Home to just under two million people, Idaho ranks 44 out of 50 for its population density. It’s a big state and it is filled with large swaths of low-population areas. Due to this, the three major carriers have not developed their networks here with as much rigor as they have in other states. Verizon, for instance, covers around 50% of Idaho’s area. The best cell phone coverage in Idaho is key to staying connected during your travels. This article will list the top three carriers for the best cell phone coverage in Idaho, what we like about each carrier, and how to decide which is best for you.
Our research found that Visible Wireless, Mint Mobile, and Tello Mobile are the top three for best phone coverage in Idaho overall. This article features detailed information on the following:
Idaho is a big state with a relatively low population. Due to the large swaths of land with few residents, Idaho has relatively poor data coverage compared to the more populous states of the country. Regardless of which network you choose, there will be sections of the state where your coverage wanes, but we’ve determined that using a carrier on Verizon’s network gives you the best cell phone coverage. You will run into dead spots in rural and less populated areas, but highways and other populated areas have solid coverage.
Coverage in Idaho is a different equation than coverage in smaller, more populated states like those in the Northeast. Let’s jump into the best cell phone coverage in Idaho.
The top three carriers in Idaho are Visible Wireless, Mint Mobile, and Tello Mobile.
Verizon is your best bet for cell phone coverage in Idaho. While its lightning-fast 5G network is not out in force, the 4G LTE and 3G networks are strong throughout the state. When we say Verizon, we mean Verizon’s network. As a major wireless provider, Verizon, along with T-Mobile and AT&T, own their networks. They are in charge of maintenance and upgrades. Because of this, cell phone plans at major wireless networks give unlimited high-speed data and faster average data speeds for more money each month.
This article, however, focuses on Mobile Virtual Network Operators or MVNOs. These companies rent their bandwidth from the big three networks to give their customers cheaper access to data. The two major downsides to MVNOs are that their plans offer limited high-speed data and lower data priority, meaning your data gets slowed down whenever bandwidth is strained. Data priority is most important in cities or areas where a lot of people are gathered. Since that is not terribly common in Idaho, some of the biggest downsides to MVNOs are non-problems. You can save big with MVNO plans, and that’s what we will discuss in this article.
Let’s take a look at which of these carriers use the network that gives people in Idaho the best phone coverage.
Visible Wireless is the first of our three MVNOs on this list. It is one of the few MVNOs that provides unlimited high-speed data on both of its plans, which is amazing. Visible uses Verizon’s network, which provides some of the best cell phone coverage in Idaho. The next time you see a Mountain Bluebird flitting through the fields, you can rely on Visible’s connection to share that picture with family and friends!
Price: From just $30/month
Plan: Visible Wireless has two wireless plans. Each of them has unlimited high-speed data, an amazing feature of this MVNO. The two Visible Wireless phone plans are as follows:
The other two MVNOs on this list are best for medium or low-data users, but Visible is great for any Idaho resident. The other MVNOs, while they have unlimited plans, do not offer unlimited high-speed data. Many MVNOs offer unlimited 3G data and a limited quantity of high-speed (5G or 4G LTE) data with each plan. They are often well-priced but only provide between 25 and 50 GB of high-speed data. Visible is the perfect plan for you if you use more than that each month.
Visible’s basic unlimited plan has high-speed data on Verizon’s 5G and 4G LTE networks but does not allow users on Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband network. The regular MVNO rules apply with Visible’s unlimited plan, where your data will be slowed in times of high traffic in your area. The networks are not as strong in Idaho as they are in more populated areas of the States, but we don’t think you will run into any data deprioritization in the cities and roads of Idaho. One of the big benefits of major wireless networks is the priority data. Anytime there is stress on the bandwidth, the network owner will slow down all MVNO users. This frees up some bandwidth for their own customers to keep max speeds. In cities and other major population centers, networks may often slow down their MVNO customers, but that is less frequent in Idaho. All MVNOs use one or multiple major networks, so you should have the same coverage and signal strength with VIsible as you would with Verizon.
Riding T-Mobile’s network is Mint Mobile, the Ryan Reynolds-backed MVNO that has recently grown in popularity. You may have seen one of their ads that highlights their low prices and great service. For the most part — it’s excellent! Mint Mobile, like most other MVNOs, keep the fact that their unlimited plans have limited high-speed data in the fine print. Mint’s unlimited plan comes with 35 GB of high-speed data before your data is throttled to 3G speeds. The best cell phone coverage in Idaho lets you stay connected when visiting the two ancient cedar groves in the state. You can find one next to the Granite Falls Waterfall and the other in St. Jude National Forest!
Price: From just $15/month
Plan: Mint Mobile has a variety of limited-data cell phone plans. Ranging from 5 GB to 35 GB of high-speed data, Mint’s plans are very affordable.
Mint Mobile is our favorite T-Mobile MVNO, providing some of the best cell phone coverage in Idaho. Mint Mobile customers enjoy T-Mobile’s excellent coverage all over the state without paying the prices of a major wireless company. The downside is that they don’t offer unlimited high-speed data. These are the plans Mint Mobile offers:
Compared to Visible, Mint Mobile provides better service to those who don’t need unlimited high-speed data or those who want to start a multi-line plan. Mint Mobile offers contract-based savings, so even a single-line account can get its lowest prices. The downside to this is that their savings come from contracts, and to get the lowest tier of price, you need to buy a year of service all at once. Paying for 12 months of service in one go removes any flexibility you may have. There is, fortunately, a way around that contract, which is Mint Mobile’s family plan. Their family plan lets users take out 3-month contracts while enjoying the lowest price on all the plans. Mint Mobile’s family plan gives each line-owner their own data pool and the ability to pick a favorite plan. That flexibility is amazing.
Like Visible, we don’t think that the low-priority data will result in much, if any, slowed data speeds in Idaho. There’s a greater risk of slow data speeds in times of high usage, but there aren’t a lot of people around to use the data! T-Mobile’s network covers around 35% of Idaho’s total area. While that sounds bad, they focus on providing a network along the highest-traveled areas of the state. Just be warned: when you’re traveling off of the beaten path, you may lose signal.
Tello Mobile also utilizes Verizon’s network. Users enjoy the best cell phone coverage in Idaho at incredibly low prices, making it one of our favorite MVNOs for low-data users. Their unlimited data plan only offers 25 GBs of high-speed data, but it is only $29 a month. Alongside that, Tello offers many affordable plans that offer less data. Tello Mobile brings a lot to the table for the residents of Idaho. Next time you take a short trip, we recommend checking out the Niagara of the West! The Shoshone falls is an incredible location that is sure to take your breath away.
Plan: Tello Mobile offers a variety of plans between 0 GBs of high-speed data and 25 GBs of high-speed data.
Tello Mobile is an excellent choice for people who want an affordable set of low-data plans. In our explanation of the plans, we will focus on the different data offerings in Tello Mobile. They also allow users to purchase limited talk and text, but the cost of unlimited talk and text through Tello is only $4 a month, which we think is a worthwhile investment! Here is the list of their data offerings:
The wide range of plans available at Tello Mobile lets you figure out exactly what you need from your cell phone plan and pay that and no more for your service. As there are no contracts at Tello Mobile, you can change your plan as your data needs change. The downside to this is that their biggest plan only offers 25 GB of high-speed data each month, so if you use your phone frequently on the long roads of Idaho, you will quickly run through your data allocation.
We’d wager that you are usually getting the maximum data speeds from Verizon’s towers in Idaho, so you will receive equivalent speeds and coverage as all of Verizon’s users for a fraction of the price. We recommend Tello Mobile to customers who do not use much data throughout the month. Any video or audio streaming, social media usage, or web browsing will quickly chew through your data allocation.
We focused on MVNOs in this article, but there are many more than the three we highlighted. Each MVNO has a particular set of cell phone plans that provide different amounts of data and other add-ons. While we hope that one of these three is the perfect fit for you, you can compare carriers at Really.com for more information.
We recommend looking at local message boards and coverage maps to determine the best cell carrier in your area. While Verizon’s network is the best overall in the state, there are many locations where its network is weaker than the competition.
AT&T has good coverage in Idaho. AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile all have fair coverage over the state, with Verizon in a slight lead.
Verizon’s wireless network gets the best signal in Idaho.
Use really.com to compare!
What’s your favorite place in Idaho? The best cell phone coverage is crucial to stay connected on your travels. We love MVNOs for Idaho residents, as there’s not a lot of congestion on Idaho’s networks, and there is little 5G coverage to be had throughout the state. If you want more info about plans available in Idaho, you can compare carriers at Really.com to decide which phone carrier is best for you.