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  1. #1
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    Default "Cheapest cell phone" thread. Edited: Call from Q-tel re landline - anyone know them?

    New twist about "lower rates than Verizon!" for my land line. Please see post 13...

    I figure it's been a few months. And perhaps people are happy/not-so-happy with their budget phones.

    The leaves are on the trees, so it's apparent the cell coverage, which appeared suddenly at my house in Dec., is here to stay...

    I have an ancient LG ENV Touch. No Verizon Wireless contract. I will never have a contract with them again. I get laughed at in the Verizon stores. Have to buy the batteries through Amazon, but phone still works fine -after 9 years!!

    BUT, I've also tried to end my land line, and business purposes suggest I may still need to keep one. ONE land line alone with long distance is $95 a month.

    My cell phone rate for now is $180 for 2 phones, my son's is $110. He's beginning his own contract. I have a limit of 700 minutes and now that the cell coverage works here, have gone slightly over the past 2 months.

    Headed to Walmart, Target for any of their pay ahead plans suggested here earlier...? Being on the road, I need probably about 800-1000 minutes a month. I don't text much. Currently don't need a phone for e-mail, etc. as I take my laptop with me and stop where there's wifi. May get a new cell phone, but not an expensive one. The LG takes awful pictures, but I have a digital SLR.

    Still, might be nice to be able to do what 80% of the rest of the population does with their phones now. But, thinking budget, budget...

    Thanks, again, for your recommendations.
    Last edited by CVPeg; May. 30, 2014 at 05:21 PM.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  2. #2
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    Verizon has a pay ahead plan that has unlimited talk/text and 500mb data for, I believe, under $60/month. Of course you have to buy the phone up front, but I think there are several to choose from at different price points. I also saw that with the "ALLSET" plan, you can get an iPhone 4 or 4s for $99 with no contract for their prepaid service. Might be worth checking out.
    Rhode Islands are red;
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  3. #3
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    my DH loves his Straight Talk service, 50$, no Verizon involved (started hating them when they advertised pay as you talk, but I never could set my prepaid up for that, paid a small fortune for not using my phone)

    He has an LG android, has most whistles you could ask for, I think about 99$
    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.


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  4. #4
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    I know you said you don't want to do a contract, but I have to tell you, I pay $40/line per smart phone then $60-70/mo for shared data (4GB) and unlimited talk/text. So my total bill for two of us is about 140 (I keep monkeying with the data plan due to SD.) I have (gulp!) Verizon and have had for more than 10 years and have been very happy. (SD and I both have iphone 5s)

    If you want to get rid of your land line, I think a smart phone is the way to go. If you have wifi at home, then much of your use (say for skype, facetime, downloading email, yada yada) will not go towards your data. And you CAN get lesser data plans, still with unlimited talk and text. Would likely come out ahead unless your land line is bundled with your internet.

    I'm sure there are other good companies out there but the US model is either prepaid phones (where often, you're paying a lot more for minutes) or a contract with a major carrier. I've been very happy with Verizon and had some really wonky situations where they've done a great job. Have also liked ATT back before Verizon. I've had T-Mobile and Sprint for secondary phones and actually done some work for both companies and was not a fan. Can't really chime in on the prepaid phones as I have no first hand experience there.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

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  5. #5
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    I have an AT&T "go phone" prepaid phone and plan. I got the Samsung Galaxy Express for myself about a year ago, and am very happy with it. I pay $40/month for unlimited text and talk, and some limit on data which I never get close to. I think the phone was in the $200-$250 range.

    I also have a $19.99 phone for my son from AT&T go phone. I put on $25 which lasts 3 months, and have to supplement that with an additional $4.99 in texting from time to time. It is not a smart phone, and I don't pay for him to have any data plan.



  6. #6
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    Nov. 10, 2011
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    A quick snapshot of featured plans - note there are many more options out there

    AT&T - $25 - 250 mins/ unltd text / data is $5/ 50MB
    VZW - $45 - unltd talk/ text/ data
    Net10 - $40 - unltd talk/ text/ data
    TracFone - $40 - 200 mins/ 90 days of service
    T-mobile - $50 - unltd talk/ text/ data

    If you are just looking to upgrade your device, BYOD is starting to roll out in most merchandisers. BLU is a company that makes amazing off brand cell phones and then you can slide the SIM card in and ride whichever carrier floats your boat.



  7. #7
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    If all you want is phone service and use it very little, I've had Tracfone for eons. The phones are cheap, and you can get promo codes to add to your minutes. The minutes that you don't use don't expire. Texts are 3 tenths of a minute per text.

    What I would do is buy a phone from them with double or triple minutes for life; then buy a 400 minute card which will double to 800 minutes + whatever minutes you get from a promo code and give you three months of service. I then buy a 60 minute card (doubles to 120 minutes + additional promo code minutes) every three months for three additional months service. That works out to service for just about $7 per month. If you don't expect to do most of your internet on the phone, you can buy one of their smartphones or the LG840 which will let you check email etc. They also sell data cards now but they are not cheap for 2Gs of internet use.

    If you buy your tracfone phones and minutes through Fat Wallet, you're supposed to get cash back, but I never have. Fat Wallet does have a thread devoted to promo codes, so you can get the code number free and know whether or not it will work (on the whole).

    Whether or not cell phone service for $7 per month will work for you will depend on how much you use your phone and for what. I'd guess that if you use over 700 minutes per month, there would be cheaper ways out there. I use my land line for most of my calls.
    "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
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  8. #8
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    Sep. 22, 2011
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    I have Tracfone too though I have triple minutes for life. I just bought 120 min (x 3 = 360 min) used code to receive 60 min and at check out bought 120 min (x 3 = 360) so total purchase for 780 minutes (90 more days of service) was $44.99 plus gov't fees - total $46.41.

    Yeah, I'd love to have the newest i-phone but not the monthly charges.



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by CVPeg View Post
    BUT, I've also tried to end my land line, and business purposes suggest I may still need to keep one. ONE land line alone with long distance is $95 a month.
    We downgraded our land line to the most basic service they offer and no long distance plan. We use free google voice for any long distance calls or toll calls we make. This should bring your phone bill down to around $25 (due to all the taxes) depending on where you live.



  10. #10
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Thanks for the replies. Printing and taking with me out shopping later.

    Macimage, sadley no high speed internet either, or I'd have a phone system tied in.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes


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  11. #11
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    I love Straight Talk. No plan, no billing, no surprise charges. $45/month unlimited talk and text, basic Internet access, phones start at around $39.99(?) and last forever!
    RoanPonyMare



  12. #12
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    You could try google voice and get a new number but keep your existing service. Just search "google voice".



  13. #13
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Verizon has been the only game in town land line wise. Just got a call from Q-tel, suggesting they may be able to lower my rates. I have a commercial phone number I use, that frankly forwards calls to my home number. So at first they called thinking I was paying a full small business rate.

    However, they are talking about a $39 rate including unlimited long distance! Sounds too good to be true!

    Anyone ever deal with Q-tel??
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by CVPeg View Post
    Thanks for the replies. Printing and taking with me out shopping later.

    Macimage, sadley no high speed internet either, or I'd have a phone system tied in.
    Google voice doesn't need a high speed internet, any internet connection will work.

    It dials the number for you and your home phone rings when you hit the connect button. You can either type in the number you want to call or enter your favorite phone numbers in the contacts list.

    You just hit "connect' and your land line will ring.



  15. #15
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Thanks, Macimage - am reading up on it now. But a bit confused about how it all works.

    So trying to understand this, even if I'm on my home phone, can the call be made through my cell, and vice versa? So there's a way that I can avoid a big long distance package for both?

    Also just reading where Google is doing away with much of its functionality in Google Voice, integrating that into G+ Hangouts. http://9to5google.com/2014/03/18/goo...into-hangouts/

    So am more confused than ever! Does that mean my cell phone would have to be a Smartphone to use it? Phew! Thanks.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by CVPeg View Post
    Thanks, Macimage - am reading up on it now. But a bit confused about how it all works.

    So trying to understand this, even if I'm on my home phone, can the call be made through my cell, and vice versa? So there's a way that I can avoid a big long distance package for both?

    Also just reading where Google is doing away with much of its functionality in Google Voice, integrating that into G+ Hangouts. http://9to5google.com/2014/03/18/goo...into-hangouts/

    So am more confused than ever! Does that mean my cell phone would have to be a Smartphone to use it? Phew! Thanks.
    I don't know anything about the Hangup part of it, but the existing Google Voice (which I would think they would keep in some fashion) allows you to dial any number and have any of your phones ring. Yes, you don't need any long distance packages when you use free google voice.

    Here is what the screen to dial says:

    Google will call your phone and connect you.

    Number to call





    Phone to call with

    Home







    Connect






    The copy function is a bit off from the actual screen but it shows how it works. You type the number you want to call into the box, there is a drop down menu where you pick what phone you want to ring (I have home set up, but the drop down box can have cell and whatever numbers you add) and then you hit "Connect".

    If I typed a phone number into the 'Number to Call Box" and clicked "Connect", my "Home" land line would immediately ring. I would pick up my land line and the number I called would be ringing just as if I dialed it on my land line.


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  17. #17
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Thanks again, Macimage.

    I'm having such a hard time wrapping my head around all these phone options. Especially as I don't want any errors on business calls, but am trying to cut costs. Am maintaining an old real estate business phone number which is on my current sign for my own property up for sale, as well as the real estate signs I have left. It's automatically forwarded to my home phone.

    Where I'm stuck is, I still have to have a fax machine available for assignments which is at my house. If someone calls, the answering machine can pick up and switch over to the fax.

    BUT, if I'm on the road, I also like to forward my home phone to my cell, so I don't miss calls. But then I can't have the fax.

    I haven't determined exactly what I'll be using as my business number for the other business I'm finally beginning. Am almost thinking - now that we FINALLY have cell coverage at my house, that I may use my cell phone number for that.

    I know - complicated! But your idea sounds intriguing -it might be a solution. Am going to play with it, and see how it goes.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  18. #18
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    There was an ad from Walmart Sunday about phones and non contract service. One that might work for you is the WalMart Family Mobile. For $29.88 per month, you get unlimited talk and text; for $39.88 per month, you get unlimited talk, text and web. It uses T-Mobile's network. T-Mobile is also in the ad. For $30 per month, you get "unlimited" text and data and 100 minutes, along with 5GB of 4G LTE data and unlimited international texting.

    The ad offers a Samsung Galaxy 5 III for $299.

    In the small print, the Family Mobile plan allows you 2.5 GB of data per month at 3G speeds, then you're choked down to 2g speed for the rest of the month.

    The Walmart Family Mobile plan might work for you, and it's even cheaper than Straight Talk.

    Here's a review, but the numbers are different from those in the ad.
    http://www.consumersearch.com/prepai...-family-mobile

    And another:
    http://nocontractsmartphones.net/wal...mobile-review/

    This is all so complicated and so unnecessarily expensive.
    Last edited by vineyridge; Jun. 3, 2014 at 02:20 PM.
    "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
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  19. #19
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    My cheapest cell phone option was a Tracfone thru HSN! Got a semi-smart phone, triple minutes and a year of service for $100! Now I just add minutes if needed. Each year I decide if I want to upgrade the phone and they will transfer my minutes to the new phone.



  20. #20
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Part of the problem solved today.
    Decided to go with one of the "remote" fax services. Found one for $7 a month. You pick out your own toll free fax number from several ones available. Anything sent to that can be forwarded to your computer, smart phone, etc. I can pick it up on my laptop when I'm on the road - after I stop at a free wifi spot, that is. LOL
    Had considered them earlier, but the ones I found seemed costly. Then dug this one up.

    I can still use my old business number - which goes to my home phone for voice calls. Then forward my home phone to my cell when I'm on the road. Phew!

    But am still perusing options on my cell phone. The cost just kills me, so thanks to all for the suggestions!
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



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