Google Fi and Ting Mobile are popular prepaid carriers that offer great prices. Each carrier has its positives and negatives, but which offers better phone plans? Let’s put them head to head and see which brand comes out on top.
In this article, we plan to discuss the ins and outs of both carriers and what they offer. We’ll also cover:
Unsure of what you need out of a plan? Check out our guide on how to choose the best phone plan.
Google Fi and Ting Mobile are mobile virtual network operators, or MVNOs. This means that they purchase service access wholesale from one of the three major networks that own infrastructure across the country – AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile – giving customers service at a much cheaper price. Google Fi is an MVNO of T-Mobile, and Ting Mobile is an MVNO of both Verizon and T-Mobile. You can choose which network you go with if you choose Ting Mobile.
Often, the quality of coverage comes down to your area. One carrier’s coverage may be better in New York, while another’s coverage may be better in California. It’s important to compare between providers on a coverage map of your specific city. Ookla’s coverage map allows you to see where cellular towers are located and which company owns them. This coverage map provides information about coverage from 2G to 5G for several providers.
However, T-Mobile’s 5G coverage and access is hailed as the best coverage overall.
Like most plans you’ll see on the market, both carriers offer unlimited talk and texting options with any plan you choose. Google Fi offers premium data, which does not slow down no matter the amount of network traffic. Both offer flexible data plans, where you can buy the specific amount of data you need. They both also deprioritize data, meaning you’ll have slower connection speeds in high traffic areas like concerts venues and sports arenas.
Google Fi offers 2 unlimited plans and one plan with pay-per-use data. Each of its unlimited plans offer a limited amount of premium data. Each plan allows up to 6 lines and renews monthly. Google Fi is on QCI tier 6 of 9.
Image courtesy of Google Fi’s website.
Google Fi’s Flexible plan is unlike a lot of other plans on the market, as it allows you to pay a set amount per month for talk and text features. Users then pay for only the amount of data they use. After 15GB of data, your speed is slowed to 256 kbps, or 3G speeds. You can still send texts, emails, and use social media with little issues. Streaming video will be much more difficult.
The plan also includes the ability to buy mobile hotspot data, and all plan data can be used as hotspot data.
The plan costs $20 per month, plus $10 for each GB you use. For example, you’d pay about $70 per month if you used 5GB.
The Simply Unlimited plan gives you 35GB of premium data. Premium data means your data will not be deprioritized in times of high traffic and congestion. After 35GB, data slows down to 3G speeds. 5GB of hotspot data is also included in the plan, then stops after that allotment.
The plan costs $50 per month. At this rate, you get 35GB at $1.42 per GB.
Google Fi’s Unlimited Plus plan has 50GB of premium data. Connection is then slowed down to 3G speeds. You can use all 50GB of plan data as mobile hotspot data, but hotspot data stops after the 50GB.
The plan costs $65 per month. At this rate, you get 50GB at $1.30 per GB.
Ting Mobile offers varying unlimited and limited plans with the ability to include an unlimited number of lines on your plan. Any fast data you don’t use will roll over to the next month. Their QCI tier changes depending on which network you choose. If you choose T-Mobile, your QCI tier will be 7. It will be tier 9 on Verizon’s network.
Their unlimited plans also include varying amounts of hotspot data.
They also offer a pay-as-you-go, or flexible, plan, where you pay for the exact amount of data you use.
If you purchase your phone from Ting Mobile, your device will be sold to you already unlocked. The plans they offer renew monthly, and taxes and fees are not included with the advertised price.
As a flexible plan, Ting Mobile allows you to pay for the exact amount of data you use. Any data you buy can be used as hotspot data.
The plan costs $10 per month, and each GB you use is $5. For example, if you used 1GB, you’d pay $15.
Ting Mobile gives you 5GB of data with this plan, and all plan data can be used as a hotspot data. After the cap, you can use unlimited slow data at 2G speeds, or 128 kbps. This allows you to send text messages and emails or browse websites, but not much else.
The plan costs $25 per month. At this rate, you get 5GB at $5 per GB.
Set 12 gives you 12GB of data, and all of it can be used as hotspot data. Again, data slows to 2G speeds after the cap.
The plan costs $35 per month. At this rate, you get 12GB at $2.92 per GB.
Ting Mobile’s unlimited plan gives you 22GB of full speed data before slowing down to 2G speeds for the rest of the month. The plan also gives you separate hotspot data, which stops after 12GB.
The plan costs $45 per month. At this rate, you get 22GB of full speed data and 12GB of hotspot data at $1.32 per GB.
Ollo Unlimited is Ting Mobile’s biggest plan, which gives you 35GB of full speed data before slowing down to 2G speeds. You also get an additional 18GB of hotspot data, which stops after you reach that cap.
The plan costs $55 per month. At this rate, you get 35GB of full speed data and 18GB of hotspot data at $1.04 per GB.
If you’re looking for a plan with more included features, such as international connection or domestic roaming data, it’s best to compare carriers with what they offer.
Google Fi offers domestic roaming data on their plans. Ting Mobile offers domestic roaming with no specific limits.
Google Fi offers talk, text, and data in Mexico and Canada included with both its unlimited plans. However, only text is included in their Flexible plan. Talk and data are pay-per-use. Ting Mobile offers pay-per-use rates on talk, text, and data for both Mexico and Canada. Talk rates are $0.30 per minute, text rates are $0.12 per message, and data rates are $0.20 per MB.
Google Fi’s Unlimited Plus plan includes international text and data. Calling internationally is pay-per-use outside the United States, Mexico, and Canada. The Simply Unlimited plan does not include international connection, and the Flexible plan includes international texting, but talk and data are pay-per-use. Calling costs $0.20 per minute. Ting Mobile offers varying pay-per-use rates depending on the country.
Google Fi offers 4k Ultra High Definition streaming for their Flexible plan and 480p Standard Definition streaming for their unlimited data plans. All Ting Mobile plans offer 1080p High Definition streaming.
Google Fi’s Unlimited Plus plan offers a free subscription to Youtube Premium. Ting Mobile does not offer this feature.
Google Fi’s Unlimited Plus plan offers 100GB of Google One. Ting Mobile does not offer this feature.
If you buy a phone from Google Fi, the carrier allows you to pay for your device in installments over time. Ting Mobile does not offer this feature.
Both carriers offer WiFi calling, which allows you to send and receive phone calls over a WiFi connection rather than cellular reception.
All Google Fi plans offer spam protection included. Ting Mobile does not offer this feature.
Google Fi offers a 7 day free trial. Ting Mobile does not offer this feature.
Google Fi is a digital-only carrier, meaning they only offer customer support online. Google Fi offers 24/7 customer support over chat and over the phone at 1-844-TALK-2-FI. Ting Mobile offers chat support 24/7, and phone support at the number 1-855-846-4389.
We’d recommend checking your data usage before committing to a plan.
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