Watch me not watch my phone with a watch
September 13, 2018 11:10 AM   Subscribe

I’d like to get the new Apple Watch and keep my existing phone at home as much as possible (using little data, hopefully.) What’s the cheapest way to do this in the US? I’m currently on prepaid but have the credit for post-paid, and I live in a big enough city that pretty much any carrier or MNVO should work. Speed isn’t as important as reliable connectivity. I potentially can move to a Verizon family plan as the 6th member.
posted by michaelh to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be many options at this point, you have to have phone service on one of the big four carriers (no MVNOs), and it's $10 a month to have your phone added to the account. So whatever you'd otherwise pay, plus $10 more. Whatever data your watch uses would come out of the same data bucket as your phone. Joining that Verizon family plan is probably your best bet.

I had similar thoughts, but it doesn't look like they're going to let consumers do this quite yet, too many people would probably decide they don't really need a full-fledged phone plan.
posted by skewed at 1:29 PM on September 13, 2018

I have an Apple Watch and I’m on metropcs, the $60 unlimited text/phone/data + 10gb hotspot plan. I could use a smaller plan — I think they go down to like $30-40/mo w no hotspot. This is a prepaid plan. I own my phone.
posted by toodleydoodley at 3:37 PM on September 13, 2018

Toodleydoodley, you are talking about a non-cellular watch, right? I am wanting to get the cellular watch a data plan. I’d love to do that and pay what you’re paying if it’s possible, though.
posted by michaelh at 3:55 AM on September 14, 2018

I want to do this as well. A watch and AirPods for my "phone."

The phone and watch share a number, so you can't just have a phone. But I am hoping to do what you are speculating, and just leave my phone at home. Currently when I do this, certain things deactivate (such as texts) since both devices have to be on the same wireless for this to work. I am hoping this will no longer be the case with cellular.

I seldom use my phone as a phone, and I am seldom away from a wireless signal, but I would like to be able to make a call in an emergency, and I will need to be able to text in the field even without a phone.

If you join your family plan, you can add a watch for a little money (it varies by carrier). I am going to make the case with mine that they waive this fee or give me a better deal. I've been with them long enough that I am hoping for a customer loyalty/customer retention discount.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:03 PM on September 14, 2018

Yeah, I’ve been researching even more since posting this and it looks like there are zero angles on this thing. I guess it’s not any different than how AT&T got their unlimited plan requirement in the original iPhone deal, and loosened up over time. I saw that Ting support is expecting to be able to offer it eventually, which is encouraging.

Hopefully something changes somewhere and a MeFite notices it and leaves the answer here.
posted by michaelh at 10:40 AM on September 15, 2018

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