Cell service providers compete relentlessly against each for new customers, to the point that they'll go so far as to blur the meaning of the word family. Case in point: You don't have to be blood relatives with people to sign up for a family cell plan, which can save you so much money that your piggy bank quivers with joy.
It's true; you can rope just about anyone into your phone's family plan. That includes friends, roommates, neighbors, anyone you trust enough to join you on the contract. Cell phone companies don't necessarily advertise this fact. But they don't hide it, either.
According to BillShrink, as many as 65 percent of Verizon's users alone sign up for multiple-user accounts, as opposed to paying for just a single line [source: The Consumerist]. That number alone should speak to the power of group spending.
The amount you save will always vary depending on the plans you select. That said, it's no stretch at all to say that in a family plan, you could very well spend less on a smartphone with a liberal data plan than you would on a single line that includes just a basic phone with no data plan at all.
So find a family and exploit it to lower your cell costs. It's what family ties are all about.