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Need smart phone but not data plan-- Verizon issue

I would like one of the Palm, Q, Blackberry, type phones for their organizer, planner, calendar advanced features but don't need or can't justify the data plan costs.

A Verizon rep. told me they changed last year and if you had one of those phones you were grandfathered in but now you had to have a data plan. I have unlimited texts and pics and was told that would now come under the data plan since they changed.

Has anyone got a work around with Verizon to use one of these phones without the data plan and still use your unlimited texts and pics?


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I don't believe it's possible

Unless you are a business with many, many lines (hundreds), and spend the kind of money that could warrant such as exception.

I'm not aware of anyone (yet) buying one used and seeing if Verizon CS would allow such a device to be placed on their account w/o a data plan. Worth a try however. I'd also see what the contract says regarding how long one has to keep data on the plan to get the phone discount/subsidy. Maybe you could remove the feature eventually? Again, you'd probably be better off asking this type of detail over @ They have a very active Verizon sub-forum.


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There is no "work around"---you must get a data plan...

Hi mike62,

What the Verizon rep told you is true. Verizon now requires customers to subscribe to a data plan if they use either a PDA phone or a Smartphone on their network. It doesn't matter from where or how you got your phone. If it is a PDA phone or Smartphone, you must subscribe to a data plan.

The reason is actually quite sad. Verizon has had enough of people buying these phones without a data plan, using data features on their phones, incurring high per megabyte fees (when you're not on a data plan, you can still transmit/receive data but it is at a higher per megabyte fee), and then calling to complain about it.

Evidently Verizon is unwilling to deal with this issue any longer and that's why they created the new rule.

As far as I'm aware there are only two ways to avoid a data plan if you use Verizon:

1 - Get a "dumb" phone that does not require a data plan. Then get a separate PDA device (without a phone) for your PDA needs.

2 - If you don't need the features of a true PDA phone or Smartphone, then there is one way to avoid the data plan AND get some of the "PDA-like" features in a phone: Choose a "multimedia phone" like the LG Voyager. It has Calendar, Contacts List, and Notepad applications. It also handles both text-only and multimedia texting. Plus it has a full QWERTY keyboard AND touchscreen (it actually has two full-size 400x240 pixel displays). It's about as advanced as you can go and still have a "dumb" phone. But here's the trick: You MUST buy the phone at the full non-commitment price (or obtain it from a third party with no plan commitment) in order to qualify to use it on the Verizon network with no data plan. If you purchase it (or any "multimedia" phone) from Verizon or a Verizon representative AND you buy it at the discounted price with a requirement for a 1-year or 2-year contract, then Verizon will require you to subscribe to a data plan for it the same as they do for the PDA phones and Smartphones.

Like it or not, that's the way it is.

Best regards, WiredNot

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Thanks guys.........that is what I was afraid of I was just hoping there was something out there that I might not be aware of.

Its a shame Verizon did not inactivate those services instead of trying to give them credit but of course they probably also generated some revenue from it too.

I called and asked them right off the bat to disable my phones ability to connect to the web so I would not accidently connect.

Oh well.

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not quite

Just this year (last few months) I got a new Dare and my wife got a new Voyager, both from Verizon with plan related discounts and they did not require a data plan for us.

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not quite

where did you find this. I've been talking to verizon and I'm not getting anywhere.

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dare and voyager are not considered smart phones

The dare and voyager are not considered smart phones. The dare is a great phone, my daughter broke mine yesterday after close to 3 years. It is data capable for me on the few times I need to check email, but the last really good phone they offered without the month to month data in my opinion. The only complaint I have had is that the calendar is not syncable with any other so I have to hand input all of my husbands business information into my own calendar. Wish Verizon still sold them.

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Not quite true

Yes, it is true that any smartphone launched after Nov 14 requires a data plan but any phone that was introduced prior to that can still be had without a data plan except the Blackberry. I know this is true I got it from a Verizon rep that there is a list of phones that still don't require a data plan. I got one of those phones and was able to activate it without the plan.

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not quite true

could i have the list

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list for me

i am soo glad i checked this site out. I too am stuck with a data package phone, i missed the trial by one day and they would not let me change the phone. So pleaaase send me the list so i too can purchase a non data phone. thank you

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verizon phone list

could I get a copy of teh list you got from verizon of phones that don't require a data plan?

Ricc Havens

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(NT) Please, would you send me the list too? Thank you!
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(NT) I never got a list from anyone still waiting!!
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Verizon Data Plan con't

I'm in the same boat - just found out you can buy the Palm Centro or Voyager online (like EBay) - they work like a smart phone without the data plan - although I think with the Voyager you have to get a 3rd party app to sync with Outlook.

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2010 Update (New Change)

After March 2010 all Smart phones phones require a data plan even if you buy them used. I had a Palm in 2009 that I bought on Ebay and I used it without the data plan then broke it last month then bought another one on Ebay and now it they require a data plan. It's the same phone and I went to the Verizon store they would not budge and call 1-800 and they wouldn't budge. Even if I have to get a data plan I am just going to switch to AT&T so I can get the iphone

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There's gotta be a way!!!

This is ridiculous! I can totally understand if you purchased one of verizon's smart phones under a 2yr contract because they are in a sense extending credit to you. But on a phone that you got used off of ebay makes no sense. I was about to get the HTC Eris or Motorola Droid so that I can have all of my contacts in a nice pda and have some decent apps...and verizon said the same thing...all smart phones must have a data plan. I sit at a friggin' wifi connection all day at work and all night at home...I don't need to pay $30 a month for the few hours a week I'm away from home.

What if you agree to verizon's stupid the first month's data plan and then call up the following month and let them know you want to keep the voice but cancel the data plan? Could that looophole work? Would that satisfy their stupid rule? Would they shut your voice off too if you didn't agree to pay next month's data plan? There's gotta be a way to fly under the radar here...the only reason I like verizon is because they're the ONLY cell network that works in my apartment...otherwise I would've been on t-mobile or at&t.

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the answer is still "No"

You are not allowed to remove the data feature if you continue to use a "Smart Phone" even though you don't want it after the first month. You are requred to have a minimum voice plan at least $29.99 in addition. There is no "loophole" to get out of those requirements. Sorry, "no soup for you" (to qoute the Jerry Seinfeld show).

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It's true..........

I've been trying to do just this for the past month. Best possible solution is getting a "dumb" phone and using to transfer contacts from computer to phone. However.....just tried it on my wife's RAZR and didn't like it.

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i want a blackberry but my parents wont buy me a data plan which i dont blame them because its extremely expensive. i went to the verizon store and asked if there was any possible way. The guy told me that the only possible way was to go off your contract and get your own pre paid contract of minutes and everything and you wouldnt need a data plan.

hope this helped

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I've to try that bad boy out. Thanks!

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oh, yeah..

yes, that helped.. thank you Happy

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So this works for verizon phones?

My contract is up in November 2010. Is the pre paid contracts from Verizon or another carrier? I want a phone, but don't want use the internet for anything.


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I don't understand...

I know I'm not the smartest person but I don't understand this. Is there some way they can tell what phone the SIM is in? I'm with ATT and two years ago when I signed up, I took the basic phone. When I got home, I took the chip out and put it in my unlocked Palm. It has worked fine with my minute plan and pay for use data plan. But my Palm is dying so I'm looking for another unlocked phone rather than make another 2 year commitment to AT&T in order to get a free smart phone and get stuck with the mandatory data package. Any suggestions? Like the original poster, I'm mainly looking for a good organizer that I can sync with Outlook.

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SIM card, etc.

The SIM card is what ATT uses to authenticate you on their network. It can also store a finite number of contacts (name/number only) as well as text messages (SMS). Your line/cellular number is associated with the physical SIM card inside your phone.

That said, it is possible to grab an unlocked/unbranded smartphone for syncing w/ Outlook & PDA-like usage w/o having the mandatory ATT data plan. It will however force you to forget about that generally terrible UI of the Palm OS, as it's quite dated. There will be a small learning curve when you make the jump. If you want a very functional and economical option, the Nokia E63-2 is a great way to make the smartphone jump w/o the nasty data charges. You would also gain the ability to use wifi for free with this handset. Throw in your current SIM card and your are good to go. Price will be between $159-199. Search for it here-

If you want/need GPS and are willing to pay a little more, do the same search for the E72.

FWIW, is a great place to learn about the Symbian OS and what it can do to replace most if not all of what your Palm did. There are a heck of a lot of other symbian focuses sites as well with great tidbits on the 'how to'.


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Yes, there is a solution

Simply purchase an iPhone from eBay, then jail-break it, (a trivial task) or buy a jail-broken model. Then go to Walmart, purchase a $20 GSM phone with a sim card and a t-Mobile pre-paid plan. Take the sim card from the new phone and stick it in your iPhone. Now you have an iPhone you canuse for voice that will sync with Outlook, hold all you music, videos, etc and connect to the internet from wi-fi hot spots. But the best part of this solution is it will likely reduce your monthly mobile bill by somewhere between 50% and 90%.

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Yes, that's a great solution for some but the problem is...

...the person I replied to didn't say they wanted to switch carriers. This option is not viable for her since she's on ATT and an iPhone would trigger the data plan.

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Net10 on HTC phone?

I've been a Verizon customer for about 6 years. Most of that time, I've had a Windows Mobile 5 phone. This is one of the smart phones that was grandfathered in. However, I lost it in December and the warranty replacement was an HTC Ozone XV6175. Strangly, I now 'need' a data plan for my Smartphone to work. After HOURS of fighting Verizon in the store and over the phone line, I've gotten nowhere. I've been paying $15 a month and not getting any value out of it!

I'd like to keep my Windows Mobile phone, but I refuse to pay for data that I don't use. Can I buy a Net10 phone, activate it, and then move the SIM card to this 'Verizon' HTC phone? What would I not be able to do? What are the risks, other than saving money each month??

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I tried that.

I tried both the Net10 and Tracfone sims in other phones and it never worked out. All would report "bad sim." For example we have the Pharos m619 among other WinMo phones to play with.

Any chance of moving to a droid phone? My son's Virgin Mobile unlimited text+data and 300 minutes talk is 25 a month.

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I might try that

I would consider switching phones, if that's what it took to dump Verizon. I really want to be able to sychronize my Outlook contacts and calendar. I could care less about my e-mail (don't want to be THAT connected to work). I was hoping for a solution where I could utilize my existing equipment.

I mentioned Net10, as it appears that the service areas of Virgin and Boost are limited to urban areas. My job takes me to more rural areas that I would like to maintain coverage.


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Palm Centro * No Data Plan Required

It took me many hours and repeat visits to a busy Verizon store to finally figure this out, but...

Verizon's Palm Centro is the last smart phone released by Verizon that does not require a data plan... ...which is exactly why I bought the Palm Centro.

*You can buy the Palm Centro at non Verizon stores online.
* There are used Centro's available on various websites like Ebay and Amazon (although I would just get a new one due to the touch screen; you never know the true condition of a used touch screen). Make sure you buy one that's setup for Verizon (And not Sprint, etc).

My plan is setup as follows-
* Nationwide Talk 450 for $39/mo.
* 500 Text messages for $10. (they offer 5000 text messages for $20/mo)

Verizon also offers cheaper data service plans that are not advertised on their site. I once had a "business data plan" that was only $29/mo which included web browsing, phone pics, a generous megabyte allowance, etc (I dropped it though because I never used the plan; you CAN drop data plans on older phones if you decide you don't want them). I heard that Verizon was offering a 2010 winter holiday promotion of $10 data plans (?) but I'm not sure if they're compatible with the Palm Centro.

To setup Palm Centro -Verizon service without the data plan, DO NOT setup service online. Instead, call Verizon directly and have a customer service rep set up service. Also, be sure to ask about any non advertised data plans.

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Palm Centro

This is true. I have been a Palm user for more than 8 years now and Palm Centro is the last grandfathered smartphone under Verizon service that you can have WITHOUT a data plan.

Despite several Verizon reps telling me that I had to have it...and several times calling back to Verizon to finally get ahold of one that was helpful and has been with Verizon for a while, I was able to activate mine and my wife's Palm Centro's WITHOUT a data plan.

They charge you "pay as you go" and it is $1.99/MB. Not too shabby considering we don't get on very often except to get directions or a phone number while we are traveling.

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