TextNow Review


One of the biggest decisions about making the switch is knowing that coverage falls under the Sprint network. Even though Sprint has made some great strides in the last year to spread its 4G LTE network, it still largely pales in comparison to the coverage you get from Verizon and AT&T. Carrying it along with us on our travels, it’s often frequent for us to notice that the Nexus 5 switches from LTE back down to 3G – while other devices on us from AT&T and Verizon, generally remain constantly on LTE.

The TextNow app

Needless to say, you gain the best experience using any one of the devices sold by TextNow, but you can still retain service on other devices by using the TextNow app. This, essentially, makes any device capable of sending/receiving phone calls and text messages – just as long as you sign in with your TextNow account. Does this sound familiar? Well, it should because it works on the same premise as Google Voice.

Downloading the app on a Samsung Galaxy S6 Active on AT&T, as well as an Apple iPhone 6 Plus on Sprint, we’re able to utilize the TextNow app to place/receive phone calls and text messages – all of it is down via the cloud. When someone calls our TextNow phone number, it’s routed to all of the phones running the TextNow app. That’s extremely useful, because it means that you can stay in touch no matter what phone you’re using.


It’s almost hard to believe that TextNow offers such value! From its affordable service costs, the discounted phones in its lineup, and the extended use of its app, it’s seriously a comprehensive offering that helps consumers keep connected no matter what. The biggest question, of course, is whether or not you’ll be content relying on Sprint’s coverage. Naturally, LTE coverage is widespread in major cities, but it’s something of a concern for rural areas.

Ultimately, though, we find TextNow’s service as an intriguing prospect that’ll surely make you think twice about what you have. Current Sprint and T-Mobile customers, in addition to the handful of customers using their prepaid services, will really have to think about making the switch considering the unbelievable savings that’s at stake here. However, for those comfortable and rely on the excellent LTE coverage from AT&T and Verizon, it might be tough to make the plunge and switch. Nevertheless, this model is the way service should be done going forward!


  • Low cost service plans
  • Great discounts on select smartphones
  • TextNow app routes calls & text messages to most phone
  • Option to bring your own device


  • Spotty LTE coverage
  • Limited selection of dedicated phones

PhoneArena Rating:




1. Totse2k15

Posts: 479; Member since: Feb 11, 2014

RingPlus is better. Bought 3 of their cheap Moto G and moved to RingPlus. It has FREE plans for the grandma that only uses her phone a little, lulz.

9. rogerdpack

Posts: 4; Member since: Sep 01, 2017

RingPlus is dead now, for followers :)

2. downphoenix

Posts: 3165; Member since: Jun 19, 2010

I will have to say Not Now to Text Now, since it is using Sprint. I don't want to downgrade my service from Cricket.

3. onetime

Posts: 1; Member since: Oct 02, 2015

Things you're review missed: 1) You must text every 2 days or you can lose your phone number. Forgot? Sucks to be you 2) Customer support is non-exisitent. The FAQ's are generic, support pages are for a small subset of problems, and try and contact someone 3) The phone comes with no documentation on how to setup, how to use. See above about no help Based on reviews, we made the mistake of buying a phone (at least we were only out $20) and plan from Textnow. No one can text to the phone (brilliant, right? A company called Textnow and you can't text to it), and the phone can't make calls (error: Sorry, we only support calls to North America. We are in N. America, we were calling N. America). You get what you pay for. In the case of Textnow, you get less, far less. Avoid this company.

4. vivanash

Posts: 1; Member since: Dec 15, 2015

So far...have had a good experience with TextNow. Support/contact us, very helpful, both on web and by phone. I brought my own phone so can't comment on the those for sale on the site. Have had no issues with coverage in my area. I'm not a big data user so 500mb is enough for me. It's the wild west out there for this type of cell service with Fi, RW, FP. Hope they do well. The price is awesome!

5. rosefromarock

Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 24, 2016

TextNow began just fine. I had a new phone that was better than my old phone and was free. I could text and make calls just fine. But very quickly I began having problems. I would try to make a call and it would be dropped before the other party even picked up. Texts often weren't sent or received. I contacted customer service and they suggested I reset the app. I did and things got better--for about a week. I figured that service was just going to be bad most of the time, so I decided to change providers. Ironically, just as I was trying to use my phone to purchase a new phone from a new provider, the phone died. It completely died and has never recovered since. It was a mere 4 months old. I went and got my new phone from a new provider and then began the nightmare of trying to get TextNow to port my number out. It has been almost a month now. First of all, they have it set up so you can't find your account number online and they don't send paper bills. So I had to call customer service to get it, which was a 30 minute wait. They gave me the wrong information and my new company submitted the request again and again, only to have it rejected. I called back and was finally given the correct information. A week ago my new company submitted the correct information and confirmed with TextNow that it was the correct information. However, they have taken their time in releasing the information. My number has to remain active with TextNow for the port to take place, and guess what? They delayed releasing it long enough that, yes, I was charged for another month of their service. I am still, after almost a month, waiting for my number to be ported. I am, of course, demanding a refund. In the meantime, I am warning everyone who will listen to steer clear of TextNow. I can handle ineptness but dishonesty is inexcusable.

6. Bluejs

Posts: 1; Member since: May 07, 2016

Negligent company This company makes it possible for an individual to obtain a new number without using a real email. A perfect way to hide ones real number. Used by cheaters. Another use to bypass a block on ones number to use for dangerous stocking behaviour, threatening, and intimidation.They havent even done the minimum possible to try restrict this behaviour. A request for verification of a legitimate email before a number is active would help deter. My ex possess more then 5 dozen of their numbers.Text now= possible cheater!!

7. Patricia116

Posts: 1; Member since: Aug 19, 2016

I had a TextNow phone for the last year and found it very unreliable for many reasons: -When I got the phone, they took about 5 days to port my old number and I had no means of texting or calling during that time. -Whenever I called customer service, I was always on hold for at least an hour unless I scheduled an appointment with them ahead of time. Oftentimes the call was dropped before I was able to talk to someone. -Customer service hours are limited and there is no alternative way to reach them (no email or chat options). -Calls from the phone always had at least a 2 second delay, sometimes longer, which made talking very awkward. -Sometimes incoming phone calls would go straight to voicemail without my phone even ringing. -I wouldn’t receive text messages right away unless I was getting them in the Internet browser version of the TextNow app on my laptop. Sometimes it would take hours for a text message to show up on my phone. -The plan I was on was $20/month for unlimited texting/calls and 500mb of data. But the phone would slowly eat up data in the background so the user would be forced to pay for a more expensive plan before the end of the month. -I would turn off my data to preserve it, but if I didn’t have wifi access this would cause the phone to stop working. -Sometimes I was unable to make phone calls at all, even though I had service. -The longer I had the phone, the longer the TextNow app took to load when I opened it. It probably took about 10 seconds to load when I finally cancelled my service. -When I deleted old text messages and pictures using the TextNow app, they would reappear months later. -When I went to cancel my service, I had to argue/debate with the customer service representative on the phone. At one point he told me the service was spotty because I was using an outdated version of the app, but the service had been spotty since the day I bought the phone and there’s no easy way to tell if the app is outdated or to update it from the interface. Overall, I was very disappointed with this phone. I just bought a Verizon phone with unlimited text/calling at a comparable price and it works much better than TextNow, and their customer service is much better. I wish I'd cancelled my service with TextNow sooner.

8. Davidsims

Posts: 3; Member since: Dec 26, 2016

I ordered a cell phone from a company called TextNow, unlimited 2g, 100mb 4g, unlimited calling. when the phone arrived it needed to be updated, it shut down a couple seconds into the update and said wifi would be required and I was out of data. around 3 days later the phone sent me a text saying i had used to much of the unlimited service and the phone locked me out of every thing? I contacted the number on the web site and asked how I could be shut off for using unlimited 2g. The customer service rep said: "The phone and the service do not matter, Its about fighting non believers in allaha's name" then proceeded to ask me for financial donations to "help kill non believers in allah's name...." Originally I thought this was a joke or a disgruntled employee so i called the canadian office pretending to be a turkish muslim traveling thru america and required a good phone service... needless to say after some general chit chat the guy on the other end offered me special services for cash,, services such as european motel rooms could be setup with either underage girl or boy for pleasure, for extra donation money i could decapitate the non believer aftrerwards. WTF!!!!!

10. rogerdpack

Posts: 4; Member since: Sep 01, 2017

The BYOD (with a sim card you buy from them) essentially "function the same really" as if you bought a device from them (which is, calls "always go over IP" whether its wi-fi or LTE, or handoff to LTE when you leave your house). FWIW. I asked their support about it. Now if you're just using the TextNow App that's a different story, it's kind of like its own dialing program, you can't use your phone's normal dialing. Though in the end it's all the same (everything always just goes over IP) FWIW.

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