Verizon vs Spectrum Mobile: Should I Switch to the MVNO or the Major Carrier?

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Are you still looking for an affordable but reliable cell phone service you can use? If yes, this article will be comparing Verizon vs Spectrum Mobile, whereby we’ll look at the various features that matter in any phone service.

However, Spectrum Mobile is one of the MVNOs that runs on the Verizon network. So, you’ll notice quite a number of similarities between the two, including the coverage, device compatibility, and even data speeds.

FYI: MVNOs mean mobile virtual network operators, which are the small carriers that usually run on the network of the Big Carriers.

Verizon vs Spectrum Mobile: A Quick Peek on the Features & Perks of the CDMA Phones

FeatureVerizonSpectrum Mobile
Carrier NetworkVerizonVerizon
5G Data SpeedsUp to 4000+MbpsUp to 2000+Mbps
4G Data SpeedsUp to 355MbpsUp to 110+Mbp
Lowest Phone Plan$30$14
Unlimited MinutesYESYES
Unlimited dataYESYES
Family DiscountYES  YES
WiFi CallingYESYES
Free Mexico/ Canada CallYESYES
Mobile HotspotYESYES
Video StreamingYES [up to UHD]YES [up to HD]
Phone Unlock PeriodAfter 60 DaysAfter 60 Days
Extra PerksFree Hulu/ Disney+/ ESPN+/ Discovery+, Free Apple Music, Free Apple Arcade, 600GB Cloud Storage, Free Google Play Pass, & Free Travel PassFree unlimited Spectrum WiFi Hotspots

Is Verizon Any Good?

Do you browse a lot? In the recent review on Straight Talk and Verizon, we concluded the CDMA provider not only has “truly” unlimited data and hotspot allowance but also the fastest browsing speeds.

The phone provider also has unlimited roaming data in various countries. Then, the postpaid rate plans have a free subscription to various entertainment services, including Hulu, Disney+, ESPN+, Apple Music, and Arcade Games.

Other pros & cons of Verizon service include:


  • It offers prioritized data
  • Includes multi-line discounts
  • Has unlimited mobile hotspot
  • Supports 4K Ultra-HD video streaming
  • Features amazing phone deals & discounts
  • Has free calling/ texting to Mexico & Canada
  • Also, has free unlimited international texting
  • It supports both domestic & international roaming


  • It’s relatively pricey (on postpaid)
  • Has limited major LTE network bands

Is Spectrum Mobile Any Good?

Do you want to cut your monthly phone bill? Spectrum Mobile has some of the best rate plans. You can get the By-the-Gig plan (with up to ten lines) from as low as $14/ month, provided your usage doesn’t exceed the 1GB cap.

Even better, Spectrum Mobile usually gets prioritized data deals from Verizon. Hence, the reason it records higher data speeds than Red Pocket or Visible, which also runs on the Verizon network

Other pros and cons of Spectrum Mobile include:


  • It has multi-line discounts
  • Has free unlimited WiFi hotspot
  • Offers free calling to Mexico & Canada
  • Includes free unlimited international texting
  • Can stream videos at up to 1080p HD quality
  • Supports both domestic & international roaming
  • Has a retail department for phones & accessories
  • It provides device financing over 24 months


  • It has throttled data on all plans
  • Currently doesn’t support eSIM services
  • Has a high risk of overage fees on By-the-Gig plan
verizon vs Spectrum Mobile

Verizon vs Spectrum Mobile: Comparing the Features & Perks of the Phone Providers


Verizon’s the clear winner here. It’s open to all people, whether you have the Fios internet/ TV or not. Then, you can join with either the physical SIM card or the digital eSIM, which, by the way, allows you to have up to five virtual SIM cards.

Furthermore, you can get the Verizon prepaid service for a single or multiple lines with no credit check. And that’s something not promised with Spectrum Mobile since they usually approve the multi-line option based on your credit rating.

Furthermore, the MVNO is only available to the customers of Spectrum cabled internet and or TV. If you can remember our previous talk on Xfinity Mobile and Verizon, the Comcast brand had similar requirements.

In fact, Spectrum Mobile will add a surcharge fee (of $20) on your monthly bill in case you disconnect your internet and TV services. And that’s something we also saw on the Xfinity Mobile service.

Winner: Verizon as it’s available to all people, plus has both a physical SIM card and eSIM

 Network Coverage

On this one, the two phone providers will be sharing the point since they usually run on Verizon’s infrastructure. So, the reception across the country is pretty much the same.

The best part is the fact that you can have a usable phone with either carrier even outside the major cities. That includes even the rural areas of Oregon, Madison, Milwaukee, Toledo, and many others.

Winner: A Tie as both carriers usually run on the Verizon network.

Phone Deals & Discounts

Unfortunately, Spectrum Mobile isn’t the best when it comes to promotional offers. It has neither free phone deals nor significantly discounted offers, apart from the time there’s a new Samsung or iPhone release.

On the other hand, you’ll come across Verizon iPhone and Android deals all year round. The deals include free smartphones that you can either grab by adding a line, trade-in, or a BOGO offer. And in case you’re a prepaid customer, you can get a partial discount of up to $300 on the high-end devices or 50% off the midrange brands.

Winner: Verizon as it has plenty of free phone deals and partial discount offers

Free 5G Access & Speeds

Technically, all the two carriers have free access to the 5G bands and decent data speeds. However, my points will go with Verizon as it has relatively higher browsing speeds on this and the LTE network.

In a recent speed test with the iPhone 12, the Verizon 5G Ultra-Wideband peaked at 4020+Mbps on download and 280+Mbps uploads. Other Reddit-ers shared a similar experience, but a small percentage still complained about having less than 50Mbps. However, most of these customers are in rural places, where we have LTE speeds at 20-100+Mbps.

As for Spectrum Mobile, the data speeds are also outstanding. On a recent 5G speed test, the MVNO peaked at 1300+Mbps on downloads and around 40Mbps uploads. But some Reddit-ers have claimed to pull down up to 2300+mbps on downloads with 5G phones. Then, the LTE data is at about 110Mbps.

Winner: Verizon as its data speeds are still relatively faster, both on the 5G and LTE networks.

Network Roaming

Although not many bloggers talk about it, network roaming is very crucial when traveling. And when we compare spectrum mobile vs Verizon on the function, they both offer domestic and international roaming.

You can even get international roaming data, text, and minutes in various countries and at very competitive rates. Spectrum actually has better international roaming rates than Verizon, but my points will still go with the major carrier. Why?

Well, for one, Verizon has unlimited roaming data, text, and talk minutes while in Canada or Mexico. Then, the Unlimited postpaid plans now have a free TravelPass that gives you up to 12 days of unlimited talk, text, and data while roaming in over 185 other countries.

Winner: Verizon as it has free unlimited data, talk, & texting while roaming in more than 187 countries

Phone Plans & Pricing

As already mentioned, Spectrum Mobile is a great option if you want to cut down your monthly phone bill. It has the By-the-Gig going for $14/ month, which is way cheaper than any of the Verizon rate plans. See below.

Chart 2.1 Spectrum Mobile Phone plan Structure

FeaturesBy the Gig Plan3GB Plan (By the Gig)Unlimited PlanUnlimited Plus Plan
Single Line Price$14/ mo.$42/ mo.$45/ mo.$55/ mo.
2+ Lines Price$14/ mo. (all lines)$42/ mo. (all lines)$29.99/ mo. (per line)$39.99/ mo. (per line)
Call MinutesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Text MessagesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
High-Speed Data1GB3GBUnlimitedUnlimited
Premium DataN/AN/A20GB30GB
2G DataUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Mobile HotspotNoneNone5GB5GB
Video Streaming480p (DVD Quality)480p (DVD Quality)480p (DVD Quality)Up to 1080p (HD Quality)

Chart 2.2 Verizon wireless Phone plan Structure

Features5GB (prepaid)15GB (prepaid)Unlimited (prepaid)Unlimited+ (prepaid)Do More (postpaid)Get More (postpaid)
Regular Price$40/ mo.$50/ mo.$65/ mo.$75/ mo.$80/ mo.  $90/ mo.
Plan Discounts$5 – $15 (loyalty tip)$5 – $15 (loyalty tip)$5- $15 (loyalty tip)$5 – $15 (loyalty tip)$10 – $40 (2+ lines)$10 – $40 (2+ lines)
Free 5G AccessYES (Nationwide)YES (Nationwide)YES (Nationwide)YES (Both)YES (Both)YES (Both)
Talk MinutesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Text MessagesUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Data Allotment5GB (then 2G)15GB (then 2G)UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Premium DataN/AN/AN/AN/A50GBUnlimited
Mobile HotspotN/AN/A10GB (At $5/ mo.)10GB (then 3G)25GB (then 3G)50GB (then 3G)
Video Stream QualityUp to 480pUp to 480pUp to 480pUp to 4K UHDUp to 4K UHDUp to 4K UHD
International TextingUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited
Canada/ Mexico Calls$5/mo.FREEFREEFREEFREEFREE
Canada/ Mexico DataN/AN/A0.5GB / Day (then 2G)0.5GB / Day (then 2G)0.5GB / Day (then 2G)0.5GB / Day (then 2G)

In the first chart, you can see the Spectrum Mobile phone plans start you with the said $14 on the By-the-Gig. And just as the name, the rate plan usually charges you by the amount of data (in gigabytes) you use by the end of the month.

If you use more than 1GB, your bill will now account at 2GB and charge you the overage fees. So, you might want to consider the unlimited plans if you’re a heavy-duty data user.

As for the multi-line discounts, you can save up to fifteen bucks each month on every line you add to the unlimited plan. Then, on the By-the-Gig plan, it’s more of a shared data pool. So, the price remains the same no matter the number of lines you add, but they all share the available data allowance.

As for Verizon phone plans, the prepaid lines are relatively cheaper than the postpaid unlimited package. However, you can still save big on the multi-line discounts.

Better yet, the Verizon unlimited plans (both prepaid and postpaid) usually include free unlimited roaming data, talk, and text while in Canada. Then, you can also enjoy unlimited mobile hotspots and video streaming in up to 4K Ultra-HD quality.

Winner: Spectrum is relatively cheaper on the By-the-Gig phone plan

Final Thoughts

Overall, both Verizon and Spectrum Mobile are great cellular services. They have great coverage across the country, outstanding data speeds, and competitive international roaming rates.

In my opinion, though, Verizon is still a much better option than the Spectrum service. It not only supports all the plan features and easier to qualify, but also has no overage fees to worry about.

The major carrier also has “truly” unlimited data on the unlimited prepaid and postpaid plans. Thus, allowing you to browse, stream, and game as much as you want without worrying about getting throttled.