Spectrum Mobile™

We’ll break down the biggest strengths and weaknesses of Spectrum’s mobile phone service.

Save up to 60% on your cell phone bill

Price: $14.00–$55.00/mo.

Lines: 1–10

Data cap: 1–30 GB

Contract: N/A

Spectrum Mobile cell phone plans

Plan Price (single line) Price (2+ lines) Data allowance Overage speed limit Details
By The Gig $14.00/GB/mo. $14.00/GB/mo. 1 GB/line ($14.00/mo. per additional GB) 256 Kbps download/upload View plans
Unlimited Data $45.00/line $29.99/line 20 GB/line 1 Mbps download/512 Kbps upload View plans
Unlimited Plus $55.00/line $39.99/line 30 GB/line 1 Mbps download/512 Kbps upload View plans

Spectrum Mobile™ is Spectrum’s wireless services brand, and it offers smartphones and affordable cell phone coverage to Spectrum Internet® customers. If you’re interested in bundling another Spectrum service with your Spectrum internet plan and saving a few bucks, here’s what you need to know about Spectrum Mobile.

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Affordable smartphone plans
  • Large data caps

Cons

  • Limited discounts for larger families
  • No big signup deals

Interested in Spectrum Mobile?

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Spectrum Mobile plans

Every Spectrum Mobile plan includes features like nationwide coverage, unlimited calls and texts, 4G LTE mobile data, 5G access, and hotspot tethering support. You’ll also get free international coverage, no service contracts, and mobile access to Spectrum’s hotspot network.

Spectrum Mobile cell phone plans

Monthly price (single line) Monthly price (2+ lines) Data allowance Overage speed limit Details
By The Gig $14.00/GB/mo. $14.00/GB/mo. 1 GB/line ($14.00/mo. per additional GB) 256 Kbps download/upload View plans
Unlimited Data $45.00/line $29.99/line 20 GB/line 1 Mbps download/512 Kbps upload View plans
Unlimited Plus $55.00/line $39.99/line 30 GB/line 1 Mbps download/512 Kbps upload View plans

Data effective as of publish date. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

By The Gig is Spectrum Mobile’s basic cell phone plan. For $14.00 monthly, you’ll get one line with 1 GB of data. The plan’s data is shared across every line on your plan, and you can add more data ($14.00 a month per additional GB) if the plan’s 1 GB default is too small for your family’s needs.

Once a line uses more than 5 GB of data, Spectrum Mobile will throttle its download and upload speeds to a meager 256 Kbps. At this speed, the only thing you’ll be able to do on mobile data is web browsing. Most carriers do speed throttling, and although we’re not fans of the policy, Spectrum Mobile does offer faster throttle speeds on its Unlimited plans.

By The Gig is the best cell phone plan for family members who only make calls or do basic web browsing because, once you add on more than two GBs to support more internet use, it’ll make more sense to upgrade to Spectrum Mobile’s other plans. At 3 GB of data on By The Gig ($42.00/mo.), you’ll be better off paying for an Unlimited plan (starting at $45.00/mo.) and its 20 GB data cap.

Pro tip: J.D. Power ranked Spectrum as their top mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) in 2021, and Spectrum was a top provider in our annual internet customer satisfaction survey.

Spectrum Mobile’s other two plans may be called Unlimited, but they’re “unlimited” in the same way that marathoning Ozark until 4 a.m. is “a TV night.”

You’ll have a 20 GB cap on Unlimited Data and a 30 GB cap on Unlimited Plus. Once you exceed these limits, you’ll still technically be able to use the internet, but your speeds will be lowered to 1 Mbps for downloads and 512 Kbps for uploads.

Although we’re not fans of data caps, Spectrum Mobile’s data caps are in line with competitors and big enough for many customers. Unless you’re regularly streaming videos and downloading apps off your phone, most people won’t regularly break 20 GB of monthly mobile data.

But if you’re close to your monthly limit, you can hop onto Wi-Fi via the carrier’s nationwide hotspot network to conserve mobile data.

Spectrum Mobile fees

Spectrum Mobile thankfully doesn’t have too many extra fees, as its biggest standard charge is a one-time $10 activation fee per line. Tablets with mobile data will need their own line, while it’ll cost a $10 monthly fee to add a smartwatch to your mobile data plan.

If you cancel Spectrum Internet (which is required for Spectrum Mobile) at any time, you’ll be hit with an extra $20 monthly charge per line for Spectrum Mobile. You’ll also have reduced Spectrum hotspot speeds (5 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload), and you won’t be able to add additional lines to your account.

All of these fees and penalties are permanent for Spectrum Mobile customers who drop Spectrum Internet, and they put a big damper on Spectrum Mobile’s value if you ever decide to change internet providers. You’ll get the best savings from Spectrum Mobile by bundling the service with Spectrum Internet.

What to look for

From Kroger Wireless to Google Fi, Spectrum isn’t the only company with an MVNO on the side. Let’s break down the biggest differences if you’re undecided between Spectrum Mobile, other MVNOs, or a traditional phone carrier.

Spectrum Mobile vs. the competition

The sheer number of MVNOs makes it hard to directly compare Spectrum Mobile to competitors, but generally, we’d recommend following two rules: look at each provider’s data cap and monthly rate per line.

Your ideal data cap depends on what you’re using your smartphone for every day. Are you just sending texts, or are you regularly streaming Apple Music and TV shows on your way to work? Go with a 1 GB data cap for family members who aren’t heavy smartphone users, and get a cap of at least 5 GB for anyone who’s regularly streaming podcasts or TV shows on their phone.

As for line pricing, Spectrum Mobile’s flat-rate pricing makes it easy to figure out your monthly bill. But some MVNOs like Xfinity Mobile offer larger discounts depending on the number of lines on your account. Consider the number of lines your family needs and mix-and-match plans to find the best deal.

Pro tip: If your family already has smartphones, you can use Spectrum Mobile’s compatible device wizard to see if they can be moved to the carrier.

Spectrum Mobile vs. major phone providers

In most cases, plans from an MVNO like Spectrum Mobile will be cheaper than those from a major phone provider like AT&T or Verizon. That’s because, even though Spectrum Mobile uses Verizon’s network, it doesn’t have to pay for things like network upkeep and can pass those savings onto you.

MVNOs can be a great value for customers who simply need smartphone service, but the big companies often offer sizable deals to encourage you to sign up. Depending on the carrier, you might be able to bundle fully unlimited mobile data, free streaming service subscriptions, or jumbo hotspot data caps with your phone plan.

Available phones with Spectrum

When you switch to Spectrum Mobile, you can either bring your own device (a process it’s cheekily named BYOD) or buy a new one.

Bring your own phone

If you choose to BYOD, your device must be running the most up-to-date operating system software and be unlocked before you activate your new service. If you usually put off system updates (we’ve been there!), any new downloads might mean clearing off some space on your phone. Make sure you remember to back up anything important.

To check if your device is compatible with Spectrum Mobile, enter your device ID into Spectrum’s BYOD eligibility tool.

Buying a new phone through Spectrum

Spectrum carries the most recent popular phones, like the iPhone 13 Pro Max and the Galaxy S22 Ultra. You can even get a Galaxy Z Flip3 5G if you feel like reliving the flip-phone days of yore.

The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra in Burgundy.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max in Alpine Green.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip3 5G in Cream.

Trade-in offers and deals

If you’re looking to upgrade your phone, changing plans is a great excuse to do so, since a lot of providers will offer a perk or discount when you trade-in your old device.

Currently, Spectrum is offering an extra $100 (on top of the value of your phone) towards a new device when you trade in your old phone.

To start the trade-in process, pick out a new phone through Spectrum’s online store. During checkout, you’ll be asked questions about your old phone, which will tell you your phone’s value.

If you like the number they offer, send in your old device within 21 days of purchasing your new phone and plan. Once they receive your old device, you’ll get your compensation (either in one lump sum or monthly, depending on how you chose to finance your new phone).

Final take

MVNOs are built around value-friendly plans that’ll save money, and Spectrum Mobile is no different. With excellent coverage, sizable data caps, and affordable monthly plans, Spectrum Mobile has a lot to offer customers who want to bundle internet and smartphone service from Spectrum.

Methodology

We analyzed Spectrum Mobile data including user reviews, pricing information, our annual internet customer satisfaction survey, and competitor plans to figure out how Spectrum Mobile stacks up as a phone provider. For more on our methodology, see our How We Rank page.

Spectrum Mobile FAQ

Is Spectrum Mobile owned by Verizon?

Spectrum Mobile is not owned by Verizon, but it does use Verizon’s cell phone network. Spectrum Mobile’s parent company is Charter Communications.

Is Spectrum Mobile expensive?

Spectrum Mobile is not expensive for a smartphone provider. Spectrum Mobile’s plans start at $14.00 per month.

Is Spectrum Mobile truly unlimited?

Spectrum Mobile has data caps of 20 GB and 30 GB on its Unlimited plans. Once you hit this cap, you’ll still have internet access, but it’ll be slower for the rest of the month.

Will Spectrum Mobile pay me to switch?

Spectrum Mobile won’t pay you to switch phone providers, but Spectrum Internet will cover up to $500 in early termination fees if you switch from another internet provider. Check out our Spectrum deals page to learn more about this offer.

What carrier is Spectrum Mobile?

Spectrum Mobile uses Verizon’s network for its phone plans. This means that you can bundle your Spectrum phone service with your Spectrum internet and/or cable bill and still access Verizon’s coverage across most of the US.

However, since resources are finite, Verizon has the final say over which customers get prioritized—and spoiler alert, they’re going to choose their own. The major downside of bundling mobile service through a separate TV and/or internet provider is that Verizon can throttle your speeds if you’re in an area with a lot of usage.

Restrictions Apply: Spectrum Mobile service not available in all areas. Per line activation fee, Spectrum Internet and Auto-pay required. Other restrictions apply.
Trade-In Offer: Promotion requires customers to trade-in qualifying device, add a new line, purchase and activate a new phone. If new phone paid in full, credit applied to purchase. If new phone financed, credit applied to bill in pro-rated increments for the duration of the Device Payment Plan. Visit spectrummobile.com/tradein for details.
Trade-In Offer: Limited time offer while supplies last. Spectrum Internet required. Auto-pay required. Up to $200 off eligible phones at time of purchase. Offer may be combined with $100 Trade-in promotion which requires customers to trade-in qualifying device, add a new line, purchase and activate a new phone. If new phone financed, credit applied to bill in pro-rated increments for duration of Device Payment plan. If wireless service cancelled, remaining balance on device becomes due. No additional discounts may be combined with this or other offers. Visit spectrum.com/policies/mobile-terms for details. Restrictions apply. Subject to change.
Restrictions Apply: To access 5G, 5G compatible phone and 5G service required. Not all 5G capable phones compatible with all 5G service. Speeds may vary. Visit spectrum.com/mobile/5G for details.

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