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my business ain't nobody's business

Help me write a funny, effective, non-shaming sign asking people to please not talk on their cellphones in the office restroom. [more inside]
posted by elizeh on Sep 27, 2012 - 27 answers

How to unlock my front door via bluetooth proximity

Can you suggest a USB motor / solenoid / actuator that can by activated via the command line on my Windows 8 PC? I would like my front door to automatically unlock every time I approach it. Details are as follows: [more inside]
posted by thankyoumuchly on Sep 21, 2012 - 11 answers

at&t vs. verizon for iphone in bay area?

Should I choose ATT or Verizon for iPhone in San Francisco/Bay Area? [more inside]
posted by roxie110 on Sep 16, 2012 - 20 answers

How do I wipe a bricked smart phone?

How do I wipe the memory of a bricked Android phone before returning it to the manufacturer? [more inside]
posted by LarryC on Sep 10, 2012 - 3 answers

PLZ HLP, MMS.

Why does this strange thing happen ONLY when a certain person sends me an MMS? [more inside]
posted by mittenbex on Sep 6, 2012 - 3 answers

Is this another useless superpower?

Do other peoples' cellphone batteries spontaneously discharge, or is it just me? [more inside]
posted by still_wears_a_hat on Sep 6, 2012 - 15 answers

South Bay mobile carriers: which one?

Is there a "best" mobile provider/carrier in the Mountain View/Sunnyvale/Santa Clara area? [more inside]
posted by Chaotic Bedlam on Sep 6, 2012 - 5 answers

Smartphone Pay As You Go Plans in Canada

I'm currently using an iPhone 3GS in Ontario with Fido. With the new iPhone on the horizon, I'm considering buying the phone unlocked through Apple, and switching to a "Pay as You Go" service. I'm hoping the kind folks at Metafilter can help me choose the best plan. [more inside]
posted by backwards guitar on Sep 5, 2012 - 7 answers

Why is a brand-new smartphone worth the money?

How do you use your smartphone to actually improve your life/work? How would you persuade someone upgrading is worthwhile with real-life examples? [more inside]
posted by likeyoubutme on Aug 31, 2012 - 35 answers

Why does everyone whisper and mumble on phones nowadays?

Please help me with recommendations for a mobile/cell phone for my hard of hearing Father in Law. [more inside]
posted by wwax on Aug 29, 2012 - 4 answers

Roam, roam on the range?

Can you help me understand how cellphone roaming works in 2012? [more inside]
posted by werkzeuger on Aug 28, 2012 - 21 answers

Need a "Swedish" phone but I live in the US

I will be travelling a lot to Sweden and I would like to purchase a Samsung Galaxy S3 made for Europe/Sweden while still in the US. [more inside]
posted by digividal on Aug 27, 2012 - 7 answers

How come you can't hear yourself speaking on a cell phone?

Why can't you hear yourself on a cell phone? Land lines, even old analog ones, feed the sound of your own voice back to you, so you can more easily gauge how loudly you are talking. Why don't cell phones do that? [more inside]
posted by wnissen on Aug 19, 2012 - 15 answers

Poor cell signal in new flat. Cellphone repeater question.

Poor cell signal in new flat. Cellphone repeater question. [more inside]
posted by lemonfridge on Aug 19, 2012 - 10 answers

I need a phone to hold me over until my upgrade on Verizon

I need a Verizon phone to carry me over until the new iphone release. What's a decent cheap phone to get without doing the contract renewal or using up my upgrade? [more inside]
posted by msbrauer on Aug 17, 2012 - 15 answers

Someone gave my name and phone number to creep online. What now?

Someone gave out my name and phone number in a potentially creepy chatroom. What do should I do to protect myself? [more inside]
posted by Ommcc on Aug 7, 2012 - 8 answers

find my art via GPS

Hi mefites, I'm researching for an art project that needs a robust GPS unit they can put in a project that will be mobile around a few mile area. The GPS needs to be fairly robust in terms of ability to withstand shakes and jounces, being upside down or turned and twisted. We're not talking bouncing it like a basketball but rather the unit will be in a larger package moving about and being shifted around a lot. We need to be able to find the unit via GPS for a 24 hours run time. Actually, the run time needs to be at least 12 hours but using 24 hours as a way to give some leeway. When I say GPS, really it's a GPS plus the ability to signal someone where it is located. It seems to me like a cell phone would qualify for this. What are some of the options? Robust, power miser, and locatable in a 5 mile wide area. That's about it. Thanks for any tips on this.
posted by diode on Aug 5, 2012 - 9 answers

Is there a way someone could use my cellphone number with out using my phone?

Is there a way someone could use my cellphone number with out using my phone? [more inside]
posted by SheMulp AKA Plus 1 on Jul 28, 2012 - 5 answers

A Device for Every Snowflake!

I need a new cellphone/GPS setup. Did I mention that I am also the most special snowflake in the world? [more inside]
posted by broadway bill on Jul 23, 2012 - 8 answers

Repeated calls from foreign telemarketer to cell. No way to stop them!

I've been receiving calls every few days for the past few months from a company trying to sell me prescription drugs from India. I've tried telling them to please stop calling, putting them on donotcall.gov, filing a complaint with the FCC, and even complaining to Washington state which seems to be where the calls are routed from domestically. None of these have worked so far...though that isn't too surprising. What does surprise me is that I'm unable to even put a block on the number because it has a 3 digit int'l prefix and Verizon's system for blocking can only handle 10 digit numbers! The number reads on 001-206-337-3269 on my phone. Pretty frustrating. Any other ideas? thanks!
posted by grammalvsu on Jul 12, 2012 - 23 answers

Avoid the Noise

How far underground would I have go to escape any man made signals?
posted by Query on Jul 2, 2012 - 18 answers

I need a reasonably-intelligent phone, not a smart phone.

Is there a phone out there with a battery life like they used to have that can still let me check facebook every now and then? [more inside]
posted by smoke on Jul 2, 2012 - 19 answers

Google Voice phone calls over wi-fi using android 2.2 cell phone.

Seriously considering buying Virgin Mobile LG Optimus V (android 2.2) phone tomorrow, would/will be my first foray into any phone even beginning to resemble smart. My main question: how difficult is this phone to set up to use Google Voice telephone number over wi-fi, calls in-bound and out. [more inside]
posted by dancestoblue on Jul 2, 2012 - 14 answers

Smart and Thrifty?

Recommendations for an inexpensive smartphone/plan combination? My wife pays $40-50 for her dumb phone now. Would love to pay the same or not too much more, but actually be able to take pictures, text without 3 keys per character, and sync her calendar. web surfing would be nice but is optional if the calendar works. Google Calendar would presumably require a data plan; but is there a windows/outlook calendar that would not? She has Outlook at work.)
posted by msalt on Jun 26, 2012 - 21 answers

Very slow 3G in Paris

Parisian Mefites: How do you find the quality of 3G service in your city. [more inside]
posted by reformedjerk on Jun 22, 2012 - 1 answer

Please help me overhaul my international cellphone setup

I live in the US, but I spend quite a bit of time in the UK. Please help me overhaul my (currently ridiculous) cellphone arrangement, so that I can make calls cheaply, and be called by other people cheaply for them, in/from/to both places, preferably with email access too. [more inside]
posted by oliverburkeman on Jun 20, 2012 - 5 answers

Should I stick with Blackberry

What Verizon cell phone meets these requirements [more inside]
posted by mintchip on Jun 19, 2012 - 11 answers

Help me pick out a tmobile phone.

Help me pick out a tmobile phone. [more inside]
posted by markblasco on Jun 13, 2012 - 14 answers

Handy und Internet

Moving to Berlin from San Francisco in October, and I'd like some advice for finding both a cell phone plan and a broadband service for my apartment. [more inside]
posted by Yiggs on Jun 12, 2012 - 3 answers

Modern mobile etiquette

Please explain to me as though I have lived under a rock: What are the modern norms among urban folk in the US regarding mobile telephones? SMS? Internet-capable phones and "apps"? When is it appropriate to take a call? To place a call? What do people do with their telephones that really pisses you off? When, if ever, has someone made your life easier by appropriate use of a telephone? [more inside]
posted by d. z. wang on Jun 8, 2012 - 21 answers

Gift for a DC cab driver?

I left my dead-battery smartphone in a cab to Dulles. I rudely took the driver's card on the way out even though I didn't want to. I phoned the driver an hour later, and he actually said he'd return it to me, but I didn't have high hopes. [more inside]
posted by Ignatius J. Reilly on Jun 6, 2012 - 29 answers

Best cell phone and plan in Edmonton?

I'm buying my first cell phone and would like input sorting out the best phone and plan in Edmonton. [more inside]
posted by narcissus_and_ambrosia on Jun 4, 2012 - 4 answers

cellphones are proof we live in the future

What cellphone and service should I choose for an upcoming 6-week vacation to Australia? [more inside]
posted by jepler on Jun 1, 2012 - 8 answers

How do I bring my own iPhone to a US carrier?

I have a legally unlocked GSM iPhone 4 from Europe and will be moving back to the states soon for the foreseeable future. Since I don't need to trade the next year or two of my life for a hardware subsidy and am not bound to any company already, what is my best carrier choice for a data plan with modest talk use? Does having my own phone free and clear give me any extra options I wouldn't have otherwise? [more inside]
posted by Schismatic on May 31, 2012 - 21 answers

What are the options for a simple CDMA phone?

My wife wants a new cellphone but her needs are out-of-step with the market. She's looking for something very simple but the hard part is that we're on Verizon so it needs to be CDMA. Are there options? [more inside]
posted by camcgee on May 28, 2012 - 9 answers

Is t-mobile coverage adequate in the northeast

What is t-mobile coverage like in the northeast? [more inside]
posted by madajb on May 25, 2012 - 10 answers

Cellphone options for senior travelers in London

The recently-retired senior generation of my family is traveling from US to London in October. They are arriving separately and splitting up for a couple of different side trips, and want to be able to stay in touch by cell phone. What are the easiest, cheapest options for cell phones that they can purchase ahead of time? [more inside]
posted by kimdog on May 23, 2012 - 6 answers

Help a Dumb Daddy Out, Please

Help me unlock a locked phone without the code! [more inside]
posted by joelhunt on May 19, 2012 - 10 answers

Sudden influx of calls to mobile phone

My mobile phone is suddenly getting lots (more than 30 in the last 18 hours) of phone calls from "unknown" numbers and numbers with strange area codes. No voicemails are left. In many cases, the leading three digits don't appear to be area codes used in North America (examples include 375, 736, and 486), so these could be calls from outside the U.S. and Canda. What's going on? What should I do? [more inside]
posted by Area Man on May 17, 2012 - 11 answers

Please enter a phone number for the verification code to be sent to you (NOT)

Is it safe or desireable to give a mobile phone number, to a website for verification? [more inside]
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey on May 16, 2012 - 8 answers

USA-based phone solutions for non-residents?

Non-American who occasionally travels to America wants a Southern California phone number (Los Angeles area) that has data and that my friends can text to. My phone works on all USA carriers. What's the cheapest permanent solution? A web-based (or other non-cell) solution is also welcome as long as people can text to the number. [more inside]
posted by You Should See the Other Guy on May 11, 2012 - 11 answers

Any port in a cell phone storm?

Currently, I have a Virgin Mobile PAYG smartphone. I'd like to get a phone on my family's Sprint plan instead (for the same monthly price as Virgin, I can get unlimited whatever). However, Sprint says they can't port my phone number because Virgin is a reseller of theirs. I've heard that you can port your number to Google Voice for a small fee, and then have Sprint port the number to a Sprint phone, but this advice was found on a forum somewhere and no one backed up the claim that it actually worked. Would it work? Have you done this? I'd really like to keep my phone number, and before I risk losing it, I'd like to know. Thanks.
posted by bluefly on May 7, 2012 - 6 answers

Spooky cellphone interference

Walking down the street on a cellphone, my reception cuts out and I hear a different voice through the earpiece, very briefly, say something like "... three months..." It sounds like an advertisement. The person on the other end heard nothing, and the call wasn't dropped. What the heck happened? [more inside]
posted by BungaDunga on Apr 30, 2012 - 6 answers

The Mighty Avengers vs the Modern World

Will there be a place in the lobby to check cell phones at tomorrow's preview screening of The Avengers at the AMC Empire 25 in NYC? [more inside]
posted by Devoidoid on Apr 30, 2012 - 10 answers

Android stream and calls

I've had a fantasy about my computer acting as a wireless answering system that I can voice control to answer calls via Skype while listening to streaming music. It's suddenly occurred to me that my smart phone can already do this, or is darn close to it. Is that true, and how could I pull it off? [more inside]
posted by diode on Apr 28, 2012 - 2 answers

SIM /Data while travelling in Italy

Staying in Italy for 3 1/2 months from June to October 2012. The Flashdrake and I need SIM cards for our mobile/cell phones while we are there. I must have data access as well, at least 1GB a month. The TelCo industry changes so rapidly however, that I hoped that MeFites might help with current options. In the past we have had not problem with SIM cards overseas, particularly finding the Lebara plans great in Europe as they permitted us to call each other for free. [more inside]
posted by Flashduck on Apr 28, 2012 - 4 answers

Which cell phone should I choose?

I'm switching my cell phone service from Bell to Koodo. I'd like a smartphone but I've never had one before. Which phone should I get? [more inside]
posted by kyla on Apr 20, 2012 - 5 answers

Anonymous SMS to Twitter

I want to create a number to send text messages (SMS) which will then post all the messages onto a Twitter feed... [more inside]
posted by iamck on Apr 18, 2012 - 3 answers

Batteries for my phone

How risky (or not) is it to buy non OEM batteries off of ebay from china for my cellphone? [more inside]
posted by skjønn on Apr 10, 2012 - 5 answers

Droid 4 Camera Quality & Third-Party Apps

Upgrading my phone: I'm debating a Droid 4, but I'm a bit nervous about the mediocre reviews of the camera. Will a third-party camera app improve the photo quality? [more inside]
posted by soleiluna on Apr 5, 2012 - 12 answers

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