Lowest Cost: Sprint
The big winner in the cost category was Sprint, which offered plans that worked out to a lower cost than those available from the other major carriers. Particularly useful for many consumers was the unlimited data plan still available from Sprint. Rosalind Tordesillas, representing Consumer Reports, explained why this is so significant: “Sprint is the last of the big carriers and cell phone service to offer unlimited data plans, which can make a big difference if you surf the web or if you download lots of apps and videos.”
Without an unlimited data plan, those kinds of downloads can result in hefty charges for exceeding the download limit that comes as part of a cell phone service contract.
Best for Occasional Use: Pre-Paid Plans
Those who use a cell phone only occasionally should look into the pre-paid option. Such plans have no contract or required term of service; consumers are charged for the texts they send or voice-call minutes they consume on an ongoing basis. Tracfone scored high among pre-paid carriers.
The Ultimate Question
Since changing carriers often means the users will decide to purchase a phone designed to work with the new service, one question is likely to arise: Where can I recycle old cell phones?
Fortunately, this is easily accomplished. Online services are one of the easiest ways to discard an unwanted cell phone. Recycling old phones is the right thing to do since it helps conserve the planet’s scarce resources.