Archives: Tips & Alerts
Archive of previous Tips & Alerts from WirelessEd.
Stay connected during a power outage by planning ahead: Keep an extra, charged wireless phone battery on hand and own a car, solar- or hand-powered charger.
Some carriers send text alerts as you approach your service limits or once you begin incurring overage charges.
During natural disasters or widespread emergencies, wireless voice networks can be overwhelmed, and text messages to loved ones have a higher likelihood of getting through.
To protect yourself if your phone is stolen, ask your wireless providers how to access applications that can lock, locate and erase data from stolen phones.
Save your data allowance and tune your smartphone into free public Wi-Fi, available in some cafes, airports and public spaces. Switch to Wi-Fi mode in the “settings” menu.
By July 1, 2012, the wireless industry will launch an education campaign for consumers on the safe use of smartphones.
If you are concerned about “radio frequency” from your cell phone, reduce exposure by using a speakerphone, earpiece or headset to distance the device from your head.
The FCC suggests that pacemaker users may want to avoid placing or using a wireless device close to their pacemaker.
Expand your smartphone’s memory with a micro SD card. You’ll get extra room for apps and media and your phone will run faster. 8GB cards cost less than $20.
It might be possible to avoid a cell plan contract and an early termination fee (ETF) if you pay full price for your phone. Compare prices to get the best deal!
Ask your carrier if you can update your cell phone’s roaming capability to give your phone a signal boost. Updating may improve reception.
Check in for your flight using your smartphone and get a mobile boarding pass. You can flash the barcode on your phone at the airline’s reader and move along through security.
If you want to watch streaming video without using any of your monthly wireless data allotment, set your data-ready device to Wi-Fi when in range of a wireless Internet signal.
Using your smartphone or other data-ready wireless device to watch high definition streaming video uses significantly more data that viewing in “standard quality” mode.
Customers of all major carriers can check their usage at any time by visiting the company’s website.
If your phone is lost or stolen, notify your carrier right away so that service can be turned off to avoid unauthorized use, for which you may be liable.
If you aren’t moving out of the area, you can keep your existing phone number when you switch cell phone carriers. This is called “porting” your number. (There may be a porting fee).
If you don’t use your cell phone much, consider a prepaid plan. Unless you choose to “re-up” your minutes, you can’t go over your limit.
Does your state have prohibitions on cell phone use and texting while driving? Find out at the Governors Highway Safety Association website.
When traveling abroad, avoid high charges for international data roaming by turning off the mobile network on your smartphone and using Wi-Fi (wireless internet) to browse the Web or send email.
Get information about international calling from all the major wireless providers, VoIP services and smartphone manufacturers here.
Data usage is measured in kilobytes (KB), megabytes (MB) or gigabytes (GB) rather than minutes. There are 1,024 KB in 1 MB, and 1,024 MB in 1 GB.
Recent materials recommended by Consumer Action
- California Lifeline carrier search tool
The California Public Utility Commission (CPU
- Stolen Phone Safety
While designed for AT&T customers, the Stolen
- Top 10 Ways Broadband Saves You Money
Smart spending online can add up to a lot mor
- That’s Not Cool
A campaign that addresses abusive uses of dig
- The Last Text (Video)
A sobering documentary on the dangers of text