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Anyone using an Unlocked Nexus 5 on T-mobile's Unlimited $30/mo plan?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by ragnarkar, Jan 6, 2014.

  1. ragnarkar

    ragnarkar Well-Known Member
    Thread Starter

    It seems, in theory, this is possible:

    1) Purchase an unlocked Nexus 5 from Google
    2) Purchase an activation kit from T-mobile
    3) Transfer old # to T-mobile
    4) Activate online, picking the $30/mo unlimited data and 100 minute plan

    Has anyone actually done the above and will there be any unexpected roadbumps along the way?

  2. Zolo185

    Zolo185 Android Enthusiast

    The $30 plan is 5 GB of LTE not "unlimited" but you do get unlimited 3g and H+
  3. Hook

    Hook Ever since DU... ;-)

    There are many here who do this and they will post I'm sure. I'm pretty sure you now have to buy the plan through Walmart. It is no longer an option on T-Mobile's web site, although they honor it and you can manage your account from there after you set up the plan.
  4. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin'

    That is basically the procedure. Walmart has basically dropped this plan from what I've heard unless you manage to find a phone that comes pre-bundled with this plan. I did it back in March with a Nexus 4, but I think Rxpert83 did this just a month ago so it should still work.
  5. Hook

    Hook Ever since DU... ;-)

    It's available on their web site as either a sim kit:

    T-Mobile SIM Kit: No-Contract Phones & Plans : Walmart.com

    Or, as an air card if you have a registered SIM:

    T-Mobile $30 Wireless Airtime Card - Walmart.com

    My Walmart still has the SIM kit package available in store.

    I have never tried this. I got it briefly on my N4 when T-Mobile sold it direct, but coverage was so bad, in spite of contradictory information on their coverage map, that I stayed with AT&T.
  6. g01851

    g01851 Well-Known Member

    I did pretty much exactly this, no glitches at all. I came from VirginMobileUSA, just had to be sure to call them (VM) beforehand and get my actual account number, as T-Mobile asks for that during the setup for porting your number. Depending on your carrier, your account number may or MAY NOT (in the case of VM) be your mobile number. The VM rep will be reluctant to give you the number, but just tell them that the VM reception in your area sucks, and you know your new carriers is much better :) (that's what I did).

    I did get in during the T-Mobile holiday 'free' kit time, so that was a bonus ($10 otherwise). If you buy the SIM and $30 card from Walmart, it costs you $40 total.

    I believe you can still just get the MicroSIM from T-Mobile (either online or from local store).
    http://prepaid-phones.t-mobile.com/sim-card (choose the Micro SIM) $10

    As far as the process itself, it took about 18 hrs for my new phone to be fully active on T-Mobile. Almost immediately after completing the signup and porting info, my new phone could call out on my number, and my old phone could still call out and receive calls. The next day the old phone was not on a network, and the new phone started receiving calls. T-Mobile sends you a text when the porting is finished.
    ragnarkar likes this.
  7. OhSeven

    OhSeven Android Enthusiast

    This is what I've done, but it was almost a year ago and I'm not aware of the availability issues people mentioned already
  8. mc4golf60

    mc4golf60 Lurker

    I walked into a T-mobile store and asked for a MicroSim card, then bought my N5 from Ebay and it worked fine on my TMo $30 plan.
    The activation including keeping same phone# was performed using TMo online chat and took a total of less than 3 Minutes.
    The only problem I have seen beside battery life is that IMAP for @sbcglobal.net using stock mail app doesn't work on LTE. Works on WiFi fine. I have a trouble ticket in with Tmo customer service on it. Will post any results that are useful.
    I don't think the $30 plan is available for new TMo customers now. I got mine in a promo about a year ago.

    Seems like my battery life issue is resolved by disabling as much auto-sync stuff on most functions, like Google+, Voice Recognition, facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. have been on battery now since about 8:00am and it is now 3:30 and battery is at 71%. heavy usage including text, web, Youtube, mail.

    And I am using the Spigen case - Love it. The phone was knocked out of my hands, hit the sidewalk and didn't hurt it a bit. Highly recommend a case.
  9. g01851

    g01851 Well-Known Member

    It's alive and well as of today :)

    Prepaid Cell Phone Plans, No Credit Check | Monthly 4G | T-Mobile
    Look in lower left of page

    $30 per month—Unlimited web and text with 100 minutes talk
    100 minutes talk | Unlimited text | First 5 GB at up to 4G speeds
    This plan is only available for devices purchased from
    Wal-Mart or devices activated on T-Mobile.com
    mc4golf60 likes this.
  10. g01851

    g01851 Well-Known Member

    Try out Juice Defender, it helps out a lot :) The custom ROMs and kernels do better with battery life too, if you're a 'rooter'.
  11. saptech

    saptech Android Expert

    I just did it about three weeks ago. But my phone is the Motorola Moto G. I bought the phone, then used it with Wifi & Google Voice for awhile. I had already caught the free Sim Card deal before getting the phone.
    I had time left on my old phone/plan so just Saturday, I transferred the old number and it became active on the Moto G today.
    No other problems involved.
  12. Crashdamage

    Crashdamage Android Expert

    Juice Defender hasn't been updated for over a year and is terrible anyway. So-called 'battery savers' are usually worthless or worse.
  13. matter0ni

    matter0ni Well-Known Member

    This is EXACTLY what I did. I'm cheap and I love great deals, which is why I did all of the stuff you mentioned above. I had no help, I just prayed it would work and sure as shit it worked easy as hell!

    Just make sure you get T-Mo service in your area. I live in upstate South Carolina and I have to be pretty much within city limits to get a connection. It's extremely hit or miss around here, but it's a great deal.
  14. Skyroket

    Skyroket Android Enthusiast

    I activated this plan a while ago. Tried to activate the same plan in October but couldn't do it through website instead the rep. activated 1500 minute plan :)))
  15. edhgreatone

    edhgreatone Well-Known Member

    Woah now that's a killer deal --- I am on straight talks $45/mo unlimited everything and slows at 2.5gb but this one beats it out.

    When I called T-Mobile to get their pricing structure they told me T-Mobile = $50 unlimited talk/text/data with 500mb per month then slow down... $60 per month for 2gb then slow.

    Where is this $30/unlimited at 5gb coming from and is it still active? My main # is currently on Verizon and they want $220 to break contract early... But T-Mobile said they would cover the ETF but didnt do it bc of the monthly price of the plan... Also wasn't sure what if the deal was if T-Mobile did pay the ETF... is it only a credit I could use towards T-Mobile or... Anyone know these details?
  16. DMajor239

    DMajor239 Android Expert

    I'm already on T-Mobile and I decided to pay the phone off and get off their $70 plan to the prepaid 100 mins plan. Would I have to get a new Sim or the current one I have good enough? I ask because I called twice and got 2 completely different stories.
  17. jhawkkw

    jhawkkw Chinchillin'

    The 30 dollar plan is a prepaid plan, which means you either have to bring your own device or buy a compatible one at full retail. T-Mobile will only pay the ETF if you go on one of their postpaid plan..

    The plan is only for new activations, so you will need a new SIM card and likely a new number because T-Mobile can be a bit on the finicky on porting prepaid to prepaid numbers.
    edhgreatone and DMajor239 like this.
  18. Joon525

    Joon525 Member

    What about if I currently have the Nexus 4 on T-Mobile's $30 plan and just want a new micro SIM card to use with a Nexus 5?
    Do I get the card for free from T-Mobile and LTE is naturally included? Or do I have to try to sign up all over again (which might be hard to do since these $30 deals are typically only for new customers)?
  19. mc4golf60

    mc4golf60 Lurker

    I had a Samsung GIO device on the $30 plan when I switched to the Nexus5.
    I bought the MicroSim from the Tmo store.
    I started a Chat on My-Tmobile
    I told the Chat tech I wanted to switch devices, keep the same plan and phone number.
    I gave the new MicroSim Serial Number over Chat to the Support person.
    I Powered off the Nexus5 and installed the MicroSim.
    I powered up the Nexus5.
    I received the WELCOME TO TMobile text within about 1 minute on the Nexus5 and kept the same phone number. (The Chat Tech said it could take up to 2 hours - haha.

    PS, Update on my stock Android Email problem not signing-in to my @sbcglobal email account using POP3 or IMAP incoming servers when on LTE. If I disable SETTINGS > IMAP > SYNC for each account, I can manually refresh mail on LTE network with no problems.

    Thanks to an independent mailapp developer forum who claims he found a bug in Google source code that affects all mail apps.
    Reference - Google search terms: POP/IMAP issues Google source code bug invalid time sent to the AlarmManager
    View topic - No new mail notification for IMAP

    Correction/Update - Manual refresh occasionally fails with the sign-in problem also. :-(
    #19 mc4golf60, Jan 9, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 10, 2014
    Joon525 likes this.
  20. Thefoodman52

    Thefoodman52 Android Expert

    I was on sprint, bought a N5 through Google, did this.

    Aside from having to get phone insurance through a third party option online, I'm totally comfortable. Less money per month on my bills, a better phone than the S3 (however, I'm still totally satisfied with that phone too), etc.

    Took 2 hours-ish for my number to port over totally. Felt like a sugar daddy for a minute. You can get calls with the old phone, text, etc... but the new phone is the one you can send out from. You'll have to carry two phones, basically, for a few hours.
  21. DMajor239

    DMajor239 Android Expert

    Is there a difference in service with prepaid and post paid?
  22. mc4golf60

    mc4golf60 Lurker

    DMajor -
    One of the differences is the $30 pre-paid Non-Contract plan doesn't have access to the nice Voicemail over Web that is offered with the Higher-priced plans that I think have a Phone and a contract.
    DMajor239 likes this.
  23. dmoss74

    dmoss74 Well-Known Member

    100 minutes?!? am i the only person left who makes phone calls? i'd be dead after about three days. :)
    mc4golf60 likes this.
  24. g01851

    g01851 Well-Known Member

    I 'chat' when I'm at home, via my magicjack 'home phone'... I think I got 5 years of service for $100, unlimited minutes :)

    For the mobile phone, I'm not a good chatter when I'm out driving, etc. Call me old (school), which I am about some things :)
  25. mc4golf60

    mc4golf60 Lurker

    Dmoss -
    Good point, the $30 plan is not for everyone because it is 10c/min after the allowed 100/min is used in the month, and there is no rollover of unused min. But for me, it fits my usage great. I don't like paying for features I don't use.

Nexus 5 Forum

The Nexus 5 release date was November 2013. Features and Specs include a 4.95" screen, 8MP camera, Snapdragon 800 processor, 2300mAh battery, and 2GB storage.

November 2013
Release Date
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