On the Red Pocket vs Visible review, we saw a lot of similarities between the two carriers. In this article, we’re going to continue on the topic, whereby we’ll compare Red Pocket vs Cricket to see which provider would be more worthwhile to get.
Similar to the previous post, we’ll only focus on the call & data features that matter most. That includes the network coverage, browsing speeds, phone plan structure, plus data deprioritization and throttling.
Red pocket vs Cricket: An Overview on the Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs)
|Feature||Red Pocket||Cricket Wireless|
|Carrier Network||AT&T/ T-Mobile/ Verizon||AT&T|
|5G Download Speeds||200+Mbps||200+Mbps|
|Unlimited data||YES (with cap)||YES (with no cap)|
|Free Mexico/ Canada Call||YES (and to 80+ destinations)||YES (varies)|
|Video Streaming||YES [up to 720 HD]||YES [up to 1080p HD]|
|Phone Unlock Period||Varies (After 6 or 12 Months)||After 180 Days|
|Extra Perks||6 months free service||150GB cloud storage, Free HBO Max streaming, & Unlimited texting to international destinations|
Should I Get a Cricket Phone?
Do you travel a lot? As an MVNO of AT&T, Cricket Wireless has pretty decent coverage, including even in the Midwestern and Northwestern states. Thus, can be a better option than T-Mobile carriers if you reside or travel a lot in the regions.
When comparing Cricket and Metro services, we saw the AT&T brand also does have budget-friendly plans. Then, you can enjoy a free subscription of the HBO-Max streaming service and up to 150GB of cloud storage.
Other pros and cons of Cricket Wireless include:
- It has great phone deals
- Has decent browsing speeds
- Charges no activation fees online
- Offers device protection through Asurion
- Includes unlimited texting to 37 countries
- Doesn’t performs credit check when joining
- It has international roaming data/ calling/ texting
- It has no eSIM support at the moment
- Gives deprioritized data on most rate plans
- Doesn’t support 5G on BYP (bring your phone) program
Should I Get a Red Pocket Phone?
Do you want to save even more money on your monthly phone bill? The Red Pocket could be a perfect choice for you. It has some affordable cell phone plans to choose from, including the basic phone option at $10 or the eBay exclusive from as low as $2.50/ month.
Even better, Red Pocket is currently giving the $50 Unlimited plan with up 100GB of high-speed data. And since it has partnered with all the major providers, including AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile, you can join their service with the network that works best in your area.
Some of the other best pros and cons of Red Pocket include:
- It performs no credit check
- Has decent browsing speeds
- Doesn’t have phone activation fees
- Offers multi-line discount on select plans
- Allows up to HD streaming on all the plans
- Offers free international calling on various countries
- It has up to 6 months of free service on device purchase
- It provides deprioritized data
- It has no eSIM support at this moment
- Also, doesn’t support network roaming services
Red Pocket vs Cricket: Comparing the Main Features & Perks between the Cell Phone Providers
On the question of coverage, both Red Pocket has partnered with the AT&T network. Thus, you should get a workable service in most parts of the country. That includes Portland Oregon, some parts of Madison, and a few other rural places.
However, Red Pocket also allows you to join their service on the T-Mobile or Verizon network. So, it’s a much better choice since you get to choose what works best in your location or fits your lifestyle.
Winner: Red Pocket has partnered with all the three major network providers
Phone Deals & Discounts
Cricket Wireless is one of the providers that give free phones when you switch to their prepaid service. Of course, the deals are usually on entry-level and mid-range devices but don’t require a trade-in. Thus, beating many MVNOs that don’t have such promotional offers, or even its carrier network, AT&T, where you need an eligible trade-in.
On its end, Red Pocket doesn’t have free phone deals, at this time. However, you can get partial discounts on select devices and or 6 months of free service on GSMA when you buy an iPhone. Thus, saving you up to $350, including even on the Apple iPhone SE (2020 Edition) that usually retails at $399.99.
Winner: Cricket as it has over a dozen free phone deals and doesn’t require a trade-in
Free 5G Access & Speeds
Well, the two prepaid carriers take the points on this part. Not only do they have access to the 5G bands for free, but also the speed cap is very much similar.
If it’s for the Red Pocket 5G phone, you can expect up to 230+Mbps download speeds. But a lot of people has access to the LTE bands (also used by low-band 5G) that peaks around 75Mbps,
As for Cricket Wireless, a recent 5g speed test recorded up to up to 225Mbps on the download speed and 25Mbps for the uploads. Then, the LTE falls around 71Mbps, which is enough to seamlessly game or stream your movies.
Winner: A Tie both carriers have free 5G access and data speeds at 200+Mbps
Cricket is no doubt the winner in this case. It has partnered with some local U.S. networks to enable domestic roaming when you leave its dedicated coverage map.
Furthermore, the carrier usually includes unlimited talking & texting when roaming in Mexico or Canada. Then, there’s also roaming data in the two regions, in which case the device uses your monthly allotment.
On its end, Red Pocket doesn’t support either domestic or international roaming services. However, you can enjoy free unlimited international calls to the UK, Sweden, Peru, or Panama, and “limited” calling in other 80+ countries.
Winner: Cricket Wireless as it has domestic and international roaming services in various countries
Phone Plans & Pricing
When we now compare Cricket vs Red Pocket on the rate plans, the latter takes the whole point of the pricing. It’s relatively more flexible and also cheaper on both the single and multi-line packages. See below.
Chart 2.1 Red Pocket Phone Plan Structure
|Features||Basic Plan||3GB Plan||10GB Plan||25GB Plan||Unlimited Plan|
|Single Line Price||$10/ mo.||$20/ mo.||$30/ mo.||$40/ mo.||$50/ mo.|
|12-Month Subscription||N/A||$180 ($15/ mo.)||$270 ($22.50/ mo.)||$360 ($30/ mo.)||$450 ($37.50/ mo.)|
|2+ Lines Discount||N/A||N/A||$10/ mo. (per extra line)||N/A||N/A|
|4G LTE & 5G||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Talk Minutes||500 or Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Text Messages||500 or Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|High-Speed Data||500MB or 1GB||3GB||10GB||12GB or 25GB||Unlimited|
|Premium Data||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||50GB or 100GB|
|Video Streaming||HD Quality (720p)||HD Quality (720p)||HD Quality (720p)||HD Quality (720p)||HD Quality (720p)|
Chart 2.2 Cricket Wireless Phone Plan Structure
|Features||2GB Cell Phone Plan||10GB Cell Phone Plan||Cricket Core Unlimited Plan||Cricket More Unlimited Plan|
|Single-Line Price||$30/ mo.||$40/ mo.||$55/ mo.||$60/ mo.|
|Auto-pay Discount||N/A||$5/ mo.||$5/ mo.||$5/ mo.|
|2G Unlimited Data||YES (up to128 Kbps)||YES (up to128 Kbps)||N/A||N/A|
|Mobile Hotspot||N/A||N/A||15GB Hotspot (for $10)||15GB Hotspot (free)|
|Video Stream Resolution||(Up to HD)||(Up to HD)||(480p Quality)||(480p Quality)|
In the first chart, you can see the Red Pocket phone plans support all the users. If you just need a simple phone for calls only, the $10 basic plan includes unlimited talk minutes for GSMT (on T-Mobile) lines or 500 minutes on GSMA (on AT&T) and CDMA (on Verizon).
Furthermore, the carrier has annual discounts on the 3GB through Unlimited plans and a $10 discount on every line you add on the 10GB plan. Then, you can also get the Red Pocket/ eBay exclusive plans for as low as $2.50/ month.
On the second chart, you’ll notice the Cricket phone plans aren’t as cheap as with the Red Pocket. However, you can save $5 when you enable the auto-pay feature or $5-$28 on the multi-line discount.
Winner: Red Pocket as it has more affordable phone plans to consider
Deprioritization & Throttling
Overall, this would have been another tie since the two carriers usually resell network services of the major providers. However, Cricket is the winner as it usually offers unlimited premium data (doesn’t slow on usage) for the Cricket More and Cricket Core plans.
Furthermore, the Cricket More customers usually get prioritized data that won’t slow down during congestion. The others can experience deprioritization (a temporary drop in the data speeds) when the AT&T network is busy.
Well, the same deprioritization ordeal happens to Red Pocket, but for all customers. Hence, the reason you should work hard on getting a 5G-capable device as the deprioritized data still has usable service.
As for the heavy-duty data users, Red Pocket usually throttles all the plans after reaching the monthly limit. However, the Unlimited GSMA service comprises 100GB of high-speed data, which is more than enough for many users.
Winner: Cricket as it has “truly” unlimited prioritized data on the Cricket More plan
In truth, both Red Pocket and Cricket wireless are great phone services. The pricing isn’t too bad, but Red Pocket is relatively more flexible and also you can save more on the basic plan or the exclusive eBay deals.
Even so, Cricket, in my opinion, is still a much better option. Of course, it might seem expensive on the basic plans, but the unlimited category has uncapped high-speed data. Thus, can be very handy for a heavy-data user, like me, who spends a lot of time online.
Also, don’t forget Cricket does have absolutely free phone deals. Then, you get roaming data, minutes, & text when in the country or Canada and Mexico.