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How to read broadband labels (and why the fox they matter)

By Courtney Prather

Originally published April 16, 2024


Last Updated April 16, 2024

Mint Fox with a sign that says "How to read broadband labels"

You might have heard some of the buzz about broadband labels and are wondering what it’s all about… or actually, this is probably your first time hearing about them. Either way, you’ve come to the right place because in this article we’ll go over all the broadband label basics, like:

  • What broadband labels are
  • Why broadband labels matter
  • How you can use broadband labels to find the best wireless plan for you
In this article
Mint Fox wondering "what are broadband labels anyway?"

What are broadband labels anyway?

Beginning in April 2024, the FCC will require all wireless providers (including yours truly) to feature broadband labels with their plans to provide consumers (such as yourself) with, to use the FCC’s words, “clear, easy-to-understand and accurate information about the cost and performance of high-speed internet services.” 

Think of broadband labels as nutrition labels but for wireless data plans instead of, say, boxes of cereal. Mmm, cereal. Broadband labels are a step towards making more wireless providers’ plans as transparent and easy to understand as possible. You could say the FCC is taking a page from our book, since transparency is kind of our thing.

Mint Fox wondering what do broadband labels mean for him?

What do broadband labels mean for me?

Broadband labels are required to disclose important information about the price, introductory rate of the plan, data allowances, and broadband speeds, so you know exactly what you’re getting before you purchase. Broadband labels have been created to make it as easy and clear as possible for you to view the relevant information about the plans and performance of each plan. 

Similar to comparing nutrition labels, this makes it easy to see what’s actually in your plan. Only in this case, there’s no point in overpaying for a wireless provider when another is providing more or less the same speeds at a much lower price or without a long contract (hmm, kinda sounds like Mint). So next time you’re looking at a new wireless provider and your B.S.-ometer is going off, now you can check the broadband label to see what the provider is really providing. 

Picture of a broadband label and Mint Fox pointing at the monthly price and the additional charges and terms

What’s the most important information included in broadband labels?

The “most important” info will vary from person to person, of course, but here are some things you will definitely want to know when considering a wireless provider. 

Monthly Price 

This section will let you know what you’ll be paying for the service every month. It will also help you know if the price is an introductory rate, and if so, how long it lasts before going up to the regular price. 

This is an important one to check because it might not be clear that the price advertised is an introductory rate. Checking this info before selecting a plan can clarify what you’ll be paying for after the introductory rate. This section also shows how long your contract will be if you sign up for this plan. We don’t do contracts, so no need to worry about that with us. 

Additional Charges and Terms 

Make sure to check this section for any fees you’ll have to pay on top of the cost of the actual plan. This can include government-mandated fees, one-time fees at time of purchase, and any other fees, based on the provider.

Speeds provided with plan include:
-typical download speed
-typical upload speed
-typical latency

Speeds Provided With Plan 

This covers a few different things, such as: 

Typical download speed

How fast your phone can receive data from the internet – how long it takes for a page to load. 

Typical upload speed

How fast your phone can send data to the internet – how long it takes to post your latest food pic online.

Typical latency

How much delay exists to download or upload something, measured in milliseconds – like how long after you click “Share” it takes for a post to actually be shared. The lower the latency, the less time this process takes.

Data Included With Monthly Price 

How much data you’re getting with the plan each month. More importantly, this is also where you can see if and how much a provider will charge you if you go over your allotted data amount. At Mint, we don’t do overages. If you use up your high-speed data before the end of your billing cycle, you always have the option to buy additional data before the next one begins. It’s super easy to do and super affordable, so there’s that.

So Mint has broadband labels, too?

We sure do. When you click on any of our plan offerings, you can see all the info you need to decide if Mint is the right choice for you, or compare us against other carriers to determine who can give you the most bang for your buck. You can also call 855-752-2357 to hear our label info read out to you, if you prefer. Again, after “savings,” “transparency” is our second favorite word. So broadband labels are just another way to let people know about what we offer. Tldr; premium wireless at an affordable price. 

We hope that having this broadband information gives you the power to decide what carrier is best for you. And if you happen to see that it’s Mint Mobile, all the merrier. Still not sure? You can learn more about what our plans can do for you check out our article on how Mint Mobile can help you do more. And if you’re still wondering Is Mint Mobile good? Check out what real Mint Mobile customers have to say about it.  You can also check out our quiz to see which of our plans is the best fit for you.

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