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Total Wireless May Be Getting LTE Soon

Total Wireless, a Verizon MVNO that's part of TracFone and is sold only online and at Walmarticon currently doesn't offer LTE data and won't activate LTE capable phones. But there are indications that might be changing.

Soon after Total Wireless launched, a user on Howard Forums discovered that if they entered a Verizon LTE phone's IMEI on the Total Wireless BYOP page they got a message saying that the phone was eligible and to click Activate to continue. However there's no Activate button or link anywhere on the page to click.

A couple of days ago, A Prepaid Phone News reader who tried activating a Verizon Samsung Galaxy S III on the Total Wireless website and got the congratulations your device is eligible message will no way to continue called Total Wireless' support number. She was told that Total Wireless was in the process of allowing LTE device and offering LTE service "very soon".

The same user discovered that if you search for Total Wireless SIM card Activation Kit" on Google you get a hit on a Walmart page:

Total Wireless SIM Card Activation Kits : No-Contract ...
www.walmart.com/.../cell.../sim-card-activation-kits/total-wireles... Walmart
Shop for Total Wireless SIM Card Activation Kits : No-Contract Phones & Plans - Walmart.com.

The link fails with a redirection error in Firefox but works in Chrome. However there are no Total Wireless SIM Activation Kits listed on that page or on Google's cached copy of it. But there is a Total Wireless check box in the refine results filter in the page sidebar. All of which suggests that the Walmart website may have once had a listing for Total Wireless SIMs that's been removed.

Is Total Wireless getting LTE soon? Maybe, but before you get too excited keep in mind that:
  • First line customer support reps aren't a very reliable source of information about future products and services at any company. There's no need for them to know about about a new offering until it's actually available. TracFone reps in particular have a reputation for being poorly trained, poorly supervised and for telling customers what they want to hear to get them off the line.
  • There have been many TracFone products and services that have shown up in deep links on the TracFone companies' websites weeks or months before they were actually available. That happened with Straight Talk Verizon BYOP, TracFone Android phones, TracFone BYOP, TracFone LTE and countless phones, some of which were never released.
In addition, Total Wireless' plan pricing is pretty aggressive.
  • $25/month: unlimited talk & text and no data
  • $35/month: unlimited talk & text and 2.5 GB
 There are also some "family" or multi-line plans:

  • $60/month for 2 lines with unlimited talk & text and 5 GB of shared data
  • $85/month for 3 lines with unlimited talk & text and 9 GB of shared data
  • $110/month for 4 lines with unlimited talk & text and 12 GB of shared data
For $10 you can add 1.5 GB of data that never expires to any plan.

TracFone probably prefers to steer LTE seeking customers to its more expensive and presumably more profitable NET10 and Straight Talk brands, at least for now. That could change if another MVNO starts taking sales away from the TracFone brands with cheaper LTE plans.

I'm sure that Total Wireless will eventually get LTE. They have to, Verizon 3G will eventually get shut down, though that's probably at least five years away. But how soon LTE comes to Total Wireless is anybody's guess. It could be tomorrow, it could be years away.

59 comments:

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  1. Tomorrow would be fine with me :) . I would like to move to a prepaid VZW provider that has a family plan.

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  2. I can't imagine that Tracphones Total Wireless would have LTE plans that cost less then the Net10/StraightTalk CDMA plans . I don't understand why they would even venture into LTE as they are filling a niche right now that seems to be very popular. How many brands are necessary for American Movil to stay at the top?

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    1. Total Wireless don't really compete with Straight Talk anymore.
      Total 2.5GB $35
      ST 5GB $45
      Total 5GB on 2 lines $60
      Total and Straight Talk's plans fit pretty well together. In fact, all of these plans could have been offered by just one brand. But it looks like AM wanted a Verizon-only brand, so they came up with yet another brand. TracFone has also moved from running on all four national networks to being an Verizon-only MVNO, at least when in comes to smartphones. AM must have a really good deal with Verizon to prefer them over AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. The only AM brand that doesn't make much sense anymore is Net10. Their plans have been overpriced for a while now, especially if you're not running on Verizon or AT&T.

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    2. American Movil(Brand) AND Verizon(Coverage) AND Walmart(Stores) banded together for the $35 price point of 2.5GB Data that competes with Cricket Wireless. $35/2.5GB brings smiles to peoples faces. $45/2.5GB or 3GB or 5GB no longer brings as many smiles as it used to. $35 Price Point = Smiles. Something to smile about, not just Cricket now also Total.

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    3. Anon. said: "TracFone has also moved from running on all four national networks to being an Verizon-only MVNO, at least when in comes to smartphones."

      If you had checked the TracFone Models page recently, you would have seen that the "Verizon-only MVNO" label may soon change. There are a number of space holders with serial numbers listed, some of which others have identified as suggesting that GSM smartphones are coming to TracFone . . .

      http://www.tracfone.com/models/phoneModels.jsp?brandName=TRACFONE#

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    4. I wonder if that means TracFone will offer GSM BYOP soon?

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  3. Competing with Cricket Wireless -

    " I don't understand why they would even venture into LTE as they are filling a niche right now that seems to be very popular. How many brands are necessary for American Movil to stay at the top?"

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    1. The Two displays at the front of electronic/wireless department on Both sides of the Checkout counter at my Walmart are Verizon Prepaid to the left and on the right a two-sided aisle shelf with a serious Total Wireless Display Kit on the right. CRicket has their network of dealers and neighborhood stores. Verizon wants Walmarts foot traffic. Yes this is about competing with Cricket with their 5 million subscribers,which means sooner rather than later LTE will be coming to Total Wireless.

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  4. I believe there are alot of people on the Tracfone brands Net10 & Straight Talk that were sold on the $45 Plans as a great plan 2-3 years ago. Things have changed. $25 Unlimited Talk & Text Plans are available with the Big 4 and some with data also at that price range. People/Consumers are getting more saavy. They are hearing and hearing that - Yellow- is willing to "cut your bill in half". They want some of that and are looking for any brand/provider who will do that for them. $45 Plans were very good for the wise earlier on, but we have become more wise. We want it ALL for even cheaper so forth cometh the $35 price range. I dont know how low it will go ,but i do know that plans that are $35 or less are bringing alot of smiles to peoples faces knowing that we all paid too much for too long.

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  5. "For plans 1 GB and above, data overage is $15 per 1 GB of data if you go over your plan allowance."

    Cricket is better deal; throttle at 128kb when overage. With VZ charges will accumulate without you knowing.

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    1. "For plans 1 GB and above, data overage is $15 per 1 GB of data if you go over your plan allowance." Where does it say that? Who or What are you quoting?

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    2. "Cricket is a better deal".Welcome to the PrePaid World and to Prepaid Phone News.

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  6. I guess even the 56 kbs AM / ST / PP soft cap would be nice to have to send and receive email when data allotment has run out .

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  7. Nobody can beat Cricket Wireless 35 plan for 2.5gb of data.

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    1. Yes, but some people need the Verizon Wireless network coverage.

      "Nobody can beat Cricket Wireless 35 plan for 2.5gb of data"

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    2. ... or Cricket $20 plan (with 5 lines on Group Save) for 2.5GB of data.

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    3. Verizon Wireless and Cricket own by ATT has almost the same coverage. its not that big of a deal. I would rather go with GSM all day everyday.

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    4. Boost Mobile was the company that match with Cricket Wireless but they now discontinue that plan. So Cricket is the King of the Hill. Unless someone comes out with something better im sticking with cricket.

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  8. Don't straight talk and Net10 give you 5gb now for $45?

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    1. yes, if you are on the BYOP plan. It is an incredible deal! Unlimited talk and text with 5GB of data on the Verizon network.

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    2. Incredible deal in contrast to what? If Straight Talk and Net10 can give "any"or all subscribers 5GB at the $45 mark on any of the networks because someone needs it as a heavy data user,that is good. The $45 mark is starting to show itself as the mark for HEAVY Data Users of 5GB or more. MetroPCS had a promotion at one time for UNLIMITED High speed 4g lte data for $50. AT&T GoPhone $60 Plan and Verizon Prepaid $60 Plan,but deep down everyone wishes those two plans were $50. Nobody at least on prepaid really wants to pay more than $50 for whatever amount of data they give you. AM has always known this. That is why Straight Talk $45+ tax =$50 plans have been priced there all along. Need lots of data then pay the prermium. When i got my two kids on cell plans that i told them that they were gonna have to pay for themselves. they both stated at different times . "I am Not gonna pay more than $50". That tells you everything.

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    3. You only pay $50 or more if you buy directly from AM. I pay $45 or less, period. It's an incredible deal compared to any other offer for anyone who benefits from Verizon's vast network. I travel for work all over Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, N Dakota, S Dakota, and some Illinois. I have tried all the networks and no one else even comes close to the reliability I get with Verizon. So, yeah, I agree "I am Not gonna pay more than $50 either". In fact, I won't pay more than $45. Find me another Verizon provider who comes close to Unlimited Talk, Text and 5GB of data for $45 or less.

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    4. Where do you get Straight Talk refills for $45 or less?

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    5. I'm with Net10 so I can't be sure about StraightTalk but I have seen discounts for StraightTalk too . I get mine from different places.such as PR Wireless or CallingMart when they have their monthly discount codes. CallingMart is linked from this site. You just have to look around and also check conversations on Howards Forum.

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  9. You CAN go through the Complete Activation Process(Final Step is to Purchase/make Payment) and acticvate a 4G LTE Device right now with Total Wireless. You just are not gonna have any service voice,text data(You Need A Sim), which is probably gonna include alot of other problems.. i.e- Wheres my Sim? I was told the only reason it is doing this right now at this very time is because Total Wireless is RIGHT NOW in the process of updating its system/programming for 4G LTE. People are calling in wondering why they don't have service driving the CSR nuts. When I called the CSR he told he said knows about all this and to NOT make Payment/Purchase which will activate/register the device within their system setting off a hoopla bucnh of problems..Right now my 4G LTE device is STAGED for Activation within my Total wireless account. I guess there was no other way to update their system without the headaches for both new customer activations,the curious or the first-line customer support reps. LTE devices probably are being charged for service like CDMA 30 day plans, when usually with any LTE device service date starts with SIM activation. Headaches going on right now.

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    1. Possibly just pop in a ST SIM and good to go like on Tracfone BYOP?

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  10. It is not always what they give you that is important, its what they can get out of you.

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  11. Total can't wait 5 years or even one year to offer LTE, because soon there won't be any 3G phones to sell to their customers.

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  12. TRUST. Cheap data always come with some compromises? I don't trust any American Movil brand with my phone number, credit card info, how they count data, spotty customer service. I'll stick with Verizon Prepaid.

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  13. total wireless
    DOES NOT have roaming.. in some areas thats a big deal.. better check out the map... verizon native doesn't cover it all.... despite the ads

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  14. total [toht-l] ADJECTIVE - involving all aspects, elements, participants, resources, etc.; unqualified; all-out: total wireless You would have to THINK that this meaning would/should and will include 4G LTE soon.

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  15. Which LTE connection is faster, Cricket's 8Mbps or Verizon MVNOs 5Mbps? Cricket should be faster but I've seen a lot of complaints about Cricket's latency. What's the latency like on Verizon MVNOs?

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    1. I doubt that most people would notice the difference. I don't recall seeing any latency complaints (or numbers) for Verizon MVNOs. Cricket's latency seems to be getting better lately with some users reporting sub-100ms pings. 8 Mbps vs 5 Mbps is an inconsequential difference and those are maximum not average speeds anyway,

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  16. Does Total Wireless turn your smartphone into a glorified kids Toy like Straight Talk: No video streaming allowed? If so I'd NEVER go with total and it would mean CricKet is the way to go if you want a MVNO. Verizon Prepaid is more confusing as you have to buy the $45 plan and get 500 MB then buy more data. I want a 5GB plan that does not cut me off for streaming a few Youtube video's if I'm traveling and want to look up something and watch a quick video. Case in point I was looking for a 1/4 mile FM transmitter for my station and watched youtube video's when I sat in the car waiting for my Stepson to come out of the Tobacco shop. If Total Wireless does cut video its as worthless as Straight Talk and Net10.

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    1. Answer to Legacy. No Tracphone brands limit anything except for tethering. You can watch as many videos as your data allowance will take. You are about 3 years behind the times. Get educated before you post

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  17. I did hear that Straight Talk doesn't allow video streaming. Did that change?

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    1. Yes. Again, that changed about 3 years ago, maybe longer

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    2. Dennis is that true?

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    3. Terms and Conditions: StraightTalk Wireless still prohibit "uploading, downloading or streaming of uninterrupted continuous video". Whether they still enforce that restriction, I don't know.

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    4. Before I switched to Aio/Cricket about a year ago I was on StraightTalk. They had stopped enforcing their "no video streaming" policy. In their publications, ST was including "watching video" in their description of what you could do with their data.

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  18. JeffMN- What is more valuable your 6 state(WORK) coverage area or your 5GB?

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  19. @JeffMN: When I had straight talk it was far less than 3 yrs ago that yours Truly streamed a few video's RIGHT after I bought a ZTE majesty (Yes it was 3G) it was right before they started allowing 4G on PagePlus (Within less than 30 days). Case in point these crooks let me stream along for about 5-10 minutes without a hitch. All of a sudden I couldn't even stream The Legacy using the nobex app. I knew something was wrong. The entire month I could not do a damn thing on my smartphone which now was turned into a kids play toy,a paper weight. A waste of $200 plus the $45 card. You can see why I'd be hesitant to ever deal with these shady crooks ever again. Not to mention other shady deals TracFone was involved in. I'd have to hear from someone who tried to stream video for at least an hr or so before I'd ever think of investing in something that could ruin what I use a smartphone for which is not playing on Facebook nor sending the latest gossip on Twitter. Its like running a professional business in which I consider my station to be the #1 reason I have a smartphone. And turning my phone into a play toy is certainly not something I'll stand for believe me. Its something I complained about and tried to have their business shut down for. So being a Radio DJ I take this stuff seriously just like a stock broker takes his or her daily financial reports. Its why I depend on my data to be Rock Solid and not fudged by some corporate ego maniac big wig (And I'm keeping some of my comments to a minimum here). The FCC should have shut Straight Talk down, sued all the folks who were a part of this fraud and televised it on TV so everyone knew to Stay Clear of the biggest prepaid fraudulent company that ever existed. Even a Walmart employee started to tell my friends to stay CLEAR of Straight talk because they had many returns due to total miss representation of service and some never got service after paying for it and the cellular department helped to get the phone activated. Its still something I'd be on watch for. Maybe its why TracFone desided to disguise itself now as Total Wireless at Walmart because the truth was let out about the stunts they were pulling.

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    1. I don't know what to tell you. That's the first time I've heard anyone talk about this in recent years. I stream TuneIn Pro all the time for hours with no problem. I have to assume there was something more to your issues because it just is not the case anymore. You can check Facebook or Howard Forums and see this just is not reported anymore. There are problems but not with using your data anyway you want to as long as your not tethering.

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    2. Maybe its not reported anymore because everyone already knows about it?

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    3. No. I can tell you that people would report something like that as it would be a huge factor compared to other options. I've been with Net10 for over 2 years and have done a lot of streaming, both audio and video. Your problem is either a glitch in the system or there is more to your story that we don't know.

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  20. Well maybe now that they allow 4G on Verizon on both Straight Talk and Total it may be something to try on a used Verizon phone. I could at least if they screw up again switch to Verizon with a Verizon SIM or I could just go with an AT&T used Android and if I have issues switch to GoPhone or Cricket. That could be because it was a 3G phone and everyone knows 3G is pretty much useless for a DJ to use anyway. I've seen some really nice AT&T phones out there and a few Verizon ones so I'll keep my eyes out on Total as they have lots of support at WalMart along with Net10 because Net10 you can buy the refill cards anywhere. Their SIM cards are all over WalMart and some Radio Shack stores. GoPhone the same way you can get SIM's for it at Walmart and Radio Shack and I think we have an AT&T store somewhere. Only thing is here in my area there are for more used Verizon and US Cellular phones than AT&T's.

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  21. I wonder which 4G phones Total Wireless will offer once they go 4G /LTE ?

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    1. likely the same ones Straight Talk sells.

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  22. I'm using ztotal Wireless and after reading here about data speed i emaied and called them. I got a replay stating they only support Cdma, no GSM phones. I love their service. :)

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  23. I recently contacted them by email about when they anticipated getting 4G/LTE . Their response was essentially no idea when and to keep checking their website. I m interested in their family plans (moving from Cricket Wireless due to unusual coverage issues) but there is no way I will buy 3G phones (even a cheap one used one).

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  24. Total Wireless 4G LTE is here !!

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    1. Do you have an LTE phone active on Total Wireless? What phone ? Where did you get it?

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  25. No active LTE phone yet on TW. The TW LG Premiere 4G LTE is currently available at the store level of three of the Walmarts in my area used Brickseek. Going to Wally World right now to purchase one and bring it home and see if i can activate it on the TW website. Walmart is right now (starting today) in the middle of their mods rotation old stuff sent back- new stuff put out. Called about TW SIM Cards, they do not have those available, yet.

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  26. I was able to order a sim card with the online chat representative, Should be here Thursday so I can activate my nexus 5x and see how the service is.

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  27. I purchased a Total Wireless Samsung S6 but cannot get a LTE signal, just 3G. My preferred network mode is LTE/CDMA. LTE is readily available in my area. Any suggestions? Thanks!

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    1. check with total wireless support. I sometimes also get 3G in places where I used to get LTE. They should help you troubleshoot it.

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    2. The most likely cause is a provisioning error on Total Wireless' part. Contact them by chat, their call center support is generally clueless.

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  28. Can anyone confirm 4G LTE working with BYOD?

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