T-Mobile is starting to get aggressive with customer acquisition and retention, and in light of less than stellar fiscal performance and the news of the AT&T deal, it's not hard to see why.
On April 13, the carrier will begin offering a new off-contract smartphone plan, and it's a steal - for $59.99 a month (down from $79.99), you'll get unlimited talk, text and data*. But, there are some significant catches. The first is that you'll have to pay full retail for your phone of choice - the Even More Plus plan is a month-to-month affair.
The second is arguably worse - your data usage is technically unlimited, but after the first 2GB (as opposed to the current 5GB) your data speeds will be throttled down until the next billing cycle. Read More
4G is here - and it seems like all four of America's biggest carriers are more than happy to advertise the fact that they've got it. Sprint was first on the scene - offering their WiMax 4G, and T-Mobile shortly thereafter began its upgrade to HSPA+ technology. Verizon was next, providing mobile broadband LTE via USB dongle for laptops, though its much-awaited debut 4G handset, the Thunderbolt, has yet to hit shelves after numerous delays. Finally, lagging behind in truly characteristic fashion, AT&T has begun to roll out its own HSPA+ network, with plans to offer LTE in the second half of the year. Read More
While some people were unable to contemplate the possibility that Verizon's all-you-can-eat data plans would be coming to an end, Verizon's CFO Fran Shammo again affirmed the carrier's commitment to move to a tiered system today. When will life start to suck for new or upgrading Verizon customers? This Summer, apparently.
"But David, I already have an unlimited data contract, they have to honor that!" Why yes, they do. Until you want to upgrade to a 4G device, and you have to sign a completely "new" rate plan contract. AT&T is already doing this with the Inspire 4G - if you upgrade from any previous device to the Inspire, AT&T forces you into their limited data plans because your "service" has changed (to "4G"). Read More
Samsung has a reputation for not being the greatest at updating their devices, but this week has been especially rough for them. First, Microsoft had to halt an update to the Samsung Omnia 7 due to reports of bricked devices. Today, Sprint has just stopped pushing the Android 2.2 update for the Epic as users have found hardware problems after applying it.
According to Sprint's support forum, there have been an increased number of calls into their Care Centre about issues with wireless data connectivity and the ability to access the SD card. While it's a relief that no one has reported a bricked phone, I can imagine the long wait for Froyo would be made that much worse by having it break some core functionalities of your device. Read More
Today, Google got the ball rolling on Gingerbread updates for the two official "Google phones", the Nexus One and Nexus S. While this is exciting, long awaited news for owners of the Nexus One, the Nexus S crowd may have some reason for disdain.
One of the things that got me really excited when I bought my first Android phone was the ability to import the numbers and email addresses of all my Facebook friends to my contact list automagically. No longer did I have to look it up on the Facebook webpage or, God forbid, call them and ask.
With the Gingerbread update for the Nexus S, Google has disabled this feature. Read More
One of the few tech blogs who managed to get their hands on Motorola's upcoming AT&T flagship - the Atrix 4G - is, of course, Engadget. The reviewer, unsurprisingly, is the infamous cool geek and editor-in-chief Joshua Topolsky, who, from my experience reading Engadget's reviews, does a good overall job but fails to go into those details that matter to most Android users. The Atrix 4G review is exactly what I had expected, and I'm going to summarize it and save you 20 minutes reading it.
- The phone is blazing fast, which is unsurprising, considering its 2 cores and 1GB of RAM.
If one thing can put an end to rumors, it's the official Best Buy weekly ad - the one you get in print from the store. Unfortunately, this time, all the rumors turned out to be correct. Namely:
- As rumored, Motorola XOOM is indeed going to cost $799 and will require a 1-month data package to unlock WiFi. February 24th remains the go-live date. Anyone still up for picking it up? Oh, and the same spelling errors are still present (/sigh).
- HTC Thunderbolt's regular, off-contract price is also confirmed at $749.99, just like we told you yesterday. Bummer. 2-year contract price is still $249.99.
Well, we knew it was coming. Did you honestly think Big Red would bundle your 3G and 4G into one big, happy family? Neither did we. An anonymous Engadget tipster snapped a picture of Verizon's latest data plans - probably set to be released in time for the iPhone 4. Check it out:
Droid-Life posted a helpful companion image of the old pricing for comparison's sake:
Notice the 150MB smartphone plan has vanished, along with an increased base data cap for feature phones. This is likely meant to simplify things for upcoming 4G devices and new iPhone 4 adopters - Verizon doesn't want to have more than one 3G smartphone plan confusing customers, they'll leave that to the more profitable 4G tiers. Read More
Although Sprint's data plans are significantly cheaper than their competition, there was still some outcry when Sprint decided to charge a $10 monthly add-on charge to phones with 4G connectivity, even if your area isn't actually covered by their WiMax network. Now, however, all smartphones activated after January 30 will be subject to the same charge.
Sprint's reasoning - that “building, maintaining and expanding wireless data networks isn’t free" - is sound, and you can't argue that they still beat every other carrier when it comes to the price of their data plans. Data plans for the EVO 4G, Epic 4G, and EVO Shift 4G will remained unaffected as they are already subject to the fee. Read More
Device updates that break root are fairly common - in fact, I'd go so far as to say that the majority of updates do so. What's a bit less common, though, is an update that resets your device because you're rooted. The device in question here is the NOOKcolor, and unfortunately it looks like that's exactly what's happening.
Before I dive into the details, I think it's important to note that I doubt that even as much as manufacturers and carriers dislike when people root their device, it's pretty far over the line for them to remotely wipe the devices of people who have done so. Read More