Welcome to the 411, my column answering all your questions about cell phones and cell phone accessories. I receive plenty of questions about these subjects via e-mail, so I figured many of you might have similar queries, too. At times, I might solicit answers from readers if I'm stumped. Send your questions and comments to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you prefer to remain anonymous, let me know in the e-mail.
Question: I am in a family plan with my brother and mom through AT&T. I have an
$185 is a lot to pay a month, Peter, especially if you can get something cheaper. I looked over what the current AT&T family plan pricing is for 1400 minutes ($89.99), a 200 messaging plan for two people ($20), and a legacy unlimited data plan ($30), and it should still add up to around $139.99 a month, not the $185 that you quoted. Perhaps there are additional fees that your family has incurred, or maybe you need to call AT&T and negotiate a new deal.
Aside from that, I would look into your monthly calling habits. If most of the calls your family make are to other mobile phones, then I would suggest looking into a cheaper minute plan. AT&T offers unlimited mobile-to-mobile calls to any carrier, so the monthly minutes you buy only apply to landline calls. If you don't make a lot of landline calls, I think you can get away with a 550- or 700-minute plan that costs $30 to $20 less. Also, I know you like unlimited data, but if you never go over 2GB, then you could also consider going to a $25 monthly plan to save some extra money. If you're running into overage charges with texting, I would suggest moving up to an unlimited family messaging plan, which is only $30 for everyone.
As for whether you should switch to Verizon, that's completely up to you. In the overall scheme of things, I don't see it saving you much money. As you say, you have to pay around $30 more a month anyway, and.
P.S. And about that nano iPhone rumor: Please note that it's just a rumor. Nobody aside from Apple really knows what the next iPhone will be just yet.
Question:What would be the best headphones to use while driving? I drive a truck over-the-road and would like to listen to my iPad, but can't find any that allow you to drive while using them. -- Bob, via e-mail
Bob, I hope you didn't mean to write that! You absolutely should not use headphones while driving--it's dangerous! Now, if you're asking about a mono Bluetooth headset, I can certainly recommend a few from our Best Bluetooth headsets list--the