Pros / T-Mobile offers an awesome Unlimited 55+ plan for seniors.
Cons / Beyond unlimited plans, it doesn’t have many options.
Verdict / T-Mobile offers some of the best unlimited data plans and fastest 4G LTE speeds.
Though there are some conflicting reports on T-Mobile’s network performance, it is still one of the best cell phone providers in the U.S. It has one of the fastest 4G networks – performing particularly well in urban areas – and offers three tiers of feature-rich unlimited plans.
The reports from different independent testing companies like RootMetrics, Ookla and OpenSignal sometimes contradict each other. For example, T-Mobile comes in fourth place in RootMetrics’ report from the second half of 2017, but it tops both Ookla and OpenSignal’s rankings. This happens because each company uses different testing methodologies. RootMetrics performs road tests and covers a wider physical area than other tests, but OpenSignal is more relevant to users, as its results come from an amalgam of crowdsourced data. Basically, T-Mobile doesn’t have as much coverage in rural areas as, say, Verizon, but it performs well in urban zones. If you live in a city, you can benefit from T-Mobile’s fast speeds.
T-Mobile offers two unlimited plans and a 10GB sharable plan available without a credit check. We are not huge fans of the shareable plan as it involves fees and deposits, and it doesn’t include most of the extras that come with the other plans. We mention this offer to give you the full spectrum of T-Mobile’s plans, but we don’t recommend it.
The unlimited plans, on the other hand, are great. T-Mobile ONE is the base plan, which costs $75 a month for an individual or $180 for four lines. You can save $5 a month by enrolling in autopay – the prices T-Mobile advertises assume this discount. The ONE plan includes unlimited talk, text and LTE data. It deprioritizes your data usage after 50GB a month, which is the highest 4G threshold of any unlimited data plan in our evaluation. You can use your talk, text and up to 5GB of 4G data in Canada and Mexico, with data and text available in over 140 more countries.
For $10 more a month per line, you can upgrade to the ONE Plus plan. This gives you 10GB of 4G mobile hotspot data, HD video streaming, unlimited text and Wi-Fi on Gogo enabled flights. The One Plus International upgrade costs $25 per month and includes everything in the Plus upgrade and unlimited international calling, unlimited 4G data in Mexico and Canada, and unlimited 4G hotspot data. We like that you can add these upgrades to individual lines on a plan instead of having to upgrade them all.
The Unlimited 55+ plan offers a discounted rate on up to two lines as long as the primary account holder is over the age of 55. You can get two lines on the ONE plan for $75 a month ($5 less if you enroll in autopay). The same two lines cost $130 without the discount.
T-Mobile is a good cell phone provider if you live in a metropolitan area. It offers great speeds in covered areas but doesn’t perform as well as Verizon on a nationwide scale. We highly recommend checking coverage maps to make sure you live well within any carrier’s coverage area before choosing one. But if you live in an area with good T-Mobile reliability, you can’t beat its feature-rich unlimited plans for fair prices.