Android Phone with $15 Verizon Data Plan


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  1. BrennanU

    BrennanU Member This Topic's Starter

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    Hello all, I am a Verizon user in the market for a new phone. Currently I have an LG Chocolate 2 with an iPod touch for my mobile internet needs. I am currently a college student who lives on campus and have wifi almost everwhere I am. I have always been hesitant of getting a smartphone because of the $30 data plan, because I already have access to free data.

    My Chocolate seems to be acting up, so I am in the market for a new phone. I have looked at the very limited selection of feature phones and none of them really appeal to me. I see that Verizon now has a $15 plan which I would strongly consider with an Android phone. In addition, I see that the price of Android phones are dropping. Best Buy even has an HTC Droid Incredible for free this weekend.

    I was talking with a Verizon rep who warned that the $15 data plan will probably not be enough, with a droid. I mentioned that I have campus wifi and she still didn't seem sure. The campus wifi seems to work pretty well with my iPod, although it seems to disconnect periodically, and require a moment or two to reconnect.

    What are everyone's thoughts? Am I going to run into problems with this setup? I guess my biggest concern is that the phone will experience these disconnects and utilize large amounts of data via 3G without my knowledge.

    Thanks,
    Brennan
     

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  2. Demache

    Demache Well-Known Member

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    Its possible to get away with only the $15 plan. Its far more restrictive and requires you to be proactive about your data habits, but doable. Make sure you disable the mobile data network when your not using it. Then you can get away with only having 150 MB safely. But make sure you disable it. If you have an app that starts downloading stuff over the mobile network, and you go way over the limit, you will have wished you paid the $15 extra due to the possible hefty fees! Then just turn it on when you need to use it.

    Also, you cannot receive MMS over Wifi, so you need to temporarily enable the mobile network when you want to receive an MMS. Just a heads up, because some people don't know this. ;)
     
  3. BrennanU

    BrennanU Member This Topic's Starter

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    OK, so just to confirm, there is a way to turn off mobile data, but it prevents me from recieving MMS (ex Picture/Video) but still allows regular text
    messages.

    Also, the Verizon rep mentioned security issues with using the campus network. I am already aware of this, and am certain to never visit any extremely personal sites (ex Online Banking) without a VPN tunnel . Are there any other security risks I should be concerned about?
     
  4. OfTheDamned

    OfTheDamned The Friendly Undead VIP Member

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    Beyond inputting personal data on an open network there aren't too many security concerns out there for Android right now. There ave been some apps that have caused issues, but those are only a few. Reading the comments and being aware of what an app is requesting permission to access is a good way to make sure your not getting anything nefarious on your phone.

    As for text and calling, those run over a different part of the network and don't require data, so having data turned off (Only works with some phones) won't affect text or calls even if you aren't on wifi. Keep in mind that 150 MB isn't a whole lot of data these days though. If you start streaming anything over 3G for to long, you will be toast. I can easily hit 200 MB mid day on the first day of my billing cycle. On the other side, people in Europe have been doing it for years because the data rates are so high, so there isn't any reason you shouldn't be able to. I would definitely make sure the phone you pick out has the ability to turn off the mobile network though.
     
  5. UncleMike

    UncleMike Well-Known Member

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    The ability to turn off mobile data came to my Droid with Android 2.2. I suspect any phone running 2.2 would work the same, but better to check that this is available on a specific model before you buy.

    My main interactive use for data is Google Reader, maybe a little web browsing here and there (often links from within Google Reader), and very minor (< 1 hour per month) of Slacker use. My average data use of the past three months, according to Verizon, is 114MB/month. Yes, that's not a typo, and I don't do anything to intentionally curb my data use other than use Wifi when I'm at home.

    It's definitely doable, but the amount of discipline required will depend on your habits. If you normally leave data off, it shouldn't be a problem - especially if you use something like Tasker to turn off data when your screen turns off, in case you forget to turn off data yourself.
     
  6. lordofthereef

    lordofthereef Well-Known Member

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    I don't think turning off mobile data is going to effect your ability to receive SMS or MMS. At least it shouldn't. Messages like that are billed completely differently. If it does restrict your ability to receive said messages, that is quite a rip if you ask me...
     
  7. OfTheDamned

    OfTheDamned The Friendly Undead VIP Member

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    SMS? No MMS? Yes. The billing doesn't really matter. Picture messaging goes over 3G for just about every phone.
     
  8. lordofthereef

    lordofthereef Well-Known Member

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    Wow that is pretty unfortunate. I feel like we shouldn't be getting billed for MMS then...

    On a side note... I don't think keeping your data on at all times is going to be detrimental to you. My mother has data like weather forecasts update on here phone and she ends up using less than 3 megs a month in data.
     
  9. BrennanU

    BrennanU Member This Topic's Starter

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    Just to follow up, I did end up getting the HTC Incredible. I played around with the phone in the store, and it seemed to send and recieve SMS messages when the data was turned off. I went to Best Buy to get the phone as they had the $1 offer. I ended up going with the Unlimited data plan, as they offered me a $10 discount making it only $5 more than the 150MB plan.

    Thanks for all of your input,
    Brennan
     
  10. lordofthereef

    lordofthereef Well-Known Member

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    Nice! So it turns out you don't need to really limit your data usage anyway? ;)
     

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