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Tello Review - 2024 - Customizable for Any Budget

30-Second Review

Thanks to its customizability and fair pricing, Tello scored the 2nd highest of all the mobile providers on our list.

See the other features that propel Tello to the top:

Tello Logo Back to Top


  • Unlimited talk, text, and data for $25/month
  • Free calls to over 60 countries including China, Mexico, and India
  • Refer a friend to each receive 10 Tello Dollars
  • 4.5/5 rating on TrustPilot
  • No added cost for additional lines

Services and Features

Here’s what you can expect when you switch to Tello:

Coverage and Service

  • Chat with up to 99% of the population on T-Mobile’s nationwide network/li>
  • 5G and 4G LTE access
  • Free calls to 60+ countries, including Canada, Mexico, China, and India
  • Free mobile hotspot
  • Free Wi-Fi calling and texting
  • Texting included with every phone plan
  • Build-your-own phone plan
  • No added cost per line

Customer Service

  • 24/7 support from real humans


  • Compatible with most major phone companies
  • eSIM or physical SIM available


  • Referral bonus: Refer a friend and you both get $10 in Tello Dollars


  • Shop for new or pre-owned smartphones

Pros and Cons


  • Flexible, Prepaid Plans: Never overpay for talk, text, or data with build-your-own, prepaid plans.
  • Free International Calling: Free international calling for over 60 countries, including Canada, Mexico, India, and China.
  • Reliable Network: Call, text, and stream along T-Mobile’s 5G and 4G LTE network.


  • Threat of Throttling: Tello is an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator), meaning they borrow their network space from the network owner. During peak times, the network owner may slow Tello’s customers’ speeds in a process known as “throttling.”
  • Lack of Discounts: Unlike other providers, Tello does not provide discounts for new customers or families.

Plans and Pricing

Tello’s phone plans are super flexible. You can mix and match just about any combination of call minutes and data per month, meaning you never have to overpay for unused data or minutes.

You might be wondering: what about text messaging? Texting is included free with every Tello package. Use those thumbs as much as you like!


Feel free to mix and match your perfect per-month phone package with our handy-dandy pricing chart:

  No Minutes 100 Minutes 300 Minutes 500 Minutes Unlimited Minutes
No Data N/A $5 $3 $7 $8
1GB $5 $6 $7 $8 $9
2GB $6 $7 $8 $9 $10
5GB $10 $11 $12 $13 $14
10GB $15 $16 $17 $18 $19
15GB $20 $21 $22 $23 $24
Unlimited Data $25 $25 $25 $25 $25


Tello doesn’t offer traditional “add-ons.” Instead, Tello provides three options for customers who need a little more from their plan:

  • Flexible, Prepaid Plans: Never overpay for talk, text, or data with build-your-own, prepaid plans.
  • Upgrade your plan: You can upgrade or downgrade your Tello mobile plan at any time. When you make a change to your plan, the changes go into effect immediately, with no wait times to sit through. For example, if your 2GB per month isn’t cutting it: you can upgrade to the 5GB plan instantly.
  • Purchase credits: You can also purchase Tello credits (in any amount you’d like) that convert directly into call minutes and data. For the United States, calls cost only $0.01/minute, and data only $0.02 per MB.

Coverage, Performance, and Customer Reviews

Network Coverage

Tello uses T-Mobile’s 4G LTE and 5G network, which is the largest 5G network in the US, ahead of AT&T and Verizon.

By population, Tello customers can speak to just about anyone: 99% of the US population, to be exact. Geographically, the eastern United States is well covered (except Appalachia and other mountain ranges). On the eastern side of the country, Tello might not reach folks in the rural parts of Idaho, California, Oregon, Washington, or Nevada.

Call and Text Performance

Tello customers should experience high-quality phone calls and speedy text messaging. According to a 2018 study by RootMetrics regarding America’s cell phone networks, T-Mobile’s text and data perform nearly as well as AT&T and Verizon. In call performance, T-Mobile kept pace with its fellow competitors, scoring just behind Verizon, AT&T, and Sprint.

Customer Reviews

Tello has a 4.5/5.0 rating on TrustPilot from over 10,000 reviewers, which is considered “Excellent” by the website’s standards.

According to TrustPilot reviews from current customers, users really enjoy Tello’s low prices, helpful customer service, and customizable plans.


Bring Your Old Phone

Don’t worry: you can easily switch to Tello’s mobile network, even if you’re not looking to switch to a new phone.

To use an old smartphone for your new Tello service, start by double-checking that your old phone is compatible with the network. Tello makes this no sweat:

  1. Log on to
  2. Click “Bring your own phone” at the top of the page.
  3. Type your cell phone’s IMEI number into the toolbar.
  4. Instantly find out if your phone is compatible.

Purchase a New Phone

If you’d rather upgrade to a new or used smartphone, try shopping on Tello’s website. Every smartphone listed on Tello’s online store is compatible with their network, meaning you can’t go wrong with your choice.

Online Smartphone Store

Tello’s online smartphone store offers discounts on new and used smartphones, including recognizable makes such as:

  • Apple iPhone 14
  • Motorola Moto G Power 2022
  • Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3
  • Nuu F4L

Activation Process

It only takes a few steps to switch from your old carrier to Tello. Here’s what to expect:

  1. Check your phone’s network compatibility: Double-check that your phone is compatible with Tello’s service. For more on this, see our detailed instructions just above.
  2. Unlock your old phone: Call your old provider and ask them to unlock your phone. If you’ve paid off your old phone, this should be super easy.
  3. Select a plan and SIM card: Customize your phone plan by call minutes and data allowances. After creating your plan, decide if you want an eSIM (if compatible) or a physical SIM card. eSIM card customers will receive a QR code in their Tello login, perfect for a scan-and-go eSIM download. Physical SIM card customers will receive their SIM card in a few days via mail.
  4. Pay and Activate: Pay for your new plan and confirm activation on your smartphone. Now you’re ready to use Tello!

Customer Service

Tello’s customer service team is available 24/7. That’s right: if something goes wrong, a real person is on the other end of the line, ready to help at any time of the day.

According to reviews on TrustPilot, great customer service is one of the most commonly-cited perks of being a Tello customer.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Is Tello Mobile Good?

Yes, we think Tello is pretty great. In addition to a 4.5 rating on TrustPilot, we really like Tello’s customizable phone plans and transparent pricing. If you want a reliable phone plan that won’t surprise your wallet, try Tello.

Who Owns Tello Mobile?

Tello’s parent company is “KeepCalling,” an international telecommunications company.

What Network Does Tello Mobile Use?

Tello uses T-Mobile’s 5G and 4G LTE nationwide network, meaning Tello customers have access to T-Mobile’s phone, text, and data speeds and coverage capacity.

Is Tello T-Mobile?

Nope. Tello is an MVNO (Mobile Virtual Network Operator), meaning they lease network allowances from the network owner. In the case of Tello, the network owner is T-Mobile.

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot to love about Tello: a reliable network, low prices, and completely-customizable phone plans. Customers can reach 99% of the US population, with prices as low as a few dollars a month. Better yet, you can upgrade, downgrade, or add credits to your plan at any time, so you never overpay and your plan never under-delivers.

We highly recommend Tello to people who want a phone plan where they know just what they’re paying for. If pricing transparency and plan flexibility are your thing, call and say hello to Tello.