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The Apple iPhone 14 is unveiled today. Here’s how to choose the best wireless carrier for it


AT&T


Thinking of switching mobile carriers for the new Apple iPhone 14? With the phone officially releasing in a few weeks, now is the time to start looking at your options. Keep reading to learn what to look for in a wireless carrier and how to choose the best wireless carrier for you and your new Apple iPhone 14.


The best products in this article

Store plans at Verizon

Purchasing plans at AT&T

Shopping plans at T-Mobile


Choosing a new wireless plan can have many benefits. You may find a new plan with better 5G coverage in your area, or a plan that saves you money over your current plan. Some carriers are offering incentives and equipment discounts to new customers looking for new phones like Apple’s iPhone 14, Google Pixel 7 or the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4.

How to Choose the Best Wireless Carrier

To help you shop around for your next wireless carrier, we’ve compiled a list of what you should consider when choosing a new wireless carrier.

Network coverage

When choosing between different mobile carriers, it’s a good idea to check the network coverage in your area. After all, what good is a new phone if you’re still losing service? Even carriers with a solid reputation for reliable service can have spotty coverage in some areas, especially if you live in a more rural setting.

Remember that it is often worth paying more for a reliable connection. Verizon is known to be more expensive, but also has a reputation for network reliability. You want to be able to reliably use the data and calls you pay for, right?

Since network reliability can vary, it’s often helpful to ask neighbors, friends, or co-workers about their experiences with data and call reliability.

First, compare phone plan prices

Each phone company charges a different price for the service, and most offer several plans to consider. You’ll want to review your current plan and data usage before you shop – this will help you figure out which plan to buy.

First, you’ll need to decide if you want to try a budget carrier like Mint Mobile or a standard carrier like AT&T or Verizon. Budget carriers offer basic connectivity. Premium carriers, meanwhile, are more likely to offer faster speeds and better 5G coverage. That’s something to consider if you’re upgrading to a 5G-capable phone like Apple’s iPhone 14.

When comparing prices between carriers, compare based on the plan and contract you would actually choose, rather than just the lowest advertised price. Many carriers also offer special discounts for students, seniors, first responders, military, and employees of certain companies. If you work for a large company or government agency, check to see if a list of carrier discounts is available to you. Also, be sure to factor these discounts into your comparisons.

Next, compare phone plan features

Many shoppers go for unlimited plans these days (all major carriers offer unlimited data plans), but if your data usage is low, you can save money by choosing a limited data plan option. Most limited data plans still include unlimited calls and texts, but they limit your data usage. If you frequently stream movies, songs, and videos on your phone, unlimited data is probably the way to go. However, if you’re just using your data to do a few quick Google searches here or there, the unlimited data might not be worth the extra bucks.

You might also want to take a look at the type of data connectivity available. Newer phones are compatible with 5G connectivity, which offers faster internet speeds than 4G. If you’re buying a brand new phone like the iPhone 14, you’ll also want the latest 5G wireless capabilities for a smoother experience. 5G isn’t available everywhere yet, but it will come to other regions soon as most wireless carriers and ISPs upgrade their networks to expand 5G coverage now. Mint Mobile, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile all support 5G at the moment, as long as you have a 5G-enabled device.

Other plan features to consider include international texting and calling, mobile hotspot data support, and data speeds. One thing to pay special attention to on unlimited data plans is whether the carrier will throttle your data after you hit a certain data cap. For example, AT&T warns that it may slow data speeds for lower-tier Unlimited plan customers if the network is busy, but Premium Unlimited plan customers will not experience a reduction in data speed. Similarly, Verizon slows download speeds after 50GB of data usage on lower-tier unlimited plans.

You should also consider money-saving benefits

Each wireless carrier offers different benefits with their plans. For example, new Verizon customers (with an eligible plan) will receive six months of access to Apple Music. AT&T offers its customers free mobile security tools. And T-Mobile offers free Netflix subscriptions with qualifying plans and offers special discounts at different retailers and restaurants every week on T-Mobile Tuesdays.

Major Wireless Carriers

Here are the four biggest wireless carriers to consider, all of which offer and support Apple’s iPhone 14.

Verizon

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Verizon


Verizon has built a solid reputation for consistent and reliable coverage – it claims to be the best in the business. The operator offers a wide range of trade-in offers, as well as promotions for new phones with new service. The carrier may be a little more expensive than the others, but it’s often worth paying more for reliable coverage. The carrier also offers numerous tablet and smartwatch options at Verizon retail stores and online, many of which can connect to the company’s wireless network.

Plan pricing varies depending on how many lines you add and how much data you need. You should expect to pay between $70 and $90 for a single-line unlimited plan depending on which Verizon unlimited plan you select. The carrier offers prepaid phone plans as a more affordable option.

Customers may also be able to bundle their services for home internet discounts. Availability of Verizon Home Internet Service varies by region, see Verizon’s website for details.

Store plans at Verizon


AT&T

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AT&T


Like Verizon, AT&T is a well-established wireless carrier with a strong reputation. AT&T is a strong contender for wireless shoppers who travel frequently or have family members overseas: AT&T’s unlimited plans include unlimited international texting to 200 different countries, with coverage in Latin America, Mexico and in Canada. There are also options to help cruise passengers stay connected.

AT&T’s unlimited plans start at $35 per line for family plans. The carrier supports 5G connectivity for faster data. AT&T has a ton of different phone options, including the new Apple iPhone 14. AT&T also offers discount plans with home Internet and TV.

Purchasing plans at AT&T


T-Mobile

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T-Mobile


T-Mobile is a great choice if you’re looking for a happy medium between a budget carrier and more premium carriers. Unlimited plans at T-Mobile start at $27 per line per month. The carrier also offers impressive discounts for seniors, veterans, and active service members.

New customers can also get the Apple iPhone 13 for free with a 2-year commitment. If you’re okay with not getting Apple’s iPhone 14 and would rather grab a bargain, this is a tempting deal. T-Mobile supports 5G connectivity.

Shopping plans at T-Mobile


mint mobile

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mint mobile


Mint Mobile is a budget option with plans starting at just $15 per month. The unlimited talk, text and data plan is just $30 per month on a one-year contract. This beats the prices of most major carriers.

Mint Mobile allows customers to bring their own phone or buy a new one. The carrier is currently offering a deal on new phones: customers who purchase a new phone through Mint Mobile will receive six months of free cellular service on a 12-month plan.

Note, however, that Mint Mobile is a newer service that continues to expand and upgrade its network. You’ll want to be diligent in checking Mint Mobile’s coverage map before signing up. (You will notice on the map that there are a few states or areas with limited coverage.)

Shopping plans at Mint Mobile


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