Prepaid carriers don’t offer smartphones like BlackBerrys for a reason: They don’t really have the data plans to back them up. Although some carriers like Boost offer “mobile Web,” which may sound like a data plan, it’s really only access to a wading pool version of the Web where you can check sports scores or the weather, but not much else. And though a handful of carriers like Cricket offer legitimate broadband data access, at $40 a month, it’s no bargain.
“For data users, it’s really not a good solution yet,” says Pawlikowski. “Basically, there is no prepaid solution. You really have to go postpaid if you’re using a data-heavy device.”