Smartphone Madness (in Off-topic)

AdminQBVerifex July 17 2009 2:22 PM EDT

So PC World did a little table showing the costs of owning a smart phone here.

Unfortunately this is as I suspected, stupid smartphones are expensive to own. Anyone else have one of these phones but found a cheaper way to own and use one? Why in the hell aren't there any cheaper plans? I'm guessing if people knew how much these stupid phones cost to own I'm sure many people would reconsider.

AdminShade July 17 2009 2:30 PM EDT

2 friends of mine have the iPhone. They have a bundle of €35 per month including (almost) all you can use internet.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] July 17 2009 2:34 PM EDT

my new palm pre wasn't that bad. of course i was already paying for 3 phones and one data plan. it did increase my monthly but added unlimited texting, pic mail and data for all of the phones for about 30 more dollars a month.

{cb2}Dinh July 17 2009 3:15 PM EDT

A couple of things you could do fexy is one, google "Sci-Phone" which is an 'iPhone Clone' at about a third of the price, or usually around $100. I hear they're good phones...if you dont want that, just go to your nearest cities craigslist and check out what people are selling, you can find some good deals...After that, you can go thru cricket or cingular to get some "prepaid" data plans and access the internet...

QBsutekh137 July 17 2009 5:35 PM EDT

Two places to save money:

-- Texting. I only spend $5, not $20. if you text more than 200 texts a month, then you are just sort of retarded, and should stop it. It makes me mad that they now charge $5 for the 200/mo (used to be free), but upgrading the phone forces you into the new price tier.
-- Minutes: who needs unlimited minutes? I get 450 minutes a month, and have my rollover maxed out (something the chart appears to leave out. Plus, phoning to another AT&T phone is free, as are nights and weekends (or else there are so many minutes on that it might as well be unlimited. I pay 39.99 for the minutes.

$20 for the data -- well, that's a bargain as far as I am concerned. Stick with emailing, browsing, and apps that effectively use the internet (without texting or talking), and twenty bucks seems remarkably cheap for the amount of data you can pull down in a month and the things you can do with it.

My total monthly bill, including all taxes and fees, is right at $90 a month. That is $60 cheaper than what they quote, or 40% less.

So, stop jabbering all day and texting while driving, and, save money while you're at it. Pretty simple.

TheHatchetman July 17 2009 5:43 PM EDT

"So, stop jabbering all day and texting while driving, and, save money while you're at it. Pretty simple."

Are you sure you're American? o.O

theLogik July 17 2009 5:44 PM EDT


I have a blackberry and its absolutely fantastic. My monthly bill is actually just under 80$ a month and includes free nights and weekends, unlimited texts and 500 anytime minutes plus mobile to mobile and 5 numbers of my choice that I can call anytime for free. Oh yeah, as well as a limited data plan.

When you are thinking about buying a "Smart Phone" you should be aware that you are going to be paying more to get more. If you just want to text a bit and call some friends, then just go get a little 39.99 piece that wont shatter into a billion pieces when you drop the thing. But if you want any kind of versatility and/or a ton of really cool apps that enhance your day to day experience in ways you weren't even aware they could, then you should absolutely make the jump.

QBsutekh137 July 17 2009 5:45 PM EDT

Let's just say there are a lot of things about the culture and people here in the USA that I dislike, but I am not sure things are THAT much better elsewhere in the world.

AdminShade July 17 2009 8:19 PM EDT

I don't have a smartphone but my monthly bill is only οΎ€15.-

Flamey July 17 2009 8:38 PM EDT

I send 200-300 texts a month my cap fills up with mostly texts and hardly any calls. Sometimes its just necessary for organisations, and yes the odd conversation is thrown in but its cheaper than calling.

The prices don't seem that bad for unlimited everything, tbh.

Sickone July 17 2009 8:48 PM EDT

Hello and welcome to the USofA, where communications are expensive as hell because the companies are ripping you off and you don't really care. Abandon all hope.
Europe is usually much better off, and some countries have ridiculously low cost plans.

Zenai [Cult of the Valaraukar] July 17 2009 8:49 PM EDT

Well Sut to be honest there are sometimes other factors in the Texting line. Per instance my wife is Deaf and Texting is how we communicate because it is much simpler than IP Relay Systems (She Texts they call me and Repeat it, I talk back they type it to her :-/ ) It's ok though a lot of people either do not know or do not pay attention to things like this. :)

On the Plans it is up to what you really want, look for a good deal on Ebay, Craigslist is ok too, and sometimes you can find decent deals floating around. More often than not it is a matter of timing.

Sickone July 17 2009 8:54 PM EDT

By the way, I have a regular cellphone, a 7$/month plan (yes, that's SEVEN dollars, no typo), and seldom ever pay more than 10$/month due to over-usage.
I get 260 "in-network" minutes, additional minutes are 0.05$ each, zero included text messages and 0.07$ per text message.
Unlimited internet usage data plan (that's two SIM cards, one for your phone AND one additional card for your PC/laptop) would be around 20$/month.

Flamey July 17 2009 9:23 PM EDT

wow, Standard rates are $0.60/m for calls and $0.20 for texts. That's in USD even though I'm from AUS.

theLogik July 17 2009 9:28 PM EDT

sickone, the type of plan that you are describing is atypical of about 99% of cellular phone users. Though I do agree most people use their phones too much, especially texting, there is a certain level of necessity that has to be met by one's phone plan and frankly, I could never imagine being able to only talk for 260 minutes and not text.

My point is, there are no OBJECTIVE guidelines when determining an appropriate phone plan. It is thoroughly dependent on what needs the consumer has and what kind of priority those needs are to that person. I'm not sure if American cell phone plans are really more expensive but it's a mute point because if you live in America, those are the only plans you can use. Of course you could always go Skype!

QBsutekh137 July 17 2009 10:39 PM EDT

ZUL, I wasn't talking about the minority scenarios (not that they aren't crucially important) where lack of hearing comes into play. Even then, if you have something to say, substantially, email would work, no? And that would be part of the $20 unlimited data plan.

I actually think America has it exactly right. If folks want to pay for talking and texting, the providers SHOULD charge. All they can! Viva la Capitalism. If you can't figure out a way to use pure data (or just don't choose to), don't make a chart complaining about it. You can save 40% right off the top by simply using standard internet protocols.

Sickone July 17 2009 11:03 PM EDT

Oh, and get this : in-house, we ALSO have a pseudo-mobile phone (more on that later) provided by... guess who... OUR ISP :)
It just sits there unused because... well, everybody in the house already had their own mobile phone and didn't want to bother switching... whoever wants to use it uses it whenever they need it (that is, almost never).
The "PLAN TARIFAR 1" payment plan costs 2 Euro/month and that includes a fixed phone line AND the mobile phone line (the actual phone also free of charge), and includes unlimited minutes in both the ISP's mobile and fixed phone network, and ridiculously low costs for out-of-network (even for INTERNATIONAL) calls. I mean, seriously, 5 eurocent/minute to call a fixed phone anywhere in the EU or the USA ?
Granted, their coverage area isn't all that great (just the larger cities and the main road areas), but still... damn !

P.S. My personal mobile phone and that specific payment plan (it never changed since I contracted it), I've had it since the autumn of 2000. That's for nearly 9 years now. I just never felt like I needed to change it.
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