General discussion

Upgrading to Smart Phone

Any suggestions for taking the plunge to a Smart Phone? I am out of contract with Verizon & not sure if the Incredible would be the way to go or switching carriers. Maybe iPhone or Sprint's new Evo 4G. It seems as soon as something comes out, something "better" is soon to follow. Any At&t or Sprint issues I need to be aware of? I have been very happy with Verizon and its coverage & service. Thanks for any advice.

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Additional cost of data plan

Don't forget to factor in the additional $30 monthly cost of a data plan when you upgrade to a smartphone.

If you want to save money and switch to Sprint, just be certain it's the right fit for your needs. You certainly won't get better customer service w/ Sprint, nor will you get additional coverage, since they primarily roam on Verizon where they do not have native coverage. To be honest, mentioning an upgrade to a handset that has not been well tested by users (the Evo 4G) seems a little like the cart before the horse, especially if you already are satisfied with your current carrier. Switching just to get a particular handset is always a mixed bag. The only issue perhaps w/ ATT is whether or not they also have adequate coverage where you need it. This is the bottom line, really. 4G is mostly marketing fluff if you look at the speeds already present from the big two carriers (Verizon & ATT).

The iPhone certainly has one of the better user interfaces if you consider how nice web browsing is via the mobile version of Safari on the iPhone OS. With multi-tasking on the iPhone just around the corner along with increased screen resolution, perhaps that would be at least worth investigating provided you can still place a call where you need to. Since their technology uses SIM cards, ATT also gives you the opportunity to bring in your own unlocked/unbranded handset that would not require a mandatory $30 data plan. Keep on researching if you aren't in any particular hurry to upgrade...

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Thank you

Thanks for all the info. I will take all into consideration. Any one else have any comments or advice?

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Also consult Hofo for tidbits

It's a great site IMHO, with a heck of a lot of ideas floating around on all these new gizmos we admire and want to learn about.

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ATT Smartphones

I just walked into ATT to get a pay as you go SIM for an off-contract ATT Blackberry that I wanted to use as a spare phone with no data plan and they refused to sell it to me. Apparently all smartphones require a $30 data plan no matter its origin. What's up with that?

I'd be careful it I were you about making assumptions on unlocked phones.

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next time

Just by a cheap prepaid phone and swap the SIM in your smart phone. Worst case is they add the data feature. If it's prepaid, there is no contract and you can end service w/out penalty.

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Unlocked vs unbranded

It's not the first time they have used incorrect information to get a sale. Always consider their reps comments with a hefty grain (bottle) of salt Wink. What's stranger to me though, is that they wouldn't sell you the SIM card at all, regardless of what phone you planned on using it with. Contrast that w/ T-Mobile, who will give the SIM away practically and does not care about hardware they don't sell. The ATT guys were incorrect if they said *all* smartphones incurr the mandatory charge.

Currently, unbranded (this means, non-ATT branded)/unlocked smartphones do not incurr the mandatory data charge. Your BB does not qualify since it's ATT branded. This may perhaps change in the future, but for now, unbranded handsets are still safe. The notable exception being the Nexus One, I believe.

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verizon vs att

IPhone is great but it has clogged ATT's network up pretty bad. It depends on where you live, San Francisco is the worst. My fiance has the DROID on verizon and never has any problems. Coverage wise if you switch from Verizon to ATT you more than likely won't be too happy.

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LuckilyThe world doesn't revolve around NYC & Silicon valley

In many, many, many other places the iPhone, along with ATTs network, work just fine IME.

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Smartphone shopping

As one of the Cnet editors said a few months back, shop the carrier, not the phone. That new iPhone 3GS may work great now, but how will it be six months after the iPhone 4G is released and AT&T lowers the price of remaining 3GS iPhones to $99? Will your area's data network slow to a crawl due to a flood of new customers?

I don't know how easy it is to port your number with pre-paid service (or how often you're allowed to do so). My advice would be to get yourself a Google Voice account so you can try out each carrier's service via pre-paid without having to constantly change phone numbers.

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Editors spew out some fluff from time to time

It's just a headline. If anything, the netork sitution has gotten better in many places, including NYC & SF. And they will improve the backhaul as well.

Keep in mind a great deal will be upgrades and not new users per se. This won't hit the network as hard since the amoun of data per handset won't be going up necesssarily since it's the same bottleneck.

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