Cell Phone Service, What Do You Really Need?
"Cell" Phone......the original meaning...
What Cell Service Works For You?
Ok, this Hub is for those that rarely if ever check their wireless bill. Some people pay their bill month to month without a care and that is fine, if you do that then this Hub is not for you, I have some of my own bills that you can pay for me.
This Hub is not to bash any wireless carrier but to educate and to inform my fellow Hubbers to better educate you on what you really need.
With all providers you have to look at it like getting some gas. There is regular, Mid, and Premium grades of gas you can put into your car. Some cars do require the higher grade of gas, but most cars do not. Some people do need unlimited talking plans, but most people don't.
Most wireless companies provide free to their customers online tools to analyze their own usage. I cannot stress this enough when it comes to determining your usage and what you need in your plan. My wireless carrier has tools and graphs online that I can analyze and print out a report to see who I am calling the most, and who is not in my network. Knowledge is power and I found that I was not using anywhere close to the minutes that I was paying for. I was able to lower my price plan and saved about $40 month. There are those calls that I saw on the information on my online profile that I know I did not need to take. Important calls can go to my voice mail and my friends have learned that if they did not leave a message, it must not be that important.
I also had an unlimited text plan and realized that I wasn't using close to unlimited amount of text. My wireless carrier had a $5 text package which I switched to immediately which saved me $15 a month! A cell phone is a luxury, but people seem to forget that point. This luxury item is used and abused by all of us that use it. Taking better care of your own plan and usage is the best way to get the most out of your plan.
Take full advantage of all the tools available to you regarding minutes and text and data. I can punch in a few keys on my phone and I will get a free text about the total number of minutes used. This allows me to stay under my minutes. Going over on minutes is where wireless companies make their money. They give you the tools to prevent this from happening. If I know I am going to start using my phone for business, I can hop online and increase my price plan myself or call customer care to have it changed that way.
My usage changes with the time of the year. The summer I use more minutes than in the fall, and winter time. Data usage is the new big thing nowadays. Some people feel the need for a iphone, or blackberry, or any other data capable device that can access the internet and do just about anything. As a consumer you need to decide wants and needs with your wireless service. Do you want to have the latest iPhone or do you need the latest iPhone or Blackberry. Do you want to have internet access while you are out and about? The cool factor with any device is great, but have you actually thought about how often you are on your phone? Don't get me wrong I love my blackberry, I actually use most of the features on my blackberry except for the text messaging. For those that have the luxury type of cell phones, with the luxury price plan, have you thought about how much you could save if you had a basic phone? Add up your monthly bill and times that by 12 and see how much you are spending on your cell phone service. Your local government loves you using your cell phone also, since most local governments add a tax onto your bill also. The higher the price plan the higher taxes you pay to your local government.
I used to use the 411 feature my carrier provided, but realized there is a free 411 service that is available out there to use. Little changes like that can lower your bill also, so take full advantage.
When it comes to buying a phone, most carriers will want you to go into a 2 year contract. That is fine if you are happy with your service and your equipment for the next 2 years. I will only sign 1 year contracts if I even decide to sign one. Most providers don't advertise they have 1 year service, but if they want your business they will give it to you if you ask for it, with just a smaller discount on the equipment.
Always know too you can start service without a contract, they may require you to pay some sort of deposit, but your credit is not run, and you can start service without a contract in case you decide later you do not like the provider. Equipment can be expensive, but always know there are tons of people who are willing sell their old cell phones, and you can find used cell phone providers online. Recycle your old phone buy a refurbished phone at deep discount.
Review your price plan, call your provider and ask them to analyze your bill and ask for any new price plans that have come out.
Log online to your account with the carrier and look at your own usage to see where you can save money. Did you really need to call your cousin 15 times in a day, or can you cut down and just send a quick email? The ultimate plan that may work for some people are the senior citizens type of plans. My carrier offered me a cheap price plan for an old phone that I have for back up which was for only $15/month. When I was talking to the agent, this plan was not listed on their website, so unless I called to let them know that I rarely if ever need to use that phone I would of never been offered such a plan.
I also believe its the responsibility of the user of the phone to manage their minutes to keep their bill low. My provider doesn't make the phone calls for me, and if I better managed my usage I could see where I can save even more money every month.
If you don't care about your plan or minutes then the unlimted plans that are available will work for you.
So to recap, analyze your own usage, especially if you are on a family share plan. Get rid of all extra features you do not need. If your renewal date is coming up soon, then cancel your insurance since you might not need it if you have a upgrade waiting for you to use. The cost of the deductible might be more than the cost of an upgrade, or just buy a good used phone! Save the upgrade for another time.
Educate yourself on how your plan works and how it works online so you can cut some fat from your bill and use it to buy a higher grade of gasoline for your car.
Please Vote In the Poll below. Thank You
What Provider Do You Use?
What Provider Do You Use?
Useful Cell Links
- Cell phone reviews, news and specs - Phone Arena
The premium website for new cell phone information such as full specifications, in-depth reviews and the latest news. It features advanced phone filter, specs and visual size comparisons and 360 degrees view of all new phones.
- Engadget Mobile
Mobile News For You, Mobile News In Clear Simple Language, Mobile News About Future Phones and Things That Affect You.
- Cell Phone Plans: Reviews, Best Cell Phone Plan
ConsumerSearch analyzes large customer surveys to gauge overall satisfaction with cell-phone service. Top three services are listed as having the best call quality and value.
- Free 411 - 1-800-FREE411 - Free directory assistance for your home and cell phone.
This is the Web site of 1-800-FREE411, America's #1 provider of FREE telephone directory assistance (411). The site has been designed to provide you with additional information about this exciting new service.