Verizon Adds More Data To Prepaid Options

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As Verizon continues to get beat up on in the press by T-Mobile, the nation’s largest carrier isn’t happy just sitting back and taking it. Big Red continues to roll out deal after deal, and even attack T-Mobile back. In the latest volley of deals, Verizon has upped their prepaid offerings to now include 3GB of data with their $45 and 6GB of data with their $60 plan. While it doesn’t quite reach the MVNO “unlimited” levels, the fact that plans continue to increase on all the major carriers, without affecting pricing, is a great thing. Probably the largest positive to this deal is that for a family of 4, you can walk away with a decent handset in the sub $100 range and pay just $45 a month per line for Verizon’s service. This makes the monthly cost for a family of 4 $180 a month for the ability to use 3GB each.

When the 3GB isn’t quite enough, you can purchase a 500MB, 1GB or 2GB data add-on that are good for 30, 90 and 90 days respectively. 500MB of data will only cost you a $5 top up. The 1GB raises the price to $10 and the 3GB is just $20 more. The 1GB and 3GB add-ons are good for a full 90 days as well. It’s also worth noting that Verizon’s prepaid services do not have surcharges on top of them, though sales tax may be added in your area. Remember the additional bonus data requires that you are signed up for AutoPay, so no shopping discount refills to save a buck on this one.

The two year cost of the Verizon Prepaid program for a signle user on the $45 a month offering is $1080, plus device. This compares to almost $1725 for the same option under their postpaid offerings after taxes and fees have been added. As you can tell from those numbers, the prepaid offering is quite the steal if you want to move to Verizon. Again, devices like the Moto E or HTC Desire 526 will set you back less than $100 to get started with the savings on the Verizon prepaid plan. If you want more phone, selections include the newest devices from LG, Samsung and Apple, but be prepared to pay an upfront cost of nearly $900 for the upper tiered devices as they all come unlcoked and ready to use on any GSM caerrier in the US or worldwide. If you think this offer is right up your alley, hit the link below to check it out.

Link: Verizon Wireless Prepaid

Hidden Data Mongers And High Speed Data Usage

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As an editor of a smartphone blog, I hate to see it when rogue Apps destroy a users battery, performance or even worse, go on a data stream spree using up your cellular data instead of rolling on to the Wi-Fi network it is supposed to be hooked to. Unfortunately, this is exatly what my Samsung Note 5 did to me last night as I remoted in to a PC via Chrome Desktop Remote. What happened over the next 10 to 15 mintues was the Note logged off of the Wi-Fi connection, slipped back to mobile data and then proceeded to run up over 125MB of data.

I’ve shot off a few emails to Samsung today to see if there is any explaination to the random behavior, but I’m fully expecting a ‘this is your fault’ or maybe the ‘device needs to come in for service’ thing. I know that that is the simple answer for everything wrong with our smartphones today, at least according to the manufacturers, but the carriers always try to pin the blame on them as well, so you do have to wonder if some of it may be true. For the time being, I’m making the official PSA to make sure to shut off your mobile data if you are connected up to a Wi-Fi connection – or just somewhere you won’t be needing it.

As someone that had Google Play Music go rogue last month for a 250MB download and then had Google Chrome Remote do it again this month, it only makes sense to me to shut down that connection until I need it for something. Not only will it save me some needed data for when I need it, but it will also save me a hit to the pocket book if a few choose to go crazy within the same billing cycle. Of course, if you are on an unlimited plan, you don’t need to worry, but if you aren’t, keep track of your Apps that are chewing through your data.

Red Pocket Mobile Brings Back T-Mobile Plans

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In a move that caught literally everyone by complete surprise, Red Pocket Mobile announced this week that they have brought back their uber popular GSMT plans. The unlimited talk and text offering coming in at $19.99 is $5 less than any of their other unlimited offerings. The value of the day is still their Web & Text plan that offers users 300 minutes of talk, unlimited text and unlimited data with the first 2GB at LTE speeds. As excited as we are to see Red Pocket Mobile offering up the GSMT plans again, we have to move cautiously on a full recommendation as they were already discontinued once before. Sure, moving a no contract service around is no big deal, but if you aren’t watching the news carefully, sometimes those moves can end up costing you a number.

Source: http://www.goredpocket.com

Ten Minutes With Windows For Mobile

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It was time once again to break out our staff HTC One M8 for windows for another Windows Update. What we didn’t know, was that this time, it would be different. You see windows is growing up and getting much stronger. Gone are the days of sloppy designs and poor quality OS issues. Windows is getting it’s polish on.

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The overall look of the OS isn’t changing much, nor has it since Windows Phone 8. Sure, a bit of that polishing has been done, but honestly,  you can take it right back to that Windows Phone 7 look pretty quickly if you want to.

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Next in line is the fact that the App Store is actually starting to fill in, finally! A good selection of games, productivity and social networking options have all found their way into the Windows Store. Unfortunately,  many are still in their 8/8.1 modes, but at least they are popping up now instead of just going missing like they had in previous builds.

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Another positive about the latest updates from Microsoft is how well the Outlook App is progressing in the latest build. For some time now, it’s seemed as if Redmond was devoting all their Outlook development to iOS and Android. Today, it appears that the death of Windows Mobile was greatly exaggerated.

Everything in the latest build is just a tad sharper than it was last month. It’s still far from perfect, but with every Insider release, Microsoft continues to build towards something better. Sure, market share may be dwindling, but that probably has more to do with people buying multiple phones for themselves and not anything to do with new user adoption rates.

For example, many users simply take their old devices and save them for e-readers or for using as a music player at the gym when they land a newer version. Like those that purchased a Galaxy S4 and are now getting a new S6. The market numbers count that as 2 active devices as long as they are both accessing data. That could signal a false sense of “growth” as the total number of users didn’t change, but the number of devices did.

While nobody knows what the future holds for Windows on the smaller screen, it is very safe to say that the folks in Redmond are moving in the correct direction, and are doing it at a pretty strong pace.

T-Mobile Adds Amazon Video, Fox News, WWE And Univision Now To BingeOn

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T-Mobile added a few new providers to their BingeOn service today. Outspoken T-Mobile CEO John Legere made the announcement via Twitter this morning. Coming on board with the non-data counting service Will be Amazon Video, Fox News, Univision Now and the WWE Network.
For those that aren’t aware of BingeOn, the program is offered on T-Mobile Simple Choice Plans and allows users to stream unlimited videos from select services without using any of their data cap. It is worth noting that T-Mobile “compresses” the streams to 480p on all services to accomplish this, leaving some higher resolution users feeling a bit underwhelmed. For most mobile watchers 480p resolution will be more than enough, but if it’s not, users can always disable the feature.
For now, check out the details at http://www.tmobile.com and binge a bit more Amazon without worrying.

TracFone Triples Your Minutes For Life With LG Sunset Purchase

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When most people think of TracFone, well, being honest, most people never think of TracFone. If they did though, it would be a flash back to those per minute adds that show some old guy with a flip phone or a grandma with a candy bar style device making a call to the grand kids. What most people haven’t realized is that TracFone is one of the largest players in the industry having some of the largest MVNO’s under its umbrella. What they also don’t know is that TracFone is one of the best deals around for those that aren’t heavy users of their devices and when they run a Triple Your Time Deal on a Lollipop powered handset for under $100, those lighter users should take note.

The LG Sunset is an LTE device running Android Lollipop that features a 4.5” display, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 5MP camera and a battery that powers through up to 10 hours of talk time. You can activate it on a typical TracFone per minute plan (the lowest cost per minute/text/MB with this plan is $.044 with the triple your minutes promotion from thise device – which is over half a cent lower than the next closeset PayGo offering) or you can use one of the monthly smartphone plans that TracFone is now offering. The monthly smartphone offerings begin at $35 for 500 minutes of talk, 1,000 texts and 400 MB of data. This plan stays active for 90 days without having to refill. If you need additional minutes, texts or data before 90 days, you simply purchase a refill.

Moving back to the Sunset, the device is a very capable handset given the fact that it is running Android 5.0, has enough storage for some Apps and games in internal memory and features 1GB of RAM to keep the device from bogging down under light multitasking. Probably the best feature of the Sunset is that it is a GSM device that accesses the AT&T network through TracFone. About the only negative to the Sunset, when considering it is more of a starter device rather than a flagship model, is that the front camera is extremely weak at .3MP. It’s so poor, it might even be considered a throw away feature. That said, if the front facing camera is the only major flaw we find in the Sunset, it’s not all that bad.

The LG Sunset is available for $99.99 from TracFone and includes triple your minutes for life. That would mean you would get 180 minutes, 180 texts and 180MB of data for 90 days for just $20. That works out to a cost of just under $.04 per unit, or a 26% savings over the next closest PayGo service. If you think it’s time to start pocketing some savings and want to grab the TracFone LG Sunset, hit the link below and check out the coverage near you.

Source: TracFone

Low Cost Cell Battle: Ting vs. Republic Wireless

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As we continue to look at the super low cost cellular carriers and pit them against one another for penny pinching supremacy, we find ourselves staring at two juggernauts with very different deals for consumers. Where Ting offers users a sort of tiered system, Republic Wireless prefers to run a full unlimited plan up the flagpole for far less than most people would think. How do they measure up? Well, it depends on how you plan on using them.

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As we’ve covered in the past, Ting uses both the Sprint and T-Mobile networks for a greater flexibility in coverage and devices. Their $6 per line access fee is remarkably low for a per line fee, and their low cost minute and message rates make Ting an excellent value for the average consumer. Looking at a basic user that uses their phone in a minimalistic fashion, Ting can save $50 a month very quickly over the same plans on Verizon or other carrier. Unfortunately, the savings start to disappear quickly as usage goes up. For example, that $26 Ting bill ($6 device fee + $3 for under 100 minutes + $5 for 1000 texts + $12 for 500MB of data = $26 total due) can climb to $50 or more quickly when you start using your device more. In fact, for a single device with over 1,000 minutes of talk, 2000+ texts and 1GB of data a Ting user will drop $81.00 a month.

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This is where Republic Wireless comes to bat for everyone. Their extra small package offers users unlimited talk and text with 500MB of data for just $17.50 a month. If you need more, you can upgrade to the 1GB plan for $25, 2GB for $40 or skip all of the 1GB add-on packs and jump straight to the $85, 5GB plan. Of course, the nicest part about the Republic Wireless offerings is that if you do not use your full allowance during a given month, they will refund you what you didn’t use. This could equal out to a $5 a month savings or more on some of the larger plans. For the minimal user, Republic Wireless makes a strong case for winning the battle with their $17.50 plan over Ting’s slightly higher pricedrates listed above.

Of course, price isn’t everything. If the coverage isn’t there, saving money on your plan is pretty worthless. This is where Republic Wireless has an upper hand as they work off the Sprint network, but also use your exsiting WiFi connection as part of your coverage backbone. By pushing service from the Sprint network and offloading it to your WiFi system at home and at popular public places, Republic Wireless cuts costs and provides coverage in some pretty sparce areas. Ting, on the other hand, does give you a choice between Sprint and T-Mobile, but unlike Google’s Project-Fi, you can’t bounce between the networks, it’s an either or situation with them.

Overall, based on performance and price, Republic Wireless clearly wins this battle royal, though either service should be able to save you cash over your current provider, even if you bill is as low as $30 a month. The Republic Wireless refund plan, WiFi calling and decent priced new handset deals make it a stronger choice than Ting’s value plan for lighter users. If you are ready to move on and save some money, visit Republic Wireless today and grab the 2nd generation Moto X for just $249. The savings you rack up will be money in your pocket.

Sources: Republic WirelessTing