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Walmart to offer no-contract unlimited cell phone plans for $45 a month

Walmart is planning on offering its own cell phone plan on Sept. 20, the retailer announced in a press release on its corporate website.

Called Family Mobile, the new no-contract plan will offer unlimited calling and texting for $45 per month. Additional lines will cost $25 per month. The service will be powered by T-Mobile and will be sold at 2,500 stores on Monday.

The retailer offers a new concept in data plans as well. Phones will come with Internet access in the form of preloaded 100 megabyte “WebPakTM,” which is a refillable card that can be used to browse the Internet, make international calls and purchase apps, ringtones and games. Additional WebPaks, price to be announced, can be purchased in stores or online. Unused time (as if!) never expires.

This should be welcome news for families struggling to control data costs. When you run out of time, you have to buy more, so there will be no overage fees. That should offer an easier way to manage and control monthly cell-phone expenses.

The plan can be used on a wide range of phones made by Nokia, Motorola and Samsung, including smart phones running the Android Operating System.

This is great news for consumers. The move by the world’s largest retailer will likely put pressure on other large cell phone carriers like AT&T and Verizon to offer similar plans, ultimately driving down costs.

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