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LiVE4594
Something Like a Pimp
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Ironton, OH

[AT&T] Buyout contract to save money?

I've been thinking. My wife and daughter have iphone 5's. They are both in contract and we're currently paying about 180 per month with att.

If I bought out of our contract and went to straight talk, we'd have unlimited minutes and txt and 2gb data per month for 60 ea / 120.

I'd have to pay to get out of the contracts at roughly $500 but that would pay for itself in roughly 9 months. Anyone see a down side to this? They're both in contract for more than a year.

Does anyone see a flaw in this? Other than losing their cell numbers?

Happydude32
Premium
join:2005-07-16
kudos:1
Why would they lose their numbers? I’ve never dealt with an MVNO, but can’t you just port the number over from AT&T to Straight Talk like you would from any other real cell provider?

LiVE4594
Something Like a Pimp
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Ironton, OH
I dont know that you can do that. If not thatd be cool.

Happydude32
Premium
join:2005-07-16
kudos:1
All you should have to do is go to a Straight Talk dealer, or maybe contact them directly to set up new service and tell them you want to port existing numbers over. Once AT&T releases your phone numbers to ST, those AT&T lines will be officially canceled without you having to do anything or contact AT&T, and on your next AT&T statement the ETF changes will be applied.

I’ve paid ETFs a few times. I canceled AT&T and went to Sprint while I was under contract, and I canceled Sprint and went to Verizon under contract. And once Sprint gets their LTE network going, I will canceled Verizon under contract and go back to Sprint. Never did I have to contact the provider I was switching from.
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halfempty

join:2001-04-28
Miami, FL
reply to LiVE4594
Be careful with Straight Talk, it's not as painless as it sounds. First the good: I have been with them for almost a year and have had no real problems. Yes you can port your number over from AT&T, all you need is your account number and pin. For me it has been well worth it, but I have an Android, not an iPhone.

Now the bad. IPhones aren't as easy to configure as Androids, there are problems getting MMS to work correctly. If your don't use MMS then that's not a concern, if you do use it do a search on "ios7 t-mobile sim swap" to know what you'll be getting into. There are no Straight Talk dealers, it's a Walmart exclusive brand. If you've ever dealt with Walmart counter sales people you know they are not exactly tech geniuses. Straight Talk tech support is outsourced to the Philippines, and all they can do is follow their scripts. Any real problems and they're lost.

The only MVNOs that will work "out of the box" with AT&T iPhones are GoPhone and AIO wireless. The iPhone would have to be unlocked to work on AIO, but not GoPhone.

LiVE4594
Something Like a Pimp
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Ironton, OH
What about moving the phones to a go phone account. Think I'd have problems? Would they let me?


Yippz
Premium
join:2005-05-04
Fort Walton Beach, FL
reply to Happydude32
said by Happydude32:

Why would they lose their numbers? I’ve never dealt with an MVNO, but can’t you just port the number over from AT&T to Straight Talk like you would from any other real cell provider?

Correct. You can always port a number (cell, voip, landline) to any MVNO as long as the number is live and in service. If the number's been turned off or canceled by the the original cell provider the transfer won't complete.

Also, take a look at H2O, Red Pocket or AirVoice (all AT&T MVNOs) for $60 a month with an extra gig of data or Net10 (AT&T version) for $50 a month.
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Hagar

join:2004-10-31
Sunnyvale, CA
Reviews:
·T-Mobile US
·AT&T U-Verse
reply to LiVE4594
LiVE4594,

Good for you to look at MNVOs like Straight talk. Straight talk regular plan is $45 the international is $60 you will save even more if you do not need the international plan.
Now having a locked iPhone is a little extra work to get working on Straight talk. This is what I would recommend

1) Unlock one of the iPhones on ebay. Yes AT&T will unlock you for free after you paied th ETF but that will take too long and you will be in trouble if you do not get it work. Unlock on ebay does not cost that much.
2) Buy a t-mobile SIM so you can edit the APN settings. Phone needs to be unlocked to use the non ATT SIM. Try to get a nano SIM or get a micro sim and a SIM cutter from micro – nano. I would get a t-mobile prepaid SIM not a ST (t-mobile).
3) Put the t-mobile network SIM in and make sure you can edit iPhones APN setting.
4) If you are 100% sure you are going to go with ST (ATT network) then you can skip this step but if not then you might want to check out the T-mobile data network coverage in your area.
Activate the t-mobile SIM with the $30/month unlimited data plan and check out the network speed. Activate with a new number so you can play without messing up current ATT plan.
5) Get the Straight talk SIM for the network you want. ST does not sell nano SIM so you need to get a micro and a micro – nano cutter.
Note you request number porting when you activate ST SIM card.
6) If you get the ST with ATT network then do the SIM swap dance halfempty talked about to get your APN setting to work for data and MMS.
Repeat for the second phone.

I always go slow and make sure I have the t-mobile sim working before I request a number port with the new provider.

Straight talk support is not good. I moved two phones and only one had data with correct APN settings. Contacted ST support via email waited 48 hours then contacted ST on facebook and open a support request it was fixed in 2 hours. The email got a respone a day or two after the issue was fixed. Use facebook if you need to contact ST support.


halfempty

join:2001-04-28
Miami, FL
reply to LiVE4594
said by LiVE4594:

What about moving the phones to a go phone account. Think I'd have problems? Would they let me?

As long as you pay the etf they can't stop you. Make sure you go to a corporate store instead of an authorized reseller.
Expand your moderator at work


atuarre
Here come the drums
Premium
join:2004-02-14
Conroe, TX
reply to LiVE4594

Re: [AT&T] Buyout contract to save money?

Probably should explain to him about the data in case he or his daughter uses a lot of data on ST.

LiVE4594
Something Like a Pimp
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Ironton, OH
reply to LiVE4594
Most of her data is on wifi.


toby
Troy Mcclure

join:2001-11-13
Portland, OR
reply to LiVE4594
Go to net10, same company. 2.5 GB fast data each, rest slow data.

»www.net10wireless.com/#/plans/family

keason
Premium
join:2002-05-02
Ann Arbor, MI
Reviews:
·Comcast Business..
reply to LiVE4594
The only issue with MVNO's is lack of roaming coverage. Will they travel much? Another option is to switch to Tmo , pay the ETF, sell your ATT iPhone 5's which should more than cover the ETF with $300 or so remaining, and purchase new 5s from Tmo (with $20/mo financing) . I really like their new plans - the basic plan is $90 for 2 phones w 512Mb data - but data is just throttled, add $10/mo for another 2GB/phone. So you'd pay $130+taxes with no money out of pocket , less after 2 yrs.

Tmo also has free intl slow data and text roaming and cheap ($10/mo) intl calls /txt

If you can get a few relatives to go on your Tmo plan and split the cost ($10/mo for next 3 phones) it will be cheaper too.