In a September post, Cheap & cheaper cell phone deals in Tulsa, I mentioned that Sir Paul’s cousin told me about a $3/month cell phone deal from T-Mobile (30 minutes of talk or 30 text messages — or any combination of the two, up to 30).
Since I have 9 service days left on my $7/mo Tracfone, it’s time to review my options.
I see that T-Mobile still offers the Pay-As-You-Go deal, and you can bring your own phone as long as it is unlocked, GSM-capable, and with a SIM card slot.
Sadly, both of my recent phones (Tracfone and Net10) are locked to their carrier. The lock is on a firmware level, so no software monkey business will let me liberate them.
I also see that the cheapest deal T-Mobile offers with a phone included is $74.99, which includes:
Samsung T199 phone: $29.99
Refill Card: +$30.00
SIM Starter Kit: +$15.00
That is all in addition to the $3/mo service fee, on which I would save only $4/mo, or $48/year on the service.
I would need to stay with the T-Mobile deal for 2 years to reach the break-even point.
So this year, I’ll stick with the cheapo Tracfone for my infrequent out-of-the-house usage. I didn’t feel like braving the mall anyway.
However, if you have on hand an unlocked, GSM-capable phone with SIM card slot, you might like the T-Mobile deal.
Of course, I still have my zero-cost, wifi-only smartphone to send unlimited texts via Google Voice, and control our home automation and home theater devices.
(PS, just re-upped with Tracfone with a 365-day, 800-minute, $85/year offer. With taxes and fees, that comes to 66 min/mo @ $7.85/mo. Should I receive the gift of gab for Xmas, I will be all set.)