Carrier bloatware on Android devices is nothing new. Some are worse than others about it, especially Verizon and AT&T, but just about every service provider is guilty of tossing at least one or two apps onto every phone they sell. It looks like some carriers are investing in a way to make sure that you keep those apps installed on your devices, though.
We’ve seen major carriers compete on double data for large family plans, but today Sprint announced a new competitive offer for customers who don’t need quite so much data. The new plan offers 1 GB of data for $20 a month, which is almost double from the old 600 MB plan and considerably more than what you’ll get from AT&T or Verizon for the same price.
The rest of the plan stays the same, so each non-subsidized smartphone would cost $25 for data access, while tablets run $10 per month and mobile broadband devices run $20. A 1 GB plan probably won’t work for larger families, but if just one or two users just need cheap smartphone plans and don’t use much data, it could save quite a bit of cash each month.
The Moto 360 sold out in minutes of it being first available online and has created a ton of buzz since its initial announcement.
Pretty soon, you’ll have another option for where you can pick one up.
According to an AT&T release, the carrier will be adding the device to its accessory portal on its website — customers will be able to purchase the Moto 360 as an accessory.
The release says pricing and availability will be announced at a later date, but don’t expect it to cost any more or less than what it can be gotten for now from other retailers/carriers.
Just yesterday we heard rumors that Verizon was planning on launching a new app store for Android devices with the help of other wireless carriers and manufacturers. This wasn’t actually the first time that Verizon tried to make its own app store work (remember Vcast Apps, anyone?), but their last attempt was unsuccessful, to say the least. Despite that rumor, it looks like Verizon can see the writing on the wall, and they’re claiming they have no intention of creating any more app stores.
A Verizon spokesperson said they don’t want to bother creating another app store, saying the carrier has “been there, done that.” It’s very clear that consumers don’t want or need a carrier app store, so good on Verizon if they’re being truthful about this.
AT&T will be the first carrier to offer the LG G Pad 7.0 with LTE, and they’re offering a pretty great bundle to start selling it. On August 8th, you’ll be able to pick up the carrier-branded version of LG’s slim tablet for just $0.99 if you purchase it with an LG G2, LG G3, or LG G Flex. Without a bundle, the tab will cost $149.99 on a two-year contract. If you’re not a fan of the contracts, you can also opt for AT&T Next, which will run $12.50 a month.
After it became illegal to unlock carrier cell phones thanks to the DMCA, a ton of backlash started up to try and get the laws changed back. After tons of petitioning, a bill finally made its way to the Senate floor, and after a few months of work, it’s finally being signed into law. The appropriately titled Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act makes it perfectly legal for a consumer to unlock their handset once their service contract with their carrier expires, allowing them to take the device to another compatible carrier if they so choose.
Verizon has officially confirmed that they will be offering a test drive program for their network to customers in some states, similar to T-Mobile’s latest Uncarrier move. Apparently, Big Red has been quietly running this program for about a year in Kansas and Missouri. Customers were allowed to test out a smartphone or data device for a week to test if they liked Verizon’s service and network, although very recently that program has been limited to just data devices.
Being able to hook up to your WiFi network with your computer or tablet is pretty convenient, but what if you’re on the road, or in an area without a wireless network in sight?
Well there’s good news — setting up a wireless hotspot on your device, which you can then connect to with your laptop or tablet, is extremely convenient. The feature is available on most smartphones these days, but carriers usually charge around $20 or more each month for a simple subscription to the service.
But what if I told you that you could experience the same service for only a one-time fee of $7.95? You’d take it, right? Well hit the break to find out how.
New reports out today suggest Google is starting to make moves to become a mobile phone service carrier in locations where it has deployed Google Fiber service. Supposedly Google has been in contact with Verizon to discuss the possibility of becoming a mobile virtual network operator riding on the back of Verizon’s network. Some sources have pointed out that Verizon and Google are not exactly on the same page when it comes to issues like net neutrality, so a partnership of this magnitude may be questionable. It should be noted though that Google actively develops for the iOS platform, so the company clearly will not let some philosophical disagreements stand in the way of good business.
Would you be interested in using Google as your carrier for wireless service?
source: The Information
Verizon’s answer to AT&T’s new, slightly cheaper rate plan isn’t a rate plan of their own. Nope, Verizon is launching a rewards program for customers. This won’t help you lower your bill, but it will give you rewards points for having a higher data cap that you can spend on… gift cards.
The rewards program works pretty much like a credit or debit card rewards system. Whenever you pay your bill online, you get 10 rewards points for every dollar you spend. For every GB in your data package, you get another 1,000 points. Adding lines to your account or signing up for different services also gives you points.