How to save on mobile plans: Your guide to 17 no-contract carriers

Forget everything you thought you knew about buying a mobile phone. In just the past year, we’ve seen more changes to the industry than there are numbers on the dial-pad. The Big Four carriers (AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless) have all but abandoned their old business models. Major phone makers like Google, Motorola and even Apple will now sell you their phones unlocked and contract-free. And don’t forget the disruptors: The companies offering cheap (or even free) service and feature-packed (but affordable) phones.

For you, this is very good news: It means more options, fewer limitations and, best of all, lower prices. Whereas once you had no choice but to buy a subsidized phone from a major carrier, then pay a hefty fee every month for two full years, now you can choose from a variety of inexpensive handsets, get service from a smaller carrier — a mobile virtual network operator, or MVNO — and enjoy contract-free service at significantly lower rates.

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Original URL: http://www.computerworld.com/article/3021891/wireless-carriers/how-to-save-on-mobile-plans-your-guide-to-17-no-contract-carriers.html#tk.rss_all

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Apple’s iPhone installment plan threatens carriers’ ties to customers

Apple’s announcement Wednesday of its own iPhone installment plan, tucked toward the end of what CEO Tim Cook called a “monster roll-out,” was the big deal of the morning-after talk about smartphones, analysts said.

“If you like to have a new iPhone every single year, this is the best way to do that,” proclaimed Philip Schiller, Apple‘s head of marketing, during the Wednesday event. He spent just seconds outlining the iPhone Upgrade Program.

Customers walk into an Apple retail store after making an appointment — the program will be initially available only in the U.S., and is restricted to Apple’s brick-and-mortar outlets — select an unlocked iPhone, choose a carrier, and then pay for the device over a 24-month stretch. That phone will be covered by the AppleCare+ aftermarket warranty, which includes accidental damage coverage.

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Original URL: http://www.computerworld.com/article/2983237/smartphones/apples-iphone-installment-plan-threatens-carriers-ties-to-customers.html#tk.rss_all

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This wireless hotspot has room for 10 SIM cards for LTE roaming

Finnish company Uros has launched an LTE version of its wireless hotspot that can be equipped with 10 SIM cards to make roaming abroad easier.

It’s slowly becoming more common for wireless operators to let traveling users surf the Web and access email and apps via LTE networks, but the practice is nowhere near ubiquitous. Enter the Goodspeed 4G mobile hotspot, which was launched and demoed this week at the LTE World Summit in Amsterdam.

urosMikael Ricknas/IDG News Service
The Goodspeed 4G hotspot can switch automatically between 10 SIM cards to offer LTE roaming around the world.

 

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Original URL: http://www.computerworld.com/article/2940856/mobile-wireless/this-wireless-hotspot-has-room-for-10-sim-cards-for-lte-roaming.html#tk.rss_all

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