Low cost cellular providers are popping up everywhere. From FreedomPop’s limited plan to Republic Wireless’ pay only what you use plans, saving a pretty penny on your cell service is getting easier and easier, if you know what to look for. After Sprint decided to discontinue offering services to RingPlus, another Sprint MVNO, Ting Wireless came in to save the day for those users, or at least made a deal to grab the user base and the phone numbers from RingPlus. This was a good thing, and a bad thing, depending on the user and their needs, but none the less, it happened. Now, if you are one of those RingPlus users, or just someone that thought Ting would be a better deal, but didn’t experience the savings you were expecting, here’s why.
The $6 a month line fee.
From the get go, Ting tags each line with a $6 connection fee. This is before any usage begins. Again, coming from RingPlus with truly free, ad supported calling, getting hit with $6 just to have your phone on is a bit harsh. Still, not a bad deal compared to some that charge $20 for a line access fee.
The $3 minimum talk fee.
Again, it’s not terrible, but at 100 minutes for $3 as the minimum plan, you’re at $10 a month just to talk for $100 minutes. Compared to Republic Wireless, that nets you unlimited talk and text for $15 (or FreedomPop that pulls in $10.99 on Sprint or $12.99 on AT&T) it’s still a bit higher than many other value plans.
The $3 fee for 3 texts a day.
Text messaging is an awesome way to save minutes, but when the cost of sending a text is the same as a minute of talk time, it’s hard not to phone a friend instead. When you figure that the average user sends about 500 texts a month, which sounds like quite a few until you remember that it is both incoming and outgoing messages, the bill quickly climbs to $9 and then doubles to $18 at message #501. Of course they toss in picture messaging – as long as you have data.
The $10 for 500MB of data.
Now, a super light user could probably get by with just 100MB of data. The average device will blow through that on just backups and a few miniature updates. It’s really not enough to consider a data plan, but rather, it’s more of a way to send and receive picture messages. Going to the $10 mark will actually give you enough data to use email and social networking, just remember not to stream anything.
So, in a nutshell, your minimum plan on Ting for 1 phone, 100 minutes of talk, 100 texts (that’s 2 out and 1 in each day during the month for reference), and 100MB of data is $15 a month. For a plan you can actually use, you’ll be staring at $30 rather quickly. This includes the $6 access fee, 500 minutes of talk, 1000 texts and 500 MB of data. It’s still a very limited plan, especially when you consider Republic will give you unlimited talk and text and a full GB of data for just $20. Ting only gets worse when you compare it to low use providers like Tello and Red Pocket Mobile’s annual plans. For under $10 a month, both Tello and RPM will offer you service that can actually be used. Check out your savings at Republic Wireless by clicking the link below.
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