the itjerk

my adventures with technology

Tag Archives: T-Mobile

project fi from google

I dumped T-Mobile. Not because there was any issue, rather, since upgrading to a phone that supports LTE I’ve been quite please with them. No, this was strictly based on price. Instead of paying $64 per month, I am now down to $38 for the same service: unlimited talk and text, plus 1GB of cellular data.

What’s Project Fi? It’s Google’s virtual wireless service. It uses the chip inside the Nexus 5x or 6 to pass calls between Wifi and cellular networks. Of the latter, it includes T-Mobile, Verizon and now US Cellular. So that’s the catch: you have to use their specific phones, which for me was fine because I already had one. If you don’t have their Nexus phone, Google offers a no-interest payment plan.

Upside? It’s less expensive for at least equal service. I do notice that in buildings where cellular service was spotty (you know, those dark back stairwells and basement tunnels), Wifi can fill in the gaps in coverage. Downside? Well, when the kids start youtubing on a cellular network. Since you only get charged for the data you use, if you have a month where you’re under what you signed up for, you’ll get a credit on your next bill. The flip side however is that you’ll also get charged (at the same data rate) when you go over your data limit. T-mobile would allow me to go over my data limit for the same cost, but at excruciatingly slower speeds.

Screenshot_20160613-120248

On the web: Project Fi

 

lg optimus t


I got a new phone today, finally replaced the G-1 (that's "ghetto") with the LG Optimus T. Of all the phones that I looked at, none really did it for me; the G-2 was end-of-life, the Nexus S was really expensive, but the Optimus T was free (okay, $0.01 plus $35 T-mobile "One-time activation" fee), and it had most everything but a physical keyboard. I can live with that, right?

In fact, the big revelation for me is that smart phones are truly disposable electronic devices. Cellphones are another story. We still have a Nokia 3390 that we keep around for emergencies and it still provides the same (albeit limited in comparison) functions that it originally was designed to do, with exactly the same performance. The G-1 on the other hand suffered from a crack-screen, worthless camera, an overpriced data plan (that I could not downgrade), and worst of all, Android 1.6. Plus no Angry Birds! How do I explain that to my kids?

So for me, it's all about free phones. Yeah, I took a new contract, so hopefully the LG Optimus T will last two years. Until then, I'm happy with Android 2.2, a decent (enough) camera and saving $180 a year in plan fees. Thank you Amazon-Wireless.

t-mobile g2


big upgrade to the g1, not only faster, but this supports the 2.2 Android OS, MUCH better camera, SD card, std headset jack, HD video, all around Google goodness.

EXCEPT the hinge issue…
T-Mobile G2 Trouble at Engadget

Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ MSM7230 mobile processor 
Slide-out QWERTY keyboard, unique Z-hinge design 
Android 2.2 OS 
3.7” S-TFT WVGA display 
512 MB of RAM, 4 GB of internal memory 
8-GB SD card, expandable to 32 GB 
5-megapixel camera with LED flash and autofocus 
720p HD video capture
Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n 
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR + A2DP 
stereo 3.5-mm stereo headset 
4.68” (L) x 2.38” (W) x .58” (H) 
Weight: 6.5 ounces 
Included battery: 1300 mAh Li-ion 
Talk time: up to 6.5 hours 
Standby time: up to 17.5 days

On the web:
G2 with Google Phone

t-mobile g1: the android

How’s this for an early adopter? I ordered T-Moble G1, the first mobile device to use Google’s Android platform. It’s actually an HTC Dream, but more about that when I get it. As I already was a T-Mobile customer (vintage Nokia 3390), the signup was painless… or was it? The total bill of $210 included a $19 “upgrade fee”, plus a two (2) year contract. I chose the unlimited web/limited text plan for $25/mo.

I have to admit, $200 for a mobile computer is relatively inexpensive, considering the price of the Nokia Internet Tablet, or something like a Treo or Blackberry. And who wants to have Apple’s iPhone when you can have your very own ANDROID? Actually, what really tipped it for me was the low cost data plan, and a recent visit to Microcenter. Yes, my wife did make me cancel my order to Dell for the Inspiron Mini 9 before I ordered the phone, but that was no biggie. I put my hands on Acer’s netbook, and realized it may be too small for comfort and – compared to the Android – too big to lug around.

BTW, I ordered the brown one, but don’t expect to see it on eBay for at least two years!

More at the end of October.

On the web:
http://code.google.com/android/
http://www.t-mobileg1.com/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTC_Dream