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How To Stop Overpaying For Wireless Service

Posted on the 08 September 2011 by Nerdywerds @NerdyWerds
Don't volunteer for a two year sentence

Cell phones are increasingly becoming a critical part of modern life. They are becoming so common, in fact, that many homes, including mine, don't even own a land line phone. With this propagation of technology, you'd think that it would be getting cheaper by the day. At least that's how other technology seems to work; the more popular it gets and as more people enter the market, the cheaper the service becomes. Well, not with mobile phones. The devices still cost $600, the plans cost about $100 per person or more and early cancellation fees are approaching $200 per line. Many of us have resigned ourselves to paying an arm and a leg to enjoy this convenience; but there are those out there that refuse to accept that fate. The fact of the matter is that there are a number of cheaper alternatives out there; you've just got to find them, or read this article.

My wife and I are kind of royalty when it comes to switching mobile phones and carriers. Since 2007, we've switched carriers 5 or 6 times, had 10 or so phones each and have paid between $110 and $185 monthly. We've been tied down to so many contracts that I'm beginning to wonder if I owe one of them my first born child. The funny part of all of this is that I've known about the better alternatives the whole time. I've done this research a while back, before I met my wife, before I signed the first 2 year agreement and before we began sinking almost $200 a month for service. But I feel into the psychological trap most of us do; bigger is better. It seems to be ingrained in our DNA that a bigger company offers better products and services, and all little guys are trying to scam you. This is simply not true. It actually appears to me the opposite may be true. In a past life I had one of those $50 monthly unlimited plans you hear people talk about. And it was great. I never dropped calls, I had all the minutes, texts and data I could possibly want, and best of all, I didn't have to sign a contract.

There are numerous companies out there that provide reasonable mobile phone service, but we're only going to mention two today; MetroPCS and Boost Mobile. These are the 2 biggest in my area, and I've actually had MetroPCS before. First and foremost, these carriers do not require long term contracts. If at any point their service doesn't meet your standards or needs, you can simply wash your hands of the experience and move on. Most people will tell you these small carriers have pathetically small networks. The MetroPCS network covers approximately 90% of the country and Boost Mobile's runs on the Sprint network. So unless you live in an area where the big boys have trouble covering you, you should be fine with one of these carriers. Also, MetroPCS have a large 4G network, with about 20 markets as of the time I wrote this.

Another common shot taken at these carriers is their phone selection. They either don't have enough, they're too expensive, or they don't have enough features. The truth of the matter is that the selection of phones is smaller, but adequate. These two companies have a good selection of smart phones, including Android and Blackberry. One quick note, if you need to have an iPhone, for the time being you'll have to stick with the big boys. Both carriers have the wildly popular Samsung Galaxy phone, and they have it for a reasonable price. Which brings us to point of contention 2, prices. This point bares a bit of explanation. The reason the big guys can sell a $600 for $200 on contract is that they make up their money over the course of your 2 year contract. Which is why they need to lock you in and set a steep cancellation fee. That's the way they can keep prices low. So the logic that Metro or Boost can't offer cheap phones is at least plausible. But Boost Mobile's most expensive phone, at least as far as I can tell, it $200. Which is conveniently the same price as top of the line phones on other networks. Metro's most expensive phone is $300, so a bit more, but not quite the price tag people would tell you. While you may be a bit more, though you don't have to, you aren't tied down for two years. You have the option to take your business elsewhere if you so choose. Lastly, people will try to tell you these phones lack any significant features. They'll tell you that you won't be able to download apps, or take pictures, or you have to deal with a slow processor. Both of these networks have a Galaxy S phone. So you can get a phone with the same fast processor as the big boys, the same 3.5 inch screen and the same 4G LTE capability, on Metro. They have phones with cameras, expandable memory, full keyboards, Wifi and Bluetooth capability and more. So as you can see, these are full features phones that aren't the watered down junk some may have you believe.

Now to the best part about these networks is their service prices. $60 a month will get you unlimited talk, text and data usage. My wife and I currently pay $110, after a 10% discount, for 700 minutes, unlimited text and 200 MB of data to share. For roughly the same price, we could be getting unlimited everything. For $40 a month, we could get unlimited talk, text and web, we'd just be missing a few bells and whistles of the $60 everything plan. With Boost, the deal is a bit sweeter. You start at $50 a month for unlimited everything. But with Boost, you get Shrinkage. For every 6 months you pay your bill on time, Boost will knock $5 off of your bill, down to $35 a month. This is quite the bargaining. They also have Blackberry plans, daily plans and pay as you go.

There you have it folks. As long as you don't need a particular phone, you should really check out these companies the nest time you get a phone plan. They are equally reliable, fully featured and much cheaper. You will make almost no sacrifices and could save yourself thousands of dollars a year compared to family plans. I really hope this article has at least opened your eyes to the world of alternate possibilities. If it did, please share it with your friends. The buttons at the top of the article are quick links to share this on a number of networks. I normally wouldn't ask, but with the way the economy is, I feel an obligation to try and save people money. Thanks for reading!

Source: MetroPCS

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