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Last updated on November 11, 2015

The 4 Companies with the Best Prepaid Phones

Choosing the right prepaid phone is largely going to depend on what your budget is and what you plan to use your phone for. Most prepaid phone providers charge you for the full price of your phone, which means you’ll be paying considerably more with a prepaid plan than you would with a two-year contract. Therefore, carefully consider your price range before making any decisions. The best companies in the industry have a wide selection of basic and smartphones to choose from so you can find something you like regardless of your budget. Another option to consider if you have an old phone sitting around is to look for a company that lets you use your old device with your new prepaid plan. If you’re not sure where to begin, start with this list of the four companies with the best prepaid phones.

Boost Mobile offers a large selection of new and refurbished prepaid phones to choose from, including the latest smartphones. Finding the one that has everything you’re looking for is as simple as narrowing down your options using Boost Mobile’s filtering tools and comparing the resulting phone options. You can select from a number of popular brands, including Apple, Samsung, BlackBerry, and more. If a new phone is a little out of your price range, you may want to think about choosing one of Boost Mobile’s refurbished phones, which cost considerably less than their new counterparts. Boost Mobile is one of the few companies that doesn’t allow you to use your old phone with your prepaid plan but, with an excellent variety of phones to choose from at a range of prices, this shouldn’t pose too much of a problem.

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T-Mobile is another company that stands out in terms of offering the best prepaid phones. They have everything from basic flip phones to Android, Windows, and iPhones. Like Boost Mobile, T-Mobile offers several refurbished phones at a discounted price, and these may be better options if you’re operating on a small budget. Purchasing online can also earn you additional discounts on some prepaid phones that you won’t be able to get if you buy from a T-Mobile retail store. Buying online also gives you the option to compare different models more easily and find the phone you want faster using T-Mobile’s filtering tools. T-Mobile also allows their customers to use their old devices if they’re not interested in purchasing a new one. All you have to do is buy the right SIM card and activate your phone to get started.

In addition to offering individual prepaid phones for purchase, Net10 also has prepaid phone bundles, which are perfect for members of a family plan looking to get a great deal. Bundles can include two, three, or four phones. Most are smartphone bundles, though, so this may not work for you if you’re interested in something more basic. However, Net10 has plenty of phones for these types of customers as well. There are several options under $40 that have full keyboards, Bluetooth, cameras, and just about everything else you’ve come to expect from most cell phones today. If you have an old phone you’d rather use instead, Net10 gives you this option as well. It doesn’t matter what carrier it originally came from as long as the device is compatible and you purchase the appropriate SIM card.

Straight Talk’s huge selection of iPhones and Android smartphones earn them a place on this list. They also have a few BlackBerrys and more basic phones available if these are more your style. Straight Talk also has a few reconditioned phones, but their selection is pretty limited compared to some of the other prepaid phone providers on this list. No matter what your budget, though, Straight Talk has something for you. There are a number of phones available for under $50 and even a free phone, which is great if your budget is extremely tight. Like T-Mobile, Straight Talk also lets you bring your old phone as long as it’s compatible, another money-saving option if the available smartphones are a little out of your reach.