CellBreaker busts you out of your two-year contract without breaking the law

How to escape your phone contract
Lots of phone owners would like to switch carriers, but the majority are locked in for two years. No one wants to pay a large, early termination fee to break out of their cell phone contract. Enter CellBreaker, a new service that monitors cell phone contracts for legal breaches, and then notifies the consumer when they can escape without charge.

Officially launched in mid-June, CellBreaker ran a small 12-month pilot program from January 2014, and claims to have saved thousands of customers across 50 states a grand total of $160,000 in early termination fees. The marketing describes it as a “consumer justice platform,” but it’s not an altruistic service.

When you sign up with CellBreaker you’ll pay an initial $5 fee for “contract analysis.” If CellBreaker detects a breach of contract on the part of the carrier then the customer is alerted and they can switch to a new carrier within 7 days. Customers are then charged between 10 and 20 percent of the Early Termination Fee (ETF). The average ETF is $350, so with CellBreaker you’d pay $35 or $70, plus your original $5, which is a decent savings, if you’re determined to switch anyway.

If CellBreaker doesn’t detect a breach, then it continues to monitor your contract and notifies you if the carrier changes terms, which would enable you to get out of it. The 500 Startups company claims that contract breaches are common, and it can be difficult for consumers to detect them, or take action when they do, though it’s not impossible. The plan is to extend the platform in the future to cover expense tracking and help make cell phone contracts a bit more transparent.

There are also other ways to avoid ETFs, without digging into the small print of your contract and filing paperwork. For example, T-Mobile, Sprint, and U.S. Cellular are offering to pay your ETFs for you, if you switch to them right now.

Mobile

Looking for flexible and inexpensive phone service? Check out our favorite MVNOs

Looking to switch from a major carrier to something a little more affordable? Luckily, there are a ton of great MVNO options to choose from. Check out our guide to the best MVNOs, from Boost Mobile to Google Fi.
Smart Home

Ring Alarm vs. Nest Secure: Which one is right for you?

Thanks to the advance of technology, it's become really easy nowadays to secure your home and protect it from thieves, intruders, and unwanted guests. Which one of these two top contenders is right for you?
Mobile

5G’s arrival is transforming tech. Here’s everything you need to know to keep up

It has been years in the making, but 5G is finally becoming a reality. While 5G coverage is still extremely limited, expect to see it expand in 2019. Not sure what 5G even is? Here's everything you need to know.
Deals

Sign up for Verizon Fios Triple Play and get a free Amazon Echo, Prime for a year

Verizon is now offering its Fios Gigabit Connection Custom TV and Phone service with Amazon Prime tossed in. While valid, you can sign up for the company’s Triple Play package, which includes all three Fios services, for $80 per month.
Social Media

#ThrowbackThursday is only the start: Instagram hashtags for every day of the week

Not getting your hashtag fill with #ThrowbackThursday or #ManCrushMonday? Here's a list of some of the more popular Instagram hashtags, so you can outfit your next post with the proper tag, regardless of what day it is.
Mobile

Protect your new iPhone with one of our favorite iPhone XR cases

Apple's new iPhone range is the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.
Social Media

Instagram could be making a special type of account for influencers

Instagram influencers fall somewhere between a business profile and a typical Instagram, so the company is working on developing a type of account just for creators. The new account type would give creators more access to analytical data.
Computing

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.
Mobile

Apple's iOS 12.1.1 makes it easier to switch cameras in FaceTime

After months of betas, the final version of iOS 12 is here to download. The latest OS comes along with tons of new capabilities, from grouped notifications to Siri Shortcuts. Here are all the features you'll find in iOS 12.
Mobile

5G Coverage

Curious about 5G and what it means for you? Well here is our awesome one stop shop for all things 5g.
Mobile

The Galaxy A8s is Samsung's first with a hole-punch camera cutout

Samsung is building exciting, technologically innovative midrange phones, and the latest to be revealed is the new Samsung Galaxy A8s, which may give us an idea of what the new Samsung Galaxy S10 will look like.
Cars

Best Products of 2018

Our reception desk has so many brown boxes stacked up, it looks like a loading dock. We’re on a first-name basis with the UPS guy. We get new dishwashers more frequently than most people get new shoes. What we’re trying to say is: We…
Outdoors

Puma revives its classic 1986 smart shoe, complete with high-tech heel hump

More marketing stunt than serious effort to dominate the smart shoe space, Puma is about to re-release its classic RS-Computer Shoe. The high-tech footwear from 1986 was a breakthrough at the time, despite its unsightly heel hump.
Smart Home

Uber Eats is testing a system for cheaper meal delivery

You know how Uber Pool offers cheaper trips if riders share a car? Well, Uber Eats is currently testing the same idea for meal delivery, and it could mean cheaper orders for customers.