Anti-Theft Kill Switch For Smartphones Could Save Consumers $2.6 Billion A Year

Anti-Theft Kill Switch For Smartphones Could Save Consumers $2.6 Billion A Year

Smartphones are a popular target for thieves, in fact nearly 1.6 million phones were stolen in the United States in 2012. The anger knowing that you’ll have to shell out big bucks to replace it is almost comparable to the feeling of helplessness and rage one feels after having their trusty phone snatched away in the first place. But one simple change to all smartphones could lessen those feeling and keep $2.6 billion in consumers’ collective pockets. [More]

The DOT Wants To Know: Should Cell Phone Calls Be Allowed On Planes?

The DOT Wants To Know: Should Cell Phone Calls Be Allowed On Planes?

Back in December when the Federal Communications Commission announced it would start investigating whether or not it’s a good idea to lift the ban on cell phone calls on planes — from a technological point of view — the Department of Transportation was all, “Hold on, we’re going to look into this too.” The DOT is now turning to the public to hear your thoughts. [More]

Study: Texting While Walking Turns You Into A Robot, A Menace To Society And Yourself

Study: Texting While Walking Turns You Into A Robot, A Menace To Society And Yourself

Whenever I’m walking and texting I am fully aware of death glares shot my way by my fellow pedestrians. And I know why — they expect me to not pay attention and bumble right into them, so I try not to text for too long. But you could also be hurting yourself with this ambulatory multi-tasking, say Australian researchers in a new study. [More]

(Scoboco)

Blogger Admits He Maybe Overreacted By Calling 9-1-1 To Report Cell Phone Use In Theater

Your head is on fire. A spaceship spewing bug-eyed aliens just landed in the backyard, and they look mean. Someone in the movie theater is using a cell phone, but the staff doesn’t seem to care. The neighbors have turned into ravenous zombies intent on noshing on your brains. Three of the aforementioned scenarios are all emergency situations and thus warrant calling 9-1-1 for help, while one is not. Let’s take a guess which is an inappropriate reason to get emergency responders involved. [More]

She's still, she's still Jenny from the Block.

Are  you a Jennifer Lopez fan that has been feeling woefully disconnected from the singer/actress/business mogul/whatever else she’s up to these days? Jenny from the block has got the perfect solution, in the form of her new chain of cellphone stores under the Viva Movil brand name. Will you be able to dial her directly if you buy a phone at one of 15 authorized Verizon resellers? Well, no. But you will help her earn more buckets of money, so yay for you? [via Associated Press]

Newt Gingrich Needs Your Help To Name These Newfangled Internet Phones

Newt Gingrich Needs Your Help To Name These Newfangled Internet Phones

It would appear that we aren’t the only ones who have trouble keeping up with all the new technology these days: Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich posted a video on YouTube recently informing consumers that while they might think they’re holding a “cell phone,” they’re wrong. “If it’s taking pictures, it’s not a cell phone,” Gingrich explains. It’s time to find a name for this thing, and Newt says he needs our help. [More]

(Michelle Rick)

San Francisco Backs Off On Law Requiring Retailers To Post Info On Cell Phone Radiation

Back in 2011, the city of San Francisco rustled up an ordinance that would require cell phone companies to post information telling consumers about the potential dangers of radiation in retail stores. The industry fought back, claiming the law violated its free-speech rights, and after a court held up an injunction against the law, the city has decided to throw in the towel. [More]

(kfas)

The First Mobile Phone Call Was Made 40 Years Ago Today

You talk to it everyday, stroke it, keep it close by when you sleep and use it to share your world with those close to you. Cell phones are as ubiquitous today as well, we can’t really think of any other product consumers cherish so universally. And it all started 40 years ago with the first public call made from a mobile phone. [More]

(jayRaz)

ACLU Files Suit To Stop Police From Searching Cell Phones Without Warrant

A decade ago, searching someone’s cell phone would give you a list of names and numbers, maybe some recent texts. But now, the average smartphone could contain as much personal and sensitive information as a desktop computer, yet many law enforcement agencies argue they don’t need a warrant to search these devices. That’s why the American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit against the city of San Francisco and its chief of police. [More]

(cool_colonia4711)

T-Mobile Doesn’t Believe Loyal Customer Will Really Leave

So long, T-Mobile! Mark was looking for a new phone to replace his, and has been a loyal T-Mobile customer since 2007. What’s that worth to Big Pink? Not all that much. He saw a great deal reserved only for new customers. Here’s the catch: that deal included a nice price on a smartphone and a $50 per month unlimited no-contract plan. They weren’t about to let a contract customer move on to a dissolute, contract-free lifestyle. No way.  [More]

Don't miss this deal.

Raiders Of The Lost Walmart Uncover Ancient, Indestructible Nokia Phone

Do you ever get nostalgic for old technology, missing your Nokia dumbphone from 2001 or your Sony Mavica camera that saved photos to 3.5-inch floppy disks? Thanks to hidden caches of treasure in Walmart’s vast warehouses, you don’t have to. Wally World puts these items, brand-new and shrinkwrapped, on the shelves at comically high prices. Brave Consumerist readers seek out these rare finds and send their discoveries to us. We call these brave souls the Raiders of the Lost Walmart. [More]

(rafa_uoc)

Verizon Says I Owe Overages For iPhone I Returned 8 Months Ago

This past spring, Steve bought a shiny new iPhone 4S. It seemed like a good choice because his son was about to be born, and the 4S has a pretty nice camera for photographing adorable babies. When he got home, he discovered that Verizon’s coverage wasn’t so great there, so he brought the phone back within the initial 14-day return period. They took it back, charged him a restocking fee, no problem. Then, more than six months later, the collection calls began. Wha? [More]

Deli Imposes $3 ‘Yapping On Phone While Ordering’ Surcharge

Deli Imposes $3 ‘Yapping On Phone While Ordering’ Surcharge

We don’t have a “Consumerist Hero Citation,” but if we did, it would go to the person at this Vermont deli who had the idea to impose a $3 fine for yapping on one’s cell phone while trying to order at the counter. “$3 will be added to your total if you fail to GET OFF YOUR PHONE while at the counter. IT’S RUDE,” the sign reads. [More]

Here's How Much Law Enforcement Has To Pay To Snoop On Your Calls

Here's How Much Law Enforcement Has To Pay To Snoop On Your Calls

Back in December, a U.S. Appeals court gave the thumbs-up to telecommunications companies working with the National Security Agency to monitor phones and email. Phone companies are also apparently totally cool with selling access to your phone activities to other law enforcement agencies willing to fork over pre-set prices. [More]

4 Ways To Slash Phone Expenses

4 Ways To Slash Phone Expenses

Your phone is not only a lifeline, entertainment device and communication portal to everyone you know, but it’s also a siphon that sucks money out of you monthly. Phone companies are counting on you falling into complacency with paying for unneeded services. [More]

Have You Tried Swapping Your Wireless Plan With Someone Else? We Want To Hear From You

Have You Tried Swapping Your Wireless Plan With Someone Else? We Want To Hear From You

We’re constantly being asked for advice on how people can get out of cell phone contracts early without being knocked upside the noggin with a brass-knuckled early termination fee. [More]

Minneapolis Looking To Stop Cabbies From Using Cell Phones

Minneapolis Looking To Stop Cabbies From Using Cell Phones

Most of us who’ve lived in major city for long enough have had those experiences of sitting in the backseat of a cab, irritated and possibly concerned by the driver’s incessant yammering on his/her phone. Wouldn’t it be nice if such distracting chit-chat was illegal? [More]

Seattle-Area Theater Will Encourage Texting During Performances

Seattle-Area Theater Will Encourage Texting During Performances

If you’re the type of audience member who feels the need to make the performance a sideshow to your nonstop texting and social network updating, you might want to make plans to move to the Seattle area by 2014. A theater there that’s slated to open that year will embrace technological obsession rather than discourage it, encouraging customers to text during shows. [More]