If you want to save money on a data plan, go to a virtual operator like Cricket Wireless, and that's not valid for AT&T customers only. Crickett's unlimited data plan is just $55 for a single line, compared to $80 on AT&T, but the maximum LTE download speeds would go up to 8Mbps, and that's that.
Perhaps you are fine with that restriction, or with the 22GB throttling cap, then Cricket actually offers a fine roster of phones, a far cry from the prepaid portfolios of yesteryear, and can back them up with AT&T's network coverage, which is second only to Verizon's in the US.
That is why we are rounding up the best value for money phones you can get on Cricket, as the virtual carrier is running a sweet promo that takes two Benjamins off current flagships if you port over your number to Cricket (isn't valid for AT&T ports, of course, as it's essentially the same carrier.)
Premium design, excellent camera, rich interface
The Galaxy S9
offers high-flying glass body, avoids the lazy notch design, does 4K 60fps footage, and sports high-efficiency video codec to save it in. That's not all there is to it when it comes to the camera, though, as it also has unique variable aperture lens that can soak in more light in extreme night scenarios. Samsung also equipped the S9 with ultrafast chipsets, dual stereo speakers with wonderful sound, and added great looks and ergonomics to the mix, and Cricket is having a promo for port-ins that cuts the price to just $499.
Apple iPhone X ($799 with a port-in) or iPhone 8 ($499)
Pricey without the number port discount, smooth performance, great cameras
The $1,000 iPhone X is the flagship with a fresh design, an edge-to-edge screen and the new Face ID tech, and if you port your number to Cricket, you can get it for "just" $799. Needless to say, it's a great phone that costs a pretty penny, so one can look a bit further down Apple's portfolio to get a more optimal value-for-money ratio, which is the subject of our next entry.
All three new iPhones have absolutely identical main cameras, but the 8 Plus and the iPhone X
have a secondary, "tele" camera that allows you to get clearer zoom and capture portrait photos with a blurred background like on DSLRs. The iPhone X can also shoot portraits with blurry backgrounds with its front camera, while the other two cannot.
Why should you get the new iPhones? They stand out with buttery smooth performance and a rich ecosystem of apps and games. Also, you can be assured that an iPhone will be supported for years with updates, yet those updates will not come a year after they are released. You should buy them if you value the performance, and want a good camera. And of course, if you don't mind those super high prices.
Great value for money, elegant metal body, wide-color photography
We don't need to extol the iPhone 7
virtues to you - wide color screen and camera, water-tight body, and ultrafast A10 chipset, while the 7 Plus adds optical zoom and artsy portraits to the mix. At its website, Apple writes: "models A1660 and A1661 also support LTE networks listed for Models A1778 and A1784
." The first two are none other than the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus versions for Verizon and Sprint, and the other two are listed for AT&T and T-Mobile. Guess what, the unlocked SIM-free versions of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus that Apple is selling, are precisely those A1660 and A1661 model numbers whose LTE bands cover all US carriers. Apple started this trend by providing a record number of LTE band support with each and every iPhone iteration since the 5s
, and we are now at the 23-band mark with the unlocked iPhone 7 models, which the globetrotter or carrier hopper in you will surely appreciate.
LG Stylo 4 (($230 with new line or upgrade)
Galaxy Note's affordable alternative
The new Stylo 4
has two stand-out features that might be considered a selling point for some: Its large 6.2-inch screen and the stylus. To make better use of the stylus, LG has added software that lets you do some cool things like writing notes on the screen while it's turned off.
Other than that, the insides aren't thrilling, a Snapdragon 450 chip is doing all the work paired with 2GB of RAM, which might be insufficient for a device meant for productivity. Another drawback is the 3300mAh battery. While not a small capacity per se, combined with the phone's big display, it may lead to shorter battery life than users might be looking for. At that price point, the cameras won't amaze you either, it has a 13MP main camera and a 5MP front-facing one.
There are a few pleasant surprises on the spec sheet though: the Stylo 4
has NFC, a feature missing on some similarly priced devices, 600MHz LTE Band support, and comes with Android 8.1 straight out of the box.
Motorola moto e5 SUPRA ($120 with port-in, $160 with new number or upgrade)
The excellent budget E5 Plus becomes Cricket-exclusive Supra
Cricket Wireless recently added another rebranded Motorola smartphone to its portfolio – the Moto E5
Plus. The smartphone will be sold as Moto E5 Supra for just $180 at select Cricket authorized retail stores and online for both new and existing customers.
As some of you might already know, the Moto E5 Plus is an entry-level smartphone powered by Android 8.0 Oreo. It comes with a massive 6-inch display with HD+ resolution, a 12-megapixel rear camera and a secondary 8-megapixel front camera for selfies.
Unlike many other smartphones, the Moto E5 Plus has the LED Flash on both sides near each of the cameras. Under the hood, Motorola's smartphone packs 3GB RAM and 32GB expandable storage, as well as a very large 5,000 mAh battery, which should get you through several days of usage.
Although it's not water resistant, the Moto E5 Plus features an advanced nano-coating technology that makes it water repellent. Obviously, it includes some of Motorola's proprietary technologies and features like Moto Display, Moto Actions and TurboPower (6 hours of use on a 15-minute charge).
LG X Charge ($80 with port-in, $130 for new number or upgrade)
3-day battery, 1080p video, large display
Sub-$100 with number porting ain't sub-par, as the LG X Charge does what it says on the tin - it offers you extra mileage on a charge. The combo of a large HD display, frugal chipset, and a giant 4500mAh battery pack means you just can't kill this thing even after daylight time worth of Pokemon Go playing, and it can last 2-3 days on a charge with normal usage.
An iPhone at a budget price? Not an oxymoron, an SE.
As an entry level hookup to the iOS universe, the iPhone SE
comes at a great price on Cricket, and this tag doesn't even require that you port in your current number from another carrier.
Built tough, the tiny SE is one of the easiest phones to operate with one hand, and will run the iOS apps you know and love. Unfortunately, Cricket only has the Space Gray color left in stock.