While they each seem like a necessary evil, the big guns of mobile have gotten incresaingly greedier and more expensive at every turn. The plans from the likes of Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and even Sprint cost more than some average households are willing to cough up each month. Thankfully, Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) may offer a solution.
For those that don’t know, MVNOs lease the same towers from the aforementioned carriers to allow customers to connect at a discounted rate while the virtual network handles the customer service, etc.
FreedomPop was founded in 2012 by a capital investment venture led by creators Stephen Stokols and Steven Sesar to start a new carrier that molds free, open Internet with the traditional mobile telecom services. The company has a base focus with phones that work completely over the internet via voice over IP and supplements that when you are away from Wi-Fi with carrier towers.
PODCAST: What is an MVNO?
FreedomPop original launched with a limited run of phones compatible with Sprint. In 2016 the company expanded to “global compatibility” with a new partnership providing coverage with AT&T’s network. A year later they inked a deal with Target to sell service inside its stores to compete with Walmart and Straight Talk.
As mentioned above, FreedomPop starts at a free tier for just Wi-Fi enabled smartphone plans and moves towards more traditional monthly rates as you add data and voice away from Wi-Fi connections.
FreedomPop offers two versions of free plans. You can choose between either a CDMA backed line by Sprint or a GSM line with AT&T.
The CDMA option gives you 500MB of 4G LTE data, 200 minutes of talk time, and 500 texts per month. The GSM alternative stays the same for talk and text but drops the data per month to only 200MB of 4GB LTE.
For times you are away from Wi-Fi and your free plan, FreedomPop has competitive rates. Moreover, they can be heavily discounted by paying quarterly, semi-annually (6 months), or annually much like Mint Mobile. Suffice it to say, the bigger your commitment, the bigger the discount.
The 2GB plan nets you two gigabytes of 4G LTE data along with unlimited talk and text. Pricing is $24.99 monthly, $13.99 per month when paying every 3 months, $11.99 per month twice a year, and $9.99 per month with annual payments.
- Monthly: $24.99
- Quarterly: $13.99
- Semi-Annually: $11.99
- Annually: $9.99
Next up the scale at FreedomPop is a 5GB data plan. Again, unlimited talk and text are included. The payment options can be paid in the same frequencies as the 2GB for $34.99, $18.99, $17.99, and $14.99.
- Monthly: $34.99
- Quarterly: $18.99
- Semi-Annually: $17.99
- Annually: $14.99
If you’re starting to see a trend then you won’t be surprised by the 10GB plan at FreedomPop. You get 10GB of data and unlimited talk and text for $59.99 when paid monthly. Every 3 months drops to $24.99, twice a year $22.99, and $19.99 for yearly billing.
As you can see, the longer you are willing to stick with FreedomPop, the more of a discount you’ll receive. Yearly plans will save you almost 60% of your annual costs over a full calendar.
- Monthly: $59.99
- Quarterly: $24.99
- Semi-Annually: $22.99
- Annually: $19.99
There are a number of phones available to purchase from Freedompop, including those from LG, Samsung, and Apple. Selection is pretty solid but you won’t find anything on the high end of the spectrum.
Bring Your Own Device
FreedomPop does offer you the opportunity to bring your device with you to its network. We do recommend checking the device’s compatibility via the BYOD page, however. You don’t want to get stuck trying to change providers with a phone that’s going to let you down.