Getting the Best Prepaid Cell Phone Services
[adsense]I used to be a loyal customer for one of the major cell phone companies. I spent years going from one year to the next getting the latest cell phones and comparing them and holding them up to bragging rights with friends and colleagues. In no way did I believe that the best prepaid cell phone could measure up in any way to what I was getting. For having the latest and best cell phone, I only needed to trade my cell phone in for another one. Or that’s what I believed.
I was laid off in 08 and found my income reduced significantly. I begged, pleaded, and tried to get this company to let me out of my contract. They had to have something for loyal customers in my situation. I had been a loyal customer for over 10 years. Never late payments and one of their valued customers…or so I thought. But it was a no go. I was forced to pay an expensive early termination fee and lost my phone service all in one day.
The Best Prepaid Cell Phone Service vs Contracts
Since then, I have been extremely anti contracts on cell phones. Having a 2-year contract is having a chain constantly held around your neck with a ticking time bomb. You either bide your time (and money) until you eventually “serve your time”. Or that time bomb is going to go off…and mine like many went off at just the wrong time. It is then that I began to delve into prepaid services and looking into finding the best prepaid cell phone services I could find. It wasn’t that difficult actually. And surprisingly, the services received were comparable to what I was receiving before. And now that smartphone technology has been introduced and prepaid carriers have begin to offer them, there is great value in finding the best prepaid cell phone coverage, phones and plans.
The Biggest Variable
For cell phone service (especially smartphone service) we all want different levels of three things:
With today’s technology, voice generally has the same quality no matter which network or provider you choose. Text technology is the same and data rates are pretty much similar across the board (some exceptions of course depending on how populated of an area you live and travel). So what you have left is an option to focus specifically on price. Now consider that over time, technology gets cheaper and prices generally go down…that’s unless you follow the contract model still being pushed by major providers across the country. The best prepaid cell phone services can satisfy all types of lifestyles, despite the variation of individual needs.
My goal here is to provide you with the resources on how to get the best prepaid cell phone services and technology for your needs. Using this model, even if your needs change, you can change your phone or your service with minimum impact. Before we start, there are some key points you should make and understand:
- Determine your needs. Are you a heavy data user? Do you text a lot? Is your smartphone your primary home phone? These are questions you should ask yourself and answer truthfully.
- Make cell phone providers commit to you, you don’t commit to them. Once you are in a contract, you have to move mountains to get out. If you are in one, let it expire when the time comes. You may get offered all kind of offers and candy to sign into a new one again. Resist.
- If you are concerned about branding, customer service, names and such, then this is not for you. This especially goes for customer service. If something goes wrong, it suffers first. And many prepaid cell phone companies cut in this area to save on costs to the consumer.
- Evaluate your position regularly. Make sure you are getting the best deal possible for you and your position. It is amazingly easy to change from one phone to another or one provider to another using this method.
One other caveat. I am adamantly against CDMA providers and phones. It is an old technology and only dominant in the US. It is a key weapon used by carriers to keep users from using a smartphone from one provider, and taking it to another provider. GSM is the worlds most popular and my personal choice as the best type of technology currently available. Theoretically, you could jump to a new provider “every month”.
So what do you need?
- An unlocked GSM phone.
- Google Voice.
So how exactly should you proceed?
More details to come…