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Cellular Phones/need new phone plan


QUESTION: Hello.   I am on my (out of state) families Verizon plan. They have smart phones and I have a flip phone. They told me yesterday that they are upgrading to a plan that works better for them but not for me (I don't need unlimited call time or data). They suggested I check with Walmart or something called Cricket to get a prepaid plan that will perhaps let me keep my phone or at least my number.  A few calls and texts are all I need. I'm paying $25 per month (to them) now and the projected cost if I want to stay on their plan is about $38 which includes local tax (I'm in California and they are in Florida). Can you recommend something?

ANSWER: If possible I would suggest you convince your family to let you stay on their plan. They are switching to Share Everything and since you only have a flip phone the total cost for you is only $30 a month and includes unlimited talk and text even though you don't need it. They can have up to 10 lines on their plan so there is no reason for you to have to get your own service unless there is another reason that I am not aware of. Cricket won't give you much less in monthly and going with Walmart you can't keep your number I don't believe. I hope this helps.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: They are not kicking me off the plan, just explaining that it will cost more. They (my nephew) extensively researched this; and, another thing to come out of that was that the cost of a new smartphone had to be factored into the total. It seems that smartphones only last 2 years!! Expensive rascals up front and then the battery wears out or you have to re-boot constantly or some other thing. Built-in obsolescence at its finest!   What say you?

You don't have to buy a new phone unless yours doesn't work. Phones do last longer than 2 years. It's based on how they are treated and used. I still think you should stay as is even if you have to buy a new phone. You don't have to pay monthly for the phone. Buy it outright with a 2 year term and it costs much less. Thanks.  

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I can answer questions on cellular phones, the physical device, the network, contracts, billing, ordering, porting and what to look for when purchasing cell phones. I am located in the United States. I am an expert on BlackBerrys, Treos, HTC devices and iPhones as well as cellphones and aircards. I have over 15 years of experience in both the wireless and wireline world with the carriers. I have a lot of knowledge regarding the wireless providers - their services, prices and policies, both GSM AT&T and T-Mobile) and CDMA (Verizon, Sprint/Nextel). I am very familiar with the individual devices and their specifications. I can also answer questions regarding BlackBerrys, iPhones and other PDAs, both Palm-based and Windows-based. I can troubleshoot most any problem someone is having with their cellular device or with the provider.


Over 20 years in the Telecom industry working for the carriers with individuals, small business, medium business and large corporations(Fortune 500). Also worked as a professor in Maryland for 10 years teaching telecommunications.

I belong to several organizations

Master's in Telecommunications

Awards and Honors
Received several awards for papers that I have published over the years

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