Archive for the ‘ AT&T ’ Category

AT&T, T-Mobile Customers Should Stick With Unlocked Cell Phones

Beginning with the proposal from AT&T to buy T-Mobile, both companies have eperienced many ups and downs, and not without affect on the customers. To avoid the confusion, and the uncertain future, rather than renew contracts, get the freedom of unlocked cell phones.

When the merger was first proposed, T-Mobile halted many of its practices, some of which benefitted T-Mobile customers, like getting rid of their collections department. Of course, they’ve also stopped practices that would better service (for example, unless you have an unlocked cell phone, iPhone 4S isn’t on T-Mobile).

For AT&Ts part, the governments no vote on the merger has made them act a little crazy. The largest network, trying to shrink to a permissable size meant selling off spectrum, i.e., your phones service & roaming quality.

Furthermore, if the deal doesn’t go through, AT&T, per the deal, has to give even more spectrum to T-Mobile, as well as billions of dollars in penalties.

If you’re a customer of either company, it would be well worth while to switch to an unlocked cell phone that you can take with you if service tanks, the company sells into unfavorable terms, or something new and (probably) worse happens.

Unlocked cell phones also give you the ability to exist without a contract, meaning you can walk away easily. With the current ups and down the leading and third leading mobile companies are going through, the freedom of unlocked cell phones is doubtless worthwhile!

More Reason For The Flexibility Of Unlocked Cell Phones

Now Google's Turning Your Phone Into A Credit Card

Most people already appreciate that unlocked cell phones help you switch carriers more easily. You can buy unlocked cell phones cheaply online (no fees or contracts), and then you can switch carriers, if, say, they change policies and limit data to 2GB/month!

But a new assortment of data shows that there may be other concerns when choosing a carrier, or deciding when to leave one using your unlocked cell phone.

It turns out, carriers store different amounts of information about you for different periods of time. Verizon seems to be the worst offender, actually storing the content of text messages, and keep IP data the longest.

T-Mobile, AT&T and Sprint all keep data for differing lengths of time. If you’re concerned, make sure you have unlocked cell phones so that you can change to the best carrier for your needs/preferences, and since unlocked cell phones = jail broken cell phones usually, if there’s ever an app (like Tor for phones or something) that can help ensure privacy, it probably won’t be available in official app stores so best have unlocked cell phones!

What tips do you have for ensuring privacy when using cell phones? How do you adapt unlocked cell phones to enhance your privacy? Share your cell phone tips in the comments!

T-Mobile/AT&T Head To Court Over Cell Phone Merger

Stick together...if the DOJ lets you!

Now that the DOJ has sued AT&T over its planned merger with T-Mobile, they’ll head to court later this month to try and prove why the merger would be good for cell phone users.

Will it?

If you use unlocked cell phones, the merger matters a bit. One of the joys of unlocked cell phones is switching between GSM networks (networks with a sim card) to find the right data, text, and minutes plan.

With fewer US carriers on GSM networks, then the merger would be a bad thing. While competition between the two companies may be colored by other things (apps like skype, google or facebook chat, and free wifi in many places) the bottom line is that unless you want to go pre-pay, or wifi only your unlocked cell phones need to be on some sort of a plan.

There are other concerns besides the merger. Many manufacturers and carriers are choosing to sell “unlocked cell phones” directly to consumers, in an attempt to keep them in-network. Of course, unlocked cell phones mean many things, and being able to add third party software is one of them. Not all cell phones sold by companies as unlocked cell phones meet this definition, and may still need to be jail broken.

In any case, keep an eye on the T-Mobile merger, because it could affect not just your unlocked cell phone usage, but your wallet!

Want To Avoid The Upcoming iPhone Fight?

Unlocked Cell Phones Lead To Carrier Freedom

Soon AT&T will lose it’s monopoly on the iPhone, with Verizon gaining an edge in the market.

But as AT&T has pointed out (in the beginning of what looks to be some mean back-and-forth advertising), Verizon is not as fast as AT&T, and iPhone users tend to be heavy on apps and social media, meaning they have certain expectations.

On the other hand, Verizon can counter, they cover more areas, so bandwidth aside, you’re less likely to have dropped calls, and it will be easier to travel.

Not sure which carrier will come out ahead? Want to avoid the battle entirely? Switch to unlocked cell phones (or a jailbroken iPhone). Once you’ve jailbroken your iPhone, you can use it to hop networks as is the ability of unlocked cell phones.

If you are locked in a contract, then consider buying unlocked cell phones online. This allows you to  look for cheaper unlocked cell phones that don’t come with carrier strings.

Then you can jump sides in the AT&T-Verizon war, using your unlocked cell phones.

Unlocked Cell Phones: A Legal Right

Palm is one company moving toward unlocked cell phones.

You may have heard that many carriers and cell phone manufacturers are dead against unlocked cell phones. Apple even tried to making jailbreaking the iPhone against its copyright on the phone. However, last summer, the federal government ruled that jailbreaking phones (turning them into unlocked cell phones) is not illegal, or at least not protected by copyright.

For many phones, however, it does void the warranty. Unlocked cell phones destroy exclusivity contracts cell phone manufacturers make with carriers, such as the iPhone with AT&T, and now Verizon.

But exclusivity creates a huge problem with demand—popular phones like the iPhone are wanted the world over (and certainly the US over), but carriers are not always available, don’t always provide adequate bandwidth for powerful phones like the iPhone, and don’t always provide quality service. The only answer, then, is unlocked cell phones.

But should you jailbreak it yourself? Probably not. If you do it wrong, your risk turning your expensive smartphone into a brick. Rather, buy unlocked cell phones from reputable retailers, or send them in to become unlocked cell phones by the same.

What’s the advantage of unlocked cell phones? Have the phone of your choice in the region of your choosing, on the best (or most reliable) carrier, and control what you do with the phone when you upgrade.

More Unlocked Cell Phones To Come?

Jailbroken iPhone

Unlocked cell phones are a boon to consumers—they allow consumers to choose their carriers without committing to contracts that last years and may have hidden fees.

But some cell phone designers are realizing that unlocked cell phones can benefit them too—if you are only selling through one carrier, your phones only reach a small percentage of the market. Some designers have different phones they sell through certain carriers, but Apple, for instance, has generally been limited to AT&T, and now Verizon, with only one true model.

Google and a few other cell phone creators have made attempts in the past, but carriers simply used the unlocked cell phones they created to add even more restrictions, unwanted apps, and bulk to the phone.

Now there is rumor that Apple’s next phone, a sort of iPhone mini, may be unlocked, allowing them to (carrier willing) sell through every carrier. Of course, if the carriers are unwilling, unlocked cell phones are easily sold in regular stores, such as the Apple store, which is already in cities all over the country.

Whether or not this rumor turns out to be true, and whether or not Apple follows through on releasing unlocked cell phones, unlocked cell phones are still available online through reputable retailers. Even if cell phone creators aren’t benefiting from unlocked cell phones, consumers still can.

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