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Thread: What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

  1. #1
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    What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

    I have been on AT&T postpaid in the past. A week ago, I went to the AT&T Prepaid 8GB 12-month for $300 (actually $270 using the $50 cards on sale from Target.)

    Anyway, what are the biggest differences between prepaid and postpaid service?

    So far, these come to find:

    -Price

    -Prepaid does not allow wifi calling/texting with my Android

    -Anticipated data speed throttling/deprioritizing

    I assume that there are others. What are they?

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    Customer and Tech services are usually better with postpaid.
    Just another day in paradise.....

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    Postpaid encourages device upgrades with 3 year installments.

    Postpaid supports the cellular Apple Watch tied to your number with an Apple iPhone.

    Postpaid has more options for international roaming.

    I'm not sure now, but Postpaid has bundle options with other ATT services. In the past, when calling support, options to bundle with HBO or Direct TV.
    iPhone 12 Pro is my current primary phone. And also have a Galaxy a10e as a backup travel phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    I have been on AT&T postpaid in the past. A week ago, I went to the AT&T Prepaid 8GB 12-month for $300 (actually $270 using the $50 cards on sale from Target.)

    Anyway, what are the biggest differences between prepaid and postpaid service?

    So far, these come to find:

    -Price

    -Prepaid does not allow wifi calling/texting with my Android

    -Anticipated data speed throttling/deprioritizing

    I assume that there are others. What are they?
    Price is a big factor. I haven't fully researched it, mostly because I can't easily find AT&T postpaid plan pricing, but I doubt an AT&T postpaid 8GB/mo plan would be available for as low as $21.38/mo ($300 plan for $256.50 with refill cards purchased during a Target $5 off $50 sale, and paying with a Target Red Card).

    My wife's Pixel 3a has WiFi calling available on the AT&T Prepaid $300 plan. So, WiFi calling does work, but you have to make sure you have a supported phone. Here's a list: https://www.att.com/idpassets/images...TT-Network.pdf

    Based on comments posted on various forums, AT&T Prepaid / MVNO data usually doesn't suffer from deprioritization like Vzw Prepaid / MVNO data does.

    Any "perks" included with AT&T Postpaid plans can usually be paid for on your own with the SAVINGS you get by using the right AT&T Prepaid plan, and WITHOUT the limited selection of available "perks"; you get to choose your own "perks", or none, if you just want to save money.

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    What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

    Quote Originally Posted by Boz1 View Post
    ...So, WiFi calling does work, but you have to make sure you have a supported phone. Here's a list: https://www.att.com/idpassets/images...TT-Network.pdf...
    I have a Samsung Galaxy S9. According to the list, it is a supported phone. There is a footnote, though, that states:

    "Indicates devices that require a software update to enable HD Voice, Wi-Fi Calling, Video Call, Advanced Messaging or 5G."

    What isn't clear to me is where or how to get that software update. Would it come from Samsung, AT&T or somewhere else? How do I request it?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post

    What isn't clear to me is where or how to get that software update. Would it come from Samsung, AT&T or somewhere else? How do I request it?
    Generally the required update is pre-installed by the manufacturer during manufacture of the phone or the carrier pushes the information OTA (over the air) to the phone. In some cases, the carrier automatically sends those updates or has to update it through their billing system manually. I am offering the abridged explanation as a prior CS rep for At&t.

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    Maybe placing a postpaid SIM in phone would make the update available. Others have reported similar scenarios. Oh & sometimes updates are only available through wifi only.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    data speed throttling/deprioritizing
    That's false.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    I have a Samsung Galaxy S9. According to the list, it is a supported phone. There is a footnote, though, that states:

    "Indicates devices that require a software update to enable HD Voice, Wi-Fi Calling, Video Call, Advanced Messaging or 5G."

    What isn't clear to me is where or how to get that software update. Would it come from Samsung, AT&T or somewhere else? How do I request it?
    In the past, an installed AT&T MVNO or AT&T Prepaid SIM would allow an AT&T branded phone to receive updates.

    What's the origin of your S9 (i.e., was it originally unlocked or purchased from another network owner)? If it's other than AT&T, hopefully someone else will be able to reply if there's a way to update or change it to AT&T firmware.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    I have been on AT&T postpaid in the past. A week ago, I went to the AT&T

    -Prepaid does not allow wifi calling/texting with my Android
    This probably has nothing to do with it being prepaid. I am on the same plan and have it working on Pixel 3a. Most likely this wouldn't work for your phone on postpaid either.

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    What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

    It sounds like the way for me to get this is to flash my Samsung Galaxy S9 to AT&T.

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    What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim1348 View Post
    It sounds like the way for me to get this is to flash my Samsung Galaxy S9 to AT&T.
    Have you actually turned off WiFi and made a call to confirm if it drops from LTE to 3G or not? The Samsung firmware issue isn’t usually applicable to the main carriers and AT&T Prepaid and postpaid both use the same software. Your S9 should have re-branded itself.

    If you make a call and it stays on LTE, you have VoLTE and don’t need a firmware update.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    AT&T will marketing text the snot out of you. Was a prepaid customer for three years, finally had enough of it.

    STOP only appears to stop that marketing campaign.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zentec View Post
    AT&T will marketing text the snot out of you. Was a prepaid customer for three years, finally had enough of it.

    STOP only appears to stop that marketing campaign.
    That hasn't been the case for my wife with a Pixel 3a XL on the AT&T Prepaid $300 plan.

    EDIT:
    3a (Not XL)
    Last edited by Boz1; 07-29-2021 at 08:28 AM.

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    What Are The Biggest Differences Between Prepaid And Postpaid AT&T Service?

    Quote Originally Posted by zentec View Post
    AT&T will marketing text the snot out of you. Was a prepaid customer for three years, finally had enough of it.

    STOP only appears to stop that marketing campaign.
    I’m on prepaid and I don’t get any texts from AT&at other than due dates or recharge related texts.

    WiFi calling works on my unlocked phones as well.

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