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What Cellphone and system do You use???

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 10:22
budperm View Drop Down
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I am a hold-out as far as cellphones go.  I have always felt that aiming advertising at Americas youth and basically brainwashing them into believing they can't live without something is morally wrong.  That being said, I also am quite disgusted with the prices and both ends of the call being billed.  I currenty have an older flipphone and don't text or multi-media.  My plans is only $19.99 a month but is really $25.69 a month after hidden fees and taxes (another major gripe)!  For that I only get 50 minutes a month and any text are 20¢ each.  Lately I've been hit with unsolicited texts I don't even open and found out there's a month $3 fee for any texts.  So the 1st one is really $3.20.  AT&T claims that they can't turn off my text as I never use it and am tired of the unsolicted ones costing me money.
 
Well, my daughter joined and told me about "Straittalk" no contract service through T-Mobile and sold at all Walmarts.  I invesatigated and found that Starittalk also offers a "Bring Your Own GSM Phone' Plan.  For $45 a month (no hidden fees) you get unlimited Voice, Text and Internet.  This is their top of the line service previously offered only on the T-mobile system.  Now with the BYOP option you just buy their SIM card ($15) and you can stay on your curent system if desired.  This is perfect for me as T-Mobile has terrible coverage in my area but AT&T has good service!  Only catch is you pay full price to buy a phone.
 
So guys, I'm looking for opinions on your GSM based smartphones.  I started doing some research a couple of days age and quickly realized that cellphones go obsolete faster than PCs do! Whacko  They also cost about as much!  I want to get one thats fairly current and am leaning toward the Samsung Galaxy SII for AT&T as it's got the newer Super Amoled Plus display and dual core miro.  It comes with Gingerbread and is supposed to be upgradable to Ice Cream Sandwhich.  I've located one for $358 new and unlocked.  If money wasn't a factor I'd probably go with a HTC One X.
 
One of the main things thats confusing to me is that there are umteen versions of the AT&T Galaxy SII.  Different Micros and Graphics engines etc.
 
My principle usage will be voice and internet.  I'm interested in the Banking Apps, GPS and a ballistics apps and I'm sure once I dive in several others...  SO internet speed and display clarity are high on my list.
 
Please kick this around and give me your input!!!  Thanks in advance!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 10:50
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I'll look and see if I have anything at home that I can send you.  Thinking a have a sim card phone you can have but can't remember what phone it is, maybe a droid but I'll check.  Normally you can buy some fairly good phones on craigslist for a lot cheaper.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 10:53
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One can get all hi- tech and go with something like your Samsung, or an Iphone, or get simple and go with Net10, or some other plan similar to T-mobile.
Net10 type plans- you buy a phone and purchase "refill minutes" cards, with several options available.
I keep talking about NET10, because they have a plan that's $25 for 750 minutes a month and has as good of a coverage map as anyone- works in the boonies.

Decent phones on "refill" plans can be had for $45, but such plans are usually lacking apps, like you mentioned.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 10:57
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Don't get a damn Droid!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 10:59
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We experimented with T-mobile, Sprint, ATT, in that order.  Setlled on Verizon... only service that worked at my house (at the time) and works most of the places I 'visit'.  No service works well IN (it's all the metal and concrete) my house, so still tied to a landline.  I find all the cell services to be overly expensive and disingenuous about their coverage/service.  Smoke signals are attractive...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 11:01
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I have AT&T service and an iPhone, but I am required to have a smartphone with full email, etc., for work, and I can only get AT&T where I hunt and camp, plus all of my family and my wife's family has AT&T, so all of our calls back and forth don't count against our monthly minutes. 

I will say this about texts.  My dad learned to text a couple of years ago and keeps and unlimited text plan on his phone.  He even got rid of his old flip phone and got a slider phone with a keyboard because he started sending more and more texts.  The REASON he got the unlimited texts, though, is for safety reasons.  He's 72 and still spends a ton of time out in the woods and in remote areas.  In a lot of those places signal strength is present, but not great, and usually not strong enough to have a clear voice call. 

Text messages use a different set of channels than voice calls.  They use the channels that the cell phone companies use to switch you from tower to tower while traveling, determine if you are roaming, etc., or to set up a voice channel when someone calls you or you make a call.  I.e., your phone and the towers are constantly using the SMS (text) channels to make sure you have the best signal, to set up a voice channel when calls come or go, and because they only use very little data, if you can't get enough signal for voice, you can often still send a text when voice calls aren't possible or effective.  That's a great safety net if you happen to get hurt or get stranded out in the woods. 

My thoughts only.  I haven't heard of the company you are evaluating, but as long as it's GSM and that service gives you a signal where you need it, I'd say go for it.  Whatever you do, I would do some research on the strength of antenna of the phone you're using.  All phones are not created equal in that regard, either.  Best of luck, Bud.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 11:19
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Thanks for that offer G!  See what you have.
 
Net10 , Straittalk etc are all Tracphone subsidiaries.  Most use the T-mobile GSM system.  The Straittalk 'Bring your own phone' is a pay as you go monthly plan too.  The only difference is you can use another carriers GSM system for their better coverage.  Granted apps procured thru the carrier probably won't be available but there are tons of free Google apps available.
 
Dan from what I'm reading you have two options at home.  use Wifi to link your phone if you have a wireless router.  You can also buy a Cell repeater for about $100 that has an either an Omni directional or high gain Yaggi directional antenna you can install in attic or outside and the repeater antenna you put at the opposite end of house usually in the basement and turn the whole house into it's own cell.  The one's I looked at would support up to 4 GSM and or CDMA phone simultaneously.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/18/2012 at 11:24
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Deck you have an excellent point about texts.  I didn't know they were actually sent differently.  My kids have texted for years now and yes they can text at home but don't have reliable voice at all.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 16:25
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I have Samsung Galaxy S2 with AT&T and it works well.  Before I had an iPhone 4 and could not get rid of it fast enough.  I have yet to find an Apple product that I like (and lord knows I have tried a lot of them).  They are super popular and probably for a good reason, but I'll be damned if I understand what that reason is.  As far as I am concerned, Apple has the worst user interface design known to man.

My work requires me to always be connected, so I have to use smartphones.  I found that with smartphones, screen size and quality is a huge deal.

As far as cellular service goes, i have tried them all and they all suck, except in different areas.  Find something that works where you spend most of your time.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 16:29
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How do you like the display on the S2?  Thats the AMOLED plus display isn't it?  It's also a dual camera phone 8MP and 2MP for video chatting.  I figure I might as well get one of the better current smartphones and be done with it.  Wish I could afford a HTC One X...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 16:55
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Originally posted by budperm budperm wrote:

How do you like the display on the S2?  Thats the AMOLED plus display isn't it?  It's also a dual camera phone 8MP and 2MP for video chatting.  I figure I might as well get one of the better current smartphones and be done with it.  Wish I could afford a HTC One X...

It is the best phone I have had to date and it was the best Android phone back when I bought it.
The display is very vibrant and I like it quite a bit.  It was one of the main reasons I got it.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 20:24
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I've heard great things about teh display and its speed.  Have you experienced any lock-up or freezing issues.  Earlier Galaxy models had battery overheating problems and short battery life too. How's yours?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 20:28
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I have an Android Ally now.  It is quite good in most respects, but when it has to work very hard it tends to overheat and very poor battery life.  Just phone operations are pretty good, long battery life.  Thinking of getting Bionic or Droid 3 to carry over with me.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 21:12
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 I'm happy with my simple phone and simple plan because it has coverage every where I go, will text, browse, or record a msg to self and has a camera, sort of. The best thing about it is, it's cheap.

 I've kinda got a love/hate thing with my phone. I'm likely to "leave" it home or "forget" to charge it.
 I think voicemail sucks- I mean- I see the call on caller ID, I can call  back if I want, why go press all those buttons to erase some inanity when they encountered my "leave a msg" msg and blurted something out?
And call waiting is the aggravatingest thing-...
 "Oh- got another call- hang on". I'm not waiting. I'm done.

I guess the most important thing about my phone is that it works and is cheap... now, this discussion has led me through some self discovery of sorts- what it all boils down to is...
I'm cheap.

I guess with my Highlander's name, I come by it naturally.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/20/2012 at 21:38
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Ilya,
I totally agree with you about Apple stuff.
I even won an iPad in a sales contest and gave it away- didn't even take it out of the plastic- I thought it was so useless.

Volumes have been written about the brilliance of Steve Jobs in this or that manner, but all of those tomes miss the point.
Steve Jobs' true brilliance was that he knew that there were millions of 'em (suckers) out there and he could get all those trendy hip and cool hoseurs to go stand in line for hours in malls (Kyrie, eleison) and pay three prices for something just so they could feel at- oneness with their hip and coolness.
Every one of which voted for Obama. Except for Rush Limbaugh.

I know I could have sold the iPad for $600 or so and maybe made a trip up to Powder Valley to stock up, but that would have meant foisting the damn thing off on some poor soul and frankly-
I didn't want to have to pay back the bad Karma.

Obviously I talked about how cheap I was in my last post, but a man's got to have his principles.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/21/2012 at 05:43
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Alan
We're NOT cheap!!!  Other people are cheap!  We are frugal! Cool
 
Yes, damn it I want measurable value for my money!
And I'm NOT inclined or willing to pay thousands extra just to keep up with the Jones!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/21/2012 at 07:28
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Bud the only one I had was a droid and it wasn't a sim card phone.  Sorry my man, I'd have gladly gave it to you had it worked.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/21/2012 at 07:42
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Thanks for chacking G.....seems my luck is still holding! Bucky
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: June/21/2012 at 07:52
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You could always apply and try to get an obama phoneBucky
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