Friday, November 06, 2015

Wireless Update: One Year Later: More Than $1000 Saved Using Republic Wireless

By RepublicWireless (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I've been wanting to write a followup to my post last year on this subject. One of our friends just asked us how our cell phone carrier is going, so here's my chance to post here so everyone can see our thoughts.

If you saw my earlier post, we switched to Republic Wireless last year. It's still highly rated (see PC Magazine).

In that post, I mentioned three issues we had. The issues were all fixed soon after that post. The forth item (how they use Sprint as the cell phone carrier) is still the same as far as I know.

Here's how the service has stacked up.

The cost is low because it uses wi-fi when it's available for talk, text and data. 
We are paying $25 for unlimited talk and text and 1GB 3G cell data/month (Since I have wi-fi in so many places I go, I only use 0.5GB/month of data) for my phone and $10 for unlimited talk and text and wi-fi only data for our second phone. There is a bit of tax on top of this, about 10%. There are also new rebate plans we're considering that give a rebate for unused. Every time we have a little issue with the phones, I keep reminding myself how much I'm saving every month.  There is no contract, it's month to month.

Coverage has been very good. We rarely have a dropped call. Only when we were way out in Pennsylvania a few weeks ago did we have to roam. Of course, we live in a densely populated area. Coverage maps are available on their website.Again, I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving each month.

Audio Quality
The sound quality isn't quite as good as we experienced with our last carrier (Verizon), but it's still pretty good. Again, I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving each month.

Customer Service
This is a bit difficult because they don't have a phone number to call. But, you use the "help" link on the website or their app on your phone and they have a community of people who usually answer your question within 5 minutes with an email. I've found them very helpful and knowledgeable.  They give very clear and concise directions. Again, I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving each month.

You are limited in selection to only the phones they offer. You have to pay for the phone up front, but they offer a free trial period. They are currently Motorola phones (which was acquired by Google) and they all run the android operating system.  We've found them to be pretty good phones with nice features. Maybe they're not as great as an iphone, but I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving every month. I have a 1st Generation Moto X, my wife has the Moto E (1st Gen). We're both happy with them.

We've had some issues with text messages being lost (not sent or not received), but that's infrequent and again, I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving each month.  We can send text messages

One aggravating issue is that you can't put in a conference call number, then a pause, then the access code. So, you have to put the access code in manually. Again, I keep reminding myself of how much money I'm saving each month.

There is a list of publicly disclosed caveats. I suggest you read them in advance of considering them.

Alternate Wireless Phone Carrier Options
If you look at the PC Magazine article that I linked to above, you'll see some other options. We have someone in the family who is using Straight Talk. They like it. They can chose from a few major carriers and still use any phone they like.

Questions / Comments?  
Do you have any questions or comments to add?  Please let me know and I'll do my best to answer or join in the conversation. What do you think of your cell phone wireless carrier and who are they? Did you find this helpful?

Monday, November 02, 2015

Social Sharing Etiquette : Sharing Good Exciting News the Best Way!

We probably have all heard that we should be careful what we share because "anything on the internet is there forever" and there are employers that look at what you've posted to tell if you qualify for a job or not.  But, what about how to consider our friends and family with our posts?

I've noticed that people we know find lots of success by following the steps below when a big life event comes up (like a wedding engagement, or a something else to celebrate).

I thought it might be helpful to post this so that people can think through it and comment. And, for those who know me, you know I like to analyze things and put them into steps and formulas.

Before the event occurs, it's usually only known to a few people (usually two). So, how do they  get this exciting news out in a considerate way?

What I've seen people do successfully is to first tell their closest family and friends about the announcement. And, VERY IMPORTANT, they ask them not to tell anyone else or make it public until they can tell all their friends and family.

Second, they give their closest family and friends some time to tell others. And, VERY IMPORTANT, to tell those who they are sharing this exciting news with to NOT make it public until the original couple of people announce it publicly.

Then, after their closest family and friends have had a chance to tell their closest family and friends, then they announce it publicly (facebook or whatever).

And, now, everyone can join in and comment and celebrate!

Oh, what fun it is to be spreading the great exciting news!

As Christians, we like to share the best good exciting news! We know a savior who gave his life so that we can be free, so that we can have a relationship with our creator, and so that we can be part of his kingdom now and forever.  He has the lifeboat and we're all sinking.  I'm going to the one with the lifeboat. If you want to know more, let me know. I would be happy to tell you more!