I need more than just a product brochure
March 25, 2010 1:05 PM Subscribe
Help me decide whether to buy a Nexus One. Unusual questions about switching service providers, SIMs, and international options inside.
posted by Vorteks to technology (22 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I'm considering buying a smart phone, and the Nexus One is a forerunner. I've read up a lot on the different plans and advantages/disadvantages of the various providers and phones, and I like that the Nexus One is fast, more open than the iPhone, and can be purchased unlocked. If I bought a Nexus One, I would probably pay full price and then get the contractless plan from T-Mobile. The plan prices are well documented a bunch of different places on the web. However, I am wondering about certain things that don't seem to be discussed in the news coverage and forums that I've seen:
- Switching Carriers - My understanding is that when you buy an unlocked phone, you can buy a plan from T-Mobile (and maybe other carriers) using menus on the phone itself. Is this correct? If so, can I cancel my plan with one carrier and sign up with another carrier the same way?
- Number Portability - If I sign up for a 2-year contract when I buy the phone, I can provide my old phone number and transfer the phone number to my new service. If I buy the phone without a contract, is this option still available?
- Micro SIM - My understanding is that the Nexus One uses a Micro SIM card that is not popular right now. But... does anyone use it (even internationally)? Could I theoretically switch the SIM card for another provider's at some point in the future?
- International Service - Related to the above, a big "nice to have" with my phone would be the ability to use it in Japan for cheap. I know T-Mobile can provide GSM service in Japan via their partners, but it costs a fortune. A better option would be to buy a SIM card from a Japanese provider and swap it into the phone while I'm there. Of course, as I noted above, the odd SIM card format Google/HTC chose may make this difficult. Is something like this possible?
- International Calling - Can I add some kind of "international rates package" to a T-Mobile plan? How about with the other carriers? Currently I'm with Sprint and I pay $4 per month to get rates of $0.07 per minute to land lines in Japan. It looks like T-Mobile might offer this, but is that option available to Nexus One users (I'd heard that the Nexus One can only be used with certain plans/options)? I imagine I could use Skype on an Android phone if this isn't an option, but it'd still be nice to get good international rates.
- Japanese Keyboard - It looks like there's no Japanese keyboard out of the box on the Nexus One. Is there some way around this when writing e-mails (third party app, perhaps?)
- Verizon, Sprint - Supposedly Verizon and Sprint are getting Nexus Ones in the near future. If I got the T-Mobile version, would I be kicking myself later for not waiting? Aside from the fact that their network is larger, does Verizon have any huge advantage over T-Mobile?
- What don't I know? - Is there any compelling reason I shouldn't buy a Nexus One that I'm not aware of? I'd be willing to consider the other smart phones - Droid, Palm Pre, Etc (but not the iPhone)
I realize that's a lot of subquestions, but I'm hoping someone can help me out. Maybe I'll get lucky and somebody will have a link to a 30-page review that covers this all in depth.
I have already searched through Nexus One and smartphone questions here on Metafilter, but I haven't seen my specific concerns addressed.
I will not buy an iPhone because I hate AT&T and I'm not too fond of Apple recently either.
Thanks in advance for any advice or info you can offer.