Cheap phoning means using a no contract phone with a no contract plan, as compared with earlier high cost plans.
Cheap phones include the Moto G and Moto E and also the Windows Blu phones.
Cheap plans include the Republic Wireless plan, the Puretalk plan, and the Freedompop plans, among others.
But that is not all there is to it. There are choices between analog and digital phoning plans. The latter may not require a phone at all but simply a small tablet.
Analog phones are the old wired landlines and talk/text only cell phones. But cell phones now provide also digital data phoning.
Using digital data from cell towers can be extremely inexpensive, whereas WiFi data is cheap
Republic Wireless uses cheap WiFi phoning to keep the costs to the minimum by switching from cell tower based analog phoning to free WiFi data.
Any device linked to WiFi thus offers a cheaper way to phone.
There are a variety of ways to phone using WiFi. The most prominent of these is Skype, but there are others, too.
To phone from Skype to landline phones requires an annual payment about $35. To receive landline calls requires having a special Skype number.
These arrangements can be avoided by simply switching away from landline phones for your main calling.
There are other such so-called apps for phoning from smartphones and tablets.
One of these is Talkatone, and there are others which offer free phoning.
Talkatone works to and from landline or cell analog phones.
It ought to be possible to use an Amazon Kindle Fire 6 as a smartphone like the iPhone at a small fraction of the cost.
But if you have a landline anyway, and most of your phone during is done on devices, then there is a really better way than Skype.
Google Hangouts makes phoning easy, including video phoning and conference phoning, such as between members of the same family in different places.
Hangouts is free but does require setting up a Google Plus account.
If these digital or data phone services are appropriate, it is therefore possible to use them anywhere with a hotspot such as from Freedompop for $10 a month.
Considering that a tablet is all that is needed, that might be one of the cheapest ways of all to phone.