I promise this is real: How would you like to get totally free data, voice and texts on a top-of-the-line smartphone? It's not a hoax; it's an innovative new business strategy.
FreedomPop is a new company that has begun offering no-contract wireless service with absolutely no monthly fees - for anything: voice, text or data. For a long time, FreedomPop didn't offer 4G service - and the phones you could choose were never top quality. That's all changed.
Now you can get a free 4G plan on the previous generation of Samsung Galaxy phones - the S4. The iPhone 5 is also available.
I know what you're thinking: There's no way this is on the level. Let me tell you how it works.
FreedomPop operates a lot like Candy Crush. It's free to download and use, but there are some catches. For instance, on the 4G network, you have a monthly data cap of 500MB and 200 anytime minutes and 500 texts. If you use more than your limit, you'll have to pay. If you use less than 5MB a month, you'll be charged a dollar. Plus, the default settings automatically charge your account if you go over. You'll have to manually change them if you don't want to be charged.
Additionally, paying FreedomPop $20 a month will get you unlimited everything and faster speeds. On top of that, after the first gigabyte of data used in a month, you'll be dropped down to 3G speeds. Still dirt-cheap compared to other plans, but it's starting to make sense how FreedomPop stays in business.
The real way FreedomPop is competitive is cost-cutting. It leases bandwidth on Sprint's existing network - so you'll need to have a Sprint-compatible phone. FreedomPop sells older, refurbished phones so its margin is better on those. Additionally, it uses less expensive VoIP Internet calling instead of the cellular network for voice.