What You Need To Know About Choosing A Cell Phone Provider

By: Jim Johnson

Cell phones have become an integral part of the daily lives of most consumers, and that means that the choice of which cell phone provider to use is a very important one. After all, the cell phone itself can only be as good as the network it is connected to. So here are a few important tips that you need to know about how to choose a cell phone service provider.

As far as performance and customer service are concerned, most consumer surveys that have been conducted in the last couple of years indicate that two cell phone companies seem to perform best overall, and that is Verizon and T-Mobile. Both Sprint and Cingular did not receive nearly as many positive comments from cell phone users.

However, this alone should not be the determining factor in which cell phone network that you choose to use, as both performance and service can vary dramatically from one location or area of the country to another. So a better way to get a good idea of the quality of service to you can expect from a cell phone provider in your particular area is to simply ask your family, friends and acquaintances about their experiences with their cell phone provider. No doubt, you will get quite an earful about their opinions, both positive and negative. These can be very useful if you include enough people in your informal survey, as usually clear patterns can begin to develop after you have queried enough local cell phone users.

Another consideration when selecting a cell phone provider is how you plan on using the phone on their system. There are two major digital networks that are in use in the US today, and they are CDMA and GSM. If your cell phone usage requires you to make phone calls from time to time in rural areas where there is no digital service, you'll want to select a service provider that uses the CDMA network, because it allows for analog roaming in areas where a digital signal cannot be found.

On the other hand, if you travel internationally, you may want to consider getting a cell phone on a GSM network instead, as this kind of network is in wide usage internationally. What that means for you is that if you travel outside the US, you would be able to take your cell phone with you and use it as you normally would because of its compatibility with the overseas networks. Just check to see which kind of network is used by the cell phone providers in your area to decide on which will best fit your needs.

In order to protect yourself when choosing a cell phone service plan, it would be a good idea to only sign up for one year of service at a time. Although the cell phone companies will want to sell you service plans that cover a longer period of time and may be less expensive than the long run, it still may be best to try a cell phone provider in your area for only a year at a time to begin with, allowing you to determine the quality of their service and performance without being tied to a long-term commitment.

Hopefully, these tips and suggestions will help you find the best cell phone service plan for your needs and save you money too.

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