It's not just the big guys following T-Mobile's lead in the way phones and plans are sold. US Cellular is announcing new no-contract plans and financed device options today. It's more or less the same deal you get at other carriers, but with some cheaper tiers.

2014-04-07 12_04_18-Cell Phone Plans _ Wireless - Mobile Phone Plans _ U.S. Cellular

The Simple connect plans come in three flavors – a $40 unlimited data plan for "basic phones," $50 unlimited (500MB of high-speed data), and $60 unlimited (2GB of high-speed data). All plans include unlimited voice and SMS. This is just the base cost – if you finance a device through US Cellular, you will add the monthly cost of that device (divided into 24 parts) to the plan.

Part of the Simple Connect plan is the equivalent of Jump, Next, and all those other early upgrade things. At no extra cost, you have the option of trading in your device after 12 months and starting the payments over with a new one. That's not a bad deal if US Cellular's coverage works for you.


Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

He's the author of a sci-fi novel called The Crooked City, which is available on Amazon and Google Play. http://goo.gl/WQIXBM

  • http://robert.aitchison.org raitchison

    Looks like the $50 tier is equal to the $40 tier on Aio (which is only $35 if you do auto-pay)

  • NathanDrago

    You call 50$ for 500MB of high-speed data "cheap"?
    What should I say about my italian mobile plan (10€/mo for 2GB high speed) or my french friend's mobile plan (20€/mo for 20GB LTE)? :-D

    • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

      This isn't the tiny country of Italy or France...

      • NathanDrago

        Yeah, I suppose this compensates your cheap oil + gas... we're even ;-)

        • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

          True :P

    • Merri Mogridge

      Even in Ireland I get 15GB for €15 per month. That's only on 3G though, but it's still a good 3-4Mb/s on average.

  • Thomas Phillips

    No one even tries to compete with Tmobiles $30 Walmart plan. Wish there was more meaningful competition.

    • http://robert.aitchison.org raitchison

      I thought that plan didn't include any data and you had to pony up $40 for data.

      • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

        It includes 100 minutes, unlimited SMS, and 5GB of unthrottled data (unlimited still though)

      • Thomas Phillips

        Unlimited data. 5gb of LTE. Literally more than double the best plan listed above for half the cost.

        • http://robert.aitchison.org raitchison

          Do you have a link because that does sound like a great deal. I found this: http://www.walmart.com/cp/Family-Mobile/1076544 but it says you get no data for $30 or 2.5GB (at "3G" speeds) for $40.

          I've been looking for cheap service like this because my company is moving to a BYOD program and the cheaper plan I can find the more money I can pocket.

          • supremekizzle

            No that's "Family Mobile." Walmart mvno. Look here http://www.walmart.com/ip/T-Mobile-SIM-Kit/24099996 Not sure what size the sim is though. Basically you get a sim activation kit from wherever you'd like, whether it be t mobile or not, and then you activate it online and choose the $30 plan.

          • http://robert.aitchison.org raitchison

            Thanks, I'll have to consider that. I had been leaning towards Aio and their $40 ($35) plan, only includes 500MB of high speed data but that's way more than I need anyways since I usually use under 250MB on my work phone.

          • marco

            just check your coverage and make sure you have more than just edge(2g) in your area.

          • Jason Storey

            Micro Sim but you can call T-Mobile and get a different size Sim if you need. Details are on the package if you get one at walmart. It is exclusive to Walmart and as someone who uses a ton of data and very little talk its a great deal. Been on it for over a year with my nexus 4. A great cheap option.

          • solbin


            Right underneath the "pay per day" about halfway down the page.

        • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

          When you go to activate a new T-Mobile SIM online, you have the $30 plan as an option. It's not really advertised anywhere.

        • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

          When you go to activate a new T-Mobile SIM online, you have the $30 plan as an option. It's not really advertised anywhere.

      • Thomas Phillips

        Unlimited data. 5gb of LTE. Literally more than double the best plan listed above for half the cost.

      • Shawn

        And I didn't think it included roaming, but maybe I am remembering incorrectly.

    • markt9002

      It's not a Walmart plan. You simply buy an activation kit and SIM off of T-Mobile's website for $0.99, and then add $30 to your account via a PIN code. You can't get the $30 plan without the activation kit from T-Mobile.

      If you need more minutes look at H2O (AT&T based MVNO -- $40 gives you 1GB of data and unlimited), or Simple Mobile ($45 for 3GB of data on T-Mobile, or Net 10 2.5GB of LTE on AT&T.) There is also a plan from GoSmart that will give you 5GB of data and unlimited calling for $45 a month.

      H2O is the cheapest option, if you have more than 1 line and your account. You receive $10 off per line on each line, as long as you're using at least the $40 plan.

      MetroPCS also has a $60 unlimited LTE plan, it uses T-Mobile and is not throttled. You also save $5 per line when you have more than one line on an account.

  • http://twitter.com/geoff5093 Geoff Johnson

    People who have US Cellular are customers not because they are cheap, but because they have coverage where no one else does.

  • solbin

    Been happy with AIO for the last few months at $55/month for 5GB data (throttled after) and unlimited everything else. I used to be on the T-Mobile plan but the coverage isn't great here; its pretty spotty. I don't know why US Cellular is literally more expensive than all the other carriers, it is ridiculous.

  • Zyre

    50$ for 500MB internet and unlimited calls and thats cheap? What if i told you i am on a bundle with 500MB internet and 100 minutes on sms or calls for only 20 euros per month?

    • Zach

      Then I'd say you're in Europe and you don't count. Everyone knows you don't have the same problems we have with our wireless monopolies and prices. Call me when you get Steam games for USA prices and Amazon Prime. They're not related or anything, but different countries have different pricing problems.

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    These "unlimited" plans are so amusing

  • RTWright

    Gotta love how false advertising is used to mislead everyone into thinking they actually mean Unlimited. I think these people need to look up the word "Unlimited" in the Dictionary, they'd learn to use different descriptions hopefully.... Oh wait! *snap* They DO know what it means, but it's how they attract your attention and mislead you... I do hope someone starts taking lawsuits to companies like this for their misrepresentation and misleading ads, it would be something worth seeing....

  • TrollSoul

    Haha. I pay $39.55 total in Canada for unlimited calling and data on Wind.