How Do You Get the Best Cell Phone Services?

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When you are looking for a good cell phone service, there are a number of things you should seriously consider, apart from how it affects your budget.

  • Do I have good coverage in the area that I use the phone the most?
  • Am I paying too much?
  • Do I have a phone that's smart enough to use the services I'm paying for?
  • Is the FREE phone I get, really free on my 2 year contract?

Do I have good coverage?

The first thing one should look at is "where do I use my phone the most?" Is it when I'm at home? Many of us spend tons of time commuting to and from work, to and from shopping, movies, the beach etc.

Get the zip code from that area that you use your phone the most and check the coverage map.

Am I paying too much?

The short answer is yes, usually. But it all depends on what you get for your money! If you are paying more than $ 49.00 per month for Unlimited Voice, Text and Data on a 4G network, then the answer is definitely yes!

Do I have a "smart" phone?

There is such a variety of cell phones available today, it can be a little overwhelming. For simplicity sake these can be divided into a few different categories, namely: Mobile Technology, Operating Systems and Styles of Phones.

  • Mobile Technology: There are two basic technologies in mobile phones, CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) and GSM (Global System for Mobiles). Five of the top seven carriers in the US use CDMA: Verizon Wireless, Sprint, MetroPCS, Cricket, and US Cellular. AT&T and T-Mobile use GSM. That means we're mostly a CDMA country. It also means we're not part of the norm, because most of the world is GSM. There are good and bad CDMA and GSM networks, but there are key differences between the technologies.Here's what you, as a consumer, need to know. It's much easier to swap phones on GSM networks, because GSM carriers put customer information on a removable SIM card. Take the card out, put it in a different phone, and the new phone now has your number. What's more, to be considered GSM, a carrier must accept any GSM-compliant phone. So the GSM carriers don't have total control of the phone you're using.That's not the case with CDMA. In the US, CDMA carriers use network-based white lists to verify their subscribers. That means you can only switch phones with your carrier's permission, and a carrier doesn't have to accept any particular phone onto its network. It could, but typically, US carriers choose not to. In other words, you can take an unlocked AT&T phone over to T-Mobile (although its 3G may not work well because the frequency bands are different). You can't take a Verizon phone over to Sprint, because Sprint's network rejects non-Sprint phones.
  • Operating Systems: The mobile market is fragmented between the following software platforms: Palm webOS, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Symbian, Android, and iPhone OS.The iPhone OS features the largest mobile store in the world (nearly 100,000 apps currently), superb multimedia capabilities, the best mobile browser, and a responsive, easy-to-use UI (User Interface) based on icons and animations.Android is Linux based so it scales from basic phones, to fully-featured smartphones, to netbooks. It also has it's own app store with over a thousand apps, including Google Voice. Analyst firm Gartner says that Google's Android will overtake the iPhone OS by 2012. The number of Android devices is expanding rapidly, and includes phones from HTC, Motorola, and Sony Ericsson.
  • Styles of Phones: There are as many different styles of phones as there are styles of cars and bikes.You have to decide what features you want in a phone – do you want a full functional watch phone. Maybe a qwerty type keyboard. Do you want a big screen, a touch screen? How high a quality of camera do you need? Do you want HD video. Off course you want GPS, or do you, some people don't.Do you want smooth video streaming and ultra-fast loading of Web-based content. What's the battery life? There's a downside, on some phones: battery life could drop significantly when using 4G compared with 3G.What applications do you want to run? Like personal e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, games, music, videos, movies and more.Choose a cell phone if you only use Voice & Text, but choose a smart phone if you also want to run Apps, surf the Web, and send e-mail. If you are on a tight budget and can sacrifice having limited Aps there are a few low-cost "feature" phones, like the Sparq Qwerty which have voice, text web surfing and a few Aps.

Are FREE phones really Free?

Your contract is about to run out and the phone company offers you the latest smartphone or iphone, either free or for a huge discount.

AT&T offers the iPhone 5 at only $ 349, however just paying for 5 GBs of data per month from AT&T would cost $ 1,200 over 2 years, plus the $ 199 cost of a subsidized iPhone (and you have to pay for voice minutes and texting on top of that), another $ 1,200 over 2 years – total $ 2,749.

Compare that to buying an iPhone 5 for $ 699 and then paying only $ 49 per month for unlimited voice, text and data from Solavei – total $ 1,875, a savings of $ 874 over 2 years. Now which phone was free?

So how do you get the Best Cell Phone Services?

You need to get a flat rate, unlimited service which has good coverage in your highest usage area, and buy the best smart that you can afford within your budget.

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