I moved to a house that gets terrible cell phone service. I'd like to have a land line phone, especially to have in case of emergencies and power outages. I'm reading about "land lines" that use wireless cell technology, things like Vonage that use the internet, and I am confused. [more inside]
How I should network my house? I understand the basics of running cables, punch-down blocks, patch panels, jacks, network switches, etc. What I don't understand is how to put all of these together in a way that gives me what I want. Details inside. [more inside]
Phone battery won't hold a charge-what can I do? [more inside]
People of Metafilter, especially the lady types who often wear clothing with no pocketses: how do you keep your cell phone within earshot when you're at home? Especially if you've got a touch of ye olde ADHD and still struggle to remember to always take it with you when you leave the house, let alone remember to take it with you when you move from room to room. [more inside]
I lost my phone in November. I tried using Location History and Where’s My Droid to track it to no avail, then gave up and bought a new phone. Today, I noticed that about a month ago several selfies of a handful of guys in an electronics store had been uploaded to my Google Photos online. There is no location data associated with the photos, and from what I can tell I can't find it on Location History or Where's My Droid now. [more inside]
Like a lot of folks, I bought an Obihai VOIP adapter primarily for the free Google Voice XMPP calling, and like a lot of folks, I'm saddened by the loss of the essentially free home phone service. Obihai has listed Anveo and Phone Power as "Approved Service Partners", but there seem to be a lot of other options out there, and I was just wondering if anyone has any recommendations for BYOD VOIP providers that are affordable but also likely to be around in a year or two so I don't have to find a new provider on short notice.
I've just made the switch from my old iPhone to a Nexus 5, and the only little thing bothering me is that the default music app doesn't display album or track lenths when you go to choose something to play. Should I install a new music player, and if so, which one? [more inside]
I just bought a Plantronics Marque M155 Bluetooth headset for use with my cell phone. The lowest volume setting on it is too loud for my probably-overly-sensitive ears. Any suggestions for quieter headsets? [more inside]
Some weeks ago, I changed my phone's password while half asleep and haven't been able to remember it since. I've since gotten a new phone, but I really want to get the pictures and videos that were on there. Is this possible? [more inside]
I am considering one of those "design your own" mobile phones and would like to make the most of the limited line of characters that can be printed on the back. Examples and requirements within. [more inside]
Due to limited mobility from a disability, I'm forced to rely strictly on voice commands to control a cell phone. Over the years, trying to find a solution for reliable hands free functionality in this area has been challenging. Anyone familiar with voice recognition in the past knows the capricious, quirky nature of the beast. It can be VERY frustrating and almost comical at times. Anyway, with today's processing speeds and the advent of Siri and Google Now, I can happily say that it's almost there for me. In fact, I give a 90% approval rating for recent experiences with the latest Iphone and Android products. The biggest obstacle now has been the necessity to hit the home button to trigger the lovely Siri. This last hindrance was overcome by none other than Google with their release of the Moto X -- which waits in standby mode listening for your command. I was so excited by all the reviews that I rushed out to buy my own. It turned out fantastically, but (and there's always a butt in these things) it came with another quirky disappointment. And this one is kind of surprising: The damn thing won't answer incoming calls by voice. I've looked thru all the settings and searched high and low for an app but to no avail. The closest I've come is an app that auto answers after one ring, but who wants that? What if I'm trying to dodge the ex-gf. Lol. Does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks in advance.
What are my options for using a smart phone with a physical keyboard (whether built-in or as an attachment)? I am on Verizon and want to stay. I would prefer to stick with Android but would consider an iPhone. I used to love the Blackberry back in the day, but I don't think I can go back. I do not want a Windows phone. Thanks!
I recently got a Moto X, running the latest KitKat OS. I set up a few basic apps, turned off the sound and vibration to everything, but still every tweet reply and email I get causes the phone to do a short vibrate jolt on notification. I also get the haptic keyboard vibration feedback when typing on it. I've googled, turned every sound/vibrate option off in Settings and still can't get this phone to be quiet and vibrate-free on both counts. What am I doing wrong here?
I missed a whole bunch of phone calls from some unusual numbers that aren't in the standard North American (XXX) XXX-XXXX format. What could they be? [more inside]
My Grandmother has dementia. She calls her old phone number 20+ times a day to ask for a ride home. Unfortunately, this number is now used by a business, the owner of which is not too pleased with the multiple phone calls a day. [more inside]
Do those reverse phone number look-up websites actually work? I think I have a stalker on my hands. [more inside]
I work in a co-working space with folks who all have their mobile ringers turned on with the shrill "rotary phone" ringtone turned all the way up. Please help me write an email to solve this. [more inside]
I’m interested in the DURR, a simple display-less “watch” that vibrates every 5 minutes to influence your perception of the passing of time. Since DURR is not currently shipping and I already own an iPhone with a clock and a vibrating buzzer, I feel like this should be doable with an app. There’s already a Pebble app so I’m sure it’s not crazy. If this doesn’t currently exist, how hard might it be to write one myself? I’ve compiled things in XCode before but not written my own from-scratch Objective-C, so I’d be approaching this as a newcomer.
This morning at 8:50am I received a phone call and it went to voicemail. The voicemail is creepy. It says "You better watch out" in a whisper. [more inside]
Good news, everybody! I got a new Moto X smart phone, and now I want to make it as stylish and durable as possible. What's the best compromise between keeping it protected and making it look good? [more inside]
I am travelling to Chicago in two weeks and want to use my smartphone whilst I am there (and away from WiFi). Importantly though I am not actually bothered about making phone calls. DATA is what I crave. What are my best sim card options? [more inside]
Looking for an app that provides the absolute best VoIP sound quality for calls from outside the US to the US. I don't mind paying. Snowflakes inside. [more inside]
I'm looking for an iPhone alarm app that will wake me up a specific amount of time after I enable it (8 hours in my case) and has a snooze function. The timer function of iOS is not suitable (no snooze). The alarm clocks apps I have tried are not suitable as they require you to choose a time (e.g. 8am) not a duration (e.g. 8 hours), and those that do display the duration (e.g. Rise), don't display it until you enable the alarm. [more inside]
I have a no-contract plan at Virgin Mobile USA, which I like because it is so cheap ($35/month for unlimited data and enough calling). The downside of cheap and no-contract is expensive phones. However, I just lost my Android phone and would like to switch back to iPhone. My options at Virgin are iPhone 4, for $200, iPhone 4s, for $314, or iPhone 5, for more than I want to pay really. How to decide? [more inside]
My iPhone was stolen and I need to purchase a new one. I am considering saving myself the hassle of a craigslist interaction by purchasing a used one through an Amazon retailer. Has anyone done this? Would you recommend it? Anything I should look for specifically besides carrier compatibility etc.?
About a month ago, my mom misplaced her government-owned (work) iPhone 5. After a month of searching her home/car/office/relatives/everywhere to no avail, she copped up and told boss. They took the news well and paid for not only her new phone, but also for the loss of her old phone. Being the mischievous son I am, I want to make an attempt to retrieve the phone. [more inside]
When I play records sound only comes out of the right speaker. [more inside]
I am looking for an iPhone app that will allow two users to track their spending for a shared budget. [more inside]
I have an iphone. Today I will be getting a MotoX. I don't really know a lot about smartphones in general or Android in general (or hell, even ios really) except that I assume there are going to be a few hiccups in the transition. Help me avoid those hiccups! [more inside]
What specs do I need to look at to find the fastest cell phone charger? [more inside]
Here's the thing: I don't have a land-line. Over Thanksgiving, my mother got upset at the thought that she couldn't reach me late at night if there were some kind of emergency - the dreaded "3 am phone call." I understand her worry, but I'm feeling very resistant to the idea of keeping the phone on at night. In part, this because I know that most of the calls I'll get will just be annoying and unwanted (I have a fairly severe telemarketing issue) but I think there is also a kind of psychological resistance. I'm a slave to my phone already for all these hours of the day, and it feels good to know it won't be bothering me while I'm sleeping. I'm reluctant to give that up. Can you help me sort through these issues? [more inside]
Please help me choose between the phones based on my list of pros and cons between each. [more inside]
For the last day, my phone has been targeted by the "have two random cellphones call each other simultaneously and see what happens when someone picks up" prank, similar to what is available through websites I won't advertise here. (Google, "have two phones call each other prank." Yes, I looked up the 4 I could find, and registered on all of them to have my number blocked....it's still happening.) [more inside]
I am a phone luddite moving into the modern era. There is a huge array of options, most of which are meaningless to me. [more inside]
Please tell me what wireless plan to get for my family! We have four lines (mom and dad, two grown kids) on our family plan from Verizon for $188/mt. I think we can pay less but I'm really overwhelmed by all the options and possibilities. [more inside]
I'm thinking of switching my phone service from sprint to Ting. Since this is a change that's difficult to undo, I'm asking for feedback ( positive or negative ) about how your Ting experience has been. I'm in Seattle so if you're a Seattle Ting customer, I'm particularly interested in what you have to say about signal quality, 4g/3g service, etc. I'm not too concerned about the savings of switching to Ting. It's clear that I come out ahead even with the penalty I have to pay for terminating my contract early. I'm more interested in any gotchas that you didn't find out about or think about until after choosing Ting. For example, unexpected roaming charges, bad customer service, bad reception... If it makes any difference, my phone is a samsung galaxy s3 . Thanks!
I need a mobile phone for work and am debating, help me choose please [more inside]
My (Verizon) Droid X is dying. I'm looking for a new-ish used phone on Swappa, but am overwhelmed by the options. One of the features I love most about my Droid X is the car dock / vehicle mount. The dock integrates the power cable, such that I don't have to plug and unplug the cord every time I use the vehicle mount. I just put it in the cradle and it's charging. It's a small detail, but it's really nice for getting in and out of the car quickly. Is there another, slightly newer model phone that has a similar car dock available? Or are there third-party vehicle mounts that are available that are model-specific enough to incorporate the power connector?
I've had my cell phone number for 10 years. My new employer is a large non-profit organization (thousands of employees). They'll buy me a new phone and pay for the service. They won't just reimburse me for my service plan as my last employer did. I don't really want to carry a second phone and have a second plan. It seems that if I want to take advantage of this benefit, I'd need to use the university phone as my primary phone and port my phone number over to the university. I'm trying to figure out if I should do this. [more inside]
We're thinking of adding another line to our family Verizon plan - currently we have 3 people month to month, grandfathered in on unlimited data. Will we lose that if we add a new line/purchase a phone through them? [more inside]
An elderly parent is suffering from an illness which impairs lucidity and judgment, and make inappropriate use of the phone (running Android Taking the phone away is a last resort. Do others have experience of managing this? Are there any technological or human hacks we could use to manage this without distressing them? Not US based, if it matters. [more inside]
I have a Samsung Galaxy Nexus and I'm trying to install drivers other than the ones Windows 7 auto-installs. I've unchecked auto-install drivers, but from the googling I've done it appears this solution only prevents Windows from downloading drivers. It will still auto-install ones previously existing on the computer. [more inside]
With the news of the iPad Air and it's wonder 64-bit A7 processor, my curiosity is up again. Will mobile devices, phones or tablets, hit a point of diminishing returns in regards to processing power and/or RAM?
I want to do a reverse phone search on a US cell number... In the past I have used intelius.com for this purpose but lately my experiance with them hasn't been very great. How else can I do this? Thanks!
I work full-time in an office of a half-dozen people (in Ontario, Canada if it is relevant). One of the duties in my current job is to reply to general emails to my company's main address and to check the general voice mail... if someone calls after hours or chooses not to be put through to an individual, they can still leave a voice mail on the main number, and the main email is info@[business].ca which gets maybe five or ten questions a day. At the request of my boss, I do these things a couple of times a day, including on weekends and holidays. I am fine with this and I understand the reasoning - sometimes people write or call with a time-sensitive question. This usually takes me ten minutes a day tops (once in while there is a bigger thing and it may be an hour on those days), but it seems not entirely fair that I do this with zero compensation for having to be available for work on my days off. How best to negotiate what might be a better arrangement for this? Or should I even bother? [more inside]
When on shuffle mode, do phones try to play songs which sound better next to each other? [more inside]
I've recently been bitten by the running bug. Yay! I live in Portland and we're entering into our rainy season. I'd like to run listening to music on my smartphone (Samsung Galaxy S3) and not worry about it getting ruined by water damage. Can anyone recommend an armband or other solution? [more inside]
My friend checks her email constantly while driving. How do I get her to stop? [more inside]
I often cook with a recipe open on my phone. If my hands are messy, I don't want to touch my phone. It seems like there should be an app or a built-in way to use voice control to page up or down. I am happy to use Tasker, Autovoice, or to install a specific app to do this, but I can't figure it out. Any suggestions? My phone is a Nexus 4 running the latest version of stock Android.
How do presidents call other presidents? With last week's phone call between President Obama and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, it got me wondering how do heads of state call other heads of state? I imagine that one executive suite's switchboard calls the other's, but what's the diplomatic protocol for who picks up the phone first? Do they have super-secret phone numbers, or even phone numbers in the way we think of them? Are the calls private, or are is there an entire entourage listening in? Do they just hang up when they're finished, or is their an entire protocol for ending the conversation? What are some of the other "hidden" aspects of executive diplomatic communication and behind-the-scenes goings-on are there that the rest of us commoners never see?