Author Topic: Help deciding on cellphone service  (Read 1900 times)

Ecky

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Help deciding on cellphone service
« on: November 18, 2013, 11:42:23 AM »
Hi all! My wife and I have had free cellphone service for the past few years through work but we're about to need to start paying for it ourselves. We both have 2 year old Galaxy S2 smartphones that were on AT&T's network. I'm quite happy with my phone but I'm not certain what direction to go in now. It seems I have three reallistic options:

1. Find a small carrier that uses the same bands as AT&T and switch service there - let's us keep our phones

2. Sell our phones (ebay around $100 each) and switch to another cheaper smartphone carrier (Republic?) - more options for potentially cheaper service

3. Sell our phones and get dumb phones


I've come to rely on having access to data. I use the GPS heavily for tacking busses and when traveling. I'm a vegan and use Google in grocery stores and when forced to eat out to look up ingredients. I also do a lot of class work on my phone in public locations which have sketchy wifi coverage. Wifi access is very poor where I live. I could, of course, live without a smartphone but I need a phone of some sort.

I don't know a whole lot about cellphone plans as I've never done the shopping for one myself. I could live with <300mb of data, I talk less than 100 minutes per month, and I use Google Voice for texting. My wife texts a ton but I suspect GV wouldn't be a problem for her once I show her how. She can cut down on her minites with Skype. For me, anything with data and a reliable dialtone will work.

We live in Tallahassee, FL. I'm not sure where to begin to compare plans. Feedback or suggestions wanted.

Daley

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Re: Help deciding on cellphone service
« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2013, 12:21:47 PM »

alanwbaker

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Re: Help deciding on cellphone service
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2013, 10:00:19 PM »
Hi Ecky,

An MVNO that uses AT&T's network would allow you to keep your existing phones.  AirVoice is one such MVNO and I use their $10 a month pay-as-you-go plan.  I only use cell data for Google maps and email so about half the minutes roll over each month.

AirVoice is described in I.P. Daley's link above, but a couple of things written there are no longer true:  "Online or Western Union purchasing of refill cards only. No device tethering."  For refilling they automatically charge my credit card $10 each month--easy peasy.  Device tethering/portable hotspot works fine on my Google Nexus 4.

Their support and their website are (cough) minimal, but once you're up and running you won't need either.  Note that they do not enable data by default; you have to tell them explicitly that you want it.

Daley

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Re: Help deciding on cellphone service
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2013, 10:17:54 PM »
AirVoice is described in I.P. Daley's link above, but a couple of things written there are no longer true:  "Online or Western Union purchasing of refill cards only. No device tethering."  For refilling they automatically charge my credit card $10 each month--easy peasy.

I know, I know... it's getting a little dated. I'm in the process of a major update as time permits. Honest. :)