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So I'm going to need a new cell phone (clearly, for those of you… - Then You Get Up And Have Breakfast [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Whole lotta labia.

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[May. 28th, 2008|10:47 am]
Whole lotta labia.
So I'm going to need a new cell phone (clearly, for those of you who've tried to reach me recently). I think I know what my choice will be, and it's shiny shiny shiny. But if for some reason that doesn't work out, I'm putting it out to the interwebs. What is your mobile service? Do you like it? Do you think they shaft you? How often do you blow through your minutes? And for those of you with data plans (blackberry, Treo, iPhone, etc) do you use the data feature enough to warrant the expense and how good is the data availability? (Like, could I get a satellite picture of how long that thunderstorm is going to be sitting on top of us at Pennsic?)

Thank you, Interwebs!

[User Picture]From: dawntreader90
2008-05-28 03:11 pm (UTC)
i know other people bitch about Verizon, but i've been using them since 2002. i had one "fight" with them when i first signed up because they didn't have the minutes set up correctly, but they fixed the problem and i'm good to go ever since.

also, i'm on my second Nokia phone EVAR. it took 5 years for the first one to die. (granted, i don't USE mine as much as most people, or throw it around a lot, but there ya go.)
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[User Picture]From: dawntreader90
2008-05-28 03:13 pm (UTC)
oh, i have a $45/month, nationwide plan so i don't pay long distance. i have 400 minutes/4000 nighttime/weekend minutes. even when i took my trip to Kansas and was on the phone for what felt like ALL THE TIME, i didn't go through all my daytime minutes.

but again, i don't use my phone all the time for a primary phone and there are other phone minute plans.
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[User Picture]From: ipso__facto
2008-05-28 04:13 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I'm also with Verizon. They have absolutely the best coverage in the DC/Baltimore area, right now. (I say this as someone whose ex is a contractor for Sprint who knows this ish - don't go with them, btw, they are in MAJOR trouble.) Verizon's customer service can suck, but so can everyone else's, really. Also, the thing where you can talk to any other person on Verizon without using minutes? Pretty amazing. I THINK they still have that. Anyway, we're on some sort of family plan, but we never run out of minutes and I spend at least 45 mins out of every day on the phone, sometimes many more hours when I'm catching up with out of town people. It's also the nationwide plan, so I can use it anywhere and not be roaming. I dunno about their data plans, since I don't use that. I'm pretty happy with them, though, as happy as I could be with a cell phone company. It's all about shafting the customer, but I feel like I am at least holding my own with them. :)
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[User Picture]From: herrgooch
2008-05-28 04:16 pm (UTC)
Finally, my experience as a seller can be helpful!

Most plans are the same except for minute counts. All but the most basic of plans includes long distance, unlimited nights/weekends, and nationwide coverage (for a nominal fee). Most plans (save the newer 'unlimited calling' plans) can have additional lines added, again for a nominal fee.

The important thing to check is coverage areas. The big providers generally have agreements with smaller networks, but those agreements only cover voice, not data. So, if you've got Sprint, you have to get signal from a Sprint tower to use the Vision features. Each carrier will provide a coverage map on their website... Sprint and VZW's maps are zoomable to the county level.

Also (and continuing with the Sprint example), you can access data features without paying the extra $25/month for the Vision package. You can access them on a pay-per-use basis, with a small charge per MB accessed. If you're playing networked games or using navigation features, the charges can rack up quickly.

My plan, for the record, is with Sprint. The plan itself is no longer available (I'm on a 300 minute share plan - 2 phones... the shortest available now is 800 minutes, I think). I am getting shafted, but it's because of the add-on features. The Vision pack ($25 + $10), unlimited text ($15 each), insurance ($7 each), roadside rescue ($4 each) gives me a phone bill around $134 after an employer discount. I could trim that a bit, but it's not worth the hassle to me.

And, if I haven't thrown enough out there, I'm due to upgrade and I'm looking at the Blackberry Pearl. I've cleverly slipped in a link to my favorite hardware comparison site, which will let you see the phones available by brand or carrier... along with user reviews. My current phone is the LG Fusic, which has access to some websites and useful features (like navigation and weather radar) without requiring an actual data plan.

If you're looking for hardware recs, I like LG, Samsung, Sanyo, and Nokia. Nokia's only last because they waited so long to make a flip. I discourage Motorolas (there's always something glitchy about Motos) and Audiovoxes (they just feel cheap).

My carrier preference is Sprint, partly because of the phones, partly because of the discount (which they extend to a good number of large and small business employees), partly because I've had them for four years and haven't had any problems with mobile or customer service. At least, no problems that weren't partially my own fault. :-)

I'll go back to my corner now...
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[User Picture]From: wizardglick
2008-05-28 04:47 pm (UTC)

I have a Treo 750 with a full data plan. Last Pennsic, did literaly download satellite maps to see when the next thunderstorm was going to roll in. Very handy.

The provider is at&t, but my phone is provided by the office, so I don't know how much it costs or how many minutes I have, even (I don't talk on the phone anywhere near as much as the Princes here, and the minutes are all pooled).

Windows Mobile 6 is a big improvement from WM5. I would buy a version 5 device today. However, it's still windows, so it's still got UI features totally inapropriate for a hand-held devices, and it still needs rebooted every once in a while.

Nicest things about have a PDA phone is that you can run software apps on it. For instance, I have a shopping-list program, A checkbook tracker, a "personal info" organizer, and a few games.

Network availability here in the city, and Pennsic is fine. Traveling across rural PA, kind of sketchy but not bad considering the mountains. Rural Coneticut? Forget about it.
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[User Picture]From: robins1stwife
2008-05-28 06:55 pm (UTC)
I like my phone plan (t-mobile) but we know it wouldn't really work for you....so I am really just writing to urge you to decide which you want soon, cause I miss you....
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