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Best cell phone carriers

Best cell phone carriers
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Clark Howard |
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Cell phone plans are dropping like a rock in cost. I recently heard the Verizon CEO whining about how all the new deals in the marketplace are making it tough for Verizon to keep customers. Then he made a snide remark about how all that matters is the network, and if the newer players are offering such deals, their networks can’t be any good, right?

Yeah, right…

Who’s the best wireless company?

Consumer Reports has rated cell phone carriers in the February 2015 issue. Predictably, the Big 4 all got terrible ratings. Sprint was the worst, AT&T was behind them in second place for the worst, and T-Mobile and Verizon tied for best of the worst.

So who did well? Well, none of them are household names…

The best carrier is Ting. With Ting, you pay for buckets of what you want a la carte — voice minutes, text messages, and data. It’s a ‘build your own plan’ kind of model. You pick how much you want and purchase on that basis. Their plans can be as cheap as $6 a month.

In second place,  you have Consumer Cellular, which can be great for large groups like families.

In the prepaid category, Republic Wireless is the top pick. I put my father in law on Republic Wireless for $10 a month for unlimited talk and text. That’s cheap, right? If you want nearly unlimited data on their network, the bill goes up to $25 a month.