Google Pixel 4Source: Android Central

Best MVNO Carriers with Unlimited Data Plans Android Central 2020

A lot of people think of an MVNO as a carrier you get to just save money; but in the last few years, these carriers have become a stronger choice even for heavy users. A data-hungry user wants to have fast and reliable internet everywhere they go. There are more options than ever for unlimited MVNO data plans, and the prices keep coming down as well. Our current favorite is Visible because of its simplicity compared to other carriers.

Best Overall: Visible

Visible R2Source: Android Central

Visible keeps things simple like no other carrier. Besides being easy to understand, its service is rated highly, the prices are competitive, and there are no service contracts. Utilizing Verizon's LTE network, Visible has great coverage out of the gate. You should still check the coverage map to be sure.

Unlimited talk, text, and data are all included in the $40 per month price. Unlike some other unlimited plans, all of Visible's data is LTE with download speeds around 5-12Mbps in most areas, which is more than enough for most HD streaming or social media applications. This is rounded out with an unlimited hotspot at 5Mbps.

It's worth keeping in mind that Visible doesn't support every new or unlocked phone. You will need to keep an eye on its compatibility list in the Getting Started section of its help page to know for sure. You can also check your IMEI directly. Most modern iPhones and a few Android phones are available with more being added all the time. You also won't get any international service at all. If you are a traveler, you'll need to pair Visible with another carrier to stay connected abroad.

Pros:

  • Unlimited talk, text, and LTE data
  • Simple to understand
  • Verizon LTE
  • Unlimited hotspot (5Mbps)

Cons:

  • No roaming
  • No international roaming
  • Limited phone selection

Best Overall

Visible

Verizon LTE without limits

Visible offers one of the best packages for users that want to forget about usage. Unlimited everything, including a hotspot, makes Visible a great deal.

Best World Coverage: Google Fi

Google FI WebsiteSource: Android Central

Google Fi's unlimited plan offers 22GB without interruption before being slowed down. Video streams could be limited to 480p quality, but Google hasn't been specific on when quality drops. This 22GB cap is more than most people will use, and starting at $70 for one line with the price per line decreasing with more line activations up to four at $45 each, Google Fi is still a good value. You can also use your data as a hotspot at will.

Google Fi is compatible with phones that are unlocked and compatible with T-Mobile's GSM network but works even better with phones designed specifically to work with Fi. These phones will get access to Sprint's and US Cellular's networks if T-Mobile has weak service. While T-Mobile's growing footprint narrows the gap between the two tiers all the time, if you want the best service possible, you'll need the most compatible phone possible. You can check your phone at Google Fi's website.

It's also a good idea to make sure you are covered on the coverage map to be sure Fi is right for you.

One thing that sets Google Fi apart from the crowd is its international roaming capabilities. In over 200 countries Google Fi users can use their phone's data like normal. For the world traveler, there really is no better value from another MVNO or even the carriers.

Pros:

  • Large combined network
  • Support for most phones
  • International coverage
  • 100GB Google cloud storage

Cons:

  • Slowed after 22GB
  • Video quality may be low

Best World Coverage

Google Fi Unlimited

A great tool for traveling abroad

Google Fi expands its service with this unlimited plan for heavier users that want to take advantage of the great travel benefits and coverage of Fi.

Best on AT&T: Cricket Wireless

Galaxy S10Source: Android Central

AT&T has a massive network, and for a lot of people, it's worth it to have the coverage that comes with it. Coverage is always one of the most important factors when selecting a carrier, and you should always check the coverage map before signing up for service. Luckily, Cricket has a great unlimited option available.

Cricket has two-speed tiers for its three unlimited. The fastest plans are the Unlimited BYOD plan and the Unlimited & 15GB Mobile Hotspot plan with LTE speeds uncapped. The Unlimited BYOD plan is the cheapest plan at $40 per month but requires you to bring a phone number and a device with you when you sign up and doesn't include any hotspot data. If your device is incompatible, you may also buy one at full price. The next tier up brings the price to $60 per month with a 15GB hotspot.

The remaining Unlimited plan is limited to just 3Mbps, which feels low for a modern phone plan but should be adequate for SD streaming and light social media. Still, at $55, the savings over the faster and more feature-rich $60 plan won't be worth it for most smartphone users.

Cricket sells a decent array of phones from its website, such as the Samsung Galaxy S10, but it doesn't have the other versions of the S10 series like you might expect. Still, most unlocked phones should work fine on Cricket, and you can make sure on Cricket's website.

Pros:

  • Vast AT&T network
  • Support for most phones
  • Mexico and Canada roaming
  • 15GB hotspot

Cons:

  • 480p video streams

Best on AT&T

Unlimited BYOD

Cricket's biggest data plan

Take advantage of the strong AT&T network with no contracts with the Cricket More plan. Unlimited data and 15GB of hotspot makes it a great option.

Best Multi-line: Walmart Family Mobile

Moto G7Source: Android Central

Family Mobile offers a large amount of data on the T-Mobile network for a fairly standard price. Where it really stands out is when it comes to adding lines. While one line with unlimited data costs just under $50 per month, adding additional lines is only $25 each. With more than one line, the value really stands out.

As always, check your coverage before signing up. As far as phones go, Walmart sells plenty of devices, though most of them are lower end, there are high-end phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S10 line. With the T-Mobile network, most unlocked phones should work as well.

Family Mobile isn't perfect, with its hotspot only coming with 5GB of data as well as videos only streaming at 480p. Still, if you are fine with these drawbacks and have coverage, Family Mobile can be a great value.

Pros:

  • Save with more lines
  • Support for most phones
  • Uses T-Mobile network

Cons:

  • Only 5GB hotspot
  • 480p video streams

Best Multi-line

Family Mobile Truly Unlimited

Available at your local Walmart

Walmart and T-Mobile come together to offer cheap data and great coverage. Save money by adding more lines and forget about your data usage.

Best Value: US Mobile

US Mobile CoverageSource: Android Central

US Mobile's unlimited plan is a great value, but it doesn't do enough to dethrone our overall pick. While it's great to have no cap on download, you are limited to 5Mbps unless you are willing to spend $10 more per month. 5Mbps is more than enough for general usage, including video and audio streaming, but will be noticeable when downloading larger chunks of data such as games or backup files. Even with the $10 speed upgrade, it's still a great option with 5GB of international data and enough flexibility for any user's needs.

As noted in our full review, US Mobile makes use of both the T-Mobile and Verizon LTE networks, depending on device compatibility and coverage where you live. While US Mobile suggests that it's Verizon based SIM will offer faster speeds, you can expect plenty of speed on either network, as long as you've upgraded your speed.

US Mobile does sell some phones on its website, but the selection is very limited, and the prices are not competitive. Luckily, most unlocked phones will be compatible with the service, including unlocked Verizon compatible phones. You can also get some perks like free streaming service with multiple lines on the unlimited plan, which is always a nice bonus.

Pros:

  • Two networks to choose from
  • Speed and hotspot upgrades available
  • 5GB international data

Cons:

  • Speed limited to 5Mbps
  • No hotspot in the base plan
  • Poor phone selection
  • Less high-speed on GSM network

Best Value

US Mobile Unlimited

Two networks and plenty of data

US mobile has a ton of flexibility from basic phone service all the way up to blazing-fast unlimited plans. Bring your own device to make the most of this robust network.

Max Data: Metro by T-Mobile

Metro by T-Mobile websiteSource: Android Central

Metro by T-Mobile allows users to consume a massive 35GB of data before they are subject to data deprioritization. This is good if you want to use a lot of data and want your speeds to stay suitably snappy even when the towers are getting busy. The lower-priced unlimited plan, at $50 per month, includes 5GB of hotspot data and 100GB of Google One cloud storage.

Since Metro uses T-Mobile's network, it has the same coverage a T-Mobile customer would get, but you should always check to be sure you're covered. It also means that nearly any unlocked phone should work, but you can always check before you sign up.

Metro sells some phones from its stores; you can see the models on the website, which are mostly lower-end devices with more expensive phones available from Samsung and Apple. You can also save some money if you have multiple lines with the cost of additional lines discounted $20. A bigger plan is available for $10 more per month that comes with more hotspot data and an Amazon Prime membership.

Pros:

  • 35GB before deprioritization
  • 100GB Google cloud storage
  • Save with more lines
  • Support for most phones

Cons:

  • Only 5GB hotspot
  • 480p video streams

Max Data

Metro by T-Mobile Unlimited

A data-focused network

Make the most of the T-Mobile network with no contracts with Metro by T-Mobile. Unlimited data with savings for each additional line are a great value.

Bottom line

There's a lot to consider with all of these different plans, but the most important factor is going to be coverage. Not all MVNOs have access to the same towers, so it's important to check each one individually. Thanks to its great price, uncapped data speeds, strong network, and unlimited hotspot, Visible continues to stand above the rest.

While another carrier like Google Fi is compelling for its massive roaming potential, Visible is the best balance and should be suitable for nearly any user. There's only one plan, but it's easy to understand, and you'll get everything you need for heavy data usage. You don't get international roaming, but for U.S.-based customers who don't travel often, you can't do much better.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Samuel Contreras When Samuel is not writing about networking, he spends most of his time researching computer components and obsessing over what CPU goes into the ultimate Windows 98 computer. It's the Pentium 3.

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