Guide on How to Get Free Tablet With EBT 2023

For over a decade, eligible telecommunication carriers (ETC) offered a free cell phone service from the government with a free 2-inch flip phone. Later in the years, between 2017-2018 if I remember correctly, the companies dropped the flip phones for a free 5-inch smartphone. Then now, you can enjoy up to an 8-inch viewing experience if you know how to get free tablet with EBT 2023 has to offer.

I’ve just noticed some of the companies participating in this program even promise a 10-inch tablet, almost the standard size of a student laptop. And all you have to do is apply, then USAC will pay for it from the $14.1 billion the Congress passed for the broadband assistance program.

The affordable connectivity program (ACP), the official name of the broadband benefit, has been around since 31st December 2021. And just like the name, the program aims to help the underserved community afford an internet connection, as well as an internet-enabled device with a larger screen.

FYI: Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) is the institution the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has assigned to distribute monies for ACP. It’s also responsible to collect monies for Lifeline and distribute them to eligible telecommunication carriers (ETC).

About the Free Tablet from Government

As aforementioned, the free tablet from the government is part of the discounts in the ongoing affordable connectivity program (ACP). You’ll only get the program from the service providers that have registered with the FCC through USAC to participate.

Lifeline carriers often register with USAC to offer free cell phone service, making them automatically eligible to participate in ACP. And as a participant of Lifeline, you’ll also automatically qualify to get the broadband benefit with the free tablet.

If applying for the free tablet as a new customer, you need a low income at or below 200% of federal poverty guidelines. Or else a proof you participate in an eligible government-funded program such as:

  • Medicaid
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
  • Veterans Pensions & Survivors Benefit
  • Federal Pell Grant in the current award year
  • Federal Public Housing Assistance Program (FPHA)
  • Food Stamp or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
  • Head Start, Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, and other Tribal programs
  • School Lunch or School Breakfast Program (including from the USDA Community Eligibility Provision)

Ps. Nearly all the assistance programs are what you would use to apply for the free cell phone on the Lifeline program. Hence, the reason I’ve said earlier you’ll automatically qualify for the free tablet from the government if on lifeline benefit.

What’s the Free Tablet with EBT?

In the eligibility requirements above, you’ll notice nothing about EBT. The reason for this is that EBT (or electronic benefits transfer) is the electronic system that people on SNAP benefits use to pay for food.

EBT works a lot more like a debit or prepaid card. That’s, when you checkout your food orders, the total cost amount will come from your SNAP EBT account. But unlike regular debit cards, a SNAP EBT card is only usable at authorized grocery/ food stores and retailers.

As per our theme question, SNAP/ Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (or Food Stamps in some states) is eligible for ACP. And this means you can get a free tablet with an EBT card statement as your proof of eligibility.

Take note, when applying for the free government tablet, you need a proof copy of eligibility, identity, and residence address. But for security reasons, you shouldn’t share your EBT card information just anyhow. A copy of the EBT statement will be the best to use as your proof of eligibility.

Is the Free Tablet With EBT Worth it?

Similar to the Lifeline phones, the question of whether you should get a free tablet with EBT or not varies from person to person.

There are about a dozen cellular and internet service providers that have teamed up with the government to give free tablets. But out of the many options, only a few stock decent tablets brands like Apple iPad and Samsung Galaxy, as we’ll see later.

How to Get Free Tablet With EBT

The kind of tablets the rest of the providers give you are entry-level brands. A perfect example is the Torch Wireless Free tablet that high chances will come as BLU M8L 32/ 1GB or FOXXD T8 16/ 2GB.

When we’re talking about Android, such memory status is not very promising for running heavy apps/ high-graphic tasks. It’s the reason you will find many consumers on community forums complaining about the free tablet from the government freezing a lot.

However, for basic tasks, such as calling, texting, video streaming, or browsing, the specs should suffice. If this is okay with you, then the free tablet with EBT benefits is worthwhile, considering it’s free to order.

Oops! The Free Tablet With EBT isn’t 100% FREE to Use

When we’re talking about the cell phone and service with the Lifeline program, FREE is indeed “free”. You usually don’t need to pay anything at all, as the government covers the whole bill through the funds USAC collects from postpaid and prepaid carriers.

Sadly, when we’re talking about the ACP tablets with EBT (or any other eligibility criteria), free is not FREE here.

True, the carriers and internet service providers participating in the program allow you to apply free of charge. They will also mail the device to your address without having to pay even the shipping charges. But a day or several after receiving the order, you will get an invoice showing a due payment of at least $10.01.

In early 2022, a number of service providers faced heavy criticism for advertising the tablets free, only to ask for this $10.01 charge. The criticism, though, started back in 2021 when the tablet discount was under the emergency broadband benefit (EBB).

Nonetheless, the truth is that this fee on the government tablets is legit. What happens is that ACP brings you a tablet under a one-time discount of up to $100 for a connected device. But the FCC provides that the individuals applying must “contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price”. $10.01 that most of the participating providers ask falls within this range.

How to Get a Free Tablet with EBT Today

Well, the first step how to get free tablet with EBT today is to make sure you’ve met the basic requirements. And as seen earlier, the first of these requirements will be participating in SNAP (or Food Stamps) benefits. It’s the only government-funded assistance program that gives EBT cards, anyways.

If you don’t have an EBT card yet, it’s pretty easy to apply for as long you meet the required criteria, including:

  • A total household gross monthly income at or below 135% of the latest federal poverty guidelines. (Gross income means the total amount before any monetary deductions)
  • Your household resource accumulation must be around $2500 if there are no senior members (and $3750 for a household with a senior/s). Resource accumulation includes assets and monetary value your family possesses at the very moment.
  • Lastly, you must be working (or registered to work or in a training program). You should also maintain the necessary working period of 30 to 80 hours as per your state. If you reduce working hours or else quit, your EBT account will get disqualified without any delay.

If you meet these main requirements, the next step to apply for the EBT card will be to visit your State SNAP website. Each local government offers the EBT card under different names.

For instance, there’s Golden State Advantage EBT Card in California, Horizon Card in Utah, Colorado Quest Card in Colorado, et cetera. You can check the SNAP State Directory to quickly access your local office website or telephone contacts.

The 11 Best Providers You Can Get Free Tablet with EBT

At the time of writing, up to 1653 service providers (of mobile and fixed broadband) are offering affordable connectivity programs. But out of this number, I’ve been able to identify only about a dozen you can get a free tablet with EBT. Then from this dozen lot, it’s only eight providers I could find what kind of tablet they give you.

Band of the ACP Free TabletProvided byBuilt-in MemoryScreen Size
Apple iPad 4Cintex Wireless32GB ROM, 1GB RAM8” w/ 1536 x 1024p  
Apple iPad 3Cintex Wireless32GB ROM, 1GB RAM8” w/ 1536 x 2048p  
Samsung Galaxy Tab S3Cintex Wireless32GB ROM, 4GB RAM8” w/ 1536 x 2048p  
Samsung Galaxy Tab 4AirTalk Wireless32GB ROM, 3GB RAM8” w/ 1536 x 2048p  
Samsung Galaxy Tab S2AirTalk Wireless32GB ROM, 3GB RAM8” w/ 1536 x 2048p  
Apple iPad MiniAirTalk Wireless32GB ROM, .5GB RAM8” w/ 768 x 1024p  
Vortex Tab 8StandUp Wireless32GB ROM, 2GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
BLU M8LTorch Wireless32GB ROM, 1GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
Sky Devices Elite T8 TabletStandUp Wireless32GB ROM, 2GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
XMOBILE X8Torch Wireless32GB ROM, 3GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p
Sky Devices Elite T8 TabletEasy Wireless32GB ROM, 2GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
Q Link Scepter 8 TabletQ Link Wireless16GB ROM, 1GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
Cloud Mobile Sunshine EliteTruConnect16GB ROM, 2GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  
Moolah Mobile 10-Inch TabletMOOLAH Wireless32GB ROM, 3GB RAM10.1” w/ 800 x 1280p  
NUU Tab 8 4G LTEStandUp Wireless32GB ROM, 2GB RAM8” w/ 800 x 1280p  

Cintex Wireless

Cintex Wireless is the overall best provider of the free tablet with EBT. You can get more decent brands of the smart device, such as Apple, Samsung, Lenovo, et cetera.

Of course, the high-end tablets will not be brand-new as in the case of low-end brands. They are the certified refurbished series from HTH Communications, the parent company of Cintex.

The five best brands of tablets you can get with EBT on Cintex Wireless at the moment include:

  • Apple iPad 4, with 32GB internal memory & 1GB RAM
  • Apple iPad 3, with 32GB internal memory & 1GB RAM
  • Alcatel Joy Tab 2, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S3, with 32GB internal memory & 4GB RAM
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab S2, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM

AirTalk Wireless

 AirTalk Wireless is another brand under the umbrella of HTH Communications and currently offering ACP benefits. The best part, you’ll actually enjoy high-end brands of tablets from the government, as with Cintex Wireless.

In fact, all the five brands of tablets I’ve listed on Cintex above are also available with Airtalk Wireless. Then a few other options to this list include:

  • Apple iPad Mini, with 32GB internal memory & 0.5GB RAM
  • KonnectONE Moxee, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab E, with 16GB internal memory & 1.5GB RAM
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab A 2020, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM

Torch Wireless

Torch Wireless is the third cellular carrier on my list you can get a free tablet with an EBT SNAP account. It’s not famous for sure. But it’s a great option if you reside in an area with great AT&T coverage.

Furthermore, I was able to get in touch with customer care, and the kind of tablets Torch Wireless gives you can be either:

  • BLU M8L, with 32GB internal memory & 1GB RAM
  • FOXXD T8, with 16GB internal memory & 2GB RAM
  • XMOBILE X8, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • Maxwest Nitro 8, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • Maxwest Astro 8q, with 32GB internal memory & 2GB RAM
  • Hyundai HYTAB PLUS 8LB1, 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM

Easy Wireless

Easy Wireless is another phone carrier registered with the FCC to provide Lifeline and ACP benefits. It’s also one of the few that are offering a discount on a tablet if you qualify for the ACP benefit. Nevertheless, don’t expect to receive an Apple iPad or Samsung Galaxy Tab.

The kind of tablet Easy Wireless gives you once eligible will be most likely the Sky Devices Elite T8 tablet, with 32GB internal memory & 2GB RAM. If this is not available, the mobile operator may send a different brand with similar/ closer specs.

StandUp Wireless

If in a place with a good T-Mobile signal, StandUp Wireless is participating in both Lifeline and ACP benefits. The data allowance isn’t the best, unfortunately. But you will have a chance to get a one-time discount on a tablet PC.

StandUp Wireless, like most providers participating in the program, doesn’t advertise the kind of tablet you will be getting. But after extensive research, I’ve come to learn you will get either:

  • Sky Devices Elite T8, with 32GB internal memory & 2GB RAM
  • Vortex Tab 8, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM
  • NUU Tab 8 4G LTE, with 32GB internal memory & 3GB RAM

Q Link Wireless

Q Link Wireless also pings back to T-Mobile towers if the network is the best in your area. It was also one of the providers that encountered heavy criticism for charging ten bucks for a tablet they had advertised as free.

However, the company made changes to its website and social platforms. The page now reads you will get a “New tablet” if willing to co-pay $10.01. The crucial part they’ve forgotten to mention is the brand of the tablet to expect. But after a thorough search, I’ve come to learn you will get the branded Q Link Scepter 8 Tablet, with 16GB of internal memory.

TruConnect Wireless

TruConnect is yet another decent lifeline phone provider you can get ACP benefits. The operator is better than most, as your monthly service allowance includes free international calling. It also has free reward bonuses you can redeem phone discounts, airtime top-ups, et cetera.

Furthermore, TruConnect is offering a free tablet with EBT if you won’t mind paying the $10.01 FCC fee. And the brand of tablet the operator offered the last time I checked was Cloud Mobile Sunshine Elite, with 16GB of internal memory.

MOOLAH Wireless

MOOLAH Wireless is an internet service provider from Atlanta, GA. However, it has the license to offer both fixed and mobile broadband in other states, which comes through the AT&T network. (You should know AT&T has the second-best LTE coverage in the country, including in various rural areas).

MOOLAH Wireless is also participating in the ACP benefit, whereby you can get a free tablet and service. The tablet you get is a 10-inch MOOLAH Mobile brand, with 32GB internal memory and 3GB RAM. And unlike most providers on this program, you won’t be co-paying the $10.01 fee here. MOOLAH Mobile will take care of it.

EnTouch Wireless

Would you like to take advantage of the nation’s best coverage for free? EnTouch Wireless is one of the few lifeline mobile operators that utilize the Verizon network. And that means you will have a signal in most places, including Western regions like Oregon where T-Mobile and AT&T may struggle.

EnTouch Wireless has also been handing out the free tablet from the government if willing to co-pay the ten bucks FCC demanded. The sad part is that the carrier doesn’t mention the tablet they will be sending and my search was also futile. But I guess the operator offers an 8-inch Sky Devices tablet as the company (Sky Devices) is the same one they deal with for the Lifeline phones.

Maxsip Telecom

Maxsip Telecom is another service provider I’d not say is famous- at least not in my area. But they have registered to participate in the ongoing affordable connectivity program. You can get a free monthly service and a tablet if willing to pay a one-time activation fee of $20 (not $10.01). The only setback is that I’ve not been able to find any details of the kind of tablet to expect besides it being a 4G LTE model.

Excess Telecom

Last on the list is Excess Telecom, a wireless phone provider headquartered here in California. It primarily deals with the affordable connectivity program, which you can apply from either of the fifty states across the country. But there is an add-on yearly plan of 25GB for only $12. Then the company is in the process to launch a Prepaid Deluxe yearly plan where you will be getting a new tablet every six months.

Nevertheless, Excess Telecom doesn’t share details of the kind of tablet you get. And the worst part is they haven’t reached back to me on the same query.

Remember You Can Get the Free Tablet Once

Although there’s still more to cover, these are the most relevant details you should know on how to get free tablet with EBT or SNAP account. The program is easy to join if you’re at the required low-income gap or participate in a supported federal assistance program. You only need to attach copies of your official documents to prove your eligibility, identity, and place of residence.

It’s worth reminding you the FCC only allows a single enrollment per household. And this would mean you won’t qualify for the free tablet if already registered to receive the discount on another provider. It will also be impossible to qualify if another member of your family has enrolled, unless you are living in different households.

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