Visible vs. Cricket Wireless: Which is better for you?

Both Visible and Cricket Wireless are low-cost, prepaid carriers that leverage their larger networks to give subscribers affordable, reliable wireless service. Cricket uses AT&T's network, while Visible uses Verizon. These two carriers trade blows when it comes to coverage, especially in rural areas, but most people should have no issues with coverage on either.

Cricket's wireless plans are structured similarly to other carriers, with four primary plans with the three larger plans eligible for multi-line discounts. Cricket has two unlimited plans and supports nationwide 5G, but only the more expensive unlimited plan comes with premium data and hotspot data.

Visible, on the other hand, gives you more with its two simple plans. The base plan is well-suited to those looking for cheaper unlimited data without needing the fastest speeds out there. Visible+ comes with faster 5G and 50GB of premium data making it a good pick for someone in a congested area or that just wants to make the most of a new 5G plan.

Visible vs. Cricket Wireless: What kind of service do you need?

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Visible keeps things very simple, but its choices may be lacking for those looking some something smaller or wanting to bring the whole family along. Visible has no multi-line discounts, so there's no incentive to bring the whole family. If you're just looking for service for yourself, it's a great option, but if you've got a whole family to get connected, you won't find any discounts.

Cricket has a more traditional layout with four main plans starting with a 5GB and a 10GB data plan. The 10GB plan also gets minor multi-line discounts and an auto-pay discount. Moving up to unlimited, Cricket's cheaper unlimited plan keeps things simple and will prove to be the sweet spot for many families that need a lot of data but want to save on service.

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VisibleCricket Wireless
NetworkVerizonAT&T
International callingYes (Visible+)Yes (for an extra $5 per month)
Domestic roamingNoYes
Mexico and Canada DataYes (Visible+)Included with Cricket More and Cricket Core unlimited plans
Hotspot dataUnlimited (capped at 5Mbps)15GB with Cricket More unlimited plan
5G accessYesNationwide 5G on all plans
Video stream quality480p480p

Cricket also allows you to roam in Mexico and Canada for up to 50% of your usage. If you're a traveler or have family abroad, then this is definitely something you might be interested in. It's also important to note that Cricket's prices drop when you add more lines, making it almost as affordable as Visible (though still more expensive).

Visible vs. Cricket Wireless: Visible's plans

Visible SIM card Galaxy S20+

(Image credit: Samuel Contreras / Android Central)

Visible offers two plans but sticks to unlimited everything on both plans. The thing that separates them is data priority and international features. The base Visible plan is the most similar to the old plan we tested in our Visible review though responsiveness may be a bit better thanks to a change in how Visible devices connect to the Verizon network.

The base Visible plan comes with unlimited talk, text, and data including hotspot data at 5Mbps. You can connect to 5G though your speeds will be limited compared to Verizon postpaid plans or Visible+. For most people, Visible still has plenty of speed for just about anything you do on your phone. Visible also includes calling to Mexico and Canada with this base plan.

If you're looking for a bit more, Visible+ unlocks the 5G speeds with Ultra Wideband support and even comes with 50GB of premium data to keep your speeds up when network congestion is high. You get the same 5Mbps hotspot as the base plan, however. International features get a big upgrade with Visible+ adding in usage in Mexico and Canada, calling to 30+ countries, and texting to 200+ countries.

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Visible's plans
VisibleVisible+
DataUnlimitedUnlimited (50GB premium)
5G accessNationwideNationwide and Ultra Wideband
Hotspot dataUnlimited (5Mbps)Unlimited (5Mbps)
Spam protectionYesYes
Price$30 per month$45 per month

Visible vs. Cricket Wireless: Cricket's plans

Cricket Wireless uses AT&T's huge 4G LTE and 5G network with four plans available. The two smaller data plans come in at 5GB and 10GB. One thing to keep in mind is that the 10GB plan gets multi-line and auto-pay discounts that the 5GB plan does not so at three lines, the cost is the same for 5GB and 10GB. Perhaps more interestingly, though, at three lines, you could go up to the Unlimited Core plan for the same price.

If you want to get the most out of Cricket, Unlimited More is the way to go. It's pricey at $60 per month for a single line, but the price comes down pretty quickly with multiple lines. Still, with this plan, your data is upgraded to premium, meaning it will prioritize over other Cricket customers. You also get 15GB of hotspot data to share with other devices. Last but not least, this plan comes with ad-supported HBO Max.

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CategoryCricket MoreCricket CoreCricket 10GBCricket 5GB
DataUnlimited (premium)Unlimited10GB5GB
Hotspot15GBAdd-on availableNoneNone
Mexico and Canada UsageIncludedIncludedNoneNone
International text37 countries37 countriesNoneNone
5G accessNationwide 5GNationwide 5GNationwide 5GNationwide 5G
Streaming resolution480p480p480p480p
ExtrasHBO Max (with ads)
Single line price$60$55$40$30
Four-line price (per line)$33$25$28$30

You should check Cricket's coverage map (opens in new tab) to make sure it will work in your area, though each Cricket plan comes with roaming. This is especially useful if you travel frequently. And if you travel abroad, there are clear advantages to both of Cricket's unlimited data plans (Cricket More and Cricket Core), including unlimited international texting to 37 countries and service in Canada and Mexico—although Canada usage must be less than 50 percent of overall usage.

Visible vs. Cricket Wireless: Which is better for you?

There's no denying that Visible is one of the best MVNO carriers available today. With Verizon's network, unlimited data, 5G connectivity, and unlimited hotspot data, it's hard to beat even its basic plan. Visible is one of the best values for those looking for a single line, and it gets even better with Visible+. With Visible+ filling the premium gap for the carrier, you can save whether you can get by on Visible's basic plan or want some of the best speeds of the Verizon network with Visible+.

Cricket is a lot stronger when it comes to international features, so if you're a traveler, it may be a simpler fit. Still, if you're an infrequent traveler, grabbing some data on a travel SIM or signing up for something like Google Fi temporarily may prove to be a better option with Visible.

Ultimately both carriers are strong choices, but when it comes to saving money and unlimited data, Visible comes out on top. Cricket's top plan is worth it if you're looking for a family plan and can sign up for at least two lines. This brings the cost down to $45 per month, or as low as $33 per month if you have four lines. It's a good deal but still pricier than Visible.

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When Samuel is not writing about networking or 5G at Android Central, 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.