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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 03:12 PM   #1
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I need a new cellphone - suggestions?

So about 2 months ago, my cellphone refused to turn on. It's going to cost way too much to repair, and is outside its warranty (was even then at the time when it stopped working). So.. I'm with a Aliant here in Nova Scotia, and I guess I can replace it with any cellphone as long as it does not come from Rogers, and I have the "code" for it? (correct me here, please, what's the "code" that I need from a cellphone to wire it for Aliant?) Any suggestions on decent, cheap cellphones?
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 03:18 PM   #2
 
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Whichever phone your carrier will offer you free as an incentive? That fits the "cheap" description, certainly, and there are lots of consumer reviews online to check if it is decent.
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 03:49 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RevMatt
Whichever phone your carrier will offer you free as an incentive? That fits the "cheap" description, certainly, and there are lots of consumer reviews online to check if it is decent.
I got the phone free with a 3-year contract more than a year ago, so the incentive is long gone. I need to pay retail price to get the phone replaced now, since the free phone I got is now broken and out of warranty.
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 03:52 PM   #4
 
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I bet that if you threatened to switch carriers, the incentive would come back. Play hardball with them. Go get some details and contracts from competitors, and explain that if they want to keep you, they need to do something about it.

And hey, if they won't play ball, you'll already know what the competing options are, including which places will offer you free phones
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 05:24 PM   #5
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Oh, you don't have to play hardball to get a free phone. They'll just 're-up' you to another term. But really, all you need is the SIM card from the inside of your current phone.
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 05:28 PM   #6
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 06:07 PM   #7
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Are you with a carrier that uses SIM cards or no? If you are, as stated, it's just a matter of moving the SIM from your old phone into your new phone (either unlocked or from your carrier).

And if that's the case? There are a ton or world phones you can get that are way cooler than what most carriers here have.
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 07:41 PM   #8
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Aliant uses CDMA service, Rogers GSM, which aren't compatible with each other. SIM cards are used in GSM phones.

If you are in an Aliant 3 year plan you can upgrade to a new phone after 2 years, plus new activation fees and another contract 3 year extension. You can get the $0 phones or pay whatever a new phone costs.
Aliant is very firm on their replacement policies. It's bad.
I think they offer replacement insurance with new contracts.
More fees to pay. Bah.

Your cheapest option is to buy another phone (CDMA type) from EBay. (The cheap ones are GSM phones and EBay is filled with them- you don't want one of those)
CDMA phones are harder to find and more expensive.
Make sure it's unlocked and you can get the serial number, so Aliant can check if it's on their list of stolen phones. Some dealers will unlock the phone for you too. They like getting contracts renewed.

For example:
A new Samsung A660 will cost you (plus tax), new in the box, no contract, $200 from Futureshop, $250 from Aliant, or for a "lightly used" unit less than $100 delivered from EBay.

Our daughter had her new camera phone (in a family plan) stolen last year after 3 weeks of service. THAT was frustrating.
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Old Sep 1st, 2006, 09:02 PM   #9
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Found this: http://cgi.ebay.com/Like-New-Sprint-...QQcmdZViewItem

It says its with PC Spirit. Could it be changed to work with my carrier?
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Old Sep 2nd, 2006, 03:52 AM   #10
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Unless you have a friend in the service department of your CDMA carrier who can inventory the ESN of the foreign handset you are out of luck. And that is assuming there is nothing weird about the firmware on the phone.

On GSM phones it is much easier, for one you can buy an OEM phone directly with no SIM locks. You can also unlock most GSM phones no matter where they are from for use on almost any network (assuming they are on a supported band and without funky firmware)

Nokia's are the easiest to unlock - but be careful buying them used because many get sold because someone botched the unlocking.

---

I personally think cellular phone contracts are pointless - even when you account for the free phone.

Lets say your contract nets you a $100 discount on the phone - good for you over a three year contract your saving $2.75 a month. In exchange you are locked into the most consumer-unfriendly contracts ever written.

I had a complete nightmare with Rogers about a year ago - I owned my own phone and was not under a contract. When they wouldn't fix the problem I was able to cancel no strings attached.

At the same time, my brother is having his own problems with Bell Mobility to which they have been completely unresponsive. But he still has a year and a half on his contract. Even if he doesn't have a functioning phone, he is still on the hook for his service and whatever Bell decides they feel like charging for, such as their recently raised system access fee. If he finally loses his patience with their bull**** he will be on the hook for $200.

The termination penalties charged by most carriers in most circumstances are much greater than the value of the phone.
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