California & Oklahoma get unlimited voice and text, plus 500 MB of data!
Life Wireless is a regional cell phone provider that is accepted by the U.S. government’s Lifeline phone service to provide free cell phones and free airtime to the states of Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.
As of December, 2016, Life Wireless rolled out new plans. It’s a bit confusing to summarize all the variations of the plan across the states, so let’s begin with Life Wireless’ summary of the changes:
For all data-capable devices other than smart phones, your new plan comes with 500 minutes, unlimited text, and 500MB of data per month. For smart phones, the plan varies by state. For those residing in the Oklahoma Tribal region, your new plan comes with unlimited talk and text and 500 MB of data per month. For those residing in the state of Kentucky, your new plan comes with 500 minutes, unlimited text and 500MB of data per month. For those residing in Wisconsin, your new plan comes with 500 minutes, unlimited text, unlimited premium Wi-Fi powered by iPass and 25 MB of data per month. For all other states your new plan comes with 500 minutes, unlimited text, unlimited premium Wi-Fi powered by iPass and 10 MB of data per month.
California and Oklahoma residents get unlimited voice.
California and Oklahoma customers receive unlimited voice calling, unlimited texting and 500 MB of data each month. In Oklahoma there is a $1 monthly fee (imposed by the state). Note: the above quoted text from Life Wireless says that Oklahoma Tribal regions get this plan, but the website does not state that it is tribal only.
All other states
Trying to detail out the various state’s plans is just too confusing, and the easiest thing to do is go to the Life Wireless website and look up your state’s plans. We can say that you will get at least 500 voice minutes, unlimited texting, and most often just 10 MB of data (don’t even try to use that small an amount). The plans vary based upon if you have a smartphone or a feature phone, and in which state you reside. For those residing in Wisconsin, the plan also comes with unlimited premium Wi-Fi powered by iPass. For all other states your new plan comes with 500 minutes, unlimited text, unlimited premium Wi-Fi powered by iPass
How to Qualify
The qualifications to get a phone from Life Wireless are the same as for the other companies in the same states. In general, any of the following qualifies you:
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Plan (LIHEAP)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Food Stamps
- Section 8 Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
- Senior Citizen Low-Income Discount Plan (offered by the local gas or power company)
- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
- Income at or below 135% of federal poverty level* (proof required)
The Life Wireless cell phone comes with free voicemail, caller id, call waiting, 3-way calling, call forwarding, and has no roaming charges. There are no charges for domestic long distance calls. International calls are allowed, but chargeable.
There is mention on the company’s website of text messaging ability, but we cannot find mention of the cost. If it is like every other vendor, each text message received or sent is charged a portion of the monthly minutes. (We’ve asked and will update this page.)
We do not know if unused minutes rollover each month. (We’ve asked and will update this page.)
If you already have an existing unlocked GSM phone, you can use it and simply order a Life Wireless SIM card. This free SIM card can be inserted into your handset and activated for immediate use.
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