Net10 Wireless Review – An Alternative Choice

Net10 Wireless ReviewPrepaid phone services come in a range of styles, providers and options. Net10 wireless, which is owned by TracFone is one popular option that has a diverse range of services. They operate as two different prepaid services providers though both have a range of service plans that are almost interchangeable. Net10 wireless is a prepaid phone services that piggybacks their calls off of the networks of other carriers such as T-Mobile, Verizon or AT&T. Depending on which model handset a consumer buys, it will be either GSM or CDMA.

Net10 Wireless Available Automatic Service Plans

Net10 service plans are pretty straightforward, with their minutes priced at a flat rate of ten cents per minute with exception of their unlimited talk plan. Their unlimited talk plan will set you back a flat $80 and allows you the freedom of making as many regular calls, domestic long distance calls, and text messages as you can muster. The plan does allow you to use the internet and send media messages priced at tens cents per MMS and ten cents per minute for net usage.

Net10 wireless 30 day plan

Net10 also offers three plans that are for limited usage. The lowest range plan is $15 dollars monthly for 150 minutes of anytime usage. This plan is best for consumers who are on a limited budget, or don’t use their phone very often. The second tier plan is $25 dollars monthly for 250 minutes of anytime usage. This is a great deal for consumers who talk more often, but not so much that they would want to shell out for a higher priced plan. The last tier of the limited usage plan is $40 dollars monthly for 400 minutes of anytime usage. Consumers who tend to talk a great deal but want to limit their phone cost are best suited to this plan. With all plans, text messages are five cents to both send or receive and MMS are 35 cents each. These plans do renew automatically, so consumers would need to have a payment method on file for automatic billing.

Related: Straight Talk Bring Your Own Phone Review

Net10 wireless offers three ranges of family plans that come with unlimited texting, calls and data usage. The first plan covers two users at the rate of $90, their second covers three users at the rate of $130, and their third covers four users at the rate of $170. These unlimited family plans are for domestic usage only and is paired with their trademark no activation fee policy.

net10 wireless monthly unlimited plan

For single user auto renew plans, there are several options for unlimited usage. $65 a month will allow you to make unlimited international calls and also provide you with unlimited access to the web, 411,voice, MMS and SMS service. For a slightly lower rate of $50 per month, you can access all of the same features with exception of international calls.

Net10 Wireless Available Pay as You Go Service Plans

Net10 Wireless Pay As You Go

Most people who purchase Net10 do so for the ease of controlling the cost associated with phone service. For these types of consumers, the pay as you go option presents the perfect choice. There are seven pricing schemes available for prepaid Net10 airtime minutes, the lowest being $20 for 200 minutes. The higher the prepaid minutes you purchase at once, the longer the validity period for their usage. The lowest number of minutes available for purchase has a validity of 30 days, while the highest has a two year validity. In the event a consumer does not use all of their minutes before the end of their validity period, adding more airtime will roll over any remaining minutes to the next cycle. On the pre-paid plan all talk time is charged at ten cents per minute, and MMS/SMS follow the same pricing as their renewable plans.

Net10 Wireless Available Services

Net10 wireless review - limited time offerOn contract service phone plans, directory assistance is provided as well as access to 911 emergency location services. Net10 however does not offer directory assistance, emergency tracking or 3 way calling. Net10 does however offer call waiting, caller ID, and voicemail services for all users regardless of package choice. There is no activation fee with Net10, but they do charge ten cents per minute when roaming off their regular network (They no longer have roaming charges).

The Net10 website is easy to navigate and has a very well thought out FAQ section that address the majority of questions that a customer may have. Should a customer still require assistance, the customer support department can be reached via email or phone.

Net10 Wireless Handset Choices

The handsets offered by the company range from the basic to the average low end Smartphone. They have a range of sets from all of the big names in phone sets such as Nokia, LG, Motorola, and Samsung. Several of their higher end set come with basic cameras, speakers for music and blue tooth connectivity. Regardless of the set purchased, each phone comes pre-loaded with 300 minutes that are valid for 30 days from the date of activation.

Net10 also allows you to bring your own phone with either CDMA or GSM.  This is a rarity in the cellular wireless provider business.  If you have an unlocked GSM phone, then you will be good to go. If you have a CDMA phone, then you will need to register it with them to see if you can bring it over.  If you have a phone from another carrier, then make sure they unlock it before you try to move over to Net10.

Positive Aspects of Net10 Service

  • Flat rate per minute
  • Minutes can be added from phone, online, or via loaded cards
  • Offer unlimited service plans
  • No service Fees
  • Affordable Handsets
  • No Contracts
  • No Activation Fees

Negative Aspects of Net10 Service

  • Poor customer service
  • Device tethering is not allowed
  • Costly roaming fees
  • Costly internet usage fees (if not on unlimited plan)
  • No access to latest phone sets (they do offer a bring your own phone plan (BYOP))

Net10 Wireless Coverage Map

Net10 Wireless Coverage Map

Overall, using Net10 wireless is pretty simple and straightforward. Their service is easy to use, and their flexi-load cards can be found in most grocery stores and gas stations. Their fees are easy to understand and they don’t have hidden charges or complicated contracts making it a great choice for teens or consumers on a budget. When compared to the cost of a yearly contract and a high end phone that may have just hit the market, consumers can save a significant amount of money with this service. The clarity of calls is on par with just about every other provider out there, and the reliability of the airtime is iron clad.

Try Net10 Wireless

Interested in Straight Talk?  Read my full Straight Talk Review.

About the Author Grayson Bell

I'm a business owner, blogger, father, and husband. I used credit cards too much and found myself in over $75,000 in debt ($50,000 in just credit cards). I paid it off, started this blog, and my financial life has changed. I now talk about fighting debt and growing wealth here. I run a WordPress support company, along with another blog, Eyes on the Dollar, which is another great personal finance blog.

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Leave a Comment:

DC @ Young Adult Money says September 12

Honestly, their service seems a bit high. With Walmart Family Mobile powered by T-Mobile, my current plan that I use as a benchmark in comparison, it seems like you can get more for your money since you can get 2gb of data and unlimited texting and calling per month for about $50 ($40 if you only want 1gb). Just seems more affordable unless I’m missing something.

    Laurie says September 12

    I just switched to Walmart Family Mobile and I can’t complain about it. I have a review coming up. Net10 started out as a pre-paid operator that just gave minutes. They just started their unlimited plans, but they offer access to more networks compared to just T-Mobile, which is what Walmart and Straight Talk use.

John S @ Frugal Rules says September 12

I’ve not heard of Net10. We did have TracFone though for several years and did not really have a good experience at all. Their service was average at best and our calls always seemed to drop. That said, it was several years ago and not certain what network they were on.

    Laurie says September 12

    TracFone has improved quite a bit. They have access to the bigger networks now as partners.

    George Caudill says January 21

    They suck…

    Don’t get Net10

      Laurie says January 21

      I am all for freedom of speech on this blog George, but I do ask that you back up your statement. Why do they suck? Why should others not check them out? Can you provide more information about your general statement?

      debra says April 14

      Yes they do suck, and they are scandalous. Horrible service and never got to use the data at all. It never worked even after hours and hours of wasted time on the phone with people who could not help me ,and usually I could barely understand their broken English . Wore me completely out and they completely ripped me off. Terrible. I have reported them to the BBB in several areas.

Matt Becker says September 12

Why would you choose this over something like Straight Talk that offers unlimited everything for $45? I agree with DC that the pricing here seems high compared to other available options.

    Laurie says September 12

    Net10 offers more lower priced plans than Straight Talk. I liked Straight Talks service when I used it, but it doesn’t offer the really low cost plans that you can get on Net10. They just entered the “unlimited” market, so their price is a little higher.

    Net10 also can get you access to the big networks if you bring your own phone, where Straight Talk can only give you access to T-Mobile now.

ike shatori says September 12

What NET10 DOESN’T tell you is that the most cost effective card – 1500 minutes for 6 months – is only available via ONLINE and credit card. I spent 3 weeks and stopped at over 40 locations looking for that card . I sent NET10 3 emails before they replied. All they said was “NET10 was sorry for any inconvience, yada, yada” In other words, NET10 is sorry you’re so stupid you can’t read our minds and know something that is not published. NET10 STILL has not changed its website. NET10’s cusomter support is out of India and TERRIBLE. What a crappy company.
I call NET10 the Official Phone Company of Drug Dealers.

    Laurie says September 12

    Thank you for your honest feedback on Net10. This is good to hear. One thing about customer service from India, have you tried Straight Talk or Walmart Family Mobile? They also have customer service in India. This is how all of these companies keep the costs low. This is the trade-off for a lower priced service. You get what you pay for unfortunately!

Joshua @ CNA says September 12

Hey Grayson, great review. I don’t use Net10, I use MetroPCS, but my bill is the same…$50 a month unlimited! I love it!

    Laurie says September 12

    Thanks for letting me know about MetroPCS. I almost forgot about them. I think they were or are going to be bought by another company. Sprint maybe?

natalia says November 7

they have the WORST customer service I have ever seen.My problem is never fixed and I spend HOURS on the phone. So frustrating!

    Laurie says November 7

    Sorry to hear that Natalia. Thank you for your honest review of Net10.

Daniel says November 10

I had net 10 for about 6 months, everything went fine until now. Somehow they messed up my data, I didn’t go over my cap, I tried resolving the issue with them but customer service is TERRIBLE! Finally switched to AT&T gophone plan for $60 a month, in my opinion it was worth the extra $15 a month.

    Laurie says November 11

    Thank you for your honest review Daniel. I appreciate the feedback on their customer service. I have heard similar things.

jim says November 20

Net10 does not have roaming charges:

    Laurie says November 20

    Thank you Jim for the link. I have updated the post.

Steven says January 28

Service and setup were completely easy and hassle free from me. I joined Net10 with their “Bring Your Own Device” program and an unlocked Android phone I bought from another website . All I did to activate was pop in the Net10 SIM card in back of the phone and I was off. I have saved a ton of money with their unlimited plan and the phone I got is awesome!

    Laurie says January 28

    Thank you for the information Steven. I appreciate your experience with Net10.

chema says February 11

i was with GoSmart mobile (t-mobile) for about 7 months using it with my unlocked att galaxy S3 gotta tell ya data speeds are sooo slow…sending sms pics takes for ever…browsing the web same thing takes ages! bars i get 2 bars at home full bars when i go outside with the $45 plan. got sick of it went to Radio Shack bough the Net10 pack sim card was free just paid the $50 plan…went home activated and ported my number to Net10 though it was gonna take like 2 days to port number but guess what? IT ONLY TOOK 10 MINS! i now i get 4G LTE! internet is fast and data as well…bars i get 3-4-5 at home yeah it goes up and down when im home butno problems and no dropped calls like with gosmart…i have not contacted customer service because i have not had any issues for 3 days everything works perfect…im not worried about data getting cut off because i dont use it much. so lets see how it goes for the rest of the month.

    Laurie says February 11

    Hello Chema,

    Thank you for sharing your story about Net10. It is good to hear that you are having success with it. I appreciate you stopping by to share your story.

Lance Johnson says February 12

With Net10, am I able to use the Pay-As-You-Go plan with BYOP AND only refill with the $30/300min/60day refill or do I also have to purchase $50 monthly plan. I currently use AT&T GoPhone Pay-As-You-Go plan, but their coverage is crappy in Nebraska (I was told the whole state was covered, but it is actually only along the interstate). I don’t make calls much and don’t want data because I will use Wifi when available. Looking for good coverage with cheap Pay-As-You-Go price. $30 for 2 months with only 300 minutes (with carryover) would be more than enough for me.

    Laurie says February 12

    Hello Lance, I don’t believe you can use their pay as you go plan with your own phone. I think they only offer their $40/month plan with the option to bring your own phone.

Jennifer Smith says April 9

I travel along the US east and gulf coast for work, does Net10 work for well travellers? Their web-site asks where the phone will be used.
Thank you!

    Laurie says April 10

    Hello Jennifer,

    This is hard to answer because different carriers do well in different areas. Net10 does have access to the AT&T network, so it can do well for you depending on where you are.

    hoarse says June 29

    Net10 has access to BOTH ATT and Verizon. So, your travel shouldn’t be a problem. It never has been for me.

      Laurie says June 30

      While they have access to both, you can’t roam on one or the other. They are two different bands. One is CDMA (Verizon) and GSM (AT&T). You would only be able to work on both if you had a phone that can handle both CDMA and GSM, which are few and far-between.

hoarse says June 28

I have been a Net10 user for years now. I started with Tracfone and indeed it sucked. So when they started up Net10 I switched. I am in an area that only has Verizon towers so Net10 works out great for me since they use both GSM and CDMA ( Verizon) towers. In the beginning I wasn’t crazy about the CS (India) but the last few years whenever I call I get CS in the U.S,

I think the pricing is great. I have a smart phone so I use the $50 unlimited everything plan which is actually 45 since I do the auto pay option.

I say give it a try. If you don’t want to invest a bunch of money in a phone for a test drive, find someone who has an older net10 phone they aren’t using, buy a 20 dollar card to throw on it and test the service out for a month.
I have an older phone that I lend out to friends to test the service. It’s a good cheap way to find out what the service is like.

    Laurie says June 30

    I appreciate your honest review of the service and glad you are happy with it. Thank you for the great tip on testing out the phone before you go all in. Thank you again for stopping by and taking time to comment.

hoarse says June 28

Just a thought. Happen to read all the other reviews and noticed that host’s response only included the word “honest” when the review was one that is negative toward Net10. Wonder why that is?
Surely, this isn’t meant to imply that those of us who claim to like Net10 are not being “honest”.

    Laurie says June 30

    Nope, not saying that others aren’t being honest. I appreciate your comment on the review and your experience. Your review of the service is just as honest. It is just how I replied to their comment. Nothing really to dig into.

K80theSHADE says July 25

Net 10 evokes many conflicting emotions in me.
Originally, they had a simple line: “No contracts. No Evil.”
That was 2007.
I got my GSM handset from them that year.
I still have it, it is in fact my daily driver.
I have to enter secured areas regularly, and since my old GSM phone has only a camera to worry the worriers, it was a simple matter of stabbing the cameras’ plastic lens with a hot needle to render the phone “safe.”
This phone is REALLY good. I’ve used it every day for eight years and it has NEVER dropped a call. Ever.
I was being driven through the Rocky Mountains the year I got it, and I was talking on the phone for much of the trip.
This phone did not lose so much as one signal bar the whole time.
I remember heading through tunnels and warning my interlocutors that the call may drop.
Never so much as a buzz.

But Net10’s service has suffered abysmally.

Remember the $15 refill cards? They were VERY short-lived because people bought them.

Then they quit the $15 cards entirely and introduced these “unlimited” plans.
And if you switch to an unlimited plan while you still have airtime/minutes, that time and those minutes vanish.
While they do tell you this will be the case, they only do so in tiny print on the bottom edge of the back of the card.
So if you decide you don’t like the “plan” BS, you’ve still lost all your rollover time you’d spent five years accumulating.

“No contracts. No evil.”

Now, there’s contracts. And evil.

The moment I find a carrier with pay-as-you go rollover who will support this GSM handset and let me keep my number which is on, like, 10,000 business cards, I am SUCH a ghost.

You were good, Net10. Long-live Net10.

    Grayson Bell
    Grayson Bell says August 3

    Thank you for your detailed account of Net10. They have been struggling as of late to attract new customers and this is showing me why. I appreciate you taking the time to provide us with an account of what you dealt with on Net10.

    Paula Abshire says December 14

    at&t go phone has roll over data, not sure about minutes though. my husband has had this service for a couple yrs now & has no complaints

lisa says October 26

can u switch a Tacphone wireless smartphone to New 10?

Torin says September 8

I’ve my own galaxy 3. Ever since the flooding out in baton rouge&the AT&T towers went down I haven’t been able to get a signal on my phone. I can’t call out or much less make a call. I’ve Net10 for a while but when I used someone else’s phone to contact them all net10 could say was that they would extend the days I was w/o service the next month. I can’t text,no internet service nothing. Net10 just wants their money.

al hunt says April 2

I tried signing up for one of their unlimited plans, got charge 4 times in one day, called to complain and was told money would be refunded, I got charged 4 more time, called to complain again and got charge 4 more times, still no service, over 350 dollars stolen out of my account, had to get bank to block them have filed a complaint with the BBB and with the AG’s office, my advice stay away from theis scam company.

Zach says May 18

Net 10 wireless is garbage. Their service is pathetic and seems like every time I refill my service My connection starts cutting out, I get disconnected all the time and sometimes my data won’t work for hours. Their customer service is full of clowns who know nothing more than what Google will tell you. They never fix my problem and just blame it on my phone. The 2g data runs better than the 4G lte data. I will be switching to straight talk where they offer a 60 dollar package that offers double what net 10, $50 package offers. Net 10 has been nothing but a head ache and I hate having to listen to foreigners speak their trashy version of English where I can hardly understand them because it sounds like that have wet toilet paper in their mouths. Net 10 is by far the biggest garbage phone company out there. Fully pathetic and I highly recommend that no one uses it

    Grayson Bell
    Grayson Bell says May 18

    Thanks for the feedback. Just note that Straight Talk customer service is made up of foreigners as well. They can be hard to understand, but they do know how to help.

    Janie says August 31

    No 911 service with prepaid service! Be aware before you buy! My home almost burned down because I could not call 911! Had to go to a neighbors to call 911, pathetic a company can get away with this!

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