PureTalk and Straight Talk have both launched TV ads touting a free phone offer. For Straight Talk, the ad and offer represent an evolution of the brand since being taken over by Verizon. Prior to Verizon's ownership, Straight Talk really didn't offer or advertise free phones. PureTalk, the longtime AT&T MVNO, is also not known to have marketed any free phones through TV advertising in its past either. In fact, it's pretty rare for an independently owned MVNO to offer free phones to begin with.
PureTalk is offering the Samsung Galaxy A14 5G for free with number port-in and the purchase of its $55 unlimited plan that includes 60GB of 5G data before throttling to 256Kbps. It's made free by way of an instant $199.99 discount on the device. However, PureTalk does state a 30-month agreement is required to get the phone, but doesn't go into any detail about what that means. Best guess is that the phone will remain locked for 30 months and/or if you leave PureTalk before 30 months is up you may be billed for the prorated cost of the device.
Straight Talk is offering a Free Motorola G Power at Walmart for new lines of service and port-ins with in-store activation on a $45 or higher rate plan. The $45 plan includes unlimited high-speed data with an allowance of 5GB of data for mobile hotspot.
PureTalk "Free 5G Samsung Phone" TV Ad
PureTalk's TV ad, "Free 5G Samsung Phone" launched mid-May and has aired a couple of dozen times. It features a voiceover with a callout of other providers' free phone offers. The callout tells viewers that PureTalk knows that they are leary of offers from other providers with hefty strings attached like activation fees, 4-line requirements, and expensive contracts. The ad continues by stating that only PureTalk offers a free 5G Samsung phone without feeling like you've been duped. You can watch it below.
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Wave7 Research has also noted that the free phone offer is being pitched by Sean Hannity during his show and the $55 phone plan is being pushed during both Hannity and Clay Travis & Buck Sexton talk shows.
Straight Talk Wireless "No Offense, Free Motorola G Power" TV Ad
Wave7 Research noted in its latest prepaid report that Straight Talk Wireless's TV ad touting the free Motorola G Power began airing in April. It has been aired over 7k times thus far. The ad features an animated pencil drawing of a comedian who asks his audience, "Have you noticed everything that follows 'no offense' is offensive?" To the audience's laughter, he continues "No offense, but you're overpaying for your wireless plan." The ad finishes with a voiceover and says that unlimited plans from Straight Talk start at $35/month and that you can get a free phone on select plans at Walmart. You can watch the full ad below.
The Motorola G Power 2022 isn't the only phone being offered for free by Straight Talk at Walmart. The Motorola G Stylus 5G 2022 is also free but does require the in-store purchase and activation of a 3-month plan. Wave7 Research has observed Walmart store signage highlighting the free Stylus offer. The free Motorola G Power phone deal is scheduled to be available at least until 6/18/23. The Moto G Stylus 5G offer is scheduled to remain in place at least until 8/31/23.
“Free phones at Walmart is definitely a trend in the prepaid industry. Metro by T-Mobile has been offering four Android models for free at Walmart and Straight Talk is doing this with two Motorola smartphones, while Cricket Wireless and Verizon Prepaid have also been offering a free phone at Walmart. The fact that Straight Talk has a TV ad pitching a free phone, as does Pure Talk, adds strength to the trend.”