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TOPIC:   Cell Phone - Please Advise 


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60SIXTY
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7/23/10 8:29 A

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DH went ahead and ordered my cell phone online from Consumer Cellular, without telling me. I had wanted to go to Best Buys to look at the phones in real life to see how they fit my hand etc.
But, if I had done that, I wouldn't have ordered the model that he did, because the buttons are so tiny. I would have thought that I needed a magnifying glass. Now that I have worked with it, and entered some of my phone list, I am getting along with it just fine. Who knew? Not me, but apparently DH did.

the problem, we can't seem to get Net-10 to release my old phone number. It has been 36 plus hours.
Consumer Cellular staff speak English as well as the news reporters on US TV. But, Net-10 is outsourced and extremely difficult to deal with. They language skills are less than mediocre in English. I still say that if they spoke German, I might be able to communicate with them.


Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

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"To lose a healthy one pound of fat per week, all it takes is a 500-calorie deficit per day."


VALI_T
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7/18/10 3:05 P

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Saving money is why I've always had a prepaid cell phone. I hardly ever use my cell phone and I didn't (and still don't) want to have to pay yet another bill each month. My hubby was going through his prepaid minutes so fast that we just got him another monthly plan, but I'm still using the prepaid.

Heck, I went 36 or 37 years of my life without having a cell phone and I really don't even want to have one at all, except for emergencies and times when I'm driving and I really need to pull over and call someone. (It actually does happen.) I've contamplated having no home phone and just going to a cell phone, but I still don't want to pay a monthly bill and I don't want people to be able to get in touch with me at all hours of the day and night.

In the end I've gotten rid of our Qwest home phone account and gotten an Ooma Telo. We use a MagicJack ($30 a year) for my husband's international calls (he's from South America) but it only works when the computer is on. The Ooma uses our high speed internet connection but the computer does not have to be on for it to work. I had to pay $200 to purchase the Ooma, but in about 4 or 5 months it will pay for itself by having allowed me to cancel our Qwest phone service....and after that, all I'll ever have to pay for phone calls in country are the same old regulatory fees and taxes that we've all been paying on our phone accounts for years.

Sorry. None of that actually has anything to do with cell phones.emoticon I just got to thinking about the possibility of using a cell phone as our home phone....and it all just came out.emoticon

Edited by: VALI_T at: 7/18/2010 (15:07)
There was much rejoicing!


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60SIXTY
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7/18/10 1:31 P

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What I have learned.
DH checked consumer reports. I believe he said that T-Mobile is ranked the best.
He went ahead with ordering from "Consumer Cellular" without telling me. He phoned the company for some clarification. The person who answered the phone spoke English as clearly as anybody on the state or national news.
emoticon They speak English & so do I. [and I don't understand much else. I can count to 5 in Spanish and know what peepee means. I can count to ten or higher in German and know some German songs.
I also know what essen and tisch mean.

Anyway, I guess that is what we are doing. There is no contract, so I guess it would be considered a pre-paid. [Except I thought that pre-paid meant nobody knows who has the phone. I guess I watch too much of CSI.]

I will let you know how this goes.
Our land-line is part of a package with the computer.

I thought this thread might help others who are considering modifying what they have, etc.
One way or another, there are a lot of options out there to help save those $$$.

Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

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VALI_T
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7/17/10 1:58 P

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After I posted my last message an ad appeared on the page for a cell phone company with relatively inexpensive unlimited plans that claims to have nationwide coverage. Their web site was PureTalkUSA.com. Might be worth checking out.

Edited by: VALI_T at: 7/17/2010 (13:58)
There was much rejoicing!


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VALI_T
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7/17/10 1:56 P

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I used to have Verizon prepaid before I tried T-Mobile, got screwed by them, and finally switched over to Tracfone. In my area their signal was really good almost all of the time, but Verizon was the first cell phone company to really screw me so I won't go back to them. I've never had a cell phone where I had to pay a monthly bill so I have no advice at all on that aspect of using a cell phone.

Anyway....it seems like if there are cell towers in your area you ought to be able to find some cellular provider that wouldn't have so many blackout areas. Most of the cell companies share towers with each other so most of them at least have halfway decent access all over the country. But if you live in a rural area where there aren't that many cell towers you may have those blackout areas regardless of which company you have your cell service through.

There was much rejoicing!


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60SIXTY
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7/17/10 8:43 A

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I am beginning to figure out the site.
You sometimes have to know your server.
Tracphone advertises whose towers they use, but I don't remember who. They rent from others.

What was interesting, in over a 5 mile radius from my home, none of the towers are owned by a cell phone company. One was owned by cable tv. 2 owned by the railroad, 1 by the radio station, and all the others by mysterious sounding companies.

I entered a comment on how Verizon doesn't work in our area. Most of the comments by other people were too old to be valid. One by a college student in a neighboring town said that the whole campus had suddenly lost cell phone service at the beginning of a month a couple years ago from Verizon. They figured that Verizon broke their contract with the towers. That is scary.

Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

Frugalists and Simple Living [co-leader]
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ndividual.asp?gid=21800


"To lose a healthy one pound of fat per week, all it takes is a 500-calorie deficit per day."


FLUTTER34
Posts: 680
7/16/10 11:38 P

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I seldom use my cell phone except to call for emergancy help, so all you are saying is new to me. Good luck in getting better service. Flutter


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VALI_T
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7/16/10 9:22 P

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Thanks for this link. The site doesn't say that Tracfone has any towers anywhere, but I've never had any problems with mine. Granted, I don't use it that much and I mostly use it here in town. But I've never had any problems with reception on any of the trips we've taken. Even out in the middle of nowhere. I've got the basic cheapest cell phone I could get and it does okay. But then maybe I've just been really lucky....

There was much rejoicing!


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60SIXTY
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7/16/10 8:05 P

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www.cellreception.com/
this link is suppose to be helpful in analyzing if your cell carrier has towers in certain locations.
I haven't tried it yet.

Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

Frugalists and Simple Living [co-leader]
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ndividual.asp?gid=21800


"To lose a healthy one pound of fat per week, all it takes is a 500-calorie deficit per day."


60SIXTY
60SIXTY's Photo Posts: 24,902
7/16/10 6:33 P

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I emailed my "expert" brother and just heard back. He said he was involved in research about phones for his company. He said the ability of a phone to pick up a tower does depend on the quality. He said think of the quality of reception on a cheap radio vs. and expensive radio. I asked him to recommend more specifics regarding a phone.
We are ready to leave the current company I am with over them not crediting us with minutes paid for.
But when we choose the next company, I want to start out with the right phone to begin with.

Edited by: 60SIXTY at: 7/16/2010 (20:04)
Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

Frugalists and Simple Living [co-leader]
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_individual.asp?gid=16395

Team Co-Leader for OSTEOARTHRITIS OF THE LOWER BACK
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ndividual.asp?gid=21800


"To lose a healthy one pound of fat per week, all it takes is a 500-calorie deficit per day."


TEDYBEAR2838
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7/16/10 5:49 P

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That's a great question & I want to read the responses also.

I can't imagine the phone with more bells and whistles being a better phone for signals, but I'm not a tech.

I think stick with the less expensive. It's mainly a ripoff the higher priced ones and they don't work in certain areas also.

I have Virgin Mobile and love it.

Other friends have Net 10 and the ones you have.

GOOD LUCK

Nancy a.k.a. Teddybear

Psalm 121:2 My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.
=================
When you choose the behavior you choose the consequences. (Dr Phil)



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60SIXTY
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7/16/10 3:17 P

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We are not into high tech for our cell phones. We see it only needed so that family can reach us when we are not home, but mainly for safety when on the road. We drive about 20-45 miles each way through the country side in four different directions to get to the homes of different relatives. We can text, phone, and have roll-over minutes.

We currently have one Trac-phone and one Net-10. They use the same towers. Cost us about $26 a month for the two together. Two years ago, we could go any direction for at lest 200 miles and also drove to Colorado a year ago and had good service and towers everywhere we went. The only place we had problems were in a national park where there were no towers.

In the past 6-8 months, all the sudden, we can drive to any of the four relatives mentioned above and be without service for 4-5 miles at a time. We find this disturbing alone. My brother thinks it is because we have a basic phone and just need a higher tech phone - even though we are not paying for the higher tech services.

The bigger problem. On my phone, they have quit adding minutes in February. I had a lot of roll over minutes, so still have about 200 minutes, and I have been rationing my minutes for a couple months. We quit paying them a month ago after many frustrating phone calls with out-sourced, foreign speaking support services. We have also contacted the company on line.

We are afraid they will cut us off any day now. So we are checking other companies again. AT&T is suppose to have excellent coverage of towers in our area. They have a local cell phone office, that we visited. Costs upward of $60 per phone and require a minimum of a one year contract. My neighbor has used them for over 5 years, and has been required to renew the contract every year.

AARP Bulletin advertises CONSUMER CELLULAR.
The best we can figure, they use AT&T towers, and, do not require a contract. And, have a 45 minute/45 day money-back guarantee of satisfaction. We don't know what language they speak.

If we switch both our phones, there is one package with CONSUMER CELLULAR that has all the bells and whistles that is $40.38 for both phones together. That is cheaper than AT&T for one phone. There are other packages that would be around $30 for the two phones. [these prices are with the AARP 5% discount]
This is their website.
www.consumercellular.com

I realize that what works in one part of the country may not in another.
But, does anybody have any experience with CONSUMER CELLULAR?
Does anybody think my brother is right that the basic phones cannot pick up a tower in the same location as the real expensive ones can?
Is it worth spending %40 to %100 extra on the phone itself, even if you are not planning to buy the bells and whistles package.
Any other suggestions?

Edited by: 60SIXTY at: 7/16/2010 (15:28)
Linda - North East Indiana, USA `Goal to build myself up to reach 1,000 fitness minutes per month.

Frugalists and Simple Living [co-leader]
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_individual.asp?gid=16395

Team Co-Leader for OSTEOARTHRITIS OF THE LOWER BACK
www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/groups_i
ndividual.asp?gid=21800


"To lose a healthy one pound of fat per week, all it takes is a 500-calorie deficit per day."


 
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