Apple made it clear last year that Google Voice is not welcome on the App Store or your iPhone. “Fine,” said Google. “We’ll go through the browser!” Today the search engine revealed a new mobile web interface that uses some fancy HTML5 magic to provide voicemail, calling, and text message functionality. If you don’t already know, you can turn any page in Mobile Safari into an App icon on your home screen (click the “+” icon in Safari), meaning now you can have a legitimate Google Voice “app.” Below is a video tour. Update: There’s a down side to this: Cy writes in to let us know that this fancy new version actually breaks functionality for iPod Touch owners–the old web-based version let Touch owners make calls, but this one doesn’t. [More]
Verizon has dropped 10 phones from its list of models that will trigger the high $350 early termination fee. Cnet wonders whether this is Verizon’s way of trying to make its “advanced devices are expensive to service” argument more palatable to the FCC, as the remaining models are all smartphones. [More]
Jennifer wrote to us about the trouble a family in South Carolina is having over a huge T-Mobile bill: “Zeb, a special needs adult living with his parents, had his cell phone stolen just prior to Christmas. By the time the theft was discovered, $6000 in calls and text messages had been made to Honduras.” The good news is that T-Mobile hasn’t asked the family to pay the full $6,000. The bad news is that they do want them to pay a fourth of that. Update: T-Mobile has let the family off the hook. [More]
Some Motorola Droid phones are having problems with the battery cover coming off too easily. That’s what was happening to Chris’ Droid, so he and his girlfriend brought it into a Verizon store in Pleasant Hill, CA. His girlfriend brought along her defective enV Touch for service as well.
When they left, Chris had a sticker stuck to the back of his Droid, and his girlfriend was told to stop wearing makeup because makeup ruins the enV Touch.
What the heck, did you guys strike early, and target the wrong wireless carrier? The day before the possibly-ill-conceived “Operation Chokehold” is supposed to bring AT&T’s wireless network to a standstill, T-Mobile steals all the bad press by going out this evening across large parts of the Southeastern US and Puerto Rico.
Update: Immediately after posting this, T-Mobile announced the service was back up.
AT&T has debuted an iPhone app that will let AT&T/iPhone users submit reports when they experience poor phone service. This will be a popular app. [More]
I don’t know how Corey ever managed to secure a monthly plan that only costs $2.50–oh wait, it looks like some old offer Sprint forgot about but some of their customers found. Well, now Sprint knows about it, and they’re not happy. On the bright side, hey, no ETF to worry about if you want to switch carriers, Corey. You can read Sprint’s take-it-or-leave-it offer below. [More]
When David’s phone broke, he bought a stopgap device from Verizon, emphatically telling the salesperson he didn’t want to renew his contract.
You can always just not answer your phone, but if a telemarketer calling you on your Blackberry sends you into a rage, you might want to look at Call Control. The app relies on the telemarketer database at everycall.us to screen out known spammers. The free version screens out the top 100 telemarketers; an $8 version uses the entire database and includes updates.
One problem I’ve always had when shopping for jacked-up prices is I can’t find enough crazy to go along with it. Same thing for the crazy: I know where to go to get cart-loads of that, but I can’t find the 2400% markup! What I need, clearly, is for Radio Shack to open up specialty kiosks inside Target stores, so then— oh hey! It’s the Bullseye Mobile Solution!
Today Walmart announced that it’s launching its own wireless service, Straight Talk, on October 18th. The network will
piggyback on use TracFone’s wireless network. At launch, two pre-paid plans will be offered: a $30 package that includes 1000 minutes, 1000 text messages, and 30MB of data; or a $45 plan that includes unlimited voice, text, and data. 411 calls are free.
An Oregon couple signed up for $77.99 Verizon-Qwest bundle that included phone, internet and TV service, and were surprised to see the actual bill come to $158.49.
The Harrisburg, Pa. Patriot-News reports Comcast sent out a service upgrades flier with a number for a phone sex line.
Earlier this week we posted a warning to watch out for calls from people asking for donations on behalf of local police or fire departments. Today an alleged former employee—who says he quit after two days of training and one day of seeing what it was really like on the call center floor—wrote in to tell us a little more about how a company on the other side of that phone call works.