The spotlight is on MetroPCS because their family plan is just plain sweet, especially when you get four or five people on it.
Granted, local + long distance + text messaging + calling features (Caller ID, Call Waiting, Voicemail) for $40 per month may seem a bit high if you're spoiled by Pocket, or CricKet competing with Pocket, but the story changes when you add lines to the mix. You don't just get a discount on the additional line...for the second, third and fourth lines on a plan, each line takes $5 off the tab for ALL lines. So two lines are $35 apiece, or $70 total. Three lines add up to $90, four for $100, five for $125. When I saw the 4-lines-for-$100-per-month pitch I thought there had to have been a typo somewhere; even Pocket would charge $35 per month for that sort of plan, though Pocket comes with picture messaging. Their family plan, though admittedly higher-spec than MetroPCS's, gets you three lines for $100, not four.
So the effective cost for the second line on the plan is $30, the third line $20 and the fourth line a crazy-low $10, the price of an add-a-line feature on contract plans, where minutes have to be shared. Apologies for overreacting, but that's just insane if you can get four people on one bill, or a whole family using the service.