AT&T is a worthy contender for the crown of "best wireless network," boasting extensive coverage and reliability that can compete with Verizon's network. As of Q3 2016, 133.3 million customers have made AT&T their wireless home, but does that make AT&T right for you? Below, you'll find the available AT&T cell phone plans, to help you gauge on whether or not the carrier is right for you.
AT&T Wireless Plans
|1GB Mobile Share Advantage||1 GB||$50|
|3GB Mobile Share Advantage||3 GB||$60|
|Unlimited Data Choice||Unlimited||$65|
|6GB Mobile Share Advantage||6 GB||$80|
|Unlimited Data Plus||Unlimited||$95|
AT&T offers a wide range of plans with data allotments between 1GB to 100GB. These plans come with Worry-free data, meaning no overage charges when exceeding the allotted data, truly shareable data, and Rollover Data. Unfortunately, these plans are a tad pricier compared to the average carrier, but the quality is comparable with Verizon Wireless' cell phone plans.
AT&T Monthly Plans
AT&T hosts what is known as the Mobile Share Advantage, which grants truly shareable data for up to 10 devices. The most common data packages offered by AT&T are 10GB, 16GB, 25GB, and 30GB, but there are other plans, ranging from 1GB to 100GB.
As mentioned earlier, all plans come with no overage charges, meaning that once your high-speed data allotments are exceeded, you will not be charged extra but instead face a "speed penalty." This means that your data speed will slow down to 128 Kbps (2G speed) for the remainder of the billing cycle.
However, if you do not use all of your data within the month, you will instead enjoy the benefits of rollover data, which is data that rolls into the next month for usage.
AT&T Family Plans
Like other major carriers that integrate family sharing into their plans, AT&T does not have a dedicated set of "family plans" but instead has integrated the concept into its Mobile Share Advantage plans. Families are able to select a data package that would satisfy their needs. These packages allow up to 10 devices to connect to the plan, which is more than enough for most families. You can compare family plans offered by AT&T against the competition here.
AT&T Prepaid Plans
AT&T has a set of prepaid phone plans, under their GoPhone line. These plans come with an abundance of data, which has doubled since January 2016.
AT&T's GoPhone plans do not require a credit check and are not as pricey compared to its monthly plans.
Similar to the number of prepaid plans made available by the other three major carriers, there are three prepaid plans to choose from, which come with unlimited talk and text in the US and unlimited messaging to over 100 countries. However, the 4GB and 8GB monthly options feature rollover data and eligibility for the multi-line discount. However, the 8GB monthly plan includes unlimited talk, text, and data usage in Mexico and Canada, as well as unlimited talk and text from the US to Mexico and Canada.
AT&T also offers a couple of other unique plans. You can enjoy AT&T's service for just a couple of dollars per day or even for $0.25 a minute.
AT&T Unlimited Plans
While the Unlimited Data plan is a fantastic option to consider if you are a data hog (or have a family), the Unlimited Data is not 100 percent unlimited. After 22GB of usage, AT&T may slow data speeds, but only when the network is congested. Yet, 22GB is plenty of data for most families. Overall, you'll receive unlimited data for all devices on the plan, as well as receive unlimited talk and text including calls to Mexico and Canada.
If you opt for the unlimited data plan, do note that you'll also be unable to use tethering and mobile hotspots, unlike the unlimited plans brought to you by the other major carriers. Of course, feel free to compare and learn more about other unlimited plans with our review of the unlimited data plans.
AT&T Data Plans
Mobile Share - Data only plans exist but are not available for purchase online. These plans include a data amount that up to 10 data-only devices, including tablets, laptops, netbooks, mobile hotspot devices, and gaming devices, can access. You must pay a monthly fee, plus a monthly device access charge for each data-only device. The plans are a little on the pricier side, with the most expensive option, 50GB, being well over a few hundred dollars per month.
To add a Mobile Share - Data plan, you need to either chat with AT&T utilizing the Chat button when available, dial 611 from an AT&T phone, visit an AT&T store, or call 800-331-0500. If you're comparing data plans, especially for your tablet, then you should take a moment to review the best tablet data plans available to you.
Cell Phones Offered By AT&T
AT&T provides a vast array of smartphones, GoPhone eligible phones, wearables, and tablets. There's even a section on the site dedicated to the latest iPhone. That being said, the selection isn't as grand as Verizon, but the carrier does offer the latest iterations of popular phones.
You can filter the phones by pricing, manufacturer, condition (certified pre-owned or certified like-new), operating system, style, and feature. You can also purchase the phones in full or you can take the monthly installment route. Like other carriers with bring your own phone programs, you may bring your own phone to AT&T.
We have a smartphone comparison tool for you to take advantage of if you're interested in further comparing smartphones and their specifications.
AT&T Phone Insurance
AT&T does issue device protection to its customers, but only if they enroll their devices in a protection plan within 30 days of activation or upgrade. There are three types of insurance plans available:
Mobile Insurance - This $7.99 per month plan protects your smartphone or tablet from loss, theft, physical and liquid damage, and out-of-warranty malfunctions. You'll receive a speedy replacement (as soon as the following day), and if you are claim-free for six consecutive months, you'll receive anywhere between a 25 percent and 50 percent discount on your standard replacement deductible.
Mobile Protection Plan - This plan, which is $10.99 per month, provides coverage for your eligible device against loss, theft, damage, and out-of-warranty malfunctions. Like the Mobile Insurance, you'll save anywhere between 25 and 50 percent off of the standard replacement deductible if you're claim-free for six consecutive months. However, you'll also receive one-tap access to ProTech support, as soon as next day replacement, and a Protect Plus app, complete with 50GB of secure content storage.
Multi-Device Protection Pack - For a whopping $29.99 per month, you'll receive support for up to three devices - including phones, tablets, and laptops - against loss, theft, damage, and out-of-warranty malfunctions. Similar to the other plans, you'll save between 25 and 50 percent off of the standard deductible if you are claim-free for six consecutive months. Furthermore, you'll only need to enroll one device at the beginning, but you can add others when you need the coverage. Finally, you'll receive access to ProTech support, as soon as next day replacement, and the Protect Plus app, complete with 50GB of secure content storage.
Screen repair is also included with device protection enrollment. With screen repair, a certified technician will actually visit your location (potentially on the same day). However, screen repair comes with a $89 deductible with a one-year warranty.
While cell phone insurance can really help if your phone is damaged or stolen, it is a monthly service you might pay for and never end up using. Is cell phone insurance worth it? You can hear our thoughts on the matter here.
AT&T Phone Activation
Curious about activating your new phone with AT&T? There are several different ways to activate a new phone, depending on the circumstance. You can:
- Visit the AT&T activation page.
- Activate via "Chat" with AT&T
- Visit an AT&T store
- Dial 866-895-1099
- (If activating GoPhone) Call 877-426-0525
Read More: You may need to unlock your cell phone before you can activate your phone. Fortunately, we have a primer on unlocking your phone.
AT&T Mobile Hotspot
You can purchase a prepaid mobile hotspot with AT&T, providing you with the Internet on the go. You can connect up to 10 Wi-Fi-enabled devices with GoPhone.
Additionally, if you're an AT&T wireless customer, you will have access to AT&T Wi-Fi Basic, which grants you Wi-Fi access to more than 30,000 hotspots.
However, you don't need to be an AT&T customer if you want to access the hotspots, but you must pay between $3.99 and $7.99 per session if you want to access.
Finally, it's important to note that making your smartphone into a hotspot will cost you if you're not on a Mobile Share Advantage plan or a DataPro 5GB plan. If you have a smartphone and a tethering plan, then you can turn your smartphone into a hotspot for plans starting at $15. If you are indecisive or simply not keen on AT&T's mobile hotspot plans, then you then you can always refer to our review of the best mobile hotspot plans to compare the available hotspot plans.
AT&T SIM Card
When it comes to SIM cards, the tiny cards that contain your subscriber profile as well as details regarding your plan and features, AT&T offers them for free. You can always obtain a new one directly from the site.
We've also taken the time to define the SIM card if you'd like to learn more about them.
AT&T Deals, Promotions & Discounts
Like many carriers, AT&T offers special deals and promotions to either lure in new customers or to create incentives for existing customers. For instance, you could score a $50 bill credit when you bring your own smartphone to AT&T.
There is also a program offered to loyal customers, dubbed AT&T Thanks. There are three tiers available, which depend on the service the customer has. All tiers will receive benefits such as Ticket Tuesdays, Front of the line, and Fullscreen Video on Demand. However, only Platinum customers will receive awesome perks such as priority service.
AT&T also offers employee and retiree discounts. All you need to do is fill out a self-service form, and voila - discount.
AT&T's voice and data cover most of the United States. To compare AT&T's coverage with the coverage of other major wireless carriers, please refer to our review of the best cell phone coverage.
AT&T Customer Support
How does AT&T fare against its competitors in regards to customer support? AT&T isn't the worst, but it isn't the greatest either. In the case that you're seeking customer support, you can contact AT&T utilizing the following routes:
- Customer Service
- Order a New Service
- Check Order Status
- Support for Travel Abroad (Free from Mobile)
- Disability Resources
AT&T also hosts a community forum, a chat box, a Twitter profile, and a Facebook profile. You can also check AT&T's Support Center, which is home to a variety of FAQs that may serve you well when an issue arises.
Customer reviews and company reputation are two great ways to determine whether or not you might enjoy an AT&T cell phone plan. AT&T scored a 71/100 on the American Customer Satisfaction Index, an average score amongst its competitors. Yet, AT&T is an Accredited Business with an A+ score with the Better Business Bureau. However and even more baffling, Trustpilot, a website that ranks companies purely with customer reviews, rates AT&T a 2.1/10. So keep in mind that the experiences of one customer are not representative of the company as a whole, but it is important to spot potential issues you may have with the company early nonetheless.
AT&T Review Recap
AT&T overall is a good option, offering a variety of phones, strong coverage that rivals Verizon, and an incredibly speedy service. However, what gives AT&T an edge over its competitors is its Unlimited Data plan. So if you're a data hog and would like the added benefit of DIRECTV's packages, then it may be best to select AT&T.
Curious about how the major competitors fare against one another in terms of overall cell phone plans? Then be sure to read our review of the best cell phone plans.