free Shipping. Tax in CA, NJ, TN,IL. Save up to $250 off a carrier store when you factor in tax. $741 at amazon. International version.

    This is good for AT&T, T-Mobile and other No contract smartphone plans.

    This big brother and chief rival to the iPhone 6S, this S7 Edge is probably one of the best Android Smartphone out today, with a dual edge 5.5" screen. This has more storage, 32GB than past phones. Up to 21 hours of talk time. Fast 8-core processor and large 5.1in screen. No removable battery or memory card.

    In the article, iPhone vs. Android: Making the best Choice, we compare the differences between the iPhone and Android phones.

    S7 Edge Review:

    The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge includes a new stylish look with better feel. New and improved 12Mpixel camera with auto HDR, 4K Ultra HD video recording. New Waterproof protection, Ultra Power Saving Mode. Cnet Review

    Important Information:

    Perfect for T-Mobile, StraightTalk or AT&T Wireless. Add a line or replace and older phone.

    Consider purchasing an unlocked cell phone if you are on AT&T or T-Mobile and want a new Smartphone without a contract. Unlocked Smartphones allow you to subscribe to low cost carriers mentioned below and function internationally, so you can use the same phone abroad.

    Learn: No-Contract Plans, Unlocked Smartphones

    Choosing the right plan for you is time consuming and can also be a hassle. We've done the research and you may save over $1,000 each year! Be sure to check out our no-contract Smartphone plan article: How to Find the Best No Contract Smartphone Plans where we compare all of the major network carriers. Check out our How to Buy an Unlocked Smartphones article to learn what it means to have an "Unlocked" Smartphone.

    Low Cost Service Plan with Unlimited Talk, Text, and Data

    T-Mobile offers a web exclusive pre-paid plan great for unlocked phones:

    • $30/mo for Unlimited Web & Text with 100 Minutes Talk

    Straight Talk, a prepaid carrier that is owned by Tracfone and Wal-mart, sells micro SIM cards for the that cost $14.99 + Free Shipping.  You can pop these into any AT&T-compatible, T-Mobile-compatible, or unlocked GSM phone.

    • $45 a month buys you unlimited talk, text and data with no contract or credit check.

    Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge SM-G935F Specifications

    • 5.5-inch Full HD Super AMOLED touchscreen display (2560 x 1440 pixels)
    • Fingerprint sensor, Samsung Pay and Corning Gorilla Glass 4
    • 8 Cores: Quad-core 2.6 GHz Mongoose + quad-core 1.6 GHz Cortex-A53
    • 4 GB RAM
    • 32GB built in storage
    • 12MPixel camera w/ 4K video capture - 5Mpixel rear camera
    • Bluetooth 4.0
    • MicroSD Card Slot for upto 200GB more storage
    • Android 6 Marshmallow
    • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, hotspot (Depends on carrier support)
    • Near Field Communication (NFC) for transactions, data exchanges and other short-range wireless interaction.
    • Built in IR Blaster
    • 5.36 ounces
    • Supported Frequencies
      2G : 850/900/1800/1900
      3G : 850/900/1900/2100
      4G : LTE: B1(2100), B2(1900), B3(1800), B4(AWS), B5(850), B7(2600), B8(900), B12(700), B17(700), B18(800), B19(800), B20(800), B26(800)
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    Sales tax in: Depends on seller
    Posted: April 29, 2016 2:16 PM PDT


Ting

ting

Ting uses the Sprint Network (CDMA) and lets you customize your account with different levels of talk, text, and web plus a $6 monthly fee. Roaming onto Verizon and other networks with no extra cost.

Coverage – Uses Sprint Network. Not the best.

Best Plans –Customizable based on your needs. Reports a $23 average monthly bill per device for its customers.

Smartphone Selection – Decent variety including various Motorola and HTC phones along with different generations of the Samsung Galaxy and iPhone.

Bring Your OwnCurrent list - Works with many Sprint Phones except Blackberry, PTT, +WebOS. Does not work with GSM Phones. Some iPhones are in beta.

Ting is best when:

  • You are on a budget
  • You are consistent with your monthly usage

Freedom Pop

freedom-pop-logo

FreedomPop offers a variety of devices where you pay for the device and get Free monthly allotment of Data. For example: Freedom Pop now offer smartphones like the HTC EVO 4G ($179). The phone comes with a Basic 200 monthly plan for Free every month. The plan includes 200 Voice minutes, 500 Texts, 500MB 4G/3G Data on the Sprint network.

Freedom Pop also offers an Unlimited Talk and Text with 500MB for a low $11/Month.

Coverage - Okay to very good depending on your area. We have experienced dead spots. Check their coverage maps

Best Plan - Free!

Smartphone Selection - 6 different phone options--slightly older versions of phones like the HTC Evo 4G or Samsung Galaxy S2 through 4. They also have hotspots and tablets.

Bring your device - You need to buy a phone or mobile hotspot from them. Other phones will not work.

Freedom Pop is best when:

  • You want to pay once and get Free Monthly Service
  • Willing to pay for Freedom Pop devices
  • Looking to get some extra data without having to pay a lot out of pocket each month
  • Sprint has good coverage in your area

Republic Wireless

republic-wireless-logo

Republic Wireless started in 2013 and is focused on very inexpensive Smartphones and plans. They use Wi-Fi whenever possible to plans start as low as $5/month. Good ground-breaking price of $199 for the high priced Moto X Smartphone.

Coverage – Anywhere Wi-Fi is Available, plus optionally falls back to Sprint.

Best Plans -$5 Unlimited Talk, Text, and Web via Wi-Fi only; $10 Base Plan with Unlimited Cell Talk and Text, $25 with Unlimited Talk, Text, and 1GB Data, and $55 unlimited Wi-Fi, Talk, Text + 3 GB Data.

Smartphone Choices – Three choices: the Moto G, the Moto E, and the Moto X.

Bring Your Own Device – Not available. Must buy their phones.

Republic Wireless is best when:

  • You are on a tight budget
  • You do not care for phone selections

Tracfone

tracfone

Tracfone uses CDMA and GSM technology depending on the location. Most of their CDMA phones end in C, IE LG 505C.  GSM phones end in G, IE LG 840G. Tracfone focuses on low cost, non-Smartphone, and airtime cards. Must buy separate data cards. Will not roam where home network has coverage.

Coverage –Uses mostly Sprint and Sometimes Verizon Network on CDMA, depending on where it is sold. GSM versions use AT&T or T-Mobile. Get the type of phone that has the best coverage when you live, work, and play.

Best Plan –Individual +Family, 50min/30 days - $9.99.

Smartphone Selection –Limited selection of basic phones and Android phones.

Bring Your Own –Yes. CDMA phones only (Non-LTE Verizon, Sprint, Boost, Virgin). No iPhones or Blackberry Smartphones from Verizon. They later expanded it to GSM phones for use on their AT&T network when you buy this AT&T Compatible SIM kit.

Tracfone is best when:

  • You are on a budget
  • Don’t use a phone much
  • Don’t need the latest technology

AT&T Wireless

att

AT&T Wireless sells no annual contract AT&T Mobile Share wireless service at a similar price as Cricket but without unlimited data. A credit check may be required. This is only worthwhile if you're going to share data with multiple people. (They charge $25/mo extra on each additional non-contract line). If you are sharing data we suggest to go with the $70/mo for unlimited talk and text with 4GB of data. Cheapest plan is a $20/mo plan for 300MB with unlimited talk and text. AT&T has a reasonable amount of coverage nationwide. They are one of the most reliable wireless networks to be on.

AT&T Prepaid GoPhone plans include $60 for 2GB with unlimited talk, text ($5 more than AT&T Mobile Share). Additional GB of data is available for $10/GB.

Coverage - Good to very good depending on your area. Check their coverage maps

Best Plan - $55/mo Unlimited Talk and Text and 2GB Data; $70/mo for 4GB

Smartphone Selection - From Samsung Galaxy S4 through $170 Android phone. Does not include iPhones, but you can buy a phone from Apple or eBay and add a SIM card.

Bring your device -Free SIM Cards for GSM phones including iPhones that are unlocked. LTE support is also available.

AT&T is best when:

  • Sharing a plan with family
  • Speed
  • Reliability
  • Smartphone versatility

Verizon

verizon-logo

Verizon has the best coverage nationwide making them one of the most reliable networks. Verizon Prepaid does not offer unlimited data like some of the cheaper options reviewed here. Smartphone selection for no-contract plans is limited and does not include the latest phones.

In July 2014, Verizon introduced the 4G LTE ALLSET No Annual contract Plan.

Coverage - Good to very good depending on your area. Check their coverage maps

Best Plan - $45 per month for unlimited talk, text, and 500MB Data; Add $5 for 500MB more data, $10 for 1GB more, or $20 for $3GB more.

Smartphone SelectionDecent selection of no-contract Smartphones from $149. Refurbished smartphones save you money.

Bring your device - You need to buy a phone or mobile hotspot from Verizon. Other GSM phones will not work. Some used Smartphones from eBay may work if they are not banned.

Verizon is best when:

  • Reliability
  • Speed
  • Network Coverage
  • Budget not tight

Sprint

sprint

Sprint markets an Unlimited prepaid plan with no mention of throttling, but you will have to watch out for their off-network roaming usage limits. The off-network roaming usage allotment is small and can easily be used up in a few days. It is hard to recommend Sprint. Look at Boost Mobile instead.

Coverage - Good to very good depending on your area. Check their coverage maps

Best Plan - $35 per month for unlimited talk, text, and 1GB data.

Smartphone Selection – As You Go Smartphone selection has improved from before, but no iPhones. Some slightly older Samsung and Android smartphones.

Bring your device - You need to buy a phone from them. Other phones will not work.

Sprint is best when:

  • You want Unlimited Data without throttling
  • You have reliable Sprint Coverage
  • You can accept the limited Smartphone Selection

Other Carriers

Page Plus – Uses Verizon Network. $39.95 Unlimited Talk, Text, 500MB Data; $55 for 2.5GB. $29.95 for 1200 minutes, 3000 texts, 500MB Data. No unlimited data plans.

PTel – Uses T-Mobile Network. $30 Unlimited Talk, Text, Web (throttle after 2.5MB/mo)

Selectel Wireless – New. Similar to Page Plus.

GoSmart Mobile – Owned by T-Mobile. $45 Unlimited Talk, Text, Web (throttle after 5GB)

EcoMobile – Uses Sprint Network. $50 Unlimited Talk, Text, 3GB Web; $60 for Unlimited 4G Data.

PureTalkUSA – AT&T Network. $43.95 Unlimited Talk and Text with 1GB Data

H2O Wireless – AT&T Network. $40 Unlimited Talk, Text, 1GB Data. $60 gets you unlimited data. (Probably Throttled) Sells older iPhone and really old Android phones.

Red Pocket Mobile – AT&T Network. $59.99 Unlimited Talk and Text with 3GB Data

Air Voice Wireless – AT&T Network. $30 Unlimited Talk and Text with 500MB Data and offers the Samsung Galaxy S3 and older phones for sale.

ChitChatMobile - Sprint Network. $19.99 Unlimited talk and text. $20 600MB 3G/4G WiMAX Data. Use Sprint smartphones.

Conclusion

The consumer has the most control with prepaid, no contract Smartphone plans. You can switch carriers or Smartphones at any time. Review the details above + select the one that fits your needs. We recommend trying at least two or three different services for a month and pick the one best for you. Take Price, Coverage, Smartphone Selection, and monthly Bandwidth Allotment into consideration. The best thing about no-contract plans is that you can stop using the service at any time.

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6 responses to “How to Find the Best No Contract Smartphone Plans in 2015 – Part 2”

  1. Sharon Balbi says:

    Re your 2 part article on the best no contract smartphone plans in 2015, you stated that TracFone uses only CDMA phones. This is an error. I have owned a Samsung S390G phone
    since it was first shown on HSN in July of 2012. It is a GSM phone using 3G and Wi-fi on the
    AT&T and T-Mobile networks. Athough 3G phone calls sound very good, the phone has very
    limited capabilities and is not even an Android phone. It is one of those phones using Java
    apps. It was promoted as being an android phone, which was easy to do because everyone
    thinks android, when they hear the words “Samsung cell phone”. If anyone just wants a phone
    for conversations-buy it-otherwise beware ! Thanks for writing these columns. They are very
    helpful for sorting through the myriad of carriers and plans.
    Best Regards,
    Sharon Balbi

  2. David says:

    Your Ting information needs to be updated. They now support T-mobile GSM network connectivity. The best phone is the Oneplus One smart phone.

  3. Elsa says:

    Could you check out Consumer Cellular and add it to your comparisons? It’s a great company with really flexible cheap plans. I’d used them for years, and many months, I have been on the $15.00 plan. I believe they are highly rated by Consumer’s magazine.
    Thanks for all your helpful information.

  4. Meagan says:

    After reading part 1 and then switching over to finish part 2, I may consider switching to a prepaid. Every prepaid runs off of towers of the larger networks anyway. And most are also owned by those larger networks so you really aren’t losing much except the extra fees from what I am reading!

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