Instead you have to buy a new device from the service. The carrier buys and resells capacity from Sprint Nextel's network. But it also uses Wi-Fi networks. And because it uses Wi-Fi to carry the bulk of its data traffic, the company can offer such a low-cost service. The company launched a beta version of its service about a year ago. But it was quickly so overwhelmed with users interested in the service that it had to shut down.
It relaunched its beta service earlier this year. And starting next month, the service will be available to anyone.
Phone without a Data Plan??
The only catch is that, at least for now, it only supports one device, the Motorola Defy XT. Other smartphones will likely follow. And there's even a chance that eventually, customers will be able to bring their own smartphones to the service. But for now, it's just the Motorola Defy XT. I'm sorry that it's so complicated to get the service you actually want. I'm hoping that some readers out there can also contribute their thoughts on this topic and share their experiences as well.
Can you ditch your smartphone data plan for Wi-Fi?
So be sure to check back here for the reader comments. Good luck! Dear Maggie, I just read your article on "Back to cell phone basics: Buying a non-smartphone. Are there any non-smartphones out there that can allow access to local Wi-Fi without requiring a data plan? We are currently with Verizon and like their service. We have also thought of just buying iPod Touches, but don't like the idea of carrying around two devices. In fact, you will be hard pressed to find any quick messaging or feature phones that include Wi-Fi.
Wireless operators would likely tell you that these phones don't include Wi-Fi because it's too expensive to add the Wi-Fi chip. And customers who want these devices are usually cost-conscious. But I doubt that is the reason. Verizon and the other major carriers make more money from data services than they do voice services. And they want as many customers as possible using data services.
Right now, they don't require customers with these "basic" phones to have a data plan even though the phones are able to access the Internet.
If the carriers allowed these devices to have Wi-Fi built in, then many customers, such as yourself, might opt out of the data plan and instead use Wi-Fi when it's available. This would eat into the carriers' revenue stream too much. What this means for you is that you could follow the advice in my first question and try to get a smartphone, which will have Wi-Fi, at full price and use a SIM card for a voice-only service.
Wi-Fi-enabled feature phones?
Or you could get a separate Wi-Fi device. Auto-suggest helps you quickly narrow down your search results by suggesting possible matches as you type. Showing results for. Search instead for. Did you mean: Me too. Message 1 of Tags 1. Message 2 of Message 3 of Message 4 of Message 5 of Message 6 of Message 7 of Message 8 of Your post states: Message 9 of Message 10 of Accepted by lizdance40 ACE - Sage.
Accepted by lizdance If you really don't want data plan, switch to Gophone.
Why can't I buy just the services I want?
Message 11 of Do I have to have a data plan for my smartphone? But that's not the point!!! Bad policies and lousy customer service! Message 12 of Message 13 of Thank you, Dmitriy Rethink Possible Did a post have a solution that worked for you? Message 14 of February 10, Message 15 of You must be signed in to add attachments.
Phone without a Data Plan?? - Android OS
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Still need help? Knowledge is limited.
Imagination circles the world. Yes, this smartphone that I was given is a Android. Thanks for the information. I might have to go to plan 'C'. Posted 28 March - If this is an Android smartphone.
No you can't have an Android without a data plan. There is no way for the carrier to give you monthly OS security updates without it. At a very minimum. Much less maintain the various app and bloatware updates. There are other data plan requirements but thats the key ones that affect you most with an Android OS smartphone.
However with that said. You can turn data off till you need to do updates. But you'll still have your basic monthly data access charge. I have to disagree that you cannot have a Android phone without a data plan for any reason other than the carriers enforcing it. Every Android-powered smartphone I've had, save the last one, not only didn't have a data plan but didn't have phone service, either.
Updates are all handled, and perfectly, over WiFi. On my current phone a Galaxy S7 it actively resists downloading Android as opposed to app, and I've set it to not do those using mobile data, too updates except if you're connected to WiFi. They give you a warning that downloading Android OS updates over mobile data could easily exhaust your monthly allotment if you use data for lots of other things, too. I don't know of a single carrier that will activate a smartphone without a data plan and more's the pity.
I've had a pay-as-you-go plan through Virgin Mobile and have purchased two of their Android-powered smartphones over the years. I would gladly have carried that plan over to the smartphones had they allowed it because all I ever did was call. I still have the flip phone because of that plan. My solution, since WiFi has become quite ubiquitous, and emergency calls can be made even in smartphones on which the phone service has never been activated, is to use Google Hangouts with a Google Voice phone number.
You can call or text with ease if you've got WiFi connectivity and if anyone calls or texts while you don't any voicemail or text messages show up moments after you reestablish WiFi connectivity. Then you just have your smartphone WiFi connected via that unit.
The old Virgin Mobile MiFi units worked very well for this purpose and it was significantly cheaper than either their monthly plans with data or even a number of plans that were just unlimited talk and text. The deeper point here is that public policy is rarely a cure-all, but it can often be a corrective.