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Straight Talk vs Total Wireless: Which can Provide the best Phone Experience in 2021

Are you looking for affordable phone service? Want to cut your monthly bills but can’t decide between Straight Talk vs Total Wireless? If this feels like your case, our topic today’s on the two providers, specifically how they stand out from each other.

In the guide, we’ve brought together everything you need to know between Straight Talk and Total Wireless. That’s based on factors like technologies, pricing, and coverage. We’ll also mention some of the hidden drawbacks that you ought to know about in hand to avoid later disappointments.

In my opinion, however, Straight Talk can make a better cell phone provider if you’re not interested in family plans.

The 6 Reasons Why Straight Talk’s the Best Phone Provider

  • Straight Talk has monthly and multi-monthly plans
  • Straight Talk has up to unlimited high-speed data
  • Straight Talk supports video streaming in HD quality
  • Straight Talk has more free cloud storage space
  • Straight Talk offers more free hotspot mobile data
  • The network operator can work with all the Big Three carriers

Straight Talk vs Total Wireless: Comparing the Features and Perks of the Cell Phone Providers

Here’s a quick summary of how Total Wireless and Straight Talk compares to each other.

Feature Straight Talk  Total Wireless
Founded 2009 2015
Parent Company TracFone TracFone
Carrier Network T-Mobile/ Verizon/ AT&T Verizon
Technologies GSM
CDMA
CDMA
Lowest Phone Plan $30 $25
Unlimited Minutes YES YES
Unlimited data YES YES
Carry-Over YES
(add-on data)
YES
(Add-on data)
Family Plans NO YES
Mobile Hotspot YES
(Varies)
YES
(Varies)
Video Streaming YES
[up to HD quality]
YES
[at 480p]

Straight Talk

Straight Talk Wireless is one of the providers you can consider for reasonably priced cell phone service. It’s one of the prepaid network operators under TracFone Wireless, which is also a phone provider here in the United States.

As a mobile virtual network operator, or simply MNVO, Straight Talk doesn’t have its own infrastructure. It usually serves its customers through the network towers of T-Mobile and Verizon and AT&T. So, as a client, you can get service from any location, though it’ll depend on the carrier you’ve opted to use.

More on that, Straight Talk has the keep your own device policy, whereby you can bring your favorite unlocked cell phones to their service. However, the device must be compatible with the particular network you’re on.

Total Wireless

Total Wireless is also a great option if you need to lower your monthly phone bill. It’s also an MVNO under TracFone Wireless but operates on only the Verizon network. So, if you’re switching from Verizon, you can unlock your Verizon phone and use it on your Total Wireless line without any issue.

The network operator has both individual and family cell phone plans. Thus, you can choose to save a few bucks if you have someone to split with the expense. All the plans, including the basic $25 Unlimited, feature unlimited talk minutes, text messaging, and browsing data. However, the data allotment has capped high-speed data (at 5G/ 4G LTE) but then drops to slow 2G speeds.

Straight Talk vs Total Wireless: Comparing the Features, Pros, and Cons of the Network Operators

When it comes to choosing the right phone provider, you’ll notice the tricks you use on buy now pay later catalogs applies here too. That’s you shortlist your options, compare their offerings, pick out your probables, and then settle on the best solution.

Straight Talk vs Total Wireless

In our Total Wireless vs Straight Talk comparison chart above, you’ll notice the pair share more than a parent. But then, each has that one or two unique things that can make a huge difference in your next cell phone experience. So, let’s dig in and see what those perks are.

What Cellular Technology Does the Carrier Have?

Straight Talk and Total Wireless will be sharing the points as they both have up to the fifth generation of cellular technology. Of course, the 5G coverage is yet to arrive in all the U.S. cities but most of them have it already.

Even better, the two providers don’t require any extra fees from you to get the service. All the cell phone plans include the 5G service as part of the inclusions. But then, you must have a 5G-capable device to access the signal.

Needless to say, Straight Talk can throw its subscribers, whether on 4G LTE or 5G, to T-Mobile, Verizon, or AT&T. So, it’s a little more convenient as you can opt to use either based on the strength of the signal on your location.

As for Total Wireless, you will have access to only the Verizon-CDMA service towers. In simple words, you won’t be able to enjoy the benefits of the MVNO in some areas, such as parts of Nevada

Is the Network Operator GSM or CDMA

As was just mentioned, Straight Talk wireless runs on all the Big Three networks, including Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T. Verizon uses CDMA technology, which is a little complex as you must go through the carrier whenever you need to swap devices. Sadly, the carrier shares this weakness with its MVNOs, including our Straight Talk.

Regardless, Straight Talk also offers services through T-Mobile and AT&T networks, which uses GSM. So, you can add your line to almost any unlocked cell phone and it works.

Meanwhile, Total Wireless uses only the Verizon network. If you decide to bring your device to the network, you have to make sure it’s compatible with CDMA devices. True, the latest LTE devices are coming with dual-band capabilities, but it’s good to be certain. Otherwise, you’ll spend hours trying to get your CDMA-SIM card to work on your unlocked phone, only to learn later that the device’s just GSM.

Which Carrier Has the Best Cell Phone Plans?

When you compare Total Wireless vs Straight Talk based on the phone plans, the latter should take the points, for sure. It not only has slightly cheaper single-line plans, but also you can take part in the family discounts.
The said family plans include a maximum of two, three, or four devices. Then, the plan cost starts from as low as $25/ mo. as shown in the table below.

NB: Total Wireless has a limited-time offer that brings you Double High-Data on the $35/ month and $50/month Unlimited plan. The offer’s available until 31st Dec 2021.

Chart 2:

$25 Unlimited Plan $35 Unlimited Plan $50 Unlimited Plan $60 Unlimited Plan $85 Unlimited Plan $100 Unlimited
Single DeviceSingle Device Single Device Two Devices Three Devices Four Devices
Unlimited Talk Unlimited TalkUnlimited TalkUnlimited TalkUnlimited TalkUnlimited Talk
Unlimited TextUnlimited TextUnlimited TextUnlimited TextUnlimited TextUnlimited Text
1GB High-Speed Data 6GB High-Speed Data 25GB High-Speed Data 30GB High-Speed Data 60GB High-Speed Data 100GB High-Speed Data
Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data
N/A 10G Hotspot 10GB Hotspot 10GB Hotspot 10GB Hotspot10GB Hotspot
N/A N/A 50GB Cloud Storage N/A N/A N/A
N/A N/A Video stream
(480p quality)
N/A N/A N/A

As you can see, Total Wireless does bring you unlimited data as was promised earlier. Nonetheless, the data consumption starts with the capped high-speed data. Once that’s finished, the browsing speeds drop to 2G, which may be useful or not depending on your location.

On its end, the Straight Talk is a few dollars more expensive than the Total Wireless. Nonetheless, it does have the option for unlimited high-speed data with no caps. So, you can continue to browse and download stuff fast without having to worry about exhausting your allotment.

Note, Straight Talk doesn’t have cell phone plans for family, which, to be fair, are usually great to save a few bucks. However, the carrier does offer multi-month plans and they can also help you save a few bucks on the go.

In any case, here’s a summary of the various cell phone plans that Straight Talk offers on a 30-day basis.

Chart 3:

$30 Basic Phone Plan $35 Unlimited Plan $45 Unlimited Plan $55 Unlimited Plan $65 Unlimited Plan $90 Ultimate Unlimited
Single Line
(Basic phones)
Single Line Single Line Single Line Single LineTwo Lines
1500 Minutes Unlimited Talk Unlimited Talk Unlimited Talk Unlimited Talk Unlimited Talk
Unlimited Text Unlimited Text Unlimited Text Unlimited Text Unlimited Text Unlimited Text
100MB of Data 5GB High-Speed Data 25GB High-Speed Data Unlimited High-Speed Data Unlimited High-Speed Data Unlimited High-Speed Data
N/A Unlimited 2G data Unlimited 2G data N/A N/A N/A
N/A 5GB Hotspot 10GB Hotspot 15GB Hotspot 20GB Hotspot 15GB Hotspot
N/A N/A N/A Video stream
(480p Quality)
Video stream
(HD Quality)
Video stream
(480p Quality)
N/A N/A N/A N/A 100GB of Cloud Storage N/A
N/A N/A N/A N/A Mobile Protect N/A

Key Takeaway: Pros and Cons of the phone Providers

Here’s a quick summary of the advantages and disadvantages of choosing Straight Talk or Total Wireless service

Straight Talk

Pros:

  • It has flexible cell phone plans
  • You can stream videos in vibrant HD
  • Includes free unlimited international calls
  • Guarantees 5G connectivity at no extra cost
  • Offers unlimited high-speed data with no caps
  • Includes mobile phone protection against issues like spills
  • It has a wide range of smartphones and basic phones

Cons:

  • It has unreliable customer service
  • Doesn’t have family phone plans

Total Wireless

Pros:

  • It has affordable cell phone plans
  • Has various family phone plans
  • Delivers crystal call quality
  • Has budget-friendly cell phone plans
  • You can bring your own CDMA phones
  • Features a wide variety of Mobile devices
  • Has a reliable connection via Verizon network

Cons:

  • It has no free international calling
  • Does not have unlimited high-speed data
  • The unlimited 2G data speeds are excessively slow

Final Words:

Both Total Wireless and Straight Talk are popular mobile carriers. They both have nationwide coverage, including both 4G LTE and the latest 5G network. Also, both carriers have the option to bring your favorite phone brand to their network and their plans do include mobile hotspot data.

However, you may want to check out Straight Talk if you’re a heavy data user but would like to lower your phone bill at the same time. The carrier also offers unlimited international calls to Canada and Mexico at no extra charge. Then, you can stream your favorite YouTube or Netflix videos in HD quality.

Sadly, however, various Straight Talk users have complained about poor customer service and non-local operators. Assuming the company has also come across these complaints, we hope they’ll find a viable solution that works both ways.

If that doesn’t work out sooner than you expected, you can just stick with your AT&T or Verizon, or T-Mobile. Even though the carriers are expensive, they do have first-rate customer service with professional operators and exceptional experience.

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