Home - , , - New Verizon MVNO Selectel Wireless Has BYOP and PagePlus Like Pricing

New Verizon MVNO Selectel Wireless Has BYOP and PagePlus Like Pricing

Selectel Wireless is a new Verizon MVNO that launched last month. They seem to be targeting the PagePlus customer base with monthly plans that are similar to or slightly better than comparable PagePlus plans.

One advantage that Selectel has over PagePlus is that there's no extra charge for off-network voice and SMS roaming. With PagePlus text roaming is available at no extra cost, but voice roaming is 20¢ or 29¢ per minute depending on plan.

Selectel sells a variety of  smartphones and basic phones and is currently running a promotion offering free basic phones to new customers.

In common with PagePlus and other Verizon MVNOs, Selectel can activate clean ESN Verizon phones with the exception of Verizon prepaid phones. LTE phones require flashing to work as do Sprint, US Cellular and other non-Verizon CDMA devices. Selectel charges a $15 activation fee for the free phones and the ones it sells. Bring Your Own Phone (BYOP) activation is $30.

Selectel's parent company is a landline phone company and electric power utility operating in Connecticut, Illinois, New Jersey, Ohio,  Oregon, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Washington and New Jersey.

In spite of being part of larger, well established company, the Selectel website is rather uninformative and contradicts itself in several places. There's no online account management yet although it's supposed to be coming soon. Currently you have to contact customer support to find out how many minutes, texts or MBs you have left. It is possible to refill your account online and there's no tax on online refills. Auto-pay is available by calling customer support.

Here are Selectel's plans:
Plan Voice Messaging Data
$15 Value Plan 300 Minutes 300 Texts 15 MB
$30 Talk & Text 1300 Minutes 3000 Texts 300 MB
$40  Unlimited Plan Unlimited Unlimited 200 MB
$50 Data User Plan Unlimited Unlimited 2GB

For comparison here are PagePlus' comparable plans
Plan Voice Messaging Data
$12 The 12 250 Minutes 250 Texts 10 MB
$30 Talk & Text 1200 1200 Minutes 3000 Texts 250 MB
$39.95  Unlimited Talk & Text Unlimited Unlimited 200 MB
$55 The 55 Unlimited Unlimited 2GB

Currently there is no overage, if you use up your minutes you can't make or receive calls until you restart your plan month.  A "Flex Card" to cover overages is supposed to be coming soon with overage rates of 5¢ per minute, message or MB. More plans are supposed to be in the pipeline as well including one with 5GB of data and a $75/year plan with 2000 minutes and 1,500 texts.

Selectel looks promising with competitive rates, BYOD and no extra cost roaming. Once they have a online account management and a way to handle overages they should be a good alternative to PagePlus, particularly if PagePlus support and service deteriorates as a result of their acquisition by America Movil. However, if Selectel is serious about growing their business, they need to get rid of the activation fees. As an unknown in a highly competitive business Selectel needs to make it as painless as possible for potential customers to sample the service.

38 comments:

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  1. WOW EVERYDAY NEW MVNO'S POP UP, I WONDER HOW MUCH MONEY IT COSTS TO BECOME ONE. IT SEEMS THAT THEY ARE JUST POPING EVERY WHERE. DOES ANYBODY HAVE A BALLPARK FIGURE?

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    1. $15,000 application fee plus a cut of the revenues.

      See this article: http://gigaom.com/2012/06/25/why-are-mvnos-so-hot-right-now-thank-the-carriers/

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    2. I think a lot of folks are realizing that the prepaid, MVNO side of wireless service is a growth industry unlike the postpaid which is nearer to saturation. Marketing trends are pointing to a change in consumer behavior towards contract free. Smaller, nimbler MVNOs can stand to rake in some money if they plan correctly.

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    3. THANKS SO MUCH FOR THE LINK, I'LL LOOK INTO IT

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    4. And looks like there are a lot more MVNO's in the pipeline, but I think most of them wont survive past 2-3 years.

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  2. You can get a free activation on selectel on this site
    http://www.freedomwirelessbc.com/phone/index.php?id_product=91&controller=product

    Use code: FREEACT

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    Replies
    1. This looks like a capable dealer who offers customers good choices and also services phones. I believe in supporting a good dealer; it has saved me lots of time, money and hassle on Pageplus over the past 3.5 years.

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  3. Usage is on Verizon native network ONLY. Off-network roaming is NOT available with Selectel, nor does it say that anywhere on their website.

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    1. Granted the website is a mess, but I do believe Selectel offers roaming. Someone who claims to be with Selectel posted on HowardForums. "What does make us different is that we do use the post paid coverage vs prepaid...does it make a difference? Depends on where you live."

      A HowardForums user with a phone on Selectel posted:
      'So, here is my experience roaming:

      I went to Harpers Ferry, WV this weekend, which is a definite roaming or "extended" area for Verizon. I think the area is US Cellular turf. Anyways, I was on 2G and was only permitted to call and text, data doesn't work at all.

      EDIT: I should clarify, I have a zero balance in my account. Regardless, I'm fine with voice and SMS as that's the most I need in a remote area. I'm curious if Selectel is planning to allow data roaming but at a cost like Page Plus.'

      Granted, both HoFo posts could be BS but I doubt it.

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    2. Actually, Dennis Bournique is correct. They DO offer roaming, and they do NOT charge for roaming. I am with selectel (a customer not a seller), and I live in Oklahoma in one of the only places in my whole state that does not have verizone service (unless on roaming of course). Yup.... I am in a very rural area, and I am still able to talk and text. The only thing that I do not have is data, which from what I understand they are getting ready to give their customers, so even that I will not have to worry about soon :)

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  4. The offer a $65, 4GB unlimited plan through dealers. They activate Verizon iPhones.

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  5. Fabulous but they need to either eliminate or lower that activation fee.
    $30.00 is a bit steep.
    Otherwise this all sounds great because once Pageplus goes to America Movil, service is going to truly suffer.
    Hopefully Selectel stays solely domestic.

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  6. Their website is a joke. I bet I can use pen & paper and write down the whole site in a matter of minutes. Even the smallest mom & pop mvno have such things as terms & conditions, policies, and faq's.

    Look at the recharge link. It is not even secure.

    From the looks of things, there are some people subscribing. People must really hate America Movil. Otherwise, they would not be so trusting.

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  7. We can look for a Selectel dealer to activate a phone at lower cost, like Freedom Wireless (free activation) mentioned above. It's like using Kitty Wireless for Pageplus services or refills.

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  8. HoFo seems to have positive things to say about Selectel. Since Page Plus will most likely get America Movilized, I will jump ship. After Straight Talk "lost" a phone number I had for ten years, I don't trust any America Movil company.

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  9. Their CS is based out of the Philippines like most other existing MVNO's. Oh well, so much for keeping people off of the unemployment roll in the U.S.

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  10. Airvoice Wireless uses U.S.-based CS.

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    Replies
    1. Thankfully so. I hear P-tel and SpotMobile are as well

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  11. Spot Mobile has been having system issues but so has Tmobile. Wonder if they are related. Selectel has the suspicion of being a sub mvno of Page Plus hanging over their head by sone but really, how can you offer plans that COST LESS then your parent mvno and not lose the farm?

    Olam is a necessity. They appear to be a strong potential contender but are brand new. I highly doubt Page Plus, which had 1.4 million users or Tracfone is worried but if Page plus loses even one percent of their base because of the buyout that's 14,000 potential other Verizon mvno customers. It only takes 5000 customers to sustain a Verizon mvno. At least it used too.

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    Replies
    1. Then not just Spot Mobile. There are other TMobile MVNO's out there so they must be having system issues as well.
      Hopefully the mess with these Verizon MVNO's gets ironed out too. NextG seems to be the only other alternative that is stable at this time.

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    2. What system issues? My T-Mobile prepaid phone is working fine for voice and data.

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    3. My Tmob, Ptel, Lyca and Truphone are all working fine today on Tmobile network. Spot Mobile has had problems in the past with its backend system that have nothing to do with the network.

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  12. Then Ultra.me must be fine as well.
    A Selectel rep I spoke to states that they are working on alot of the things many other MVNO's were lacking when they first took off. Do not expect short codes, auto-pay, and many other things for right now. They are just starting. Even though their CS is overseas, Selectel is not owned by Carlos Slim, or any other international entity. Rest easy they are just using international CS to remain competitive and save a few $$$$

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  13. An MVNO with a $30 activation fee. If this company wishes to attract subscribers, someone there needs to use some more common-sense!!!!!!!!!

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    Replies
    1. Common sense says to cover your costs when you start, then reduce costs or increase value later on like page plus did.

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  14. Genius Wireless webpage shows the Selectel Flex cash card and the $75, 2000 minute one year paygo plan. They also have the $65/month plan.
    http://genius-wireless.com/selectel-plans-2/

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  15. I just switched from page plus to selectel and all is good so far. Ive already checked out the roaming and it is true no roaming with selectel. My phone says extended network now instead of roaming and i made several calls just to make sure. This is a huge deal in my area because there are several areas where i roamed with pageplus. Also i went through genius wireless and they activate for free..

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  16. Here is another Selectel dealer with free activations.
    http://batmobilewireless.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=7&zenid=i1r84c3gb87g0utvocsgdfkc36

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  17. I'm going to be testing Selectel. I like Page Plus and their customer service a lot, but TracFone (America Movil) not at all. One thing we (Page Plus customers) do have -- at least for now -- are good Page Plus dealers. But how long they'll be able to deal with America Movil, I don't know. I would hope some of them would "hedge their bets" by looking into Selectel Wireless dealerships in conjunction with their Page Plus business.

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  18. Who offers services to flash 4G phones to Selectel?

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    1. Flashing to Selectel is the same process as flashing to PagePlus so any service that can flash a phone to PagePlus should be able to flash it to Selectet. Flashing services I heard good things about (I haven't used any of them myself) include remoteflash.net and sedds89 and viper32 on xda-developers.com and HowardForums

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  19. I read on a dealer website that Selectel CS hours are 7am-11pm CST. Just waited on hold for 40 minutes; no message that they were closed, just sorry for the delay in serving. They must be closed. Does anyone know their actual CS hours? I can't check my balance via the dealer because they close at 2 pm on Sat.

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    1. I got through just now to Selectel. The call center building in the Philippines was damaged in a bad earthquake and cannot be occupied, so it took a little time to staff backup CS in Nebraska. They did not answer this morning, but have people diverted from other (dealer support?) work to answer the phones until 6pm today. Selectel also has a small office in FL that does CS some times. The Neb rep told me they normally have 24-hour CS, and the office you reach depends on when you call. My dealer told me this morning via email that Selectel dealer support is Mon-Sat: 8am - 8pm; Sunday 12pm - 5pm. The dealer checked my balance even though they are closed today.

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  20. I activated a straightalk verizon phone on selectel with the help of a selectel dealer http://genius-wireless.com/. No BOYD activation fees or any kind of other hidden fees. Took less than 5 minutes.

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  21. CellularFlashUSA.com can remote-flash almost any 4G LTE phone to either Page Plus or Selectel as dealers! They flashed my friends Galaxy Note 2 to Selectel in 10 minutes remote! And they did that at midnight! They advertise the Galaxy S4, Note 3, and much more on their website! Looks promising.

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  22. You will see a lot of MVNO's pop up as the wholesale pricing drops from the carriers. The cost to become an MVNO ranges from $30K to $50K depending on how many carriers you launch. That is with TelBill. TelBill has launched over 15 new MVNO's in 2013

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  23. I live in Gillette WY & have been with selectel wireless for 1 1/2 years & I am a huge fan!! Their customer service is outstanding, have traveled outside the state with no problems & never had problems with my data usage. They need better phone choices but I think this is work in progress.

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