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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    I'm seriously considering Cricket but I've been with Verizon for about 15 years. I've been doing research and I have a question. Why would anyone go with a major carrier? All prepaid plans are cheaper. The only drawbacks I see are a lack of subsidized flagship phones, throttling, and no partner networks. So.... Is that all I give up for half my bill? Am I missing something here?

    Posted via Android Central App
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Throttling can be a big issue for people who like to use their mobile data to stream movies or music. If you travel a lot, roaming might be costly for a prepaid plan. And I would guess that support from prepaid services won't be as robust as that from the major carriers.
  3. #3  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Cricket is okay. They limit your data speeds to 8mbs download speed. If you don't use more than 2-3gb of data in a month pre paid is the way to go. If you use a lot of data then probably not the way to go. I use cricket and I have no problem with my coverage. Went to the smokey mountains and not issue's at all used my phone as gps the whole way there. There customer service does stink though. You usually get stuck talking to someone from overseas. Personally if you can afford it buy an unlocked phone and take it to cricket, that way if you don't like it you can try t mobile or net10/straight talk.

    Posted via Android Central App
  4. Thread Author  Thread Author    #4  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    If I buy an unlocked phone and try cricket I can always go to AT&T if I want a big company again. Right?

    I only use about 2gb a month and where I usually travel is all covered by Cricket so I think I'll be OK. Can't wait to dump Verizon.

    Posted via Android Central App
  5. #5  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by B. Diddy View Post
    Throttling can be a big issue for people who like to use their mobile data to stream movies or music. If you travel a lot, roaming might be costly for a prepaid plan. And I would guess that support from prepaid services won't be as robust as that from the major carriers.
    Throttling isn't a huge issue; most postpaid plans don't have any more data than prepaid (and you can get unlimited high speed data through T-Mobile and their MVNOs), and Cricket (and many other MVNOs) have options to buy extra high speed data. Roaming typically doesn't cost extra on prepaid, though many prepaid providers don't offer roaming; Cricket is one of those, you are limited to native AT&T coverage. Support varies between prepaid providers, and is often related to just how cheap the carrier is (as a general rule, the cheaper the plan the worse the support). As examples, GoPhone pretty much has the same support as postpaid AT&T customers and Straight Talk has some of the worst support. It will be interesting to see where Cricket's service ends up. It seems AT&T's AIO had better support previously but is suffering through growing/transition pains when they absorbed Cricket.
  6. #6  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    For single lines :

    Cricket $50 plan with unlimited talk and text, 2.5gb high speed, slower after that
    $1,200($50 x 24 months)
    $650Unsubsidized iPhone cost
    $1,850Total cost for cricket over 2 years*

    Verizon loyalty $60 2gb plan with unlimited talk and text
    $1,440($60 x 24 months)
    $200subsidized iphone cost
    $30upgrade fee
    $1,670Total cost for Verizon over 2 years*

    Sent from my Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3
  7. #7  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by dpham00 View Post
    For single lines :

    Cricket $50 plan with unlimited talk and text, 2.5gb high speed, slower after that
    $1,200($50 x 24 months)
    $650Unsubsidized iPhone cost
    $1,850Total cost for cricket over 2 years*

    Verizon loyalty $60 2gb plan with unlimited talk and text
    $1,440($60 x 24 months)
    $200subsidized iphone cost
    $30upgrade fee
    $1,670Total cost for Verizon over 2 years*

    Sent from my Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    Two comments. First, you completely ignore the added taxes on Verizon which often add as much as $10/month. So that $60 becomes $70 and, over 24 months, raises the rate cost to $1680 -- and the total up to $1910 over the two years. By contrast, Cricket includes all taxes in their $50 price, plus they offer a $5/month discount for auto pay (which would subtract an additional $120 over 2 years).

    Second, why are you using an iPhone on AndroidCentral to compare? He can get a phone like the Nexus 5, which is similar in features to a $200 subsidized phone but lowers the Cricket total by $300.

    After factoring those in, many Cricket users are paying closer to $1500 over two years, even with the new phone, while Verizon is over $1900 in true costs and gets worse if you have overages.
  8. #8  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by mogelijk View Post
    Two comments. First, you completely ignore the added taxes on Verizon which often add as much as $10/month. So that $60 becomes $70 and, over 24 months, raises the rate cost to $1680 -- and the total up to $1910 over the two years. By contrast, Cricket includes all taxes in their $50 price, plus they offer a $5/month discount for auto pay (which would subtract an additional $120 over 2 years).

    Second, why are you using an iPhone on AndroidCentral to compare? He can get a phone like the Nexus 5, which is similar in features to a $200 subsidized phone but lowers the Cricket total by $300.

    After factoring those in, many Cricket users are paying closer to $1500 over two years, even with the new phone, while Verizon is over $1900 in true costs and gets worse if you have overages.
    You can use the g3 if you want, $100 on contract vs $600 from tmobile. Similar overall cost. If you are willing to use the nexus 5 or other lower priced devices, then yeah, prepaid makes more sense. I know people on prepaid, they have Galaxy devices or iPhones. Yeah, you can save some using a Nexus 5 on cricket vs a g3 on Verizon, but using a g3 on both carriers, Verizon is close in price.

    With regards to taxes and fees , it depends on where you are, but I pay $15 for taxes and fees for 5 lines of service, or about $3 per line.

    Prepaid doesn't automatically include taxes and fees, it depends. I was on Sprint prepaid and paid about $8 in taxes and fees for a single line.

    Sent from my Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3
  9. #9  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by dpham00 View Post
    You can use the g3 if you want, $100 on contract vs $600 from tmobile. Similar overall cost. If you are willing to use the nexus 5 or other lower priced devices, then yeah, prepaid makes more sense.

    With regards to taxes and fees , it depends on where you are, but I pay $15 for taxes and fees for 5 lines of service, or about $3 per line.

    Prepaid doesn't automatically include taxes and fees, it depends. I was on Sprint prepaid and paid about $8 in taxes and fees for a single line.

    Sent from my Verizon Samsung Galaxy Note 3
    He mentioned Cricket and you used Cricket as the comparison, and Cricket has all taxes built into their plan price. I agree, there is tax on some prepaid, though typically it is nothing more than sales tax (a few states require an e911 fee of maybe $1), though typically you can get out of the sale tax by buying from an internet vendor (e.g. Callingmart).

    As you point out, the savings can vary based on where you live (tax rates) and what phones you want to use. Of course, those who are trying to save a few extra dollars typically aren't going to go for the most expensive phones (though I do know some exceptions), instead they will find ways to get the phones they want for less money. They also frequently find they don't need the high end phones. Instead they find they get more from their money from a year old phone, or a mid-tier phone, which is plenty fast and capable for what they do and that they can find on sale or cheap on eBay/Craigslist.
  10. Thread Author  Thread Author    #10  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    There are two phones in my family so my Verizon bill is about $160 with taxes and fees (3Gb of data). With cricket we should end up paying $85 per month for both lines for 2.5 Gb ($5 auto pay discount and $10 2nd line discount). That means I should save $1800 over 2 years. That's enough to buy new phones and have money left over for new tablets for both of us.

    Posted via Android Central App
  11. #11  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    It's all about the value adds. For some people the value-adds on a major carrier like aren't worth the extra price and takes. These value-adds can include international calling or roaming options, higher data speeds, LTE service, tethering, wifi calling, etc. And some of the MVNOs offer some of these as well.

    Ultimately it depends on whether what that company is offering fits your needs well or not.
  12. #12  

    Default Re: Prepaid vs Major Carrier

    Quote Originally Posted by phantom27 View Post
    I'm seriously considering Cricket but I've been with Verizon for about 15 years. I've been doing research and I have a question. Why would anyone go with a major carrier? All prepaid plans are cheaper. The only drawbacks I see are a lack of subsidized flagship phones, throttling, and no partner networks. So.... Is that all I give up for half my bill? Am I missing something here?

    Posted via Android Central App
    I know this thread is 11 days old at this point, but I just wanted to chime in to say that I've been a prepaid customer for all of my adult life. This is because I hated the extra charges that could run your bill into the hundreds (or thousands) back then. I have always preferred to pay for what I'm getting and know exactly what I'm paying for. I went with TMO's prepaid unlimited 4G for years. It was $50 a month and I never had overage/roaming/messaging charges...I knew EXACTLY what my bill was going to be every month with no surprises! It was the same exact speeds/data that everyone else got, but without all of those extra fees. It saved me about $20+ a month. Now, I have TMO's family simple choice plan: 3 lines for $90 including all of the 4G LTE we need! This was better then paying $50 each per line. Now it's only $30 a line...so I'm definitely saving money NOT being prepaid right now.

    Basically, I went prepaid because it was cheaper, and now that its cheaper to do post paid...here I am!

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