These are the alternative carriers that lease coverage from more than one of the Big Four carriers.

We talk a lot about carriers and MVNOs here because having good wireless service goes hand in hand with your Android phone. And the service being good is the most important part. We can't stress enough that saving a few dollars each month to get service that doesn't work very well is a bad move; Verizon is expensive, for example, and worth every penny for a lot of people because of its coverage.

Multiple networks are especially great for families, who don't always live in the same place.

That's why getting service from an MVNO that works with more than one network can be important! With a company like Google's Project Fi, if coverage from one carrier is bad in the place you're at, you will jump over to another automatically. With most others, you have a choice of carrier when you first sign up and can switch the next month if you like. That's a great way to make sure you always have a good signal, and we think it's pretty cool.

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Here's a list of MVNOs that provide service on multiple carrier networks. Note that this isn't an endorsement of any of them, it's just a list so you know where to start looking!

Company AT&T Sprint T-Mobile Verizon US Cellular
Best Cellular Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Boom Mobile Yes Yes Yes Yes No
campusSIMs Yes No Yes No No
Consumer Cellular Yes No Yes No No
Eco Mobile No Yes Yes Yes No
Expo Mobile No Yes No Yes No
Flash Wireless No Yes Yes Yes No
FreedomPop1 Yes Yes No No No
good2GO Mobile Yes yes No No No
Hayai Mobile Yes No Yes No No
Jolt Mobile Yes No Yes No No
Net10 Wireless Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
OTG Mobile No Yes Yes Yes No
Project Fi2 No Yes Yes No Yes
Proven Wireless No Yes Yes Yes No
Puppy Wireless No Yes No Yes No
Red Pocket Mobile Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Republic Wireless No Yes Yes No No
Straight Talk Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Telcel América No Yes Yes No No
TextNow No Yes Yes No No
The People's Operator USA No Yes Yes No No
Ting No Yes Yes No No
TracFone3 Yes No Yes Yes Yes
US Mobile No No Yes Yes No
Zing Wireless No Yes Yes Yes No

1Voice calls are VoIP only, but not counted against a data cap

2Also uses the Three network in the UK

3TracFone's US Cellular service supports feature phones only

That's a pretty long list, and it's been culled to not include companies that only service business account or companies who force you to buy a special phone. It also doesn't include special operators that only provide service for you if you are part of a specific group, such as the armed services or the right credit union. The operators in this list will all sell you service that anyone can use with any compatible phone, anywhere in the U.S.

Your experience?

Have you tried any of these service providers? There are names we all know, names we've heard of, and names that aren't familiar at all here. If you have any experience with any of these companies, please let us know how it went in the comments.

Alternative carriers (MVNOS)


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