Discover the gateway to a connected world with a free smartphone and tablet! In today’s digital age, staying connected is not just a luxury but a necessity. Fortunately, there are top providers who understand the importance of accessibility for all. Whether you’re a low-income individual, a student on a tight budget, a senior citizen with limited resources, or simply seeking financial assistance, this article will guide you on how to get your hands on a free smartphone and tablet. We’ll explore the leading providers offering these devices, unravel the eligibility criteria, and unveil the application process. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to bridge the digital divide and unlock a world of possibilities—let’s dive in!
Free Smartphone And Tablet (2023) – Top Providers
Lifeline and ACP are reliable government assistance programs that are managed by the FCC and available in all US states, territories, and Tribal lands. Lifeline offers discounts on monthly phone and wireless services, as well as cell phones. ACP, on the other hand, offers discounts on monthly internet services and connected devices, particularly tablets.
Note: While smartphones are usually completely free of charge, tablets come with a small fee of between $10 and $50, which is mandatory according to government rules.
To participate in Lifeline and/or ACP, you must be 18 years old, and normally, only one Lifeline and ACP benefit is available per eligible household.
Lifeline and ACP are distributed by numerous wireless companies that participate in these initiatives. Each company has a slightly different offer and most of them don’t participate in all areas.
When searching for the best provider, you must look in your own area, as you can only get benefits from a company that operates in your state of residence. Moreover, you must review the companies’ offers to see which one best fits your needs. The following are considered the best and most generous free smartphone and tablet providers and they offer both smartphones and tablets:
This company, known for its generosity in the Lifeline and ACP programs, provides customers with the opportunity to receive free Android and Apple smartphones and tablets of the customer’s own choice. Along with the devices, they offer a complimentary plan that includes free talk minutes, texts, and data.
How to Enroll?
To begin the application process, visit their website at https://airtalkwireless.com/ and click on the “Apply” button. Enter your ZIP code, select your preferred plan (note: to get both devices, choose the Lifeline & ACP Combo plan), and fill out the application form, ensuring that you provide all the necessary information and documentation. Once submitted, you can expect to receive a notification regarding your approval status in the near future.
Here is another excellent company participating in the Lifeline/ACP program, providing free phones and tablets, along with complimentary monthly service plans that include free minutes, texts, and high-speed data. Unlike many other Lifeline/ACP companies, Cintex also enables qualifying clients to choose the device models themselves.
How to Enroll?
To apply, simply visit the company’s website at https://cintexwireless.com/ and click on the “Apply” button. Enter your ZIP code, select your desired plan (Lifeline & ACP Combo), and proceed to fill out and submit the application form.
This provider participating in the Lifeline and ACP program offers complimentary unlimited talk and text, free data and hotspot services, as well as a free smartphone. Eligible customers also have the option to purchase a heavily discounted tablet if they wish to do so.
How to Enroll?
To enroll, simply visit the provider’s website at https://myeasywireless.com/ and enter your email and ZIP code in the designated fields. Click on “Enroll Now” and follow the instructions on the screen to complete the application process.
NewPhone is another Lifeline/ACP provider that offers the opportunity to receive a complimentary government phone and tablet. Additionally, they provide a free monthly service plan that includes high-speed data, talk, and text. Like AirTalk and Cintex (NewPhone’s affiliate companies), NewPhone also allows customers to choose their preferred devices.
How to Enroll?
To register, navigate to its website at https://newphone.com/ and select the “Apply” option. Enter your ZIP code, choose a suitable plan, and proceed to fill out the application form by providing all the required information and documentation that proves your eligibility.
Q Link Wireless
Q Link is a well-known Lifeline and ACP provider that specializes in providing complimentary tablets, and in certain regions, customers may also receive a free phone. Along with the devices, the company offers a free cell phone service that includes unlimited talk, text, and data.
How to Enroll?
To begin the application process, visit Q Link’s website at https://qlinkwireless.com/ and provide your ZIP code and email address. Click on “Get It Now” and carefully follow the instructions to complete and submit the application form.
StandUp Wireless is a significant inclusion among the top providers of complimentary government phones and tablets. This company stands out by offering free devices as well as a monthly service plan that includes free talk, text, and data at no cost.
How to Enroll?
To initiate the enrollment process, access their website at https://standupwireless.com/. Fill in your details in the designated fields, then click on “Begin Application” and carefully follow the instructions displayed on the screen to complete the form.
Last but not least is TruConnect, a great Lifeline and ACP provider that offers high-speed data, unlimited talk and text, a free Android smartphone, and the opportunity to purchase a tablet for only $10.01. Some of TruConnect’s plans also offer other benefits, which are worth considering.
How to Enroll?
You can start your application journey by visiting https://www.truconnect.com/, entering your ZIP code and email address, and pressing Apply Now. You must then follow the on-screen prompts to choose your plan and complete the application form.
Ways to Get a Free Smartphone And Tablet in 2023
Nowadays, there are several ways to acquire both a free smartphone and tablet:
- Government Assistance Programs: Government programs like Lifeline and the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) offer free or discounted smartphones and tablets to eligible low-income individuals. These programs aim to bridge the digital divide and ensure everyone has access to essential communication devices. This is by far the best and most reliable way to get both devices, as such, we will dive more into how to get a free device from the government in the following sections.
- Non-Profit Organizations and Charities: Many non-profit organizations and charitable initiatives distribute free smartphones and tablets to those in need. They often focus on specific demographics, such as students, seniors, or individuals experiencing financial hardship.
- Internet Service Providers (ISPs): Some ISPs offer bundled packages that include a free smartphone or tablet when you sign up for their services. These promotions are typically available to new customers or as part of specific plans. Such promo deals come with certain conditions and requirements.
- Community Programs and Local Initiatives: Keep an eye out for local community programs or initiatives that provide free smartphones and tablets. These programs may be organized by community centers, libraries, or local government agencies to promote digital inclusion within the community.
- Online Giveaways and Contests: Occasionally, there are online giveaways, contests, or promotional events where you can win a free smartphone or tablet. Participating in these activities can potentially land you a device without any cost.
Remember, availability and eligibility criteria may vary depending on your location and the specific programs or offers. It’s advisable to research and explore all these avenues to increase your chances of obtaining both a free smartphone and tablet.
Free Smartphone And Tablet (2023) – How to Get?
Now that we have explored the free smartphone and tablet top providers, let’s find out how to get free devices from the government. Mastering this process will improve your options of receiving your very own free smartphone and tablet. Here is the procedure:
- See if you qualify for Lifeline and ACP. You will probably have to qualify for both to get both devices. Luckily, Lifeline subscribers automatically qualify for ACP.
- See if you can prove your eligibility by providing acceptable information and documentation.
- Apply for a free smartphone and tablet. You must first do so through the National Verifier and then through your selected provider (hopefully one of the top companies listed above).
- If approved, you will hopefully receive both devices and begin to use your benefits.
Let’s not dive deeper into each one of those steps.
Do I Qualify for a Free Smartphone And Tablet?
As mentioned before, to receive both devices, you should qualify for both government assistance programs – Lifeline and ACP. In addition to having to be at least 18 years old or an emancipated minor, you must also meet the program-specific requirements listed below:
To qualify for Lifeline, your household must meet one of the following conditions:
- Your annual household income is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, which depend on the state and household size.
- One of the household members participates in one of the following Lifeline-qualifying programs:
- Veterans Pension and Survivors Benefit
- A Tribal Assistance Program
To qualify for ACP, your household must meet one of the following conditions:
- Your annual household income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines, which depend on the state and household size.
- One of the household members participates in one of the following ACP-qualifying programs:
- Any of the Lifeline-qualifying programs listed above
- Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program or School Breakfast Program
- Or if your household received a Federal Pell Grant in the current award year
Can I Prove My Free Smartphone And Tablet Eligibility?
To ensure that the benefits of the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) and Lifeline are given to those who truly qualify, proper documentation must be provided. Here are the required proof documents:
Proof Documentation for Lifeline:
- Proof of income: You can submit a tax return, three consecutive pay stubs, a prior year’s tax return, a current income statement or paycheck stub from your employer, a Veterans Administration statement of benefits, unemployment or worker’s compensation statement of benefits, or a federal or Tribal notice letter of participation in general assistance.
- Proof of program participation: You can provide a benefit award letter, approval letter, statement of benefits, or benefit verification letter.
Proof Documentation for ACP:
- Proof of income: See acceptable documents above.
- Proof of participation in a government assistance program: See acceptable documents above.
Additional Proof Required for Both Programs:
- Proof of identity: You can submit an official document such as a government, military, state, or Tribal ID, birth certificate, driver’s license, passport, certificate of U.S. citizenship or naturalization, permanent resident card or green card, or a government assistance program document.
- Proof of address: You can provide a driver’s license or another valid government, state, or Tribal ID, utility bill, mortgage or lease statement, or the most recent W-2 or tax return.
- Proof of emancipation (for emancipated minors only): You can provide a valid court document or your emancipation certificate.
- You may also need to provide proof of life, your Social Security Number, and other personal information.
To submit the documentation, you can either upload scanned or high-quality photos of the documents if applying online. If applying by mail, attach hard copies of the documents to the completed application and send them together in the same envelope. If you are applying through a specific carrier, contact their support for instructions on submitting the necessary documentation.
Application Process for a Free Smartphone And Tablet in 2023
As mentioned before, to receive both a free phone through Lifeline and a free tablet through ACP, you need to apply for both programs. The application process can be done online or by mail through the National Verifier. Applying online is faster and provides quicker feedback, but if you prefer a traditional approach, you can apply by mail.
For online applications, visit https://getinternet.gov/apply?id=nv_home for Lifeline and https://getinternet.gov/apply?id=acp&awsl=link-from-how-to-apply for ACP. Fill in all the necessary information and provide digital copies of the required documentation. Click “Next” at the end of each page and “Submit” at the end of the form. If prompted, log in or create a new account.
To apply by mail, print out the application forms for Lifeline and ACP. The Lifeline application form can be found at https://www.lifelinesupport.org/wp-content/uploads/documents/get-lifeline/LI_Application_NVstates.pdf, and the ACP application form is available at https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/wp-content/uploads/ACP-Application-Form-English.pdf. It is highly recommended to include a copy of the Household Worksheet for ACP, which can be obtained at https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/wp-content/uploads/lifeline/images/ACP-Household-Worksheet-English.pdf. Complete all the forms, attach physical copies of the required proof documentation, and mail the package to Lifeline/ACP Support Center PO Box 9100, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18773.
Once your application is received by the National Verifier, they will review it, assess your eligibility, and promptly notify you of their decision.
Finally, you have to apply through a selected provider to do so, you must first find a suitable option. Follow these instructions:
- Go to https://cnm.universalservice.org/.
- Enter your location, choose the program, and press Search.
- You will see a list of all the available providers in your area.
- See if any of the free smartphone and tablet top providers listed above are on the list.
- Compare the providers’ offers by visiting their websites (links provided in the generated list).
- Choose the company that best fits your needs and visit its website.
- Enter your ZIP code, select a plan, and access, complete, and submit the application form.
- If approved, you will be notified.
What Happens After Applying for a Free Smartphone And Tablet?
Once you have applied, you must simply wait for the National Verifier and the provider to review your application and notify you about whether or not you have been approved.
If approved, you will shortly receive a free smartphone and tablet via mail to the provided address. You will also receive a free SIM card, which will connect your devices to your free monthly service plan. This way, you will be able to enjoy free talk, text, and data on your devices.
In case your application got rejected, you can contact the National Verifier or the selected company and ask the representative for their reasons for rejecting your application. If you have simply provided invalid, incorrect, or incomplete information/documentation, you can ask to resubmit your application.
You can expect the company to reach its decision in a few days.
Best Free Smartphone And Tablet Models in 2023
Most Lifeline and ACP companies offer undisclosed mid-range Android smartphones and tablets with based features and 4G/5G connectivity. Their offer depends on availability, state, plan, and other factors. However, the companies that do reveal the available devices, currently offer the following models:
- Samsung Galaxy S9
- Samsung Galaxy S9+
- Apple iPhone 7
- Apple iPhone 8
- Apple iPhone SE
- Google Pixel 4 XL
- Samsung Galaxy A51
- LG G8 ThinQ
- Motorola Moto Edge 5G
- Samsung Galaxy Tab 4
- Apple iPad Air 2
- Alcatel Joy Tab 2
- Sky Elite T8 Plus
- KonnectOne Moxee Tablet
- And more
The Benefits of Getting a Free Smartphone And Tablet in 2023
Getting a free smartphone and tablet can offer several benefits:
- Enhanced Communication. These devices enable you to stay connected with friends, family, and colleagues through calls, texts, emails, and social media platforms.
- Internet Access. Both devices allow you to access the internet, providing a wealth of information, online services, and entertainment options at your fingertips.
- Productivity and Organization. Smartphones and tablets come with various apps and tools that can boost your productivity and help you stay organized.
- Educational Resources. Free smartphones and tablets provide access to educational resources, online courses, e-books, and educational apps.
- Entertainment and Media Consumption. You can enjoy a wide range of entertainment options on your smartphone and tablet, such as streaming movies, TV shows, music, and podcasts.
- Cost Savings. By receiving a free smartphone and tablet, you save money on the initial purchase cost.
It’s important to note that the specific benefits may vary depending on the provider and program you choose.