Sprint vs. Straight Talk: Unlimited Battle
With the current trend of smart phone services, internet connection becomes a necessity. And since the point of having a mobile phone is being away from home, we cannot rely on a WiFi connection at all times. In addition to this, many everyday functions demand heavy data usage such as email, instant messaging, social networking, file downloading etc. This being said, the most economical option when going for a plan is to select one with an unlimited data option.
Verizon, being one of the best providers of high speed internet, is no longer an option for us since it does not provide unlimited data plans. The same goes for AT&T, aside from the controversy that it is throttling some of its subscriber’s data usage (but this is for a different story). The only option that we have left is Sprint and Straight Talk; both provide affordable unlimited call and data plan. However, one is pre paid and the other is post paid. Both are good in their own right but are vastly different from one another. Thus, one would surely work better for you than the other.
In order for us to have a fair comparison between the two, we will be comparing the two in terms of internet connection, features, phone selection, coverage, customer services, and affordability. To start with the review we will be observing its internet capabilities.
Sprint – Sprint provides unlimited calls and data for $99 a month. However, if you are only focused on unlimited data and do not want to avail unlimited call time, this can be cut down to $69 per month. In terms of speed Sprint averages 1 Mbps up to 2.2 mbps.
Straight Talk – Straight Talk offers unlimited data and talk time for $45 a month. In terms of internet speed, Straight Talk has an average speed between 80 kbps and 120 kbps.
Comparison – In terms of price, Straight Talk is more affordable and is available for half the price. However, in terms of speed, Sprint can reach up to 20 times of Straight Talk’s speed. If speed matters to you, then Sprint is a great option and you are definitely getting your buck’s worth. On the other hand, if you are prioritizing your budget over performance, then Straight Talk is a good option.
Sprint – Sprint has the Push to talk function that can significantly reduce your talk time bills as this is much cheaper. Sprint also has the ‘truly unlimited’ data plan that guarantees throttle free connection. You are then guaranteed of consistently fast and unlimited data connection.
Straight Talk – Straight Talk does not have any particularly remarkable features except for its very cheap unlimited data and talk time rates.
Sprint – Sprint offers one of the widest smart phone repertoires among all the network providers in the USA. Aside from this, Sprint claims to have the most number of Android smart phones in its inventory. This is just fitting since Sprint is focused on providing unlimited data.
Straight Talk – being a prepaid network, Straight Talk offers very limited smart phone selection and is all about basic phones. One of the latest phone models of Straight Talk can be classified as a mid end smart phone at best. It does not have highly sophisticated phones such as the iPhone 4S.
Comparison – Sprint wins all the way in this category. Without or with little smart phone selection, there is little point is subscribing in an unlimited data plan.
Sprint – Sprint offers one of the nation widest coverage. It has an excellent GSM, 3G, and 4G signals. Unless your location is somewhere really remote, you will be receiving excellent data rates and cellular signals.
Straight Talk – Being a product of Tracfone, Straight talk also enjoys great coverage. Its GSM and CDMA networks are reported to cover 99% of the USA. The same as Sprint, you will not notice any difference unless the signals are blocked or if you are located in a very remote location.
Comparison – Although both have excellent cellular connectivity, Sprint has better coverage as it partially covers the nation with 4G signals and plans to cover the entirety or majority of it by april next year. Straight Talk on the other hand, does not have any 4G LTE signal.
There is not much to be said between the customer services of both networks. Given that the issue is known or common, it can be solved within a day. However, if it is a new issue, then resolution can take weeks. This is common to all customer service across all companies. However, since Straight Talk is a prepaid service, there are les instances wherein you need to consult their customer service. However, I think both are doing a great job in this area and deserve a tie.
Sprint – To avail unlimited data, you will have to cash out at least $69 per month. However, with this, you are getting an excellent speed of consistent 1-2 Mbps. Though more expensive this usually throws in a cheaper and more sophisticated smart phone than one that is available from Straight Talk.
Straight Talk – Straight Talk’s unlimited call and data is available for $45 per month or $499 per year and can further be reduced by a Straight Talk promo code. However, you are only getting low internet speeds of 80 Kbps – 120 Kbps.
Comparison – If you are not sensitive to fast browsing and are a consistent but casual surfer, then Straight Talk may do. However, if you would like fast browsing and downloads and would like to make the most out of your money, Sprint is the way to go. Not to mention that Sprint offers phones (sometimes for free) when availing for a plan. This renders the difference between Sprint’s and Straight Talk’s monthly cost. The advantage with Straight Talk however is that the phone is yours once you bought it and you are not bound by any contract. You can stop and use Straight Talk’s service at own pace, unlike Sprint that requires you to pay every month.