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Author Topic: buying a cell phone
Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted September 14, 2008 19:02      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I have an LG flip phone that has seen better days. At least two, and occasionally three, keys don't work properly. I use my phone a lot when I'm on the road (as in, out of the office), so I get a lot more sweat on it than most phones get (I'm assuming). I miss the "brick" phone I used to have; it had a cover that I could clean, and it was sturdy.

I visited my local AT&T store (since that's my carrier), but they didn't have any of those older-style phones. Surprise, surprise, right? [Razz] I googled for phones, but there are sooo many options and places to buy phones that I don't know where to start. I don't need any features other than the ability to get and receive calls.

Where do I start? What online stores or brands do you recommend? I don't want anything terribly expensive, but a stripped-down phone shouldn't be, right?

ETA: So I went to eBay and found phones sort of like what I want. I guess here's my dilemma: In two months, the contracts on our phones are up. I'm not terribly thrilled with AT&T; it seems to be dropping my calls with increased frequency. However, it could be my phone's fault, right? If we change carriers, which one do you recommend? We only need to be able to make and receive phone calls - no texting, Web, music, etc.

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Bibo
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Icon 1 posted September 14, 2008 20:57      Profile for Bibo   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I would recommend Verizon.

www.vzw.com

They really have an amazing coverage area.

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Snaggy

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Icon 3 posted September 14, 2008 21:00      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
we have two LG's (one year old) if you want them.
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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted September 15, 2008 03:33      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
_____________________ Rhonwyyn I feel your pain, oh I feel your pain.

Out here in the Boonees of N.E. Michigan there are huge dead spots but the best coverage goes to Trac-phones. seems they have an agreement with every carrrior. Next best up here is Alltel & A.T.&T.

Verizon/Sprint die back about Bay City, even on the I-roads.

Phones them selves I really like the premise of the Jitter-Bug it just does calls. I have no first hand knowledge on its performance.

We, the MrsMoMan and myself keep coming back to Motorola as in weak signal situations they seem to have the best performance, we have found that the SamSung Hue to be a battery hog in weak areas.

I know that the Trac-Phones are expensive per call but no contract, just keep it loaded with minutes and you are good to go. My brother-in-Law has one for his Lady friend and they are happy with it for her use. He is with A.T.&T.

I have probably confused you even more, but I wish I could still use my old Moto. Bag phone I had in the truck with a roof mount antenna, that thing worked every where.

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Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.


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geekygoddess
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Icon 1 posted September 15, 2008 04:12      Profile for geekygoddess     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Geez! It looks like we are all in the same boat here. I have AT&T and get no reception in my house, but everywhere else. I too live in nowhereland:) I have friends that have other carriers and have worse issues than I do. Plus in the back of my head I keep AT&T because some glorious day I will bite the bullet and get the iPhone.
Hmmm, wish I could help you out more, but I guess I really can't. Good luck!!!

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted September 15, 2008 10:11      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Rhonnie,

Here is something I have finally realized, and it has only taken a decade of cell phone ownership to learn it.

Buy a decent phone. The bargain bin phones will have weaker reception, crappy ear pieces (30% hearing loss, you notice the difference) and tend to need regular restarts to run.

I would say that you should look for a decent mid-range phone, used if you can. And run it. I personally like LG's they make a damn sturdy phone. But I recently upgraded to an older Sony phone, with the Walkman and all that good crap, and it is very nice itself.

I am also not a giant fan of the tiny phones, since I tend to not use and earpiece, and trying to smash one between my ear and shoulder is a practice in futility.

But if you are gonna be on the move, get something with decent bluetooth support and run a good headset, I do mean good. And it should at least keep the banging the phone around issue down.

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tweety
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Icon 1 posted September 15, 2008 13:46      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Rhonnie,
We jumped from Cingular about 6 mos before it became AT&T. The dropped calls issue goes way back to Cingular. Actually, we've had two different carriers since '01 or so. T-Mobile and Cingular. We started with T-Mobile but went to Cingular because T-Mobile's customer service is horrible. Cingular's cust service was much, much better, but something changed with their network about a year into our 2-year contract and calls began to drop left and right. Since we've been back with T-Mobile our reception has been much, much better, but the customer service is still horrific.

That said, there seem to be a large amount of slider phones on the market if you're into something like that. Plus, you may be able to pick up a decent phone if you get a new contract. Both the Mrs and I have RAZRs and really like them. But, as you are trying to get away from flip phones I would guess you're not interested.

I agree with CommanderShroom on this. If you're going with a new contract, get a good mid-level phone, shouldn't cost you more than $50. When we got our RAZRs we had, I believe, 30 days to try out the phone to see if we liked it. I don't know if anyone is still doing that.

The phone Mrs Tweety liked the best was her small blue Nokia. I could barely use the thing it was so small, but she not being very big found it easy to hold and use. I had an LG at one point which was pretty decent. Took a lickin' and kept on tickin'. Now, the Sony-Ericsson I had was a POS. No reception, no reception, no reception.

Other than that, I wish I could help more. Phones are like pens, unfortunately. What fits well in one person's hand doesn't always work for someone else. And, like me, some people enjoy using fountain pens even though they usually get more ink on themselves than the paper.

And, yes, I just compared a hi-tech piece of equipment, the cell phone, to an old-school writing instrument.

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If I were a good man I'd talk to you more often than I do.
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BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 13:01      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
What Shroom said.

You basically get what you paid for. And if you do talk and drive, PLEASE invest in a bluetooth ear piece. It scares the bejeezus out of me when I see people drive and talk.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 13:20      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Don't text while you drive, either

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 15:12      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Or text while riding a

motorcycle.

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'Bout the wires circuits and motors
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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 17:01      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Snaggy:
we have two LG's (one year old) if you want them.

Thanks for your offer, Snaggy, but I only need one phone. Plus, I just remembered that my siblings got new phones several months to a year ago, so maybe I could have one of their old ones. I'll have to ask Mom next time I see her.

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nibbler
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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 22:02      Profile for nibbler   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I like my Krazor - it was free when I renewed with Suncom. Small and thin but pretty clear and better signal than my last phone (also Moto). It has a handy usb port to sync up your files and whatnot.

As far as carriers go - you just have to ask locally who gets the better coverage. Talk to friends, co-workers, strangers, everybody and gather a consensus.

But most important - use a corded headset.

And for your progeny's sake, guys don't leave it in your pocket while your talking.

Phone companies don't want you to know what years of microwave bombardment will do to your body.

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Bibo
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Icon 1 posted September 16, 2008 22:40      Profile for Bibo   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Better yet just don't talk on your cell while driving. Headset or not I know I'm distracted if I try to talk & drive. I'm just as distracted with my bluetooth headset. If my cell rings while I'm driving I let it go to voicemail, it can wait.

quote:
Originally posted by BooBooKitty:
What Shroom said.

You basically get what you paid for. And if you do talk and drive, PLEASE invest in a bluetooth ear piece. It scares the bejeezus out of me when I see people drive and talk.


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BooBooKitty

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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 10:35      Profile for BooBooKitty     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I do that too. I figure that if it was important enough the calling party would leave a message.

WRT Suncom, I believe that they've been bought by T-Mobile. However, unless, T-Mobile decides to swap out their equipment, I think that Suncom service should be decent. [Big Grin]

quote:
Originally posted by Bibo:
Better yet just don't talk on your cell while driving. Headset or not I know I'm distracted if I try to talk & drive. I'm just as distracted with my bluetooth headset. If my cell rings while I'm driving I let it go to voicemail, it can wait.

quote:
Originally posted by BooBooKitty:
What Shroom said.

You basically get what you paid for. And if you do talk and drive, PLEASE invest in a bluetooth ear piece. It scares the bejeezus out of me when I see people drive and talk.



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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 12:27      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Very true about not talking at all while driving. But glass houses and stones and all that.

I just know that if I had to choose between driving next to someone with their cell phone welded between their neck and ear while navigating some huge SUV with half a million screaming little brats and someone with a headset and two free hands. Well you can guess what my thoughts are.

I do have a preference for corded headsets but I have noticed that since bluetooth has become so prevalent that the quality of the wired stuff has gone down. And if you have a phone like mine, it doesn't even offer a different option.

--------------------
Does he know our big secret?
Has one of us confessed?
'Bout the wires circuits and motors
Buried in our chest

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 13:16      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The best thing is not using your phone in the car at all. No way, no how.

The realistic option is what others have said. If you're so important you can't turn the phone off while you're behind the wheel, either hire a driver or get a hands-free set. Otherwise you're putting yourself and everyone around you at needless risk.

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
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geekygoddess
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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 13:24      Profile for geekygoddess     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Are you guys serious? I ALWAYS talk while driving! Been doing it for ten years, never had any problems. I would never text while driving though...I do have my limits. However, I consider myself to be a very good multi-tasker [Big Grin]

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tweety
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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 13:27      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The only time I answer the cell while driving is if I am alone and it is the Mrs.* Yes, when she calls it's as though God were calling. For anyone else? Normally, I let it go to voicemail. Now, if we're both in the car, whoever is not driving gets to pick up the phone, unless it's a number we don't recognize.

Although, whenever we are out, the phone normally goes to voicemail when it's a number we don't know, unless, for some reason, I feel like answering.

Oh, I also try to keep the volume down while inside, unlike some woman wandering around the store the other day. From what we overheard, an aisle over, it seemed like a fairly private conversation, one that should have waited until she was alone.

When out, the cell is for emergencies and "Hey, hon', what else did you need me to pick up?" moments.

* This rarely, if ever, happens. When it has I have either used speaker phone, or the conversation's gone:

MT: "Hey, are you in the car?"
T: "Yeah."
MT: "Oh, okay. Do you want me to call back, or just talk when you get home?"
T: I answer with "yeah, call back in x minutes" or "Let's talk when I get back."

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If I were a good man I'd talk to you more often than I do.
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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 17:38      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I think that unless you are very organised, the only solution is to get a bluetooth 'phone and install a hands free car kit in your car. That way everything happens automatically. I tried lots of other ways but would always find I had stepped into the car forgetting I had my 'phone on me, often in a hard to get at pocket, and then the damn thing starts ringing, and usually where I cannot pull off the road to answer it.

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nibbler
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Icon 1 posted September 17, 2008 20:18      Profile for nibbler   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I'm not even talking about hands free fro driving.

Wake up folks!

Stop bombarding your thin little skulls with microwave radiation for hours a day!

And bluetooth is worse - just plug the cancer pump right into your ear, give it a straight path toyour brain.

The 7th century world won't have to conquer us - if people keep radiating their brains a whole generation will get the brain rot and there will be no country to defeat.

Keep those things away from your children - the earlier you start the more cumulative damage will occur.

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GrumpySteen

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 -

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Worst. Celibate. Ever.

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted September 18, 2008 01:01      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Are you talking from personal experience Chesty?

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted September 18, 2008 03:44      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
___________________ TheMoMan here __ just thought I would muddy the waters some more, this time with a pros perspective.

http://www.arrl.org/news/features/2008/09/17/10339/?nc=1

--------------------
Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.


Benjamin Franklin,

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nibbler
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Icon 1 posted September 18, 2008 05:58      Profile for nibbler   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
How about actual researcher's perspective?

We know that the damage UV light causes takes decades to show up as carcinomas. Forty years ago we didn't.

We know that cigarette smoke takes decades to show up as lung cancer. Sixty years ago we didn't.

Let's just wait another twenty years and then cry out, "Why didn't anyone warn us?"

Then let's all sue the cell phone companies that gave us the unlimited talk time we demanded.

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Myrtle Beach, Dude January Ski Trip Spring Break

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted September 18, 2008 10:37      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
1) Strap cell phone to your left arm
2) Lie in sun for 1 hour and get sunburned
3) Check proteins in the skin on each arm
4) Skin on right arm shows marked difference from skin on left arm where the cell phone was

Therefore cell phones cause cancer, since proteins in the skin don't react to -anything- except cell phone radiation!

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