Buy in bulk

Mint Mobile

Verizon's network

Visible

Mint Mobile uses T-Mobile to power its network, and while that means coverage isn't quite as expansive, you get a lot of bang for your buck. Plans are sold in bulk, meaning you have a bigger upfront cost but save a lot of money month-to-month. And, unlike Visible, you can use Mint Mobile with just about any Android phone.

From $15/month at Mint

Pros

  • Cheaper monthly rates
  • Lots of plan options
  • Unlimited talk and text
  • Free hotspot access
  • Works with most unlocked phones

Cons

  • Coverage isn't quite as dense as Visible's

Want access to Verizon's incredible LTE network for a fraction of the cost? That's what Visible brings to the table. For just $40 per month all-in, you get unlimited talk, text, and LTE data. We love that hotspot usage is included at 5Mbps, but we aren't fans of Android phones' limited support.

$40/month at Visible

Pros

  • Unlimited talk, text, and data
  • Verizon's LTE network
  • Free hotspot access (5Mbps)
  • Taxes and fees included
  • Save more with Party Pay

Cons

  • Only works with select Android phones
  • No international support

Visible and Mint Mobile both bring a lot of value to the carrier space, and each one manages to target a different kind of user. If you need the best possible coverage and have one of the few supported Android phones, Visible is the easy choice and offers an insane amount of value for just $40 each month and nothing more. If you don't have a phone that works on Visible and you have good coverage with T-Mobile's network, Mint Mobile is the better fit. Just be prepared to spend more money upfront.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile What are Visible's plans like?

Visible speed testSource: Android Central

With Visible, things couldn't be simpler. There's just one plan to choose from, and it comes with unlimited talk, text, and LTE data. Visible expects customers to get LTE data speeds at 5-12Mbps, and many people are seeing much more than that. For the most part, this is exactly the kind of performance we saw in our review.

Visible's LTE speed will be more than enough for most activities, including music and video streaming (limited to 480p) and social media. The only place you'll really feel that speed is with large downloads such as apps or movies.

Visible's plan includes free mobile hotspot usage (speeds are limited to 5Mbps) and costs $40/month all-in — meaning that taxes and fees are included in the price. In other words, you'll pay exactly $40 for your bill every single month and not a penny more.

If you have multiple lines or know other people that use Visible, you can save some money with Visible Party Pay. With Party Pay, you can form a group of up to four lines with prices coming down to $25 per line with four linked up. Two-line parties are $35 per line, and three-line parties are $30 per line. Be warned that if you're looking to bring a family, each line will have its own account and bill. Visible doesn't make a great family plan.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile Mint Mobile plan breakdown

Mint Mobile has a much different way of doing things. Rather than paying for your plan month-to-month like you do just about everywhere, Mint Mobile sells in bulk. This means you pay a higher upfront price, but you're saving a lot of money if you look at the monthly rate.

3GB 8GB 12GB Unlimited
3 months $15 per month ($45 total)
$25 per month renewal ($75 total)
$20 per month ($60 total)
$35 per month renewal ($105 total)
$25 per month ($75)
$45 per month renewal ($135 total)
$30 per month ($90)
$40 per month renewal ($120)
6 months $20 per month ($120) $25 per month ($150) $35 per month ($210) $35 per month ($210)
12 months $15 per month ($180) $20 per month ($240) $25 per month ($300) $30 per month ($360)

If you need more data, it can be added at a rate of 1GB for $10 or 3GB for $20. You also can upgrade mid-cycle by paying the price difference if you find that your run out of data regularly.

You can buy plans in three, six, and 12-month increments with your choice of 3GB, 8GB, 12GB, or Unlimited LTE data. The Unlimited plan will be slowed to 2G speeds if you exceed 35GB of usage. Unlimited is also limited to 5GB of high-speed hotspot data. Even so, Mint Mobile has a package that will work for just about anyone.

Your monthly rate is cheaper as you buy more months in bulk. For example, if you got 12GB of data on a 12-month plan, you'd spend $300 upfront with that working out to $25/month. For comparison's sake, a three-month plan for 12GB of data retails for $45/month (although it's currently discounted to $25/month for your first three months). Mint Mobile allows for a lot more customization than Visible, and for almost all of the plans, your monthly rate is lower.

While Mint Mobile does not offer any discounts for having multiple lines on one account, Mint Family does allow you to manage them together. One benefit is that each person can have the amount of data that makes the most sense to them, and you can even request and share extra data from one line to another.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile What is coverage like on Visible and Mint Mobile?

Visible SIM card next to Pixel 3aSource: Ara Wagoner / Android Central

Both Visible and Mint Mobile have interactive coverage maps, allowing you to enter in your ZIP code and get a precise look at the coverage in your area so you can see what's best for where you live.

Verizon powers visible, and over the years, Verizon's established itself as having the best coverage across the United States compared to every other carrier out there. Especially if you live in a rural area, chances are Verizon's got your back where other networks drop the ball.

It's worth mentioning that Visible does not support 3G and does not get access to Verizon's roaming partners. Hence, if you're currently on Verizon and have coverage, it's worth double-checking the map anyways.

Mint Mobile coverageSource: Mint Mobile

Comparatively, Mint Mobile uses T-Mobile. T-Mobile's network has improved a lot and is now better than it's ever been, but there are many places where Verizon's network is still superior. Most modern phones support T-Mobile's entire LTE network, but it might be time to upgrade if you want to use an older device. Much of T-Mobile's network improvement comes down to its 600MHz spectrum.

Luckily, Mint Mobile's online coverage map shows you exactly what kind of service you can expect so you can be sure.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile Only Mint Mobile offers international roaming

When it comes to international travel, Mint Mobile stands alone since Visible doesn't offer any international roaming. Mint Mobile charges $0.05 per text message sent, $0.25 per minute for calls, and $0.20 per megabyte in quite a few countries. Prices are lower at $0.02 per text, $0.02 per minute, and $0.06 per megabyte in Mexico and Canada. Mint's international pricing is pretty competitive, even with other carriers that offer international roaming.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile What phones can you get on Mint Mobile and Visible?

A great carrier isn't so great if you can't use your phone on it, and unfortunately, that's where Visible takes a stumble.

Visible's network is all digital, which means that all of your calls on Visible will use VoLTE. VoLTE is still a little new for carriers in general, so for now, extra care is being taken to make sure devices work flawlessly. The list of supported phones is small but expanding all the time so you will need to check for new phones on Visible's help page.

Currently, all iPhones after the iPhone 6 are supported on Visible as well as numerous Android phones such as Samsung's Galaxy S20 series, the Google Pixel 3 and 4 series, the G7 Power, and Z4 from Motorola, and OnePlus 7T and 7 Pro.

Mint Mobile really shines when it comes to supported phones. Since it's a GSM network, you can bring over virtually any unlocked Android phone and have it work perfectly fine. Mint Mobile does sell devices, but if you already have one you'd like to use, you can get a SIM card for free and be on your way to great service. You can also buy an unlocked phone that works with Mint and bring it.

If you get a device that supports T-Mobile's 5G network, you will be able to access it on every Mint Mobile plan for no extra cost.

Visible vs. Mint Mobile Get the carrier that's right for you

Mint Mobile SIM Galaxy S20Source: Samuel Contreras / Android Central

Visible is a great fit for many people, and with Verizon's network backing it, pretty much everyone will have solid coverage. Visible is let down by its lack of phone support, and if you need unlimited data with an unlimited hotspot, there are very few prepaid options that come close in value.

Mint Mobile takes the lead as a better overall pick thanks to massive phone support, a wide range of plans, and international options. While its plans are more complex, they're still simpler than most carriers with a straightforward way to save. With the growth of the T-Mobile network, including 5G and the recent addition of an unlimited plan, Mint Mobile is the better choice for most people.

Buy in bulk

Mint Mobile

Save more by planning ahead

Mint Mobile saves you money by selling cell service in bulk. It also has strong support for unlocked phones, including 5G phones.

Big network, one plan

Visible

For the data-hungry

Get Visible's simple unlimited plan on one of the best LTE networks. It even comes with unlimited hotspot data at 5Mbps.

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