Recently, Spectrum (Charter as they were previously known) has introduced a new mobile service called Spectrum Mobile. I honestly remember them teasing this about a year ago I think. This new service will only be available to customers that are in Spectrum’s pretty huge reach. If you really want something like this, don’t feel left out. Comcast has something incredibly similar.
One would think that with this being exclusive and all, that it would probably be a pretty good deal. Well, that’s where I come in to trash the whole thing. Just kidding. Or am I?
The Particulars Of Spectrum Mobile
Before I get into the bad, I’ll start with the good. Spectrum Mobile will use Verizon’s network. That’s pretty great for coverage. I would have thought they would’ve gone with a GSM carrier since that is probably the way we’re going anyway. The rest of the world uses GSM. Just saying. Believe it or not, I actually think it’s a good thing they went with Verizon’s network.
Here’s where things take a bit of a turn. There are basically two plans to pick from, an ‘Unlimited‘ plan for $45, or a ‘By the Gig’ plan for $14/GB. On the surface, those actually seem pretty ok. If you don’t use a lot of data the By the Gig plan should save you some money. If you do use a ton of data the Unlimted plan is pretty inexpensive. I don’t stay at the surface though, I like to dive. For two reasons really: 1. So you don’t have to and 2. Because I’m skeptical by nature.
If you get the Unlimited plan you have 20GB of high-speed data, after that, it will be throttled. You will have 5GB high-speed hotspot data included with that plan. Although after you hit your limit your speeds will be throttled to 600kbps! Yeah, that’s slower than a Megabyte per second. Your hotspot data counts against your monthly 20GB high-speed limit too. Here’s the real kick in the pants though. Video streaming is throttled at 480p! You got that? A company whose bread and butter is video (they’re a cable company mind you) doesn’t even let you stream HD video!
You do have to have internet service with Spectrum in order to ‘take advantage’ of Spectrum Mobile at the above price. If you don’t have internet service there is an additional $20 charge per line. Oh, and Spectrum WiFi speeds will be capped at 5Mbps.
Is it worth it?
Yes and no really. If you don’t have internet service through Spectrum I would say no. That 600kbps just gets me. I know it’s technically 3G, but that still seems ridiculous. If you almost never use a mobile phone and you have internet through Spectrum then that ‘By the Gig’ plan could be a winner. You could end up spending less than $20/mo for your cell phone.
Would you get service through Spectrum Mobile? Or would you rather stick with one of the bigger carriers? Let us know in the comments below!