Gen Mobile Review – Affordable Cell Phone Provider

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One of the pleasures of managing a personal finance site is learning about new products / services that help people save money – and then getting to share them with you!

So when we heard about Gen Mobile – we knew we’d like to learn more about them and give them a test run. Their marketing curator extraordinaire, Tony, sent us a couple phones to try-out and we’d now like to share our experience with them.

A little bit about Gen Mobile

If you’ve spent any of your time around this site – you probably know there are a lot of MVNO providers out there. According to Wikipedia, MVNO’s service over 36 million customers.

Gen Mobile was founded by a couple entrepreneurs in the wireless industry. They rightly claim of having of having over 25 years of experience in the field and have taken what they’ve learned at these other companies, bringing it to life in Gen Mobile.

They operate on the Sprint® 4G LTE network and do not throttle usage. They also allow customers to tether their data, free of charge.

Folks can bring their own phone or choose from the over 20 phones available for sale on their site. The plans range from $5 to $25/mo and customers can pay every month or every three months (with a discount of up to 20% off).

One of the attractive features of Gen Mobile is their international calling and texting. All plans include free, unlimited texting in the U.S. and to other countries. They also offer free unlimited calling to over 101 countries on their $15/mo plans and up.

PLANS STARTING AT $5/MO

Our experience with the service

I remember my first go around with an MVNO and it wasn’t all roses. I soon left that provider for another and was happy I did so. This was years ago, when MVNOs were first popping up – so the service wasn’t stellar (yet).

I’m surprised at how far many have come since that time.

My first impressions of Gen Mobile were favorable. They mailed out the phones (one was a small, kiddie or candy bar phone – great for the small kids going back-to-school) within a couple of days. The packaging was branded and easy to open, with an easy slide-out box including all the essentials.

Unboxed Gen Mobile phone

Since this was a new(er) phone (which didn’t require me to transfer or insert a SIM card), the start-up process was seamless. In minutes I was set to go.

There is a Gen Mobile Care app that allows customers the ability to track usage, make payments, change plans, and add data, minutes or int’l credit at anytime. This is a nice, self-service feature.

While using the service, I experienced no hiccups when dialing out and texting. Surfing the web was also quick and streamlined.

I didn’t get a chance to try the phone while I was in a rural / remote area – but I assume the coverage will match wherever Sprint network lives. Based on their site reviews it seems like they have a lot of satisfied customers.

Speaking of service – here is Gen Mobile’s coverage map (from the Sprint website):

Gen Mobile's coverage map over much of the USA
Gen Mobile covers much of the USA

What differentiates Gen Mobile from other providers are the following:

  1. High touch customer service team that responds quickly and goes the extra mile. This is critical in telco since many customers need to call in to change their service to us or port in their existing number. The CS team makes sure everything is done with quality and understanding. This has helped establish our overall reputation as a solid provider.
  2. Value. Plans start at $5 (text only) and our 3 month plans start at $9 month for 1GB, 300 call minutes and unlimited text or Unlimited talk and text.
  3. Unlimited Global Talk and Text to over 100 countries including India, Pakistan, China, Australia, UK and many more. For $13 month (3 month plan) consumers get 1GB with Unlimited Global Talk and Text.
  4. 7 day money back guarantee.

If you’re thinking about bringing your own phone to Gen Mobile – be sure to visit their Bring Your Own Phone page that shows compatible phones which work on the network. You’ll want to be sure you purchase the correct kit.

My final thoughts

Overall, I was happy with the performance of the service and I think their plan pricing is right in-line with other providers. One bonus it the ability to pre-pay on service three months in advance with an added discount.

If you choose to go with a phone offered through Gen Mobile, know they don’t offer any new phones – but refurbished, slightly used ones. I’ve personally never experienced any issues with refurbished (plus they are generally more affordable!)

I’d love to know your thoughts and if you’ve tried / or are currently with Gen Mobile?

PLANS STARTING AT $5/MO

FAQs

Can use my existing phone number?

Yes, you can keep it or get a new one.

What network does Gen Mobile operate on?

It utilizes the Sprint 4G LTE network.

Is Gen Mobile any good?

From our experience, we didn’t have any hiccups with the service. The unboxing was stellar and very easy to get up and running.

Is there free tethering with Gen mobile?

Tether away, for free!

What are the plan prices again?

Plans range from $5 (unlimited text only) to $25/mo for unlimited talk/text and 3GB data + international calling minutes to over 100 countries.

Where is Gen Mobile located?

They are out of Redondo Beach, California. There are probably good surfers in the office there.

What if I missed my Gen Mobile bill?

Gen Mobile offers 15 days of grace after your bill was due with unlimited texting before they shut you down.

How do i contact Gen Mobile?

United States, +1-833-528-1380 or from your Gen Mobile phone, dial *611. They also have a chat feature on their contact page. Office Hours: Everyday 8:00am – 6:00pm PST

comparison of other mvnos

MVNONetwork UsedPlan Price
(Min. available)
Calls to Mexico & Canada Included in PlanCustomer ServicePlan Friendliness
(Ability to uprade / downgrade at will)
Free Tethering
BoostSprint$35 (Unlimited / 3GB data)$5 extraFair1 month noticeNo
Consumer CellularAT&T, T-Mobile$15 (250 min / no data) AARP members can get 15% discount.International direct dialGoodAnytime-
CricketAT&T$25 (Unlimited Talk / Text Plan)Smart / Pro Plans onlyFair2x per billing cycleNo
Gen MobileSprint$5 (Unlimited text)Yes (over 101 countries)GoodYesYes
Republic WirelessSprint, T-Mobile$15 (Unlimited talk / text), + $5/GBNoFair (Most CS logged to community)2x per billing cycleYes
Straight Talk WirelessAT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Verizon$35 (Unlimited text/talk + 2GB)Add-onGoodAnytimeNo
TelloSprint$5 (100 min / Unlimited text)Yes (texts and MMS only)GoodAnytimeYes
TingSprint, T-Mobile$15 (100 min / MB / text. Plans based on what you use). Offers $50 credit upon signupYesGoodOkayYes
TracFoneVerizon Wireless, AT&T, T-Mobile US, Sprint Corporation, and U.S. Cellular$14.25 for auto-renew (200 min / 500 texts / 500mb)NoFairOkayNo
TwigbySprint, Verizon$9.00 (Text + 300min + WiFi only)Yes (and China)GoodYesYes
UNREALSprint$10 (Unlimited text + talk + data - up to 1GB)NoFairYesNo
VisibleVerizon (Visible is not considered a traditional MVNO)$40 (unlimited talk,text and data)NoGoodOnly one plan offeredYes

Gen Mobile

Starting at $5/mo
8.9

Set-up / Delivery

9.2/10

Reliability

8.5/10

Customer Service

9.1/10

Performance

8.5/10

Thriftiness

9.0/10

Pros

  • Easy onboarding
  • Low plan pricing
  • International call + text
  • Guaranteed

Cons

  • Used phones for sale

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4 comments

  1. Keith Frasier (Former Thrifty Guy of the Year) says:

    Thanks for the review Aaron. Gen Mobile sounds a lot like another MVNO I just signed up with called Hello Mobile. It also uses Sprint and sells phones or allows you to BYOP. No contract, no taxes, no fees, no credit check and free sim card are just a few of the perks. I got the 5 dollar plan which has 500 min 500 MB of data and Unlimited texting. It also allows you to call 60 different countries for free. They also offer 25 bucks unlimited everything. (data capped at 15 GB) Sign up was easy and sim card arrived quick. Worth checking out if your ‘thrifty’.

  2. Samantha Lewis says:

    Thank you for the review Aaron. Fantastic service at Gen Mobile and glad to see you reviewing. I’ve been with them since Feb this year. I was on another mvno (won’t say but rhymes with mellow) and I was not able to get customer service response when I tried to switch my phone to wifi. 8 months with Gen Mobile have been great. Also planning on buying that $9 cheapee for my son.

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