Recently I wrote about 5 ways to save on your cell phone bill. One of the strategies I talked about was to consider a lower-priced carrier. Over the past few weeks I learned of two other companies offering no-contract cell service, so I want to elaborate a little on my original post.
Some of the companies I mentioned before include Straight Talk, Virgin Mobile and Metro PCS. Each of these offers no-contract service for both light users and those who need unlimited talk, text and web. The other two competitors I want to mention are Page Plus and Republic Wireless.
Page Plus has been around in its current form since 2000 but only recently started offering an unlimited talk and text plan for about $40 a month. With Page Plus, you can choose a basic voice plan with the option to add a text plan, or you can choose a bundle.
Their cheapest bundle, called “The 12″, offers 250 minutes, 250 texts and 10MB of data for $12 a month. Plans step up from there, ending with the most generous plan, “The 55″. This is equivalent to their $40 unlimited talk and text plan, except you get 1GB of data for an extra $15 a month. Page Plus uses the Verizon Wireless network.
Started in November 2011, Republic Wireless uses technology that differs from traditional cell phone companies. Realizing that much of our cell phone use occurs when we’re in range of a WiFi signal, they developed a phone that routs calls, texts and data use through wireless internet signals whenever possible. When you’re not in range of WiFi they run on Sprint’s network.
The only phone they offer right now is a very basic Android phone for $199, which includes the first month’s service. Each month thereafter is $19 and no contract is required. If you don’t mind a basic smartphone and spend a lot of your time near WiFi, this could be for you.
When you consider the range of options for low-cost cell phone service, there’s not really a good reason to lock yourself into an expensive contract with one of the Big 4. If your contract is expiring soon, take a look at your cell phone usage. Could one of these players offer a better option?
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