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I need some cell phone advice, please.

 
 
mac11
 
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:24 am
I guess I'm going to finally break down and buy a cell phone soon. (I will NEVER, NEVER use it while driving. That's such a pet peeve of mine that it has prevented me from owning one.)

Can you offer any advice? I'm reading up on cell phones for the first time. Do you like yours? Hate yours? Please share your wisdom!
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 4,651 • Replies: 21
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husker
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:30 am
I don't have one yet either Wink
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Slappy Doo Hoo
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:32 am
Can't live without it. Actually don't have a land line anymore, it would just be a waste of money to me. You just have to figure out how often you're going to use it, where you're going to call, ect, and find the plan that suits you best.

Be careful while driving and using the phone...you'll break down.
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:33 am
I broke down.....
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bigdice67
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:33 am
I love my Ericsson t39m alot! Even when I had problems with it... But I have to buy a swedish phone as a swede, don't I? It has a bunch of jazzy features that I never use. What I do use frequently is the short message service function, short sms. And all kinds of adresses and phone#s, I put them in there. I don't use the calendar function that often, but I don't really need it!

I don't download any songs or pics from the 'net, too expensive. Don't use GPRS or the WAP-functions, WAAAY to expensive, and such a tiny screen...

Get one that's easy to use, i.e. fast and understandable menues to navigate with. A good phone salesman should have time and knowledge to explain it (almost) all to you.
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Piffka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 09:35 am
I hate mine. You know that stupid commercial where the guy is saying "Can you hear me now?" Well, I can't in several key locations, and this is ATT which, one would think, would have the best service. It also turns out the ATT phones can't be worked on by non-ATT folks. grrrrrrrr

If I had it to do over, I'd talk to some teenagers in my area who have cell phones. "Cells" are cool for them and they discuss them at length... like hair styles and clothing. It turns out teens know the best deals, the companies with the best coverage, the newest, coolest phones, which ones have good long-distance. It does depend on your area, so ATT might actually be good where you are!

Be sure to read the fine print about when evenings and weekends times start and don't get locked into a two-year contract. You might also try dickering... tell one company you're thinking of going to another and see if they'll give you some extra freebies.

Good luck and try to get a phone jack for your car even if you aren't going to use it while you drive. It sure comes in handy of your battery is low. (If you can possibly get them to throw in an extra battery... take it!)
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eoe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 10:48 am
I love my cellphone. Having one is comforting. The great thing is, it has an off/on button. You take calls when you want.
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 10:53 am
eoe, what brand/model is it? Would you recommend that brand/model in particular?
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eoe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:04 am
My phone is a Nokia. It's not the cutest or the slickest but I've never had any trouble with it, unlike friends with those cute little star trek models that go out on them all the time. A friend just last week said that she wanted to go back to her old cell because the new one she has is a pain. It's adorable but what good is it if it doesn't function properly?
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:24 am
What ever you do do NOT get service through Cingular!

They advertise pretty good monthly rates add on all sorts of "hidden" charges for every dang thing imaginable. They also changed an "internal policy" which ended up voiding my contract with them. They tried to double my plan rate and bill me retro-actively for it. When I complained about being billed retroactively for changes that I was never told about they terminated my service and then claimed that I owe them a hefty early termination fee for failure to pay my bill.

CINGULAR SUCKS!
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:27 am
Wow fishin', thanks for the heads up! What are you using now? Would you recommend it?
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:27 am
fishin'- I have Cingular and have had NO problems with it. I have an old Nokia phone, that is not the slickest, but I love it. (It's a dinosaur, like me! Very Happy )
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littlek
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:34 am
I had one, for quite awhile and i mustered enough strength (and lack of money) and canceled! I am happier ever since. I agree that Cingular is terrible, I was very unhappy with it - part of the reason why I canceled. Constant mistakes on their part, charging me late payment fee each month even though i had it set automatically to come out of my credit card, once they charged me twice, etc... AND lousy signal coverage, even in cities - parts of Boston, namely.

Verizon looks better, although I have not a personal experience.
As to the make of the phone, I was always very happy with NOKIA (had a few) - very durable, allows you to customize all sorts of things (i love the different ringings for different people), and good service.
I also had an Ericson that I was reasonably happy with, although I find them much more confusing to navitgate through, I got constantly lost in the menu. I absolutely hate Motorolla - they break down a lot and only have the most basic features, not cool at all.
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dagmaraka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:36 am
OOOOOOOOps, I am not LittleK, I am just on her computer as she has the permanent connection and I don't. I'm allowed, I swear! The post right above is from me!
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:39 am
Laughing Does littlek have any cell phone advice to add to yours, Dagmar?
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dagmaraka
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:41 am
I think she might, she has an Ericson and hardly ever uses it. I am now scurrying off to seek a secure hideaway!
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Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:47 am
Take a look at this:

http://www.myrateplan.com/wireless/

It'll give you some sense of the sort of service that you need.

The things that you need to look for in a cell phone service is:

How much will you use it?

Will you use it mostly during prime time, or nights and weekends, or only for emergencies?

Will you use it in your local area or for out of town calls?

Will you keep your landline phone?

Will you give out your number to friends? Remember, most cell phone service charge both for incoming and outgoing calls.

Do you want a local, regional or national calling plan? Be very careful about national plans. They say that there is no extra long distance charges, but many companies charge roaming out of their network. Roaming can cost a fortune! If you make only an occasional long distance call, you are better off getting a local plan, and a phone card from Sam's or Costco. They cost a few pennies a minute, and go thru "800" numbers.
Then you are only using minutes for the call.

For instance, very few people have my cell phone number. I use it mostly for local calls when I am out of the house. On the weekends, I have a long yakfest with my brother and son, who are out of town. I have a 29.95 plan which gives me 250 prime time minutes, and 3250 nights and weekends. (I was lucky. They dropped the n&w minutes to 1000 on the 29.95 plans, but I was "grandfathered" in". Even with 1000 minutes, I still would never use all my time.

Be very certain which plan is good for you. I have heard stories where people really got zapped because they did not choose the right plan for them!
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Mar, 2003 11:51 am
Thanks everybody for the great advice. Keep it coming!
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kerver
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Nov, 2003 01:07 pm
I have a cell phone, I move around alot so it's the most efficient means of communication. I could probably live with out it, but family and friends would never know what country I was in and it's also saved me from being stranded with my car a few times. I believe that motorola is about the best brand(at least where i'm from). I also had a pet peeve for people who talk on there cell while driving until i got my own cell phone. I don't talk and drive all the time, but I am guilty of doing it sometimes.
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MissBee
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Nov, 2003 01:35 pm
I used to love my cell phone. I had my Ericsson since '99, when I was still living in Europe. It was perfect, no monthly bills, no contracts, just prepaid cards and I used to pay like $5 or $10 a month for my calls and messaging. It was great because I could also send and receive messages from my boyfriend's e-mail in the US.
Then I moved to the US last December and everything changed. Shocked The US is still in diapers as far as mobile service goes. I'm not very happy with my deal now. I have an Alltel plan and a Motorola. I pay about $40 a month and I rarely even use my phone. If I used it more it wouldn't be bad, but most my family and friends are all overseas.
So now I decided I'm gonna go with a prepaid package. I think it's better if you don't use your cell phone a lot. Cool
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