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Walmart’s Mobile Unlimited Plans Make Cents

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by Lori Cunningham

Note:  I am a member of the Collective Bias Social Fabric Community.  Purchasing Family Mobile Unlimited Plans Service through Walmart has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client. #cbias #SocialFabric #FamilyMobileSaves

 

 Cheap wireless plan, lowest price rate plan, unlimited plan, best wireless

Several months ago, I read something about the Walmart Family Mobile Unlimited plans service.  I noticed their cheap wireless plan pricing and thought it sounded like a great option for single service or family service.  Recently, I had the opportunity to shop myself for mobile service at Walmart to confirm that…

1.)  the service was good throughout my city and beyond

2.)  there are a variety of phone choices to choose from

3.)  the pricing was really as good as I read about

 

Phone Service

I have been a T-Mobile customer for over 10 years.  Although I have tried Verizon and AT&T on occasion, while testing different mobile phones, I am most familiar with T-Mobile and have been quite pleased.  So when I learned that Walmart Family Mobile’s network was based on T-Mobile, I already felt right at home.  I’m very familiar with the areas in my city where I get a good signal and where I don’t.

 

Phone Choices

I was very pleased to see the number of choices the Walmart Family Mobile plans offer.  Many of the top phones are available to purchase with the plan and in fact, you can even use a phone you already own.  You just need to call your mobile phone provider and ask them to unlock your phone.  Many companies will do this free of charge.  I called in to T-Mobile earlier this year to unlock our myTouch and Samsung Galaxy III phones when we were traveling internationally so we could insert other countries’ SIM cards.

Cheap wireless plan, lowest price rate plan, unlimited plan, best wireless

Choices included on the Walmart Family Mobile lowest price rate plan include:

  • Samsung Galaxy S II
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
  • iPhone 5, 16GB white or black
  • LG Optimus L9
  • myTouch
  • HTC Wildfire
  • and a few other lower cost phones

 

 

 

Mobile Unlimited Plans Pricing

Here’s where it really gets interesting and what piqued my interest initially several months back.  The price for one user per month $39.88 which includes an unlimited plan for talk, text, and web, plus a $25 starter kit activation for each line.  This is one of the lowest price rate plans I have seen.  While I was at Walmart, I saw the display for T-Mobile right next to the Walmart Family Mobile Unlimited plans.  Their price was $30/mo with unlimited text and data (with the first 5GB of data using 4G speed), which sounds like an even better deal…until you look more closely and see that only 100 minutes of talk time are included.  Yikes!  I had over 300 minutes just last month and I’m not a big mobile phone talker, so this T-Mobile plan would not work.  Let me clarify that this is not the T-Mobile plan I have already before purchasing Walmart Family Mobile.

Cheap wireless plan, lowest price rate plan, unlimited plan, best wireless

The only limitation I saw on the Walmart Family Mobile Unlimited plan was the data.  It appears to use 3G speed for data initially rather than 4G speed, like T-Mobile.  The Walmart Family Mobile plan allows up to 2.5GB of data used per month, using a 3G speed, but any more usage afterwards slows down to the 2GB speed until your next billing cycle.  But that shouldn’t be a problem as I typically use less than 1 GB of mobile data and I use my phone data quite frequently, though admittedly, I do not watch very many videos, which would cause my usage to increase by a lot.

Cheap wireless plan, lowest price rate plan, unlimited plan, best wireless

What About Family?

As you can see from the above pricing, if you want to add others onto your plan, the cost is $34.88 for unlimited talk, text, and web, similar to the main line.  Up to 5 phones can be included and no, the lines do not have to belong to members within your household.  With my plan using T-Mobile, my husband and I have a line as well as my mom-in-law, who lives in another city.  Here is a breakdown comparison of my current T-Mobile costs vs. using Walmart Family Mobile:

 

_____T-Mobile                                    Walmart Family Mobile

Monthly charge            $87.99                                            None

Line 1:  Me                       $13.20                                            $39.88

Line 2: Husband            $13.20                                            $34.88

Line 3: Mom-in-Law:  $13.20                                            $34.88

 

Totals:                     $127.59*                            $109.64
Monthly Savings for my family with Walmart Mobile:  $17.95

Yearly Savings for my family with Walmart Mobile:      $215.40

* Includes corporate discount.  Both prices do not include taxes and surcharges.

 

One interesting thing to note is that Walmart Family Mobile does not mail out your monthly bill.  All of your online account management and information can be found online through their site.  After activating your service, you will be sent your new phone number and the website address to visit to manage your account.  You can either pay monthly or opt for autopay.  You will be sent either a text or text and email each month to remind you, dependent upon your preferences.

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A Mom’s Perspective

The Walmart Family Mobile plan is the lowest price rate plan I have seen, bringing in the true value of unlimited text, talk, and data.  It’s great for both single people and families.  I love the fact that you can use your current phone (once you have your mobile phone unlock it for you) with Walmart’s Family Mobile plan too, which helps bring the cost lower if you already have a phone.  You do need to check with Walmart Mobile to ensure your phone will work first.

Another benefit is that Walmart Family Mobile’s unlimited plans require no contract, so you can cancel right before your next billing cycle at anytime.  No fees are charged, it’s easy.  Before joining on our mobile plan, my mom-in-law had always used the prepay phones, it worked for her, but I find them limiting.  The Walmart Family Mobile plan looks like a good solution.

I will be using the Walmart Mobile Family plan over the next several months using a provided Samsung Galaxy SIII.  I will write another article in a few weeks to let you know what I think of the service, calling area, and data speed.  So far in the few days I have been using it, I have been happy with it.

 

How much do you pay for your mobile monthly service?

 



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27 comments
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GregoryAPeterson
GregoryAPeterson

in november of last year i got my son a cell phone, through the Walmart Family Plan....The service for that has been provided by T-mobile....I signed up for the $29.88 per month unlimited talk and text....I have to say the T-mobile service has been sketchy at best...now each month he gets a text telling him what his phone bill would be, some months it has been 32 and change some months it is 33 and change we have had a couplke of 35 and change months...I understand that there is a tax on that $29.88 service and that would explain the $32 and change charges.... I do not understand the 33 dollar charges and I don't understand why the one month was 36 and change now this month he gets a bill and it's for 40 dollars...I went in to talk to the person at Walmart wireless and she had no clue what I was speaking about...she put me in touch with some activation line/customer service people and that girl told me that the extra 10 dollars was a one time reactivation fee, because thje phone had been shut off for paying the bill a few days late I could understand a late fee IF the phone had been left on but either Walmart Family or T-mobile CHOSE to shut the service off for being late with the bill this is absolute B.S. they shut the phone off and now they want to charge a 10 dollar reactivation fee I should have just got a trac phone prepaid you talk until your time runs out and when you have the money you put another card in the phone, there is no B.S. $10 reactivation fee this is absolutely ridiculous and if said $10 fee were on the up and up WHY can't I find any mention of it in any of the paperwork, I will probably just go buy my son a trac phone or virgin mobile prepaid this walmart thing is criminal at best once again I would like to thank Walmart for working so diligently to make my life miserable.....WalMart sucks!!!

Tim Ballard
Tim Ballard

How do you manage more than one line do you need more than one phone problem watch alot of videos and run out of data

Linda S
Linda S

Been on Family Mobile for over 6 months with an unlocked Samsung S3 and its good But no service outside of USA (for UK) must get a international SIM card. Whereas T-Mobile does over free data/text in the Uk so they told me anyway. Overall for US users the Family Mobile plan is a great $45.00 unlimited plan .....would be $60 with T-Mobile cos their 50.00 plan is Only 500mg of data......

Elyssa
Elyssa

Lori, I truly appreciate your article and reporting on this service! I want to switch my son and I to this plan so its easier to manage since we are currently on different carriers. My son just received a new phone for Christmas and I'm not quite ready to part with mine. It looks as if we can switch to this family plan and not only save money, but.... well yeah... we can save money!!! :) One thing I wonder about is if we can keep our same number. Many of my clients have my wireless # and I really don't want to go through the hassle of updating clients and others with a new #. I'll have to stop in Walmart to ask about this soon. Again, thanks for this article. I've wondered if the Family Mobile plan was as good as it looks, and it appears that it is! Happy New Year.

Daniel Rodgers
Daniel Rodgers

You should be able to use any T-Mobile OR unlocked GSM phone with Walmart Family Mobile. We have been using WFM for 2 or 3 years, and have been thru many phones, some of them not so common, and all have worked just fine. For instance, currently using a VinciTab MV, bet you never heard of that! Been quite happy with WFM!

curtis
curtis

How can I find a list of all the cell phones or cell phone providers that this deal will work for?

sharon
sharon

WELL I'M THINKING BOUT GETTING SERVICE WITH FAMILY MOBILE BUT I HAV A SAMSUNG GALAXY MEAG IN I HAV THA UNLOCK CODE JUST WONDERING WILL MY WEB WORK GOOD IN IF I GO OUT OF TOWN WITHMY FONE WILL IT WORK GOOD!!!!

Lisa
Lisa

What is the benefit of a family plan beyond price? It looks like the difference in price is $5 less a month for each additional phone, plus an initial $25 activation. The net result is no difference the first 5 months of ownership.

Naomi
Naomi

Wow- thanks for the great breakdown in costs. I've been very curious about this program.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

You can see all your phone information for each line on the Walmart Family Mobile line and can have up to 5 lines in a plan. The data is unlimited up to 2.5 GB of data. It may not be worthwhile for you if you use more than 2.5 GB a month of data.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Thank you, Linda, for adding your perspective on the Walmart Family Mobile plan. Going point about getting another SIM card when traveling. I've done that before too, and you can just buy the time you need rather than a monthly.

Dave
Dave

Elyssa, to answer your 'keep your #' question - the answer is *maybe*. The catch is that all numbers on the WFM plan are required to have the same area code.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Hi Elyssa, Thank you for taking the time to comment. I found the Walmart plan to be a great savings. I believe you can keep your same number, I looked that up once before for someone else who asked. The one caveat is that their service isn't dedicated as with a larger mobile carrier. The employees in the Walmart technology department handle the mobile customers ad the technology customers. But I think you'll rarely need service.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Great to know, thanks for letting everyone know. And yes, I have heard of the VinciTab! That's great to hear that it's working with Walmart Family Mobile too!

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Yes, the Walmart Family Mobile Service is based on the T-Mobile service, which is what I have had for 10+ years. I have traveled with it, and it works great throughout the US.

Sahara
Sahara

Actually Lisa, while TMobile's $50 per month plan offers unlimited Talk, Text and Web, you ONLY get up to 500 MB (NOT GB) of data at the 4G speed, then the speed drops to 2G. With Walmart Family Mobile, you are only paying $39.88 per month and getting 2.5 GB of data (which is WAY more than 500 MB) before it drops to 2 G speed. That being said, the overall value with Walmart Family Mobile is much better and it's clearly the smarter choice.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Lisa, Walmart's pricing in the longer term, will save you money versus other plans. However, beyond price, you are not locked down to only certain phones, carried by only certain carriers, and it's easier to change your options online yourself versus going through a customer service rep on the phone, if you prefer to control options more yourself.

CJ
CJ

Want to add you can use SIM card from starter kit to use your own tmobile ( doesn't need unlocked) or other unlocked gem phone if it has tmobile 3g frequencies. I got online From Amazon a new T-Mobile Samsung galaxy s blaze 4g for 139 shipped. It isn't too big, 5mp camera with flash/auto Focus, dual core cpu, g screen better looking than galaxy s2, etc... It has 4g/3g for att and tmobile. Purchased just case didnt get good coverage could unlock phone go back to straight talk Sim card program on att network. But tmobile not bad, have to switch to 2g only at home to not drain battery though cause 3g weak here. Wish had first 200-500mb at 4g though I use WiFi on cell so never used over 200mb data so like a waste to me "almost".

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

You're welcome. I was hoping my current T-mobile plan would come close, but it didn't measure up. Now to test the data throughput to see how it compares.

justin
justin

I know this is old but now you get 5gigs

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

T Mobile has several different plans. The T Mobile plan I was referring to was available in the Walmart stores only. But anyway you slice it, the Walmart Mobile plan is definitely a better price. The only thing it lacks, is the service that you can expect from TMobile and other carriers.

Lori Cunningham
Lori Cunningham

Thank you, CJ for your update, great point if you already have a T-Mobile phone, no need to worry about unlocking it to use with Walmart's Family Mobile Plan.

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