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If you missed it, my look into the cost over two years of prepaid and contract carriers. The numbers may surprise you.
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Jessica Dolcourt's profile photoLionel D's profile photoJack Hodges's profile photo
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Yes, exactly. Of course, these are just example numbers -- not gospel, and there's much to trade off.
 
I plan to get the Nexus 4 for $300 on the $30/mo T Mobile pre-paid 'web plan' and supplement the 100 calling minutes with a Google Voice #. That comes out to $1,020 over 2 years and I don't have to suffer manufacturer skins, carrier apps I don't want, a blocked Google Wallet and longs waits for Android updates. I can even get a Nexus 5 next year without committing financial suicide on carrier contract penalties. For this I can survive without LTE on T Mobile's HSPA+42 network 
http://www.androidauthority.com/hspa-vs-lte-which-one-is-better-78120/
 
+Jack Hodges FYI - I saw a post from +Android Central saying that Google Voice has a bug in 4.2. You may want to verify - hopefully a fix is on the way. 
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