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Getting cell phones

AtomBombAtomBomb Registered User regular
edited September 2007 in Help / Advice Forum
So my wife and I are considering getting cell phones. We don't currently have one. I've had them before, but only when my work required it. I really don't have a good idea of what phone or plan to get. Here's what I think should be useful information towards making a choice:

We're hoping to move from Arizona to Seattle at the beginning of next year. We still have to get our house in Arizona ready to sell and then actually sell it. We would want the service to carry over, if possible. We'd probably also want to change our phone number to a local Seattle number when we move. I would like this to be as cheap and painless as possible.

I would like to get 2 phones, one for me and one for my wife.

We don't use the phone very much. If the plan included free calls to each of our phones (so I could call my wife and vice versa) we could probably get by with a tiny amount of minutes per month.

Extra shit like GPS, texting, MP3 playing, a camera, whatever would be nice, but I would rather have the phone bill be cheaper.

We don't need to transfer over our land line number. We get tons of calls from people looking for donations, and I'd rather ditch them and donate when and to whom I like (without giving them our phone number again).

A lot of people I know have Razrs, and they seem nice. My wife likes the chocolate series. I don't know how much either of these are though.

Any advice would be appreciated. I'm usually pretty good with tech stuff but I feel like a luddite when it comes to phones.

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    DividerDivider Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Let me see.... *cracks knuckles*

    Well I've worked for Sprint before and now currently an assistant manager at a store that deals with Nextel, Sprint and T-Mobile so I get lots of customers comparing the three. I'm 23 and still in school so I'm usually around all types of people and its hard to not know what others are carrying and if they like there service or not. I hear lots of opinions on whats "good" and what isn't.

    Straight up if you want affordable phones with great price plans I'd go to T-Mobile. I have Sprint service ( only because they have a bitchin employee plan ) but as a Sales Rep. I push people towards T-Mobile.

    Sprint is ahead technology / phone "look" wise but that's about it. Don't get me wrong, Sprint/Nextel ( while having the worst Customer Service ) have lots of great features especially if your the tech type.

    Every carrier ( I think!? ) has a mobile to mobile feature available to cut down on minutes you use between calls. T-Mobiile 1up's people by doing MyFavs which is basically the top five people in your phone ( doesn't matter what network there in ) can call you and you them with no charge at all. That top five you choose can be changed monthly as well. I wish I could give you more advice for Cingular, Verizon etc. but these carriers - Sprint - Nextel - T Mobile are all I deal with.

    Sprint - great nationwide service. Great for the tech. types. Plans are semi-expensive but have great features like Nights starting at 7pm.
    Nextel - great for international / heavy business use. Walkie Talkie feature is quick and easy - no minutes used. Durable phones.

    ( Both have H O R R I B L E ) customer service.

    T - Mobile - affordable phones, price plans. Introduced a system called "Flex Pay" that basically qualifies you for a phone if your 18+ with good/bad credit ( but there is a difference in what you pay once they run your credit ) Free nights/weekends, after 9pm only.

    ( great customer service )

    I know Verizon is expensive, probably more than Sprint. Cingular/Verizon also might ask for a big deposit as well. I've heard of people having to pay a $400+ deposit just to start service with them. ( depending on credit of course )

    Whatever you choose, make sure you get insurance on your phones. I see so many people shoot themselves in the foot coming back into the store because they: sat and broke there phone, it was stolen, it got wet, screen isn't working etc. With manufacturers you have a one year warrenty if its an internal phone problem only. Insurance there is a deductable but at least you only pay about $50 bucks and they send you your phone model again or one with the exact features.


    Hope this helps ~

    Divider on
    Luigi doesn't care about black Lumas! - TehBlueBlur ( 11/16/2007 )
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    GoetterdaemmerungGoetterdaemmerung Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Two things not covered by Divider that a newbie might not know: (1) T-Mobile has the worst coverage of the providers mentioned, which is irrelevant if you simply make sure that they have coverage in your areas, current and future; or get assurances that you can leave your contract if coverage isn't up to snuff -- I don't know how this works for T-Mobile. (2) The phone selection offered by a provider doesn't matter all that much: you can buy unlocked phones from third parties and use them on whichever provider you like, as long as it uses the correct technology (of which there are two).

    Also, is the definitive cell provider/phone forum.

    Goetterdaemmerung on
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    AtomBombAtomBomb Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Wow. Thanks for all the info guys. That's exactly the kind of info I'm looking for.

    AtomBomb on
    I just got a 3DS XL. Add me! 2879-0925-7162
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    JAEFJAEF Unstoppably Bald Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    If you're planning on getting Verizon (they do have the best coverage, although you pay for it with a slightly higher phone bill) make sure you get the new chocolate (8550, scroll wheel) instead of the old one (8500, directional touch pad) as the new one fixed a shitload of issues the old one had. RAZRs are dirt cheap nowadays so if you wanted to get a pair of them it would probably cost you next to nothing.

    Regarding unlocked phones: This only works on GSM networks. Sprint and Verizon are CDMA, and do not have SIM cards, you can only activate Sprint or Verizon phones respectively on their networks. You can't just throw your SIM in a phone and have it work. If this is a feature you'd like to use look at AT&T or T-Mobile.

    JAEF on
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