The Best Smartphone Plan

Gone are the days when choosing a smartphone plan was synonymous with choosing your own ball and chain. Signing on that dotted line immediately locked you into a multi-year contract that is designed to make switching phones or carriers absurdly expensive. Luckily, today’s top carriers have ditched contracts in favor of a month-to-month model that allows subscribers more freedom than ever before to switch to better deals. Carriers are offering plenty of incentives so that subscribers will make the switch and not feel stuck whenever they don’t deliver on their promise of great coverage and lightning fast data speed.

The concept of a “great phone plan” is relative. For the majority, it includes an impressive breadth of coverage, a renewed focus on speed with the rollout of its LTE Advanced network, and a reasonable price. However, if you can’t get a reliable signal where you work or live, then enhanced speed and unlimited data won’t matter. Make sure the carrier you choose has great coverage wherever you frequent. For instance, in a metro area like New York or San Francisco, T-Mobile edges out Verizon with its superior coverage and unlimited data for families.

Five people from ifferent races hanging out and using their smartphones.

At this point, you might be wondering: What’s the deal with those lesser-known phone companies on the fringes? Services such as Cricket and Republic Wireless are known as prepaid or mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), and consumers who prioritize budget and are willing to adopt a WiFi-first approach to mobile internet surfing can save some money breaking away from the Big Four (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint) completely by signing up with them.

In many cases, prepaid or MVNO services use the same networks as the major carriers and some are even direct subsidiaries of them, which means you’ll get the same coverage and reliability. What you won’t get, however, is reliable data speed. The flagship brands prioritize their customers first, so when there’s traffic on the network, MVNO subscribers will feel it the most.

Smiling African-American Woman enjoying a phone call on her smartphone.

If budget is your priority or if you’re going to use your phone primarily for phone calls, we recommend checking out the MVNO Republic Wireless, which operates on a combination of WiFi, T-Mobile’s network, and Sprint’s network. Cricket is another to consider since it is tied to AT&T’s nationwide network and has inexpensive multi-line plans.

So be sure to shop around and compare the plans to see which one works best for you and your family and which network works best in your area.  While you’re at it, after choosing a carrier, get your smartphone protected with one of Liquipel’s products. Head to www.liquipel.com to get started!