What makes ting different from Zact?
Answered

I'm currently a VZW customer waiting for my contract to end before porting all my numbers to Ting...but then I saw a news article for Zact.  They have a similar phone plan like Ting, and they offer minutes, text, and MBs in more buckets.   http://www.zact.com/plans

They both run on Sprint's network.  ting has a much better selection of smartphones and better customer support, but Zact seems to be slightly cheaper.  Also, it seems that Zact doesn't have a per device fee.  If ting or Zact offered tablets as part of the plan, then that's the company I'd probably go with.

What do you guys think?

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Comments

52 comments
  • It appear like  Zact does not have roaming for calls and texts like ting does (neither has data roaming).  So that, support, the lack of phones, and BYOSD are the big ones in my mind.  I would like to see Ting have more granularity on their plans (even more than Zact).

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  • Zact has a $5 maintenance fee.  Similar to Tings $6 maintenance fee.  And looks like they have 2 phones to choose from.   

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  • Ting has been providing service for over a year. Zact is supposed to start service in June.Their plans look similar to Ting, but with different options.

    Ting expects to be profitable by the end of this year, co they will likely be around to provide their good, reasonably prices services for quite a while. Zact's business model is unproven.

    Ting has excellent customer support. Zact's support model is unproven at this time.

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  • It's interesting that although Zact says they use the Sprint network, Verizon and Vodafone are listed as investors.

    Zact is blatantly false when they claim that they are the first smart mobile phone service with automatically adjusting plans.

    I would be very cautious of a company that is that dishonest in their marketing.

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  • Oh Bruce, stop it, you're making us blush :#)

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  • After one year it would be impossible to assume Ting is a long term carrier.  However, the Toecows (or whatever that is) has been around forever and that leads me to believe Ting has the proper financial backing.   I think Zact will be some healthy competition for Ting, once they get more phones and can do the BOYSD.   Ting, I think, is based in Canada.  Zact could be stating they are the first tier program (perhaps in USA) -  a lot of companies do that.   Its called marketing.  

     

    I don't think I'd be "very cautious" with any no contract carrier.   Your not locked into anything.  What's the huge worry?

    I will stay with Ting, but having choices and competition is GREAT for me, the consumer.

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  • Ting support is in Toronto, Canada but Ting only provides cellular service to the United States. The support people cannot use their own product unless they are traveling in the US. Ting customers can pay the additional charges to get service up there, though. I have done that a couple of times. Currently, to try Zact, you must buy one of their phones. That may be a significant financial commitment, hence the advice to be cautious.

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  • Ting support is in Toronto, Canada but Ting only provides cellular service to the United States. The support people cannot use their own product unless they are traveling in the US. Ting customers can pay the additional charges to get service up there, though. I have done that a couple of times. Currently, to try Zact, you must buy one of their phones. That may be a significant financial commitment, hence the advice to be cautious.

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  • I don't think a $99 phone is significant really.   However, the $399 for a Viper is a terrible deal.  Zact needs more phone and BOYSD for sure.   It will make it interesting to see if pushes TING to expand their slots of usage like Zact does.   

     

     

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  • Some food for thought  what Zact said in email,

    "That is a one time charge of $10 for an account set-up fee (you don't pay this fee per phone), then there is the $4.99/month line fee per phone, and of course the cost of the plans that you have chosen, $2.79 for 100 min of talk and $4.52 for 150mb of data. Your monthly after you initial set up should be around $17.29 plus taxes."

    "To answer you questions, we do not have or charge any recovery fees. Zact does not impose any extra taxes or fees aside from those required by the Government and regulatory bodies."

     

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  • william,

    The account set-up fee is definitely different from Ting. When Ting started, they charged an activation fee, bt quickly dropped that.

    Regarding taxes & fees, the two services are likely similar. I know my Ting fees are very low. I understand they vary, depending on your billing location.

    Ting's web site says, "We also don’t have a long list of fees that need to be justified and totaled."

    As an example, I just received my highest usage bill yet.

    4 devices, Data S, SMS M, Voice XL.& 52 minutes International calling surcharges. Taxes & fees totaled to $9.11

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  • Bruce,

    All that is also true and I was answering the OP question.

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  • Thanks for your comments everyone!  I'll go with Ting when my contract is over.

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  • Just took a look at Zact's coverage map.  If it is correct, it includes some kind of data roaming, that Ting does not.  Look at Illinois and Indiana, along with points further west.

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  • Still no BYOD, though They also advertise NO waste while using plan tiers. We got Ting to correct their marketing to be more honest months ago.

    I still think it strange that Verizon & Vodafone are investors in a Sprint MVNO. You would think they would be a Verizon MVNO.

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  • Ting vs Zact is six of one, half a dozen of the other.  

    Verizon and Vodaphone funded ItsOn/Zact to have an investment in a company that competes with other MVNOs.  They are wary of letting any MVNO directly use their network, or at least the 4G data part of their network, as a lot of people would leave Verizon for that MVNO.

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  • So is the VZW involvement the reason they seem to be running data on the full Sprint contract coverage area?

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  • Perhaps the roam data on VZW.

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  • If they've got the full Sprint-contract map, they are certainly roaming on VZW.  I'm just surprised VZW would put that in there, and that the contract with Sprint as an MVNO would allow it, but what do I know.

    As any number of us on Ting have commented previously, we'd be willing to pay for the additional data access.  I don't follow many of the MVNOs, but the only other one I know of with that kind of coverage is Republic Wireless.

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  • The problem for Verizon is that if they allow LTE data access to one MVNO, they have to allow it to others willing to pay the same fee; otherwise the lawsuits start flying.  Verizon has the best high-speed data network, at least in the public eye, and it would be foolish to allow another company---including a partially or wholly-owned subsidiary, access to it, since that would cost Verizon revenue.  I don't know of any phone-based MVNO that uses Verizon's LTE data network (although I believe that Millenicom, which offers broadband only, does).  On the other hand, it makes good sense to get a slice of the Sprint network MVNO pie, so they invested in Zact.

    Other carriers are in different boats. Sprint long ago decided to embrace the MVNOs.  They started two (Virgin and Boost) and  allow others (for the appropriate fees) access to their full network, including the upper speed data.  Their position is that each new MVNO is effectively a Sprint proxy with its own marketing and customer service.  The more customers the MVNO has, the more network fees Sprint collects.  

    T-Mobile is now coming around to the position that it's good business to allow MVNOs access to the upper-speed data band.  It's likely that this was delayed while the possibility of a merger with AT&T still existed.  

     AT&T, being as stubborn as ever, is very protective of its highspeed network, such as it is.  

    It's not likely that an MVNO is going to get access to Verizon's LTE data network in the near future.  If and when the other major carriers build their high-speed networks up to par, Verizon will be singing a different tune.

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  • If I purchase a phone (Samsung Galaxy S3 specifically) from Zact and I am not happy with their service (or if they go out of business), will that phone work on Ting?

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  • Hi Bob, only phones from Sprint will be able to activate on Ting. Thanks for the question though.

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  • I have not heard of a non-Sprint phone being brought to Ting. Since Ting has to "release" a Ting phone to Sprint before it can be used on Spring, I would expect that Zact would need to be willing to cooperate in a similar fashion.

    Not all businesses are as customer focused as Ting, I would not assume Zact would release a phone, making it easier for a customer to leave.

    This is just my conjecture. I am a just Ting user, not a staff member. To get Ting's official answer you may need to call or email Ting.

     

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  • Brennan,

    When Ting first announced the beta for BYOD, they indicated that phones could be brought from Sprint MVNOs too, except for Boost & Virgin Mobile.

    At one point, I was considering bringing a Kajeet phone to Ting. What has changed?

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  • Hey Bruce,

    You are correct regarding other MVNOs, however, our list of of allowable carriers was built before Zact came into business. To my knowledge, it has not been added as acceptable devices for activation.

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  • I went with Ting for my second phone (my company pays for my main phone, but I like a backup on a different network than the one I'm on.  A "bucket" plan is perfect for me, since it only costs $6 per month if I don't use the phone at all.

    Zact just doesn't seem to have it together.  They've been in business for a while, still only offer two phones, and from what I've read, people trying to use a Sprint phone on Zact have had mixed results.  Ting seems to be much better organized.

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  • Brennan,

    It might be good to list the allowed MVNOs in the whitelist thread. I am sure many new ones have appeared since Ting started testing BYOD.

    I have not noticed any successful BYOD MVNO phones mentioned here.

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  • Hi Bruce, thanks for the suggestion. I've had this added to our task list for a possible update.  I also have this list here:

    • Cintex Wireless
    • Kajeet
    • Ready Wireless
    • Voyager Mobile
    • Platinum Tel

    Not all of the phones from these carriers will work of course. This list appears when selecting "Other Carrier" in the BYOD activation.

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  • My understanding from speaking with their respective customer service reps is that Zact allows free data roaming onto Verizon's (at least 3G) network, while Ting does not, and Virgin Mobile does not. 

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  • Data roaming to Verizon is not surprising since in July 2013, they (Zact or ItsOn) listed Verizon as one of their investors. They have since removed the page that listed their investors.

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