Of late, US Mobile vs Mint Mobile has been a top topic in various blogs and community forums. Both are mobile virtual network operators (or MVNOs) that don’t have cell towers of their own. Thus, resell the service of the major carriers, which, of course, is at a relatively lower cost since they mostly don’t have the various entertainment parks.
In this review, I’ve brought together everything you need to know about Mint Mobile and US Mobile before you choose either. That includes the browsing speeds, coverage, plus plan structure and features.
US Mobile vs Mint Mobile: An Overview on the Prepaid Cell Phone Services
|Feature||US Mobile||Mint Mobile|
|Carrier Network||Verizon/ T-Mobile||T-Mobile|
|5G Download Speeds||50-2000+Mbps||50-700+Mbps|
|Lowest Phone Plan||$12||$15|
|Family Discount||YES (unlimited plans)||NO|
|Free Mexico/ Canada Call||YES (only to Canada)||YES|
|Video Streaming||YES [up to HD]||YES [Up to HD]|
|Phone Unlock Period||At Purchase||After 12 Months|
|Extra Perks||Apple TV+, Disney+, Hulu, ESPN+, HBO Max, Apple Music, Spotify, Pandora+, Stadia Pro, Apple Arcade, & Netflix||3 Months Free Service|
|Type of Service||Online Only||Online Only|
Should I Get Mint Mobile?
Mint Mobile is one of the fastest-growing prepaid phones across the country, thanks to its affordable rate plans. The service currently has about five plans you can choose from, including the 4GB at $15/ mo. and the unlimited plan for only $30.
As an MVNO, Mint Mobile runs on the T-Mobile GSM network. And if you can remember our previous speed test on Mint Mobile and AT&T, the MVNO can achieve up to 560Mbps on the 5G mmWave band.
Another thing, Mint Mobile does have a retail section, whereby you can purchase a brand-new phone upfront or through buy now pay later financing. And if you’re a new subscriber, you can enjoy up to three months of free service with any device purchase.
Should I Get US Mobile?
Overall, US Mobile is also a great phone service, and a perfect one if you travel a lot. Why do I say this?
Well, for one, US Mobile has partnered with both T-Mobile and Verizon to be reselling their network. That means the MVNO has access to the various benefits of the two carriers, including the extended coverage of Verizon in rural areas.
Secondly, US Mobile does offer some amazing roaming perks, including up to 10GB of free international data. And in case that’s not enough, you can get the add-on international data from as low as $3 to $25, depending on the destination.
Remember what I said earlier about most MVNOs not having entertainment perks? Well, US Mobile is one of the few that has been able to borrow some of these benefits from its carrier networks. That includes a free subscription to Spotify, Apple Music, Disney+, Netflix, ESPN+, Apple Arcade, and more.
US Mobile vs Mint Mobile: Comparing the Differences and Similarities between the Cell Phone Providers
The following are the seven crucial features and perks that you can consider when deciding on which of the two prepaid services to choose.
1. Device Compatibility
In device compatibility, Mint Mobile uses the T-Mobile network. So, most of the unlocked phones will be compatible, considering they have the major band 71* and or 12*/ 4*. It can also work with branded T-Mobile devices (since it’s the carrier network), as well as those locked to the Mint Mobile network.
On the other hand, US Mobile comes with either a Verizon or T-Mobile SIM card. So, the rule of compatibility will vary on the type of line you have.
If it’s the US Mobile Super LTE (on Verizon), the phones/ tablets used should support at least the major band 13*. Then, the US Mobile GSM (on T-Mobile) will require devices with at least band 71* or 12*/ 4*, just as with Mint.
2. Network Coverage
When looking for phone service, you’ll want a provider that you can count on all the time. So, your phone should always have a good signal.
In our case, Mint Mobile uses the T-Mobile cell Towers. So, you should have a good signal in all the major cities across the country. The carrier is also available in the Midwestern and Northwestern states, but, of course, only in the metropolises. If you’re in the farther end of the cities, you’re likely to hit some dead spots, thereby making the phone unusable.
On the other hand, US Mobile Super LTE uses Verizon Wireless, which you should know has the widest coverage. That includes not only the major cities but also locations like Milwaukee and many remote areas in the Midwestern/ Northwestern states. So, it’s also the favorite pick if you happen to travel across the country a lot.
Winner: US Mobile has the best coverage on the Super LTE service.
3. Free 5G Access & Speed
Technically, both Mint Mobile and US Mobile will allow you to tap into the 5G network at no extra cost. However, US Mobile leads on the browsing speeds, courtesy of the Verizon Ultra-Wideband.
If you stroll around their blog page, US Mobile claims you can achieve up to 1.13Gbps on the 5G speeds. Some users have even managed to hit up to 2.74Gbps on the 5G UW of the Super LTE.
However, I’ll not promise you can also achieve this kind of speed as the mmWave towers are pretty limited for now. Instead, you should expect the 5G Nationwide to give you speeds between 50-300+Mbps, which, in my opinion, is great.
Meanwhile, our previous speed tests with Mint Mobile achieved an average of 560Mbps on the 5G Ultra-Capacity. In some places, your phone can peak up to 700+Mbps if you have the latest device like the iPhone 13 with a superior 5G modem.
But again, the distribution of T-Mobile mmWave bands is also limited at the moment. So, most of the users, including those on Mint Mobile will access the lower-band 5G that has between 50-300+Mbps download speeds.
Winner: US Mobile has faster browsing speeds on the 5G Ultra-Wideband
4. Phone Plans & Pricing
When we now compare Mint vs US Mobile on the rate plans, you’ll notice a lot of competition between the two. The following chart shows the current pricing of the Mint Mobile phone plans in the three available bundles.
|Features||4GB Plan||10GB Plan||15GB Plan||Unlimited Plan|
|3-Month Introductory Subscription||$45 ($15/ mo.)||$60 ($20/ mo.)||$75 ($25/ mo.)||$75 ($30/ mo.)|
|3-Month Regular Subscription||$75 ($25/ mo.)||$105 ($35/ mo.)||$135 ($45/ mo.)||$120 ($40/ mo.)|
|6-Month Subscription||$120 ($20/ mo.)||$150 ($25/ mo.)||$210 ($35/ mo.)||$210 ($35/ mo.)|
|12-Month Subscription||$180 ($15/ mo.)||$240 ($20/ mo.)||$300 ($25/ mo.)||$360 ($30/ mo.)|
|4G LTE & 5G||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Mobile Hotspot||YES||YES||YES||YES (capped at 5GB)|
With Mint Mobile, you can see the carrier is better than the likes of Visible or Total Wireless which sells for $25. However, Mint doesn’t offer single-month plans. So, you’ll have to subscribe in either the three, six, or twelve months frequencies.
However, the three-month plans shown here are on an introductory pricing offer. After that, you can continue paying the same monthly rates with a yearly subscription. Or else carry on with the quarterly bundle at the regular prices, as shown above.
5. US Mobile Could be Better!
Yes, indeed, US Mobile has just bettered Mint Mobile on the pricing and also data allowance. At $15/ month, you can now get unlimited talk & text with 5GB of high-speed data. Then, the latest Unlimited All plan has up to 75GB priority data for more browsing, streaming, and or gaming.
Here’s a full summary of the various US Mobile rate plans, plus their features.
|Features||1GB Plan||5GB Plan||12GB Plan||18GB Plan||30GB Plan||Unlimited All Plan|
|1 Line Price (Before Tax)||$12/ mo.||$15/ mo.||$20/ mo.||$25/ mo.||$30/ mo.||$45/ mo.|
|2 Lines price (after Discount)||$12/ mo. (per line)||$15/ mo. (per line)||$20/ mo. (per line)||$25/ mo. (per line)||$30/ mo. (per line)||$30/ mo. (per line)|
|3+ Lines Price (after Discount)||$12/ mo. (per line)||$15/ mo. (per line)||$20/ mo. (per line)||$25/ mo. (per line)||$30/ mo. (per line)||$25/ mo. (per line)|
|4G LTE & 5G||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES||YES|
|Priority Data||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||75GB/ 35GB (then 2G)|
|Hotspot Data Cap||NO ($5 add-on)||NO ($5 add-on)||NO ($5 add-on)||NO ($5 add-on)||NO ($5 add-on)||NO ($10 add-on)|
|Video Streaming||SD Quality (480p)||SD Quality (480p)||SD Quality (480p)||SD Quality (480p)||SD Quality (480p)||SD Quality (480p)|
If we were to calculate Mint Mobile vs US Mobile plans per Gig, the latter is relatively cheaper on most plans. It’s also a better choice since the prices are payable per month, unlike Mint where you pay in advance.
As was mentioned not long ago, US Mobile plans also have an unlimited option. However, the plan includes premium data capped at 75GB (on Super LTE) and 35GB (on GSM). It also supports streaming at only SD Quality (480p), then the hotspot feature is an add-on package that you can get at $5 or $10.
Winner: US Mobile is cheaper per gig and also has more data allowance on the unlimited plan
6. Deprioritization & Throttling
Unfortunately, neither Mint nor US Mobile has its own network infrastructure. So, you may experience deprioritization when the host network (T-Mobile and Verizon) is too busy.
As for throttling, US Mobile tried to offer the Unlimited All with “truly” unlimited data (with no caps) after launching in 2021. However, the carrier was unable to maintain the benefit and now caps the plans at 75GB on Super LTE and 35GB on GSM users.
On its end, Mint Mobile does throttle all its plans, including the 4GB, 10GB, 15GB, and Unlimited. So, it takes the points in this case.
Winner: Mint Mobile throttles all the rate plans to 2G speeds after reaching the set allowances.
In truth, both US Mobile and Mint Mobile are great prepaid services. They share a carrier network at some point, then have some of the best pricing on both the standard and unlimited plans.
However, US Mobile can make a much better option, in my opinion. It’s available monthly, plus the plans are relatively cheaper than Mint options. Don’t forget the carrier also has the Unlimited All plan that has up to 75GB of high-speed data.
Even better, the US Mobile Unlimited All plan does have the option to pick one or two free entertainment perks when you add 3-4+ lines to your account. Some of the featured entertainment perks include Apple Music, ESPN+, Disney+, Netflix, Hulu, Playstation+, and HBO Max.