Since you have three lines id recommend H2O and get $10 off the 2nd and third lines. Data is decent 4G.
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I am likely going to be changing service providers before my next PTel bill becomes due in approx. 10 days. I just can not get even a decent signal inside my apartment with my PTel SIM, so it looks like I am going to need to be trying out some sort of AT&T service provider. I have just started reading about and trying to get informed about AirVoice, H2O and GoPhone, but those 3 seem to be the most-likely options for me. So, I am hoping to get some opinions on those 3 providers.
1.) Are AirVoice and/or H2O going to have the exact same signal strength as GoPhone?
- Will GoPhone have better reception, since it has LTE-access? Or does that only affect data speeds?
2.) What type of data speeds can be expected with AirVoice and H2O? HSPA+? If so, throttled at all?
3.) What happens to your data access after you use up your monthly allotment with all 3 providers?
- Do you get your data speeds throttled? or do you completely lose data access?
4.) Other than significantly-faster LTE data speeds, is there any reason to pay more for GoPhone?
I always seem to write way too much, and I don't mean to be annoying/bothersome, so I'm trying to be more concise. I feel that I should offer some additional relevant information, though, as it could help me decide how many of my lines I switch over from PTel.
I currently have 3 lines with PTel. One each for myself, my son and his mother. I currently have all 3 of us on the PTel $50 Unlimited Talk/Text/Data with 2GB of High Speed data for each line. The main reason I switched our 3 lines over to PTel (we had previously been on Virgin Mobile for about 6 months) was because of the then-long-standing PTel discounts where you could get $20 off of your monthly service. So I was expecting to be paying $30 per month for each of our 3 lines. However, as of last week, it seems as though there is no loner a valid discount like that. There is currently a 25% PTel discount code available, but you also have to order a SIM card to use the code (which was also the case before, but you got the SIM for free), so it will now be approx. $42 per month, per line; and with my personal PTel line getting barely any signal at all while inside my apartment, I really feel like switching and trying out a new service provider.
So, as of right now, I am just planning on switching over my one personal PTel number to an AT&T service provider/MVNO. However, I may end up switching over all 3 of my lines, depending on what opinions/feedback/suggestions I get about AirVoice, H2O and GoPhone. For the record, my son is 14 and I like him to have the luxury of Unlimited Talk and Text, and also some data access, but he probably uses less than 1,000 minutes per month of talk. He did use almost 1.8GB of data last month with his PTel SIM, but I figure he will just have to use less and try to get by each month with 1GB, since that seems to allow a cheap monthly price. His mother definitely needs Unlimted Talk and Text, but could probably get by with as little as 500MB of Data per month, so I am content getting her a plan with 1GB of Data allowed. And while I enjoy have the luxury of high-speed Data access on my phone, I don't need LTE or full HSPA+ speeds and I can get by with 1GB per month.
I do have to admit that I am really tempted by the new GoPhone $60 2GB Monthly with LTE access for myself; but if I can get a monthly plan with good coverage and a strong signal and 1GB of reasonably fast Data speeds for aorund $30-$40, I definitely have to consider that as an option.
As always, sprry for the lengthy post and replies will be very much appreciated!
- AzAssassin, a.k.a. BillyJackAz
Also, are H2O and AirVoice reliable companies that have been around for a while and are expected to be around for a long time to come? Are they comparable to GoPhone in terms of quality and reliability?
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I've used all 3 services. I was a long time GoPhone customer and have to say except for the price I was very happy with their service, never had a problem.
The only trouble I had with H2O was I couldn't always use data when I wanted to. It could be because I was on the $25 make your own plan, but I found sometimes I couldn't use data and it would time out. I have a feeling that they may give priority to native at&t users over MVNOs as my friend who has native at&t service wouldn't have any trouble at all.
Similar to H2O, I found that with Airvoice I couldn't use data all the time as well. One issue I have with Airvoice I never had with the other two carriers, was sometimes my phone would show no service for areas that were fine for the other two carriers. I feel this maybe just me as I haven't read anyone else having troubles.
To answer your question about signal strength, I found all 3 to be the same.
H2O is a mainstream prepaid carrier that's been around for awhile, as well as being owned by Japan's KDDI (Telecom Company) so it's not going to disappear that easily. I've never dealt with CS, but I've heard it's pretty bad. Unfortunately I'm not too familiar with the history of Airvoice, so can't say anything. But I hear they have great CS.
Would like to see a family plan with Airvoice too. They have great customer service but their are lacking in the IT area .
Last edited by bamx2; 08-17-2013 at 07:00 AM.
With prepay there's no worries since you're month to month if the company fail.
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Yeah... before switching anything, I suggest wasting about $11.00.. Get an H2O or Airvoice sim from ebay ($1.00), put in into your current phone, put in a minimum amount pin ($10.00), and try in the area that you need the phone most..
You can ask all the questions to everyone here, but only you have the correct answer. Anybody can give you a "free" advice, but you do get what you "pay" for..
As for H2O/Airvoice/Gophone, I have used all of them at some point of time, as will be the case for many people here. The signal strength and US coverage will be the same for the three... As for data, gophone will have LTE but I am not sure the other two will. What I do know is gophone will roam in Canada (used it in Canada), and have much better OLAM, and can disable ussd messages (the other two cannot). I do have my daughter's line on gophone because of the OLAM and call records, although the price is higher.. also gophone still offers the "rare" texting packages, which are going extinct in many prepaid cell phone services..
I have my wife's line on H2O now. We don't use cell phones that much, so all of our lines are "minute" plans - paygo.... The cash amount, and the dates stack.. Which i like a lot about the new H2O minutes plans.. Gophone does not do that, and I do not know what Airvoice pin will do these days..
As for H2O customer service, I never had to use them.. All porting requests were automated.. port-out is taken care of by the other carrier... didn't really have any issues since we are mostly voice users (with very limited data)...
Unless things have changed H2O has poor customer service. If T-Mobile coverage works for you, Walmart Family Mobile is the least expensive prepaid family plan in the USA. Unlimited talk, text and 2.5 GB of fast data before throttling for $40/ mo for the first line and $35 / mo for each additional line. If you can live with Sprint coverage, Republic wireless offers unlimited talk, text and 3g data @ $19 / mo per line + $3-4 if taxes and fees. Republic has no customer service, requires purchase of an older Motorola Android phone on sale until 8/31 for $199. Republic strongly encourages use of VOIP over wifi. My wife has RW and never uses wifi because their is no handoff to cellular like UMA calling. A new RW phone is expected in September.
You may also want to consider Aio. If you can wait a couple of weeks, it'll be available in your area. In September, they go nationwide online.