They're growing fast and putting real pressure on the big four operators in the cell phone industry. We're talking about Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) - and they could help you save over 50 percent on your monthly bill!
Thanks to low overhead and marketing costs, MVNOs offer the cheapest cell phone plans around.
COMPARE NOW: Cheap T-Mobile MVNO plans starting at $10
Better yet, while the big four love to focus on unlimited plans, the low-cost carriers offer customized prepaid plans so you only pay for the data you need. And best of all, they lease excellent 4G LTE coverage from the big carrier networks.
In this guide, you'll learn more about T-Mobile MVNOs, so you'll be on your way to saving for that vacation you've dreamed of.
T-Mobile MVNO List
We've made searching for T-Mobile MVNOs easy for you by compiling a list, which you can check out below:
|Red Pocket Mobile||T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon, AT&T|
|Consumer Cellular||T-Mobile, AT&T|
|Metro by T-Mobile||T-Mobile|
|Net10 Wireless||T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T, Verizon, U.S. Cellular|
|Project Fi||T-Mobile, Sprint, U.S. Cellular, Three|
|TPO Mobile||T-Mobile, Sprint|
|TracFone||T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon, AT&T|
The Best T-Mobile MVNOs
To help narrow down your search, we have listed our recommendations of the best T-Mobile MVNOs:
There are three time-tiers to choose from: 3 months, 6 months, and 12 months. However, the amount of GB you'll be able to take advantage of is suitable for light and medium data users, as well as several heavy data users.
Up to 10GB is offered, and depending on the time-tier you select, you'll only end up paying the equivalent to $25 per month!
US Mobile is an MVNO that offers some of the most customizable plans on the market. Plans range from 40 minutes, 40 text messages, or 100MB of data to unlimited talk, text, or data (or all three together).
What really earns our vote are the unlimited plans, as there are nine unlimited plans to choose from, depending on the number of minutes and texts you'd like, whether you want a mobile hotspot, and what data speeds you'd like.
Red Pocket may not feature unlimited data, but its plans are suitable for light, medium, and heavy data users. In fact, depending on your phone's compatibility with GSM or CDMA, you'll be able to adopt a plan with over 10GB of data.
Plans range from 500 minutes, 500 texts, and 500MB of data to unlimited calls and texts, as well as over 10GB of data. Best of all, these monthly plans are incredibly affordable.
All phone plans feature international calls to over 70 countries, the ability to transfer your current phone number, English or Spanish customer service, and a 30-day risk-free guarantee.
T-Mobile MVNO vs T-Mobile Price Comparison
|Carrier||Network Coverage||Data Limit||Monthly Price||Annual Price|
|T-Mobile||T-Mobile 4G LTE||Unlimited*||$70||$840|
|Mint Mobile||T-Mobile 4G LTE||10GB||$25||$300|
|* Avg. T-Mobile unlimited plan customer uses 6GB data|
T-Mobile Network Coverage
T-Mobile MVNOs function by leasing 4G LTE coverage from the actual T-Mobile network towers, so you'll be able to take advantage of T-Mobile coverage without paying T-Mobile prices.
If you're interested in T-Mobile network's overall performance, Rootmetrics' report of Mobile Performance in the US for the second half of 2017 puts T-Mobile in fourth place. Its overall score of 86.8 trails Verizon's 95, AT&T's 92.8 and Sprint's 87.8.
However, a very different perspective is provided by a report from OpenSignal on the fourth quarter of 2017. It places T-Mobile in first place in five of the six metrics it covers, including 4G availability where it awards T-Mobile 93.1%, ahead of Verizon with 92.7%, AT&T with 87.0% and Sprint with 85.6%.
Cell Phone Compatibility with T-Mobile MVNOs
You'll be happy to know that any T-Mobile phone will work with a T-Mobile MVNO. With all other phones, you will need to check your phone's compatibility with the particular MVNO you're interested in.
If your phone is compatible, then congrats! All you'll need to do is to obtain a SIM card from the new carrier.
Your phone will need to be compatible with the following frequencies:
3G: 1700Mhz/2100Mhz (Band 4)
LTE: 1700Mhz (Band 4), 2100Mhz (Band 66), 1900Mhz (Band 2), 850Mhz (Band 5), 700Mhz (Band 12),
If you have an AT&T phone, you may be able to use it on the T-Mobile network, since AT&T also uses GSM technology, but check with the MVNO first. Bear in mind that most Sprint and Verizon phones are unlikely to work on the T-Mobile network (again, check with the MVNO to be sure).
Bring Your Own Phone to a T-Mobile MVNO
You may be asking, why should you bring your own phone? Here are a few reasons:
1. You'll be saving a lot more money in the long run, as the average price of a new phone has climbed. In fact, some phones have an MSRP of close to $1000! While financing is an option, you're still adding between $10 and $30 extra onto your cell phone bill, and you're tied to the carrier until the phone is paid off.
2. Some MVNOs don't actually sell smartphones.
3. You'll make a small contribution towards preserving the environment.
If you do not have a phone to bring to the carrier, you ought to consider purchasing a used, refurbished phone in excellent condition, which could save you 50 percent or more on the cost of the same phone when new.
If you like T-Mobile's network coverage, but are tired of its high prices, you should definitely consider a T-Mobile MVNO.
Fortunately, there is a wide selection of low-cost T-Mobile network carriers to choose from. Textnow, US Mobile, Mint Mobile, and Red Pocket, are just our pick of more than twenty carriers available.
Check out our cell phone plan comparison table. It could help you save hundreds of dollars a year.
COMPARE NOW: Cheap T-Mobile MVNO plans starting at $10