If eligible at Assurance Wireless, a low-income user gets a free Kyocera Jax cell phone and 200 free monthly minutes for local and long-distance wireless calling. Voicemail, call waiting, caller ID and access to 911 also come free.
While the Assurance Wireless service was announced on Wednesday with eligibility to more than 1.5 million lower-income households in New York, the program is also available in North Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.
SafeLink Wireless, on the other hand, works with the FCC's Lifeline program. While the SafeLink offering is similar to Assurance Wireless, it has fewer monthly minutes and is good for one year.
The SafeLink Wireless program requires annual verification. Learn more about Assurance Wireless and SafeLink Wireless in my new article on low-income cell phone service.