December 29, 2017

The Future of Tracfone in 2018

New Phones, Changes, and Predictions for Tracfone in 2018

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The Future of Tracfone in 2018
A New Year is upon us and whether last year was a good year, a bad year, or just another year, it is coming to a close with the opportunity for next year to be something new.

With 2018 here, we are sharing our expectations and predictions for what Tracfone will do in the near year, what we hope Tracfone will do, and also a look back at what went on in 2017 and the major changes and new phones.

Each year we share our predictions and expectations, and you can look back at our post from last year to see how we did.

Remember that this site (TracfoneReviewer) is not affiliated with Tracfone in any way. But we are passionate about learning and sharing information, and while our predictions are based on years of experience, they may not always be accurate and so we cannot guarantee any of our predictions.

Let's begin with some of the highlights of 2017.

Looking back at 2017 - Major News and Changes

Tracfone made some significant changes in 2017, and also released several popular phones. Here are the highlights.

  • Tracfone Ends Triple Minutes for Life - This was probably the biggest news story from Tracfone from 2017.
  • Expended iPhone options including the iPhone 5S, 6 ad 6S and iPhone SE
  • Tracfone releases several smartphones with large screens and 16 GB memory/2 GB RAM at under $200 (LG Fiesta 2/Samsung Galaxy J7 Sky Pro)
  • Tracfone Expands Brick and Mortar Stores

Although Tracfone released some great phones, they did not help their customer satisfaction level by ending the popular Tripe Minutes for Life program.

Most Popular Phones in 2017
We looked at which of our Tracfone cell phone reviews had the most hits, and created our list from there. This is somewhat unofficial, but we still found it interesting and wanted to share it.
  1. Samsung Galaxy J7 Sky Pro
  2. LG Fiesta 2 (and LG Fiesta)
  3. Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro
The Samsung Galaxy Sky Pro was the most popular phone from last year which comes at no surprise, considering it offers some of the best features and specs of any budget Tracfone to date.

Now that we've looked back at last year, let's get into our predictions and expectations for Tracfone in 2018.

What to Expect From Tracfone in 2018

The Future Phones from Tracfone
We expect Tracfone to release several new phones in the next few months that will be modest upgrades to the current smartphones such as the LG Fiesta 2 and Samsung Galaxy J7 Sky Pro.

In 2017 we saw Tracfone release several popular budget phones from major brands (LG and Samsung), and we predict they will offer updated versions of these phones, or similar offerings.

Tracfone will likely also continue to offer older high end phones at a discount, such as the iPhone SE that they offered in 2017. Could we see the iPhone 8 or other popular high end smartphones? Perhaps, but they will come at a high cost which is .

The Future of Tracfone BYOP
Tracfone's 'Bring Your Own Phone' program has grown in popularity as they ironed out issues and made most phones compatible. We will have noticed users running into issues activating certain phones, but with enough patience this can usually be overcome. In many cases it is even possible to simply swap the SIM card from one phone to another, effectively switching service to a new phone at any time with no other effort involved.

We expect Tracfone to maintain the BYOP program although they likely won't make any significant changes to it. Users can already bring almost any unlocked GSM or CDMA device to use with Tracfone.

The Future of Airtime
Tracfone will continue to encourage customers to use the smartphone cards instead of the regular airtime cards. For many users, the smartphone cards are a better deal because they offer more data and texts compared to regular cards. But for those who don't use their data or texts, it still doesn't make sense to use smartphone only cards.

A major change from 2017 was when Tracfone stopped including new phones with Triple Minutes for Life. The obvious aim with this is to encourage (force) users to buy the smartphone only cards instead of regular airtime cards (because without triple minutes, the regular airtime cards are not a very god deal).

We don't expect any major changes to Tracfone going forward into 2018 and see them working at streamlining their product offerings to make it more simple, and more attractive to potential customers.

What we Want from Tracfone in 2018

Here are some of the things we want Tracfone to do in 2018 (just in case someone from Tracfone reads this)

Add Triple Minutes for Life Back to New Phones.
While we understand why Tracfone ended triple minutes (to move users to the smartphone only cards) we think they should add triple minutes back to new phones because of the large number of unhappy customers. We noticed numerous comments stating dissatisfaction in Tracfone for changing this from loyal customers. While we hope Tracfone changes this, we don't expect they will.

Improve Customer Service and Fix Lingering Issues with BYOP Compatibility.
Small steps were taken by Tracfone in 2017 to improve customer service by opening several physical stores. However, there is still plenty of room for improvement and we hope they will make customer service more of a priority.

Tracfone also has some lingering issues with the BYOP program as a number of customers have run into issues trying to activate certain unlocked smartphones. Tracfone needs to fix this immediately.

Add More Budget Smartphones at Reasonable Prices
What we really want from Tracfone are more budget phones with good performance at under $200. Devices with 32 GB of memory and at least 2 GB RAM are generally necessary for an everyday device for most users. There are a number of unlocked devices in the sub $200 range that some consumers are already buying to use with the BYOP program (such as the Moto E4 Plus) but we want Tracfone to offer them directly for greater availability.

That concludes our Tracfone predictions, expectations and hopes for 2018!

Share your own thoughts in the comments below! What should Tracfone change in 2018?

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Thanks for visiting and Happy New Year!

14 comments :

gene tascott said...

For my money Tracfone could come out with a minutes only card. I very rarely use text and wifi coverage is so universal that the only time I use data is when wifi is not available. Too bad there isn't a way to swap text/data between phone, My text and data buckets are hardly ever used.

Anonymous said...

I'm not receiving voicemail notifications in the status bar. Can anyone help? I have 2 different phones on my account and neither is receiving the notifications.

Steve said...

I wonder if the next move will be to get rid of the regular airtime cards altogether and just sell the Smartphone only cards,would make more sense now that the triple for life min program is no longer used,any thoughts on this???

pattysoo said...

And, get rid of the bonus minute codes!!! Straight up pricing, no gimmicks.

Karl Kilian said...

I'd like to see Tracfone offer up some intermediate-level smartphones, in the $150-#350 range. As you said, 32GB of storage and 2GB RAM would be great, as would 2.0GHz multi-core processors, NFC (Near-Field Communications), and better front/back cameras.

I know they exist, it's just a matter of whether Tracfone will actually sell such phones themselves. Sure, there's always the BYOP program, but for me it's easier to get a phone directly from Tracfone (and be guaranteed it'll work on their network).

Anonymous said...

To anon. 12/31 about voicemail: you can do that thru the menu when you call your
voicemail. Just call your voicemail and listen to the menu options.

Cecilieaux Bois de Murier said...

I see a real need for a phone minutes card that doesn't add service time.

Thomas Weaver said...

The only issue I've had with Tracfone recently was I lost access to my voicemail when I switched to my BYOP. Otherwise, not bad.

Coldfoot said...

I am trying to upgrade from my old TMFL Pixie Glitz to a smart phone style of phone. Problem: CDMA vs. GSM. As I understand it, 90% of tracfone customers are GSM but they only offer the lower end $30 - $70 (not on sale) frumpy versions to their GSM customers. The CDMA customers, who are only 10% of their consumer base get offerings of Galaxy Luna J3, Sky and Pro versions of smart phones for around $100 or more. What gives?

Anonymous said...

I'm experiencing the same issue. My old phone has died, and I need a new one. Tracfone does not have a relationship with the local CDMA tower, so I have to have a GSM phone in order to get coverage.

However, Tracfone's GSM offerings seem to be dwindling. The only ones available are the LG Rebel 2, and some cheap ZTEs. All of them have absolutely horrible reviews on Tracfone's website, and not much better on Walmart, Amazon, etc.

I really don't know what to do. I don't see any carriers that can beat $100/yr plus optional data cards as needed for trips, but I am very concerned that Tracfone is getting rid of GSM, while refusing to provide CDMA coverage at my location.

Anonymous said...

I agree better phones at budget prices. 32Gig and maybe better operation systems for samsung or LG phones. Please

Anonymous said...

I'm other way use texting but never calling so jave over 4000 minutes of talk time. Glad they have text time for 5.00 and year coverage only no minutes just days for 50.00

Shawn Gagne said...

They need to bring on board Tracfone branded Motorola Moto E4 and E4 Plus most reviews are very favorable for these two budget phones and they have decent specs.

Robert Emmerich said...

I just ordered 1 each of the top 2 phones last year from Amazon, J7 Sky Pro for $68 and Fiesta 2 for $50. I'll give 1 each to my 2 teen sons, haven't decided which yet, so I'm here looking for more info. My wife and I each own the #3 phone, J3 Luna Pro, so my kids will have better phones, but for those prices it was worth it.