Pros / Topping up on high-speed data is inexpensive.
Cons / Boost only offers three plan types.
Verdict / Boost Mobile’s low-cost plans and add-ons make it a good choice if one of the limited plan options meets your needs.
Boost Mobile is one of Sprint’s owned and operated prepaid subsidiaries. There are three plan tiers - a 3GB budget plan and two unlimited options - with several add-ons for more plan customization. Boost’s Unlimited Plus plan has some of the best plan features of all the plans we evaluated, with 1080p streaming and a wealth of hotspot tethering data.
Boost runs on Sprint’s network, which isn’t the fastest. Sprint’s network is generally considered to be the weakest among the Big Four networks, which include Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile. Recent expansion efforts show some improvement though. Network speed tests performed by our sister site, Tom’s Guide, proved that Boost’s performance ranks on par with its parent company’s. Still, Sprint’s 4G LTE coverage is lacking in much of the U.S., so definitely check coverage and performance maps for your area to make sure you’re covered everywhere you use your phone. For markets that do have great Sprint performance, however, Boost is a good choice.
Plan options are fairly limited with Boost Mobile: a 3GB data plan and two tiers of unlimited data. Technically, each offers unlimited data, because you have access to 2G data speeds after you’ve used your 3 or 23GB (for unlimited data plans) allotments, and they all include unlimited talk and text. For an individual, the budget plan is slightly more expensive than MetroPCS’s cheapest plan but includes an additional GB of data, but for a family of four, the two plans cost the same.
Boost’s unlimited options are either $50 or $60, depending on the included plan features. Boost offers a $20 discount on lines two through five, so unlimited family options are affordable. Both include an allotment of hotspot data, though the top-tier Unlimited Plus option lets you use up to 20GB, which is more than any other prepaid unlimited plan we found. The Unlimited Plus plan also lets you stream in HD at 1080p, whereas many other prepaid carriers reduce streaming to DVD quality. You can add HD streaming onto other plans for $10 a month as well.
Overall, Boost Mobile is a good choice if Sprint network performance is strong in your area and one of the limited plan options fits your needs. While you can find better deals if you’re a light data-user, Boost’s unlimited plans offer features that other prepaid phone plans leave out.