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Best TextNow Plans in 2021

TextNow cell phone service

Find cheap plans in your area

TextNow review in October

Pros

  • Both GSM and CDMA network options

  • Free Wi-Fi-only plan option

  • Automatically uses Wi-Fi first to save data usage

  • Unlimited 2G data on all plans

  • Unlimited data plan option

  • Taxes & fees included in plan pricing

Cons

  • Hotspot use only available on CDMA network

  • Call quality can suffer on non-TextNow phones

TextNow is a San Francisco based MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator). That means they rent their network from the big guys. They're serious disruptors in the telecoms world offering unlimited talk and text for free.

You could save $600 per year, per line by switching to a low cost alternative like TextNow.

Let's dive in to find out if this is the carrier for you.

Check Carrier Coverage

TextNow plans & pricing

PlanNetworkMinutesTextsDataPrice
Unlimited Talk & TextSprintUnltdUnltd0GB$10
2GB DataSprintUnltdUnltd2GB$20

TextNow plans include free unlimited calls and messages to anyone in the US or Canada. It all works through their TextNow app. Once you've purchased a SIM, you get basic phone function for free.

There's a couple of super-cheap prepaid plans to choose from with set-data options, plus add on features like voicemail and conference calling.

To get an ad-free service or more high-speed data, you'll need to upgrade your account. This means paying a low-cost monthly fee. You can manage all this in their app.

Savings comparison

TextNow benefits

  • Same quality coverage: powered by Sprint's national network, TextNow provides you with quality coverage you can rely on.
  • Lower prices: typically an alternative carrier costs between $10-$45 a month. With TextNow most features are completely free. Compare that with a traditional cell phone plan? You're paying more like $80 a month.
  • Simple switching process: you'll be up and running with your new plan within a few days. You can even keep your phone number.
  • Customize your plan: adjust your plan as often as you like in the TextNow app
  • No commitment: there's no contract so you can switch at any time to find a better deal if your needs change.
  • Buy online: choose your plan quickly and easily online.

TextNow coverage

Where VoIP is unavailable, this alternative carrier is powered by Sprint's network. Take a look at our TextNow coverage map to see how it'll work for you.

What networks does TextNow use?

TextNow uses Sprint's 4G LTE network and VoIP technology where WiFi signal is available. Sprint and T-Mobile are in the process of merging but for the time being, it's business as usual for TextNow customers.

Network coverage ratings

NETWORKROOTMETRICSOPENSIGNALOOKLA
Verizon network959.874%
AT&T network939.580%
T-Mobile network878879%

Sources: RootMetrics, OpenSignal, and Ookla.

TextNow data speeds

Prepaid data plans from TextNow come with 2GB of data, which slows to unlimited 2G speeds when you run out. You can add more high-speed data by going to their app.

TextNow data plans

TextNow unlimited talk & text plan

Unlimitedmins

Unlimitedtexts

0 GB

4G/5G data

$10/mo

Powered by: Sprint

TextNow features

Mobile hotspot

Their prepaid data plan comes with the mobile hotspot feature, so you can share your data with more devices.

Unlimited talk and text

Either on WiFi or through the Sprint network you can send and receive messages, or make calls for free. These features aren't restricted, you can use emojis or send videos and photos. You do however have to put up with a few adverts when you use your phone, but you can easily upgrade your TextNow account to get an ad-free service.

Voicemail

With TextNow's free service you can receive voicemail messages. They'll appear in the app as a voice recording within your messaging history.

TextNow Family plans

TextNow1 line2 lines3 lines4 lines
Unlimited Talk & Text$10$20$10/line$30$10/line$40$10/line
2GB Data$20$40$20/line$60$20/line$80$20/line

TextNow phone deals

There's a very limited selection of older cell phones to choose from with TextNow. You can also can bring your own, use our IMEI checker to see which carriers your current cell is compatible with.

Compare iPhone prices

ModelConditionMemoryCompatibilityPrice
Apple iPhone 11New64GBAT&T$499
Apple iPhone 11 MaxNew64GBAT&T$899
Apple iPhone 11 ProNew64GBAT&T$799
Apple iPhone 12New64GBT-Mobile$729
Apple iPhone 12 miniNew64GBT-Mobile$629
Apple iPhone 12 ProNew128GBVerizon$999
Apple iPhone 12 Pro MaxNew128GBT-Mobile$999
Apple iPhone 13New128GBT-Mobile$829
Apple iPhone 13 miniNew128GBT-Mobile$729
Apple iPhone 13 ProNew128GBT-Mobile$999
Apple iPhone 13 Pro MaxNew128GBT-Mobile$1,099
Apple iPhone SENew64GBT-Mobile$399

TextNow customer service

The comparison table below shows TextNow user ratings are higher than all of the major carriers.

CARRIERTRUSTPILOT USER RATING
TextNow2.6
T-Mobile1.5
Verizon1.3
AT&T1.2

There's a heap of brilliant customer support resources on their website and in app, including video tutorials, to help you resolve any hitches or hurdles. So there are routes to resolve issues yourself.

If you're someone who wants to speak to a real human when you run into a problem, TextNow might not be the first choice. There's no a designated customer support number or chat function at this time.

How do TextNow plans compare

CarrierNetworkMinutesTextsDataPrice
TelloT-MobileUnltdUnltd1GB$10
Mint MobileT-MobileUnltdUnltd4GB$15** $45 for 3 Months Service
TwigbyVerizonUnltdUnltd5GB$12.50** 50% Off for 6 Months
TingT-Mobile & VerizonUnltdUnltdUnltd$25** $20 Off for 3 Months
US MobileVerizon & T-MobileUnltdUnltd30GB$30Free Starter Kit with code: MSPUSM

Switching to TextNow

Bringing your own phone? Make sure your phone is an inactive Sprint device on either an Android or iOS operating system. Then, follow these simple steps:

  1. Download the TextNow app to your cell phone and buy a SIM activation kit.
  2. Make sure you're all paid up on your last plan and keep your account open till your number has ported over. You can manage this within the TextNow app.
  3. Enjoy the same phone service, either for free or at a fraction of the cost.

TextNow FAQs

What is TextNow?

TextNow is a low cost carrier operating on the Sprint network. It started as a call and text service using VoIP - Voice over Internet Protocol. So you could make calls or texts over Wi-Fi. But it eventually started piggybacking off the Sprint network to offer you low cost plans without needing Wi-Fi.

Does TextNow have an app?

Yes. You can download it from the App Store or Google Play.

Can you use TextNow on the computer?

Yes, you can use TextNow on your computer, tablet or smartphone device by downloading the app from your computer's app store.

Is TextNow free?

TextNow gives you free nationwide calls and texts on its app, using VoIP. But it also offers low cost paid plans that operate on the Sprint network.

Recap

TextNow is a brilliant choice for those looking to get free unlimited talk and text on the Sprint network.

You'll need to pay for an ad-free service and fork out for more data but the prices are significantly lower than those on offer from Sprint.

Not convinced this is the carrier for you? Take a look at some more low cost carriers on Sprint and start saving up to $600 per year, per line.

Rob Webber
Rob Webber

Rob has 15+ years experience in the US and UK running price comparison sites for cell phone plans, smartphone deals, TV, and internet. He loves thinking outside of the box to build tools that empower consumers to make more informed decisions.

TextNow User Reviews

TextNow
Average Customer Rating16 User Reviews
User Rating Distribution
5 Stars5
4 Stars3
3 Stars3
2 Stars2
1 Star3

How can Free be Negative?

Recently we changed cell phone providers and the new phones we received would not activate. I could not call them because of NO PHONE WORKING...I pulled out my old phone which I have Wifi and downloaded the Textnow app and that is what I have been using to communicate with customer service for the new carrier. As of now Textnow is the ONLY service I have and I am so Thankful for it. I even put it on my laptop so I can talk on that too. I have nothing negative to say for a service that works and is FREE. I am at a point where I am thinking of using Textnow only and getting rid of any cell phone carrier that I have used.

Missed calls

Half the time we receive missed calls even though our phones didn't ring!

Slow and crashing app

The app is very slow to load and it crashes my phone often. The app does work from my PC at least but the mobile version just sucks!