A young woman reacts in horror to a sms-message sms-message or e-mail on mobile phone as she stands in the open air, in a silent street, close-up of the head and the shoulders
Remember, a smartphone is a small computer, and the computers are expensive. Even older model phones can cost hundreds of dollars, never mind the $1,149, you would have to pay for an iPhone X with 256GB or the Samsung Galaxy S9, which costs upwards of $950.
In fact, there are phones that can rival the iPhone and Samsung can you have never heard of before now. Click here for the 10 best smartphones in the world.
Regardless of the medium, the freefall days of free and discounted phones are on, at least among the mainstream providers. The press is in possession of a smartphone is high, so how do you keep those costs as low as possible? Here are five smart ways to get that bill manageable.
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1. Check out the secret carriers
“The secret carrier” sounds implausible, but it is a name for a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO). These are wireless communication service providers who are not the owner of the wireless network infrastructure that they use. Instead, they work “almost” on a different network.
MVNO will lease mobile coverage and bandwidth of any of the major carriers – AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon – and sell it to their customers. The reception is often just as clear and strong, because they use the same technology.
Many MVNO companies offer cheaper plans than what you will find at the major carriers. Sign-up is usually simple, and with a low bet, you are rarely subjected to a credit check, and there are a lot of “a la carte” options and add-ons. Here are a few of the most popular options:
Virgin Mobile customers using Sprint’s nationwide 4G LTE network with a plan to choose from. It has no annual contract and there are no hidden costs.
The “Innercircle” plan from Virgin Mobile costs $50 per month for one line and comes with unlimited talk, text and 4G LTE data. You can use a mobile hotspot for $10 per month, phone insurance for $7 per month, and international calling for $5 per month.
StraightTalk Wireless uses all of the four big providers’networks.
With one line, it is $35 per month, and you get unlimited talk, text and 2GB data. If you want to bump your data up to 10GB, that plan costs $45 per month. The unlimited data plan will run you $55 per month.
Boost Mobile uses Sprint network and has a 99 percent nationwide coverage, with voice roaming.
If you have a line, it costs $35 per month for unlimited talk and text, and comes with 3GB of data. For $50 per month, your data is unlimited and comes with 8 Gigs of hotspot. And if you want to stream HD video up to 1080p, it costs $60 per month, which comes with unlimited talk, text and data plus 20 Gigs of hotspot.
2. Use of Wi-Fi when you can
Mobile providers sometimes offer unlimited data plans. However, many people choose to sign up for less expensive plans that have capped data amounts per month. This reduces the amount of data you can use, but if you spend most of your time in a Wi-Fi connection environment – at home or at the office, you do not need all that data anyway.
Instead of looking for free Wi-fi, an app on your phone. Click here for the one I use, which is a map of more than 100 million free Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide.
3. Make sure that you do not pay for insurance and any extras
A way to cut down on your cell phone bill is not to add insurance on your gadget. Think about how much you pay for it in the course of a year.
A $15 per month insurance plan costs $180 for the year. If you have a family of four and insurance on each device, that would amount to $720 for the year.
Don’t feel that you’re missing out on a quality of the phone just because you’re not with the thousand-dollar-high-end device. There are a number of lower-priced gadgets out there that all the essential features that you need; you have to look for them. Click here for a number of additional cheap phones, even iPhone users would crave.
In general, it is wise to scan from your mobile phone to see everything that you pay. You would be surprised by what you find. Something that you don’t need (usual extras are improved voicemail or roadside assistance) must be cancelled.
4. Set-up of the data overage alerts
If you don’t have an unlimited data plan and go over the permitted number, you’re going to have to pay extra costs. These costs add up quickly.
A way to avoid overspending at the top of our Wi-Fi suggestion that I spoke of earlier, is an additional warning with your provider. All primary providers have an excess alert function is easy to set up. You must log into your account and search for additional warnings to find out how you with your specific carrier.
Once you’ve set up the notification, you will automatically receive text and email alerts from your carrier when you 75 or 90 percent of your monthly allowance for calls, messages or data.
5. Go to a prepaid plan and check for discounts
Prepaid and no-contract providers often get a good reception and a lot of people want to use their flexible service. You can avoid the credit checks and substantial fees, and you can disable the service whenever you want. Companies like metroPCS and Cricket Wireless reasonably priced subscription that will not break the bank.
For example, metroPCS offers a no-annual-contract plan for $ 30 per month which allows you unlimited talk and text and 2GB of data at 4G LTE speeds. If you need more data, you can pay $ 40 per month for unlimited talk and text and 5GB of data.
The unlimited data plan costs $50 per month, for unlimited data, plus 10 GB of hotspot, it will run you $60 per month. All these plans prices are inclusive of taxes and legal fees, so that you do not pay more than what the plan calls for.
Cricket Wireless plans are similar priced. It costs $30 per month for unlimited talk and text with 2GB of high-speed data. For 5GB of data, the monthly plan costs $40, and for an unlimited talk, text and data it will cost $55 per month ($50 per month if you sign up for auto pay).
If you decide to go with a no-contract provider, be sure to ask about discounts. Most of them offer multi-line discounts, so you also pay less if you are with your whole family in your plan.
What the digital lifestyle, if you have any questions? Call my radio show and click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet or computer. Of the buy of an opinion to the digital world problems, click here for my free podcasts.
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Learn about the latest technology on the Kim Komando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and provides advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com.