My 90-year-old aunt was just admitted to a nursing home, and they aren't set up to have landlines in individual rooms. For patients to have phones in their rooms, relatives need to provide cell phones. My aunt has some dementia. She still enjoys talking on the phone (and most of us live hundreds of miles away, so it's important), but she really is incapable of learning anything new. When I talk to her, she often won't remember something I said just five minutes before. More below. [more inside]
Caller ID on landlines typically shows the name of the person or business calling. Caller ID on cell phones only shows the name if you have it in your cell phone contact list. Otherwise it just shows the number. Why the difference? [more inside]
Using my iPhone 5S on Ting, I seem to have some data usage every day. This occurs even on days when my phone never leaves the house, where we have good wifi coverage. (The "wifi assist" that snuck in with the new ios was disabled long ago.) It's never very much data - usually around .02 megabytes - so it isn't impacting my bill, but the fact that it occurs at all is puzzling and I'd love to understand why. Can anyone help?
Last night I let a stranger use my mobile phone to make a call. The whole interaction gave me a weird vibe. Could I be at risk of being the victim of a scam of some sort? [more inside]
I've been looking at bulk SMS solutions for our organisation and thought I'd check with the hive. I'm using clickatell.com at the moment but it's rather bulky, so have this idea about using a flat fee mobile phone account. Let's hear what you think… [more inside]
Hallo. I just arrived in London today for a conference and I'm very tired. I brought my Moto G (1st gen, I think -- not LTE) from Canada, and bought a pay-as-you-go SIM card from EE. Phone and text work fine, but data speeds are miserable -- 0.15 download/upload. It's only connecting on the EDGE network, and I can't get it to use HSPDA. Am I screwed re: data speed? The people at the EE store weren't very helpful; they variably said the speed would improve in a few hours, or that it wouldn't improve at all because it's a Canadian phone. [more inside]
We had an "old" smartphone so my husband gave it to my son. He's only 8 but he is going to use it to text my husband since my husband travels a lot. It also has a camera he can use... What other cool things can a you do with a old smartphone? Good apps to download? (This one happens to be a Galaxy nexus)
Why are texts to an email address being diverted? [more inside]
In October, I will be taking my first ever trip out of the United States, traveling to Incheon, South Korea. I have an unlocked Google/Motorola Nexus 6 activated on Verizon. What are my best options for keeping in touch with my family back home when I am over there? Can I just buy a SIM when I get there? [more inside]
My wife is interested in buying an off-contract new iphone and switching to MVNO service but I have questions about compatibility of the two different models. Snowflakes inside. [more inside]
What is the best smartphone/plan combination right now, given a budget of $250 max for the phone and $45/month max per month for the plan? [more inside]
The iPhone (2010-2015, RIP) in my pocket has finally perished and I have to look for a replacement. I am in southern Ontario and have been dealing with Fido mostly problem-free for fifteen years, but I am open to other suggestions. I am all over Canada frequently for work so coverage, it is a thing. Data is less important - my current plan has the lowest possible amount and I think I have exceeded the cap two or three times in five years. [more inside]
I'm a couple of months away from the end of my 2 year Verizon contract, and my LG L2G2 may have finally croaked a day after its battery was replaced. I'm headed to the hospital for surgery in 36 hours, so no time to research options re: decent, reliable phone and possible carrier switch. Hoping you all can help with cell recommendations and reception improvement hacks. (I live in California, and wonder whether our state Public Utilities Commission ADA guidelines would mandate carrier to provide free signal booster/whatever due to disability.) (details inside) [more inside]
I am travelling from Canada to the US for 11 days, and discovered that my Wind Mobile phone has no reception here -- as in, zero bars. Help me figure out what to do! [more inside]
Does there exist a monochrome phone (one whose display gets clearer the brighter the sun gets) which can/does organize texts by person and/or conversation? I'd also be hoping for that other standard feature of monochrome phones, which is a couple of weeks between recharges.
My husband recently irreparably damaged his cheap Verizon phone and wants to get a new dumbphone to use on a Verizon contract. We don't have any upgrades available. Verizon is asking for ~$200(!!!), even though prepaid phones of the same type only cost $25. Is there any way we can avoid paying this extortionate amount? [more inside]
I received my GoogleFi invite this morning, but now I'm confused about whether I should take the plunge. Does anyone have any experience with this yet? [more inside]
I have an iPhone 5s and service through Virgin Mobile USA. I bought the phone outright and have a $35 per month plan. No contract. I pay them, they give me service. Except now I'm in Canada for 5 weeks and they don't have coverage here. So it seems like the most straightforward thing for me to do is swap out the SIM card for one I buy here. But that will only work if the phone is unlocked. So I email Virgin Mobile USA, give them all the relevant info and ask them, "Is my phone unlocked?" They reply, "Virgin Mobile USA does not support international roaming, which means that we do not provide service while you are located in another country. If you travel outside of our coverage area, your phone will not have service." This is, of course, already known to me and exactly why I need to know if my phone is unlocked. This is the only answer I can get from them. So I'm turning to The Green: how can I find out if my phone is unlocked if Virgin Mobile USA won't tell me?
I'm curious about bans on technology at the college level. I've read previous threads on this topic but they predate the widespread introduction of iPads and tablets. If you're a student or instructor are there particular types of classes that ban electronics or is it more or less random based on the instructor? For "no laptop" classes are tablets allowed? [more inside]
I'm going to Guatamala for a few weeks, in two weeks! I'll be at language school in Xela. For various reasons, I'd very much like to have a cell phone with podcast-playing capability while I'm there; I also use a meditation podcast when I fly and would very much like to have that available to me while I'm getting there and leaving. How should I go about making this happen? I currently have an iPhone with Verizon within the US, would be fine getting something new for the few weeks I'm there. Money is not limitless, but this is a pretty big deal for me so I can be flexible.
I need a repeater, and tend to not trust integrated units. I'm perfectly comfy with soldering and assembling an über-repeater by sourcing the various parts ala a handbuilt PC. I just don't know what to buy! [more inside]
I broke the screen on my cellphone (nexus 5/ LG D820) and need to purchase a replacement screen for it. Reviews on most sites that sell replacement cellphone parts complain about non-oem/shoddy/fake replacement parts. Are there any good sites to order high quality cellphone parts from?
I'm getting assigned to work at the parent company near Tokyo for a year. Yay!!! They won't be providing a mobile phone. Boo!! What's the best way to have a smartphone in Japan for the year? [more inside]
Every time I try to log in to Tinder I get asked to enter my phone number for a verification code. And every single time after I enter my number I get the same error: "there was a problem getting your code. Please try again". I have looked through Google and tried various "fixes" for this problem but none have worked for me. I'm hoping the super-geniuses in the Hive Mind can help me. My phone is a QUE 5.0 running Android 4.4.2. My service is through Net10 (which uses AT&T towers).
A friend of mine has given me their old Samsung Galaxy S3. Yay! It is locked and the carrier won't unlock it without forcing a fee to be paid. Boo! [more inside]
I have a new-old Droid 3 (bought new, only started using it recently) and it's not holding a charge very long, even when I'm not actively doing anything with it (it can drop from 100% to 70% over night). I looked at its battery usage, and the bundled apps that I didn't want or use were using a lot of battery (YouTube was the worst, at 27%). Should I try some cellphone management apps (examples), get a new battery, root it to uninstall bundled apps I don't want or need, or root it to run a custom OS? [more inside]
I'm a US resident, looking for a cell-phone I can use both in the USA and Canada to receive phone calls. Any outgoing calls would be a case of a very serious emergency, and I don't particularly care what they cost. Minimal if any texting. No smartphone. Minimal minutes. I'm looking for a way to have a phone on which a few select people can reach me if they need to, and which will work across the widest area possible. Long standby battery life a plus. Suggestions for phone and plan appreciated. [more inside]
Due to some changes in my wireless plan I have a basically new Samsung Galaxy Five that I need to sell, which is a Verizon phone. I tried an ad on Craigslist and got 0 hits. If you've sold a phone in similar circumstances before, what do you recommend for success? [more inside]
Traveling to Israel in May. What are my best options for using a smartphone while in-country without breaking the bank? I won't need a lot of data, but I'd like to be able to check email and consult Google Maps. I have an iPhone 6 on Verizon in case it makes sense to use that. Thanks!
I'm a newbie to smart phones and want to buy the best one I can while avoiding pitfalls. I don't even know what I don't know about them, enlighten me please! [more inside]
I have resisted getting a smartphone for years, but it's time to give in. My problem is that I'm totally clueless about how to do this. What phone should I get? What provider? What kind of data plan? Please help! [more inside]
I need help figuring out the best way to make sure I don't lose my current wireless number when I change employers. [more inside]
I've had a Huawei u8651s for a few months now. It won't let me download or install apps. With the unlimited data plan I have as of today, this is now vexing me. Can anyone help? [more inside]
I have a car with a factory stereo which has both an aux jack and a usb input, but no bluetooth. Is there a commercially available device which would connect to an android cell phone via bluetooth and the car stereo via the usb port? My objective is to use the car stereo as the phone speaker. I do not need to stream music from the phone to the stereo. I know there are aux jack devices, but they require periodic recharging. A usb device should be able to operate indefinitely off usb 5V power
I am rather experienced with handling my communication with my international traveling as I have been doing it for some time. However my current job relies very strongly on text messaging and I haven't come up with a bulletproof solution as to how to receive and respond to text messages seamlessly. [more inside]
Going on a loooong boat trip on one of the cruise lines in a few months. What's the current deal for taking my electronics through the inspections? [Previously from 2009] [more inside]
My google-fu has failed me, and I sheepishly turn to you. Need help trying to figure out if the non-Sprint US iPhone 6 will work on LTE in the UK. [more inside]
If I give my smart phone to my spouse, and he inserts his compatible SIM card, will the apps I have on it still be there when he inserts his SIM card? [more inside]
After holding out lo, these many years, it seems I need to get a cell phone. Browsing AskMe & the internet, it seems the best, least contracty option is 7-11's Speak Out program. But maybe there's a better option of which I am not aware, and maybe you can help! [more inside]
I'm traveling from the UK to the US in 2 days, and need a cell phone with a US number for roughly a week. I have an unlocked GSM smartphone with dual SIM slots. Any options to get a short-term US SIM card quickly (and, ideally, cheaply!)? [more inside]
Should I and Mr. Darling get on a smart phone plan together? [more inside]
I recently ordered the Huawei P6 mobile phone on Amazon (UK). I received it this morning, and it is clearly the Chinese version of the phone with a UK adapter included in the packaging. Will this be a big problem? Can I return it and get a refund easily? [more inside]
My well-worn Verizon iPhone 4 often doesn't ring for incoming calls when I'm inside my apartment. Is upgrading to a new phone likely to fix it, or do I need to change carriers? [more inside]
My wife's Nexus 4 has died (due to an accident) and we are looking for a replacement. The Nexus 5 would be the obvious choice but is out of stock in the Play store (and given that the Nexus 6 has been announced may not be coming back). What should she get? [more inside]
I want to get a pre-paid android phone asap (for a trip), but I also want to be able to use it at home and my house is at the bottom of a hill and has no to poor coverage. I'm thinking that wi-fi calling may be a solution. [more inside]
This is idiotic, I realize. How do I hold my Samsung S4 up to my face, for phone calls, without mashing random touch-screen buttons? Every time I use it in that way, I end up pushing things inadvertently with my cheek. I think it's very likely that I'm doing something wrong.
I am looking for a wall charger to keep here at work to plug in my devices when they're low on juice. List of devices behind the fold. [more inside]
I went to a talk by a well-known author yesterday in an auditorium. The lights were somewhat dimmed, but definitely not dark. The person in front of me spent about half of the talk live-tweeting bits from the talk. The lights were sufficiently dim that the (5-6") cell phone of the person in front of me was quite distracting to me, since it shined directly at me (the user actually turned the phone away from them a bit, which I wonder was due to the brightness of the screen.). However, I am somewhat more sensitive to bright light than other people. Has smart phone usage reached sufficient social acceptance to allow usage in a non-darkened auditorium? [more inside]
My current Android phone is dying, and I've had bad luck with other Android phones. Money is real tight right now, but I'm thinking about buying this used Apple iPhone 4 for $95. Will I regret the purchase? [more inside]
T-Mobile Samsung Galaxy 5 phone repeatedly torments me with a loud series of 4-tones. When it plays from the beginning, it's something like C - ABC, where the first note is a quarter, eighth pause, then three eighth-notes (I'm no musician, so I might have the notes wrong, but that's vaguely it). [more inside]