British Expats

British Expats (https://britishexpats.com/forum/)
-   USA (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/)
-   -   Cellhphone Hellphone! (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/cellhphone-hellphone-830855/)

petitefrancaise Apr 9th 2014 6:32 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 
T-mobile have a pre-pay plan that costs $50 per month for 500megawhatsit of data,unlimited texts and calls in the USA. Add $10 more for unlimited international landline calls. That's just for the sim so bring your phone from the UK. That was what we had when we first arrived and we didn't need ssn or credit check since you pay in advance, very easy to do.

We've just switched to a family plan which is costing us about $90 permonth for 3 lines (not phones tho) but that required a credit check and a texas drivers license but not the ssn.

I bought a Nokia 521 from Microsoft last week for $70 which my son is now using until it ends up in the washing machine like the last one he had....

Bob Apr 9th 2014 7:43 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 
Best off asking people on the ground, where you plan to spend most of your time, home/office area.

No point getting a great deal on a phone if it isn't going to work in the office.

Contract is easy enough to get, you'll just likely be asked to put down a deposit, $200-600 a phone seems usual.

PAYG has gotten much better in the last couple years and well worth considering.

jibsymalone Apr 9th 2014 8:15 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by kodokan (Post 11211709)
My son is currently using an iPhone 4 on our T-Mobile family plan; he has unlimited calls, text and data. It's not LTE compatible, so he gets slower data at 3G/ 4G/ E/ something or other, which is fine as he's only a very occasional user. We're in Phoenix, ie, a major city with good T-Mobile coverage.

I'm not very techie and don't quite understand about bands and things. Does this change mean that his phone won't work at ALL for data once the network is converted? Or is it more that T-Mobile aren't expanding their non-LTE network, but they'll leave it in areas where it's already in place, at least for another couple of years until everyone's caught up with the technology?

My wife uses AIO and is extremely happy with their service. We pay $45 a month for unlimited talk, text and data.

The first 2.5Gb is at "4G speeds" (actually it is throttled a little, but we can tell no difference between my phone on AT&T post paid (company phone) and hers on AIO when downloading stuff to be honest). After the initial 4G cap is reached the speed gets throttled down to 3G speeds. There is another plan higher than this with a higher cap (5Gb opposed to 2.5) for $55 PM if you feel you need more data. These prices are for enrolling in the auto pay, add $5 a month if you don't wish to autopay.

AIO uses AT&T towers, so the coverage is usually pretty good (dare I say, one of the best nationwide?) and is GSM so will work with phones you bring from the UK (assuming they are SIM unlocked of course). Usually all it takes to unlock your phone is a call to your network (Orange, Vodafone etc.) if you are outside the contract period and they will unlock the GSM port and you can then put any SIM card in the phone.

You can buy phones from them also if you wish. a quick search will get you the site.

I highly recommend.

hungryhorace Apr 9th 2014 8:17 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by jibsymalone (Post 11212060)
My wife uses AIO and is extremely happy with their service. We pay $45 a month for unlimited talk, text and data.

The first 2.5Gb is at "4G speeds" (actually it is throttled a little, but we can tell no difference between my phone on AT&T post paid (company phone) and hers on AIO when downloading stuff to be honest). After the initial 4G cap is reached the speed gets throttled down to 3G speeds.

256kbit/sec to be precise. The thing I find off putting about AIO (apart from it's merger with Cricket) is the high latency, it really affects the 'feel' of your internet experience. With unproxied LTE the experience is like using WiFI. AIO simply doesn't offer that experience yet. Though, it's dirt cheap (compared to the general US market!) so I forgive it.

delbitter Apr 9th 2014 8:20 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by jibsymalone (Post 11212060)
My wife uses AIO and is extremely happy with their service. We pay $45 a month for unlimited talk, text and data.

The first 2.5Gb is at "4G speeds" (actually it is throttled a little, but we can tell no difference between my phone on AT&T post paid (company phone) and hers on AIO when downloading stuff to be honest). After the initial 4G cap is reached the speed gets throttled down to 3G speeds. There is another plan higher than this with a higher cap (5Gb opposed to 2.5) for $55 PM if you feel you need more data. These prices are for enrolling in the auto pay, add $5 a month if you don't wish to autopay.

AIO uses AT&T towers, so the coverage is usually pretty good (dare I say, one of the best nationwide?) and is GSM so will work with phones you bring from the UK (assuming they are SIM unlocked of course). Usually all it takes to unlock your phone is a call to your network (Orange, Vodafone etc.) if you are outside the contract period and they will unlock the GSM port and you can then put any SIM card in the phone.

You can buy phones from them also if you wish. a quick search will get you the site.

I highly recommend.

nice. will check them out thanks!

hungryhorace Apr 9th 2014 8:22 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by delbitter (Post 11212072)
nice. will check them out thanks!

If you do, fancy allowing me to refer you? :)

jibsymalone Apr 9th 2014 8:37 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by hungryhorace (Post 11212064)
256kbit/sec to be precise. The thing I find off putting about AIO (apart from it's merger with Cricket) is the high latency, it really affects the 'feel' of your internet experience. With unproxied LTE the experience is like using WiFI. AIO simply doesn't offer that experience yet. Though, it's dirt cheap (compared to the general US market!) so I forgive it.

I thought it was 4Mb on 4G and LTE at 8Mb??
Their ping is a little high, granted, but we have no issues, webpages load, music and video download/stream fine, so really don't see that much of a difference in what we use it for.

jibsymalone Apr 9th 2014 8:37 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 
:sneaky:

Originally Posted by hungryhorace (Post 11212077)
If you do, fancy allowing me to refer you? :)

:sneaky:

hungryhorace Apr 9th 2014 8:44 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by jibsymalone (Post 11212098)
I thought it was 4Mb on 4G and LTE at 8Mb??
Their ping is a little high, granted, but we have no issues, webpages load, music and video download/stream fine, so really don't see that much of a difference in what we use it for.

Those bandwidth caps are accurate, but I was referring to the cap when you go over your allotted allowance. Even if the download limits were 60Mbps, the feel would still be 'slow' because of the high latency. It's a real pita imo, but then ATT does offer a prepaid service with postpaid quality: GoPhone.

kodokan Apr 9th 2014 8:46 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by jibsymalone (Post 11212060)
We pay $45 a month for unlimited talk, text and data.

T-Mobile is $50 for the first line for unlimited everything, $30 for second, then $10 for each afterwards, so is a great scheme for families where one or more kids is old enough to have a phone and 'needs' a full plan. Prices are for no contract, and just for the service, not the device.

They've just added a ton of useful international services too - I can text the UK for nothing now, and hubby currently in the UK can use his phone for texting and data whilst there, free of charge.

I spend 99.9% of my time in metro Phoenix, so the patchy coverage isn't an issue. And I was slightly surprised when we went camping a few months back, and I got something like 10 MG of data free on someone else's network; enough to pull up a few webpages, check the weather, etc. It even gave me the free data, told me it was free up to 10 MG, then stopped working, which I far prefer than simply continuing to let me use it and then the next bill being a 'Surprise!'.

Edit: OP, you mentioned earlier in the thread about how a deposit would suck - be prepared for this with utilities. I have about $600 in deposits for electric and gas that are, hopefully, going to be refunded later this year as we've been not stealing their supplies and subsequently defaulting for 3 years now.

delbitter Apr 10th 2014 8:52 am

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by kodokan (Post 11212109)
T-Mobile is $50 for the first line for unlimited everything, $30 for second, then $10 for each afterwards, so is a great scheme for families where one or more kids is old enough to have a phone and 'needs' a full plan. Prices are for no contract, and just for the service, not the device.

They've just added a ton of useful international services too - I can text the UK for nothing now, and hubby currently in the UK can use his phone for texting and data whilst there, free of charge.

I spend 99.9% of my time in metro Phoenix, so the patchy coverage isn't an issue. And I was slightly surprised when we went camping a few months back, and I got something like 10 MG of data free on someone else's network; enough to pull up a few webpages, check the weather, etc. It even gave me the free data, told me it was free up to 10 MG, then stopped working, which I far prefer than simply continuing to let me use it and then the next bill being a 'Surprise!'.

Edit: OP, you mentioned earlier in the thread about how a deposit would suck - be prepared for this with utilities. I have about $600 in deposits for electric and gas that are, hopefully, going to be refunded later this year as we've been not stealing their supplies and subsequently defaulting for 3 years now.

I guess the deposit thing is something we will have to get used to. I wish we could move credit history to another country#! haha

hungryhorace Apr 10th 2014 1:15 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by delbitter (Post 11212746)
I guess the deposit thing is something we will have to get used to. I wish we could move credit history to another country#! haha

Don't bother with prepaid (it's a complete rip off here) would be my advice, that way you won't be on the line for any potential deposit.

jibsymalone Apr 10th 2014 1:36 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by hungryhorace (Post 11213052)
Don't bother with prepaid (it's a complete rip off here) would be my advice, that way you won't be on the line for any potential deposit.

I agree, Use the potential deposit money to pay for the phones you want and go pay as you go, you will be sooo much better off!

Bayleaf_01 Apr 11th 2014 12:24 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by delbitter (Post 11211104)
Snappy title hey! lol

I got my L1 visa approved at the embassy yesterday and my wife and I move out to Chicago in May.

I have been told by my company to look at cellphones (as well as several other things) and after checking the stickys in this forum I am not sure if I can even get a contract cellphone to start off with.

Sounds like I will need a social security number and even then my credit score will be non existent so I wont be able to get one?

Thanks in advance

I'll be honest and admit, I haven't read every reply. Here is my 2p.

We arrived on L1a visa's almost 2 years ago. The company that moved us had a business contract with Verizon. We walked into a Verizon store the day after we landed with a letter of employment and the visa's and Verizon set us up with 2 year contracts. They put a fake SSN in the system (I must remember to change that!).
The only proviso was that we paid a $400 deposit per handset - which they fully refunded after 1 year.

I would recommend you check out the coverage maps and check with colleagues, as although every provider claims they cover our area at full saturation, only Verizon has a strong signal in the buildings that both myself and husband work in. My husband has staff that have to leave the building to check messages on AT&T, we have never had a problem.

Ash14297 Apr 13th 2014 5:55 pm

Re: Cellhphone Hellphone!
 

Originally Posted by delbitter (Post 11211104)
Snappy title hey! lol

I got my L1 visa approved at the embassy yesterday and my wife and I move out to Chicago in May.

I have been told by my company to look at cellphones (as well as several other things) and after checking the stickys in this forum I am not sure if I can even get a contract cellphone to start off with.

Sounds like I will need a social security number and even then my credit score will be non existent so I wont be able to get one?

Thanks in advance

Good luck getting a cell phone contract... That is unless you want to pay a hefty deposit! I actually went out yesterday to try and get a phone contract (been here 4 weeks) with AT&T and T-Mobile as I get corporate discount through my company. T-Mobile wanted $300 for an iPhone upfront plus a refundable security deposit of $500... so $700 in total and you don't get your deposit back until 12 months have passed. AT&T wanted $199 for the phone plus a refundable security deposit of $500! :eek:

Safe to say that I will be sticking with my prepaid simcard for a little while!


All times are GMT. The time now is 9:28 pm.

Powered by vBulletin: ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.