Reader Andrew has an interesting problem: whenever he logs onto T-Mobile’s website to pay his bill, T-Mobile flashes him.
Hey AT&T, maybe you should offer some sort of congestion pricing on your iPhone plans in places like New York City. We’ve heard/read all sorts of anecdotal reports on dropped calls before, but today Engadget reported that an Apple Genius said a 30% drop call rate is average for the area. If that’s true, it seems like false advertising to charge for a full-time calling plan that you can only use about two-thirds of the time.
If you bought an LG Chocolate phone, compare its serial number to the ones on this site—if it matches then you can sell it back to LG for $10,000. We’re not sure if this is just a fancy way to hold a contest, or if those 5 phones accidentally shipped with alien technology inside. Either way, it’s a bit more than you’d get through Craigslist. Hurry though; the offer/contest/coverup ends today.
If you’ve been holding out on a phone upgrade or carrier switch until the Palm Pre comes to Verizon, you may need to give up the dream. The carrier has “reportedly ditched plans to offer the Palm Pre early next year,” says PC World. Apparently poor sales of the device at Sprint, combined with Verizon’s interest in upcoming Blackberry devices, killed any enthusiasm the carrier once had. Update: The no-Pre rumor may be false, according to these two analysts.
Uh-oh, the FCC is getting serious about doing its job, which probably means more memos like the one Apple posted last week from companies like AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile. Yesterday the FCC announced three “Notices of Inquiry”—all unanimously voted for by a full, bi-partisan commission—that will look at different aspects of the cellular industry.
If you want to decide which cellular provider to do business with based on performance, you might be interested in checking out the new “2009 Wireless Call Quality Performance Study” from J.D. Power and Associates. If you don’t have time, just remember that Verizon Wireless offers the most reliable call quality around the country, coming out on top in 4 of the 6 regions.
A new survey from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) compared annual costs around the world for consumers who have cellphones, and the U.S. is in the top three for most expensive. How expensive? DSLReports notes that “on average, the OECD found that Americans pay $635.85 on cell phone service, compared to $131.44 per year in the Netherlands or $137.94 per year in Sweden.”
Apple may not feel like you’re ready to take advantage of Google Voice, but luckily Jobs and his legion can’t lock you out of every potential way to access the service. (Yet.) Here are three paths to GV you can use today, no permission needed from the Applelord.
NetworkWorld published its findings on the suspicious histories of the men behind new cellphone company Zer01 just two days ago, but they clearly sent someone behind the scenes scrambling. This afternoon they reported that Zer01’s parent company “has stripped its Web site down to only basic information,” and that “new details have also come to light suggesting a past connection between two of the involved companies, despite claims to the contrary.”
John Hargrave of comedy site Zug.com tracked down the personal info of Verizon’s CEO, then showed up with a bullhorn to illustrate what a lack of privacy feels like. “Ivan Seidenberg! I’m here on behalf of Verizon customers. PLEASE DO A BETTER JOB PROTECTING YOUR CUSTOMERS’ CELL PHONE RECORDS! Everyone has the right to privacy, including you Ivan! When we don’t have privacy, then freaks with bullhorns start showing up on our front lawn.”
ZER01 is a new cellular service launching soon that promises unlimited calling and unlimited, fast data connectivity for $70 a month. There’s another unique twist: you can sell the service to your friends for $10 monthly credits. That’s right, it’s a multi-level marketing mobile virtual network operator—an MLM MVNO. NetworkWorld smelled something fishy, so they researched the companies behind the offering and found that there’s a lot of sketchy looking stuff. We put the highlights of their investigation into a chart.
If you’ve been a prompt-paying T-Mobile customer for 22 months or more, you can still sign up for their “Loyalty Unlimited” offering—$50/mo for unlimited calling—through the end of this month. [IntoMobile]
“This is a recommendation,” the technical support person told me. “If you decide not to go, it’s okay but we’re informing customers that service will not be up to par.”
Update: Some of our readers who are Sprint customers say they don’t think the screenshots are legit. We asked Sprint for an opinion, and they responded, “We had noticed the post on sprintusers.com earlier today and are tracking down the answer. I’ll get back to you asap.” We’ll post further updates when they arrive.
Apple fans around the country are foaming at the mouths over the jacked-up pricing AT&T has announced for the upgraded iPhone. AT&T apparently can’t afford to subsidize the phones for existing customers, because if you currently have an iPhone and more than 6 months left on your contract, you’ll have to pay $417-$517 for the newer model (that includes an $18 “upgrade” fee).
Update: Lloyd, a Sprint “Customer Experience” Manager, wrote in to let us know that the bill below is indeed legitimate:
T-Mobile is running a “flip your pearl” promotion right now, where you can trade in your old Blackberry for at least $75 (or another phone for $50) when you buy and activate a new Blackberry from them. Your trade-in phone will have to meet certain conditions for the offer to apply. [FlipYourPearl via IntoMobile]