The T-Mobile/Walmart $30 Pre-paid Plan

Discussion in 'Alternatives to iOS and iOS Devices' started by dkersten, May 4, 2013.

  1. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 5, 2010
    Not sure if there is a better place to put this but here goes...

    I have been on Verizon for awhile and have unlimited data still but have been looking for alternatives for awhile. I came across the 100 minute, unlimited text, and unlimited 4G (which is really HPSA+ for mostly everyone) up to 5GB before you are throttled. I had many questions on how to use this plan and if you could use it with any unlocked phone and finally found answers through multiple websites. I thought I would list how I set it up so anyone else considering this plan would have an easy step by step manual on how to do it. Finally, let me start out by saying this plan will only work with new activations on T-Mobile only.

    1) Pick your phone. I personally bought a Nexus 4.
    2) Get your T-Mobile Sim activation kit.
    -Micro Sim:
    -Regular Sim (if anyone actually uses these still):
    -Nano Sim: I couldn't find one straight from T-Mobile
    *I guess you can also get a cheaper activation kit through ebay or amazon as well
    3) When your Sim arrives go to this website:
    4) Follow the Steps
    5) When you get to the page to pick your plan, make sure you choose the $30 plan with 100 min, unlimited text, and unlimited data*
    Screen Shot 2013-05-04 at 11.25.11 PM.png

    That's all you have to do. Let me reiterate that you DO NOT need to go to Walmart at all (or If you find you are running out of minutes, you can buy refill cards mid month (I do not know if you can roll these minutes over month to month).

    If you are a little worried about T-Mobile's coverage in your area like I was/am, you can start the phone out on a new number. If you can deal with the coverage, you can port your number over from your previous carrier at anytime (right now I still have my Verizon S3 and a Nexus 4 on T-Mobile). If you cannot deal with the coverage, cancel your pre-paid account with T-Mobile after a month. You will only be out $30 (plus any money you would lose if you bought and then sold your device, which should be fairly negligible).

    If you have any further questions, feel free to comment
  2. macrumors newbie

    Jul 3, 2013
    So can I use my unlocked verizon iPhone 5 with this?
  3. macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2008
    Does the personal hotspot feature work with this prepaid plan?
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Nov 5, 2010
    Sorry for the delayed reply, this is from the Verge:

    So technically you should be able to, but it isn't the best option.

    From the T-Mobile website:

    However I was able to use an Android 3rd party app to achieve this. If you have an iPhone I believe you can do the same thing ONLY if you jailbreak but I am not 100% sure.
  5. macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2008
    Have you been using this plan? I went to T Mobile today and asked about refilling once you run out of minutes and the reps both said that you cannot reup just the minutes. I am hoping they are misinformed. Just wondering if you have any experience in refilled minutes mid-month.
  6. thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Nov 5, 2010
    I don't have personal experience with this because I never used more than 100 minutes but according to a review of the plan from Walmart...

    I would consider taking this with a grain of salt however.
  7. macrumors 6502


    Apr 30, 2010
    Los Angeles
    I've been using this plan for a few months, biggest problem is no roaming on AT&T. TMobile towers only, other than that, it's a hell of a deal.
  8. macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2008
    Do you have any experience with going over 100 mins a month and using refill cards on this plan? The majority of my calls are for work (sporadically throughout the month) so running out of minutes and having to wait until the next month for another 100 mins isn't isn't a viable option for me.

    My average monthly usage is around 180-220 mins... if I could use this plan with any additional mins over the allotted 100 @ $0.10 I would still be coming out around $40 a mo. which beats the $75 I am currently paying for at&t.
  9. macrumors 6502a

    Apr 24, 2012
    Denver Colorado
    I've been tethering for months now using this plan. I have this plan on both an iPhone 4S and a Nexus 4. There have been times I've used the entire 5GB for nothing but tethering. Never had a problem with it and have never heard from T-Mobile warning me about it.
  10. macrumors newbie

    Oct 7, 2012
    Get the Vonage Mobile app to supplement your minutes. You do not need to be a Vonage customer to use it, nor do the people you're calling need to have the app installed.
  11. macrumors newbie

    Sep 12, 2008
    Awesome idea. Thanks! Not sure if that will be enough as most of my minutes are from received calls, but I will definitely start using Vonage for my outgoing calls.
  12. macrumors 65816


    Apr 22, 2003
    Are you certain about that? According to Tmobiles own prepaid coverage maps, they have several highlighted sections of "service partner" which I assume is roaming. I don't know if its as expansive as their postpaid coverage, but they do appear to support roaming on prepaid.
  13. macrumors newbie

    Oct 7, 2012
    If you think it'll be a long call, just tell them you'll call them right back.
  14. macrumors newbie

    Sep 21, 2007
    Vonage is terrible, I have been using Google Voice voip via GV mobile + v3.0
  15. macrumors 6502

    Dec 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    I was on that plan it's not bad other than you have to keep counting minutes. In the end getting on a family plan was better for me and cheaper.
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Oct 24, 2008
    I've been using this plan for a year now, actually a little over. Here's a few useful tips for you guys:

    1) Sign up for Google Voice and use Talkatone. If you can get the ad-free Talkatone (Google is your friend) all the better. It logs into your Google Talk account so you can make AND receive calls from your Google Voice number.

    2) You can't 're-up' minutes alone. The plan has 100 minutes and 100 minutes is all you get. If you re-fill, you have to pay $30 and it restarts your 5GB of 4G.

    3) The plan cuts off on MIDNIGHT of the 30th day.

    4) This plan does NOT work with Nexus 7 4G (Not sure about the 2013 model) but it WILL work with the iPad 4G. I was using an iPad Mini as a cell phone for a few weeks while my N4 was being repaired.

    5) You can NOT do this with an existing account. It has to be a new account. Do NOT get it set up at the store. Buy the kit and set it up over the phone or online. The reason being: The T-Mobile store reps ONLY have access to the atrocious 1500 minute/text plan and that's the only plan that will give them credit so they'll sign you up for it and it becomes a pain to get the plan changed with customer service.

    6) Even cities with refarmed HSPA+ have spotty internet on AT&T's bands. I live in San Diego and I was using an unlocked AT&T iPhone 5 with this plan for a little while. I constantly dropped to Edge and it was atrociously slow and for the most part unusable. (For some reason a lot of apps on iOS time out or don't respond when the data speed is lower than 3G. I think they need at least 1.5 mbps to be functional and Edge on T-mobile is less than 1 mbps.) I strongly recommend using a T-Mobile phone for this plan.

    Good luck!
  17. macrumors 6502

    Dec 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Excellent advice. yes make sure to pay your bills on time they will not give you any extra time as this is sort of prepaid. On post paid they will give you a few days after to pay your bill.
  18. macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2011
    Did they throttle your speeds? If so to what? I know it has a 5GB 4G speed unthrottled but what speed do you get when you pass that limit?

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