Cheap iPhone prepaid data plan

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by jlmcclellan, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. jlmcclellan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #1
    Check out this link guys:

    http://www.tuaw.com/2011/08/10/dear-aunt-tuaw-what-is-this-cheap-iphone-data-plan-you-speak-of/

    Is anyone out there using a method such as this for a prepaid voice/data plan on their iPhones? Aunt TUAW uses an iPhone 3gs but I was curious if anyone has had any success doing this with, say, an iPhone 4 that isn't jailbroken/unlocked. My wife wants an iPhone but won't get one because she refuses to pay the money every month for a data plan that she'll barely use (due to available wifi, etc and fairly limited data use anyway).

    Anybody out there have any experience with the above prescribed method?
     
  2. ap3604 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    #2
    Seems pretty risky if you buy the $100 card in case ATT recognizes your using an iPhone and tells you that you have to upgrade to a postpaid plan. Probably need to try a lower card amount first...
     
  3. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #3
    Yeah I'd definitely start out with a cheap data/voice plan (as they recommend doing in the article). Anyone out there done this?
     
  4. labman macrumors 604

    labman

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    Mich near Detroit
    #4
    3GS or I4 they will catch you maybe not today but they will. keep in mind they are cracking down more and more. ATT says right in there contract that iphones require data plans 2G and down are except.
     
  5. tgcken macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    #5
    Does it mention that anywhere in their pay as you go service terms, though?

    http://www.wireless.att.com/cell-ph...cell-phone-plans.jsp?wtSlotClick=1-005ZH4-0-2



    Correct me if I'm wrong, but an Iphone is a smartphone. You may use your smartphone on GoPhone plans. Seems to me there's no problem.
     
  6. EddyP macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    #6
    Not to be a dick but what do you mean cracking down? Cracking down on what?

    Are you saying it's not allowed to use an iPhone (not on contract of course) and a PayGo sim?
     
  7. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    #7
    PAYG definitely works on the 3G and AT&T, however I would sooner put my face through a plate glass window than listen to anything "Auntie" Erica says on TUAW. There's a reason they fired her from Ars.
     
  8. tgcken, Aug 15, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2011

    tgcken macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    #8
    Well this is something I've been considering since before reading her article. I currently use PAYG with my Pantech Link, which I just realized already uses a microSIM card like the iphone 4.

    I also use an ipod touch to receive my texts when I have wifi. Instead of the dual system, I was planning on getting a used iphone and just using google voice exclusively (everyone already as my google voice #) for texting.

    Her recommendation seems legitimate, as far as how the data pricing would work. Whether or not you can get the data to come through on the iphone I can not verify, though I plan on trying soon. I figure instead of paying 10$ a mo for 1000 texts, I can pay 10$ a month for roughly 141mb of data. (1.6gb per year)

    I believe the policy everyone is referring to is the inability to use an iPhone on any postpaid AT&T contract without paying for a postpaid data plan.
     
  9. EddyP macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2010
    #9
    Agreed. That is specifically prohibited.



    I have a 3GS out of contract. Is there any reason I can't make it PayGo? Or are we only talking about under contract? I'll call ATT and report back.
     
  10. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #10
    And what reason is that? I know nothing of any scandal (although I'm likely just out of the loop). Nonetheless, the advice seems sound, regardless of who it is coming from...
     
  11. Fezwick macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #11
    I'm doing this right now. I got sick and tired of paying $40 bucks a month for voice service that I barely used. I canceled my contract ($200) and hopped on prepaid. I'm on the 10 cents a minute plan. I also bought the 500 MB data bucket for $25 bucks, and 1000 texts for $10. I roll both these over every month by spending the minimum on both services.

    Prepaid isn't for everyone, but it works great for me. I only use 3G when wi-fi isn't around. My bill went from $70 bucks a month to $15. I'll make up my ETF within 4 months.

    People have been doing this for years and AT&T isn't shutting off prepaid iPhones. I've read some people have even gone into AT&T stores with iPhones and they've activated them on prepaid with no hassle.

    If you're thinking about doing this, buy your prepaid cards from callingmart.com. They frequently have 10% off deals and you get the PINs instantly in your email.

    Oh, and I'm using a non-jailbroken, locked iPhone 4.
     
  12. tgcken macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    #12
    Did you have to do anything to make data work with your iphone 4 fezwick, or did it just work after you bought a data plan?
     
  13. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #13
    This is awesome news, thanks for confirming it works on an iPhone 4. Did you follow basically the same directions that Aunt TUAW spells out?
     
  14. Fezwick macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #14
    You have to change the APN for data to work. When you get your gophone plan all straightened out, go to this site on your iPhone on wifi:

    http://www.unlockit.co.nz/unlockit/

    It will ask you what carrier APN profile to use. Select AT&T, install it and you're good to go. Everything will work great EXCEPT for visual voicemail. You need an iPhone data plan for that to work, which you can't get on prepaid. I ended up signing up for a youmail account and downloading the app they have on my phone. Now you have 3rd party visual voicemail.

    I basically did the same thing. To get my account switched over, I went down to an AT&T store and asked them to switch my account to prepaid. Don't tell them you are using an iPhone, however. I know some people have had success with getting an iPhone on prepaid with no hassles, but I decided to play it safe. I bought a $10 gophone from walmart and slapped my SIM card in it. That way when they ask to see your phone they won't deny you your gophone account. You get to keep your phone number this way as well.

    After they transfer your account, put the SIM card back in your iPhone, change the APN and you're all set. The whole process was very easy.
     
  15. tgcken macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2011
    #15
    Thanks for the unlockitz link, worked like a charm. I went to the AT&T store and told them I needed a microSIM card and the guy gave it to me for free. Dropped it in the iphone 4, called up AT&T (half hour call, not too horrible I suppose) and they changed my sim card (I had a regular sized SIM card on my paygo plan before) and my phone.

    After that I bought the data plan and went to unlockitz.
     
  16. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #16
    I've successfully implemented this procedure and am now prepaid on my 3GS!
     
  17. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #17
    Has anyone that has been using prepaid voice/data on their iPhone updated to iOS5? I'm assuming it'll require using the unlockit.co.nz website again once you update, is that right?
     
  18. jlmcclellan thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    #18
    Lots of traffic today with iOS5 coming out. Bump. Anyone out there?
     
  19. Fezwick macrumors 6502

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    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #19
    My APN settings carried over no problem. I restored from a previous backup.
     
  20. drewdrewdrew macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2011
    #20
    anyone here moved from T-Mobile to the AT&T go phone service? if so how are you finding the speeds?
     
  21. Fezwick macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #21
    GoPhone is heavily throttled. The data speeds are barely 3G, sometimes not even. I'm not complaining since I don't pay all that much a month, but if you're looking for speed, go to Straight Talk. Your mileage may vary.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. drewdrewdrew macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2011
    #22
    Straight Talk works with the IPHONEs?

    Thanks
     
  23. rmhop81 macrumors 68020

    rmhop81

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2005
    Location:
    Dallas, TX
    #23
    i never did a speed test when i've used it. but i came from postpaid plan and i could easily download apps etc. When i did prepaid gophone data a few times i couldn't even download apps it was so slow.
     
  24. Fezwick macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2002
    Location:
    Rhode Island
    #24
    Yes. You can buy the E71 at Walmart or straightalk.com and swap the SIM into your iPhone. Change the APN on your iPhone and you're good to go. If you do this, be aware that you must keep the E71. If you sell it or return it, your SIM card will be deactivated.
     
  25. chillhase macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2011
    #25
    anyone:

    just went through this thread.
    is it possible to take, lets say the 10c plan and get data and phone via Skype/google voice/whatever or is the speed too slow?

    @ Fezwick
    i don't know how you end up with 15? for me 25 for data and 10 for text is more?!
     

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