The day the iPhone 5 goes on sale, millions of people will happily line up to buy Apple's latest marvel. How could they resist? What with the temptations of the iPhone 5's rumored smaller 19-pin dock connector, in-cell technology that enables the screen's touch sensors and LCD to be consolidated into a single layer, global LTE networks, and oodles of other goodies, it's no wonder Americans on average replace their cell phones every 21.7 months. Computers, digital cameras, tablets, and other gizmos have somewhat longer useful lives, but their owners never develop long-term, decade or … Read more
Apparently Verizon Wireless has been offering users several high-GB data plans without publicly announcing it. According to Computerworld, a company spokesperson confirmed that the carrier is giving users a choice of five more data tiers for their family plans than those previously announced with Share Everything.
The five tiers have been offered to customers since June through customer service on the phone or in stores. They include, 12GB for $110 a month, 14GB for $120 a month, 16GB for $130 a month, 18 GB for $140 a month, and $150 for 20GB a month, according to Verizon spokesperson Brenda Raney.… Read more
Apple and Samsung are running away with the smartphone market, but does that mean that consumers should steer clear of all the other handset makers?
In this edition of Ask Maggie, I help one reader decide if he should take a gamble and ditch Apple for an HTC One X. Will he still get the same level of service he has had with Apple?
I also explain to another reader that the Wi-Fi hotspot feature is included in the price of the new family share plans.
Steer Clear of HTC because of its sales troubles?
Dear Maggie, I've been … Read more
A few weeks ago, AT&T announced its intentions to follow Verizon with a new model of selling customers a pool of mobile data they can access across multiple devices. Today, AT&T stamps a date on the launch.
Starting August 23, AT&T customers can opt into the Mobile Share data plan, which will grant access from 1GB to 20GB per person or group. In addition to the GB -per-month cost, Mobile Share plans charge an access fee per device and see unlimited texts and voice minutes. The plans support as many as 10 devices per … Read more
Looking to slash your smartphone bill? Prepaid services that resell service from the nationwide carriers at big discounts may be your answer.
There are now several prepaid services available that resell nationwide carriers' 3G wireless services. The benefits to these plans are huge. Customers can still get access to hot new smartphones and reliable networks with nationwide coverage at a fraction of the price that they'd pay subscribing to a service from AT&T or Verizon Wireless. Of course, there are a few downsides to these prepaid services. Still, as I explain in this edition of Ask Maggie, … Read more
WASHINGTON--The federal government is slinking away from a promise by President Obama to free up badly-needed radio spectrum for mobile users and the already over-taxed networks that serve them.
Just months after the publication of the National Broadband Plan in early 2010, the president issued a memorandum ordering the FCC and the Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration to "make available a total of 500 MHz of Federal and nonfederal spectrum over the next 10 years" for mobile users.
The goal was to clear unused or underutilized spectrum the FCC could then auction off for use … Read more
This Wednesday's top stories are sharing the love of data (but not the love of sharing data):
It began with Verizon, and now AT&T has joined the data-sharing movement. Starting in August, new AT&T customers will be signing up for "Mobile Share" plans. All have unlimited voice and text, but you pick how much data you need, and up to 10 devices can share from that bucket of data. Generally speaking, AT&T and Verizon's plan prices are pretty similar in the lower data tiers. Depending on your needs, one can … Read more
With AT&T officially announcing its "Mobile Share" plans and joining Verizon Wireless, there will soon be two options for customers who want to get into a family plan for data services.
While these plans aren't the best deals for individuals, large families or even groups of really, really close friends may want to consider them. That's because the more people who sign on, the lower the price per gigabyte and user. Of course, if someone is a heavy data user, that person may want to stick with an individual plan, or risk hogging up … Read more
AT&T launched its own "Mobile Share" plans today, matching Verizon Wireless' push to get more people to share their data plans with family members.
Mobile Share, like Verizon's Share Everything, provides a bucket of data that can be shared between as many as 10 devices. One of the devices has to be a smartphone, but other basic phones, tablets, and laptops can be added on top of that for an additional fee. The plans get unlimited voice and text messages.
Shared data plans, which act like a family plan of minutes and text messages to … Read more
Updated 7:07 a.m. PT:This story was updated to reflect AT&T's announcement of a new data share plan. The story has been reworked to compare AT&T's and Verizon's data share plans.
First Verizon and now AT&T has announced new plans that offer families the option to share a bucket of data across several users or even several Internet-enabled devices. But are these new plans right for your family?
One thing is certain about these new plans. AT&T and Verizon have not made these plans easy to understand. … Read more