For our Readers' Choice Awards, PCMag readers told us which carrier they prefer based on coverage, call quality, device selection, and other factors.And for our Fastest Mobile Networks feature, we sent drivers to 30 US cities to scope out which smartphone carriers have the best data coverage.
For most of us, mobile phones are at the center of our universe.
The typical feature set of these palm-size marvels is astounding.
But what should you be looking for when buying a cell phone?
Here are some key points to consider: Despite all the recent hardware and mobile software innovation, your wireless service provider remains your most important decision.
It's your phone, your messaging device, your on-the-go Web browser, your camera, your music player, your GPS, and more.
We're a smartphone-dominated nation, with 4G LTE networks beating many home Internet connections in terms of speed.We spotlight some of our favorites in The Best Cheap Cell Phone Plans You've Never Heard Of.And if you're looking for a phone on one of the major carriers, we've rounded up our favorites on AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon.As carriers have moved to increasingly more confusing service and pricing plans, the value of unlocked phones has been rising accordingly.Unlocked phones are bought from a third-party store or directly from the manufacturer, and aren't tied to any specific carrier. But there are a few popular unlocked phoneswork just fine on all the national and prepaid carriers.We have more good wireless carrier options than we've had in years, thanks to vigorous competition between the four major carriers and smaller virtual carriers like Google Fi.