I love my phone company (or why Ting.com is awesome)

I love my phone company.

I thought I'd never ever say that, ever, but it's true. I really love my mobile phone company. Granted, it's only been a month since I've used them, and the honeymoon is still in full swing, but I can't imagine myself being this happy with a phone company, ever.

Mobile phone companies, as a rule suck. They make a show of selling you a phone at a reduced rate, but then jack up the price of every single transaction with the phone. Got a smart phone? Well, that's a separate data charge. Went over your allotted minutes / messages / megabytes this month? Well, speedy, it's gonna cost you at an inflated rate, so make sure you don't do it again, pal. Oh, and if you want to use your phone for a remote network connection (tethering / wireless hot spot), well, prepare to pony up, assuming they let you do it at all. And if you don't use it, they'll still gladly charge you as though you did.

It's a load of rubbish.

Bits are bits, whether you use them via tethering, mobile WIFI access point, or whatever. You're paying for them, and you should be able to use them. And you shouldn't get charged extra for not using your phone (or worse, for using your phone more than you thought you might).

And that's why I love Ting.com.

Ting charges you per tier for the services you use. Say you plan each month on using 1GB of data. Ting charges for data in tiers. Let's say that I choose the Large plan, which is 1,000MB of data (1GB = $24). But, last month, I only used 494MB. Instead of telling me "tough, you should have used it", Ting.com issued me a credit for the difference to the Medium tier (which is $13). So, I got a credit on my next bill of $11 for my unused data.

My first bill was $39.24. My second bill was $27.05 because of the credits for unused service.

There are some caveats:

  • You will need to purchase the phone without the normal subsidies of the phone company. However, that also means if you decide you no longer want Ting, you're not bound to a contract to pay for a subsidized phone. You just cancel your account, and walk away, simple as that.
  • Ting uses Sprint as it's carrier., so if Sprint sucks where you are, it'll continue to suck if you switch to Ting. Luckily, Sprint has a decent presence in this area, although there are dead zones for networking. Also, 4G hasn't made it out this way yet.
  • The phone selection is pretty limited. They're working on getting more phones.
  • You can't bring another CDMA device (you'll have to purchase a phone in order to use Ting). That said, they're extremely liberal about people discussing how to get around this. Frankly, if someone could figure out how to make it work, they'd much rather you bring your own device.

Where Ting.com really shines, though, is with multiple devices. Say I have three relatives that all want mobile phones. Relative A uses few phone minutes, little data, but text messages like a fiend. Relative B uses their phone for emergencies only. Relative C is a salesperson, and uses their phone constantly. They rarely text, and only use their phone for Facebook when it isn't jammed against their ear. If they're all on the same plan, you can pool their usage together. Each phone costs $6 to connect, and whatever they use gets billed against the pool. So if you have a relative that rarely uses their mobile phone, you can pay $6 to keep it active, and pay for whatever tier of minutes they use whenever they use it. However, you can probably pile that in with the relative who is a blabbermouth, so the cost is essentially $6, even if they use the phone.

Ting.com is also exceptionally helpful, and their support staff is great.Questions are usually answered in 24 hours on their forums.

I can't say enough about how much I love Ting.com right now. I would encourage you to check out their plans, and see how well they'll fit for you and your mobile needs.

Rarely have I ever been happy with a mobile phone company, but I couldn't be happier with Ting.com. Check them out, and let me know if you love them too.

Use my URL (https://z6oc11q87.ting.com/) and save yourself $25 off the price of your device order. I'll also get $25 credit, so we both win. :)