• Carriers

    by Published on 07-10-2013 11:06 PM
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    2. News,
    3. Carriers

    Today, T-Mobile announced their new Jump program. For an extra $10 a month you're basically paying for device insurance. After 6 months of doing this you can trade in your T-Mobile phone for a new one and not have to worry about any more device payments. Your new phone won't cost you any more than what a new customer would pay.

    Doesn't make much sense does it? My guess is that T-Mobile is banking that you won't upgrade EVERY six months since most phones are on a 11 to 12 month release cycle.

    T-Mobile also announced the Sony Xperia Z which is sort of like a bigger, water and dust-proof version of the Xperia ZL I reviewed recently minus the infrared blaster and the Nokia Lumia 925.

    They also announced a new family plan. 4 lines with unlimited talk, text and web plus up to 500MB of data for only $100. ...
    by Published on 06-13-2013 02:11 PM
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    2. News,
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    Just got some info on when and how Bell is going to behave itself now that we have the Wireless Code of Conduct.

    First off, they're going to start on Dec 2nd 2013.

    To me the most interesting points are that Bell can't charge you a monthly fee, if you device is under warranty repair. While Bell has to unlock your phone after 90 days, you have to pay Bell's fee (which presumably won't be cheap). When you cancel, it now happens immediately, you don't have to give 30 days notice.

    When your data usage goes over $50/100 (domestic/roaming) Bell will ask you for permission before they continue to charge you.

    Here are the point:

    • Roaming data - data is cut off once you hit $100 of overage unless you agree to pay additional charges
    • Domestic data - data is cut off at $50 overage unless you agree to pay additional charges
    • Unlocking - you can get your device unlocked after 90 days at Bell's rate
    • Repairs - no monthly charges while your device is under warranty repair
    • Early termination fees - Cancellation fee cannot exceed value of device subsidy. Each month, the device cost/(number of months of contract up to 24 months) is taken off the remainder of your subsidy balance.
    • Cancellation - When you want to cancel it happens IMMEDIATELY. No more 30 days notice BS. Now we need a cable and telephone service code of conduct
    • End of contract - The contract continues on the same terms after expiry. They have to notify you 30 days before the end of term.
    • It looks like larger business accounts are excluded from the rules.
    ...
    by Published on 06-04-2013 08:37 AM
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    2. News,
    3. Carriers

    The looks like the Canadian government isn't going to allow the TELUS purchase of Mobilicity to go through. Also; the license transfer denied, and the 700Mhz spectrum auction is now delayed until January.

    What does this mean for Mobilicity and the other incumbents?
    ...
    by Published on 05-14-2013 03:58 PM
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    3. Reviews and Hands-on,
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    Our very own HC - NO "i" just handed my his review for the ZTE F160. No, it doesn't have a 5" 4K display, 16 core processor or 8GB of RAM with dodeca-band LTE support. Instead, it's a feature phone (AKA dumbphone). Here it is:



    It's inevitable. Now that smartphones have out shipped feature phones for the first time. Mundane usage like voice calls and even SMS are declining for many subscribers as these activities are being replaced by social networking (e.g. Facebook, Google+), on-the-top messaging (e.g. WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger) and VoIP calls (e.g. Skype, Google Talk).



    Here at HoFo, we mostly focus on smartphones these days. Smartphones like my brand spanking new Samsung Galaxy S 4 which is the very definition of ‘all the bell and whistles’.



    So when I told my fellow HC that I wanted to check out the F160 candy bar handset from ZTE, he wondered if I was really serious. ...
    by Published on 04-29-2013 09:31 AM
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    2. Devices,
    3. From The Forums,
    4. Carriers

    Man, Sprint can't get a break!

    HTC’s conscious decision to focus on premium design for its HTC One flagship may come with an unintended consequenc: reception problem if the phone is held a certain way. Though we haven’t been able to confirm if the problem affects all global and U.S. releases of the HTC One, we have found–and are able to repeat–the problem on at least two Sprint Nextel HTC One units, one in theSan Francisco Bay Area and another in the New York Metropolitan Area.
    http://www.gottabemobile.com/2013/04...ttaBeMobile%29
    by Published on 04-13-2013 09:26 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. News,
    4. Carriers

    Just got word that the Samsung Galaxy S4 is coming to Bell on May 3rd for $699.95 straight up or $199.95 on an eligible 3yr contract. It will be available in either Black or White (I think). Pre-orders launch on Monday. If you pre-order you can get it as soon as April 27th.

    Check out the banding. Apparently it supports LTE on 700/AWS/850/1900/2100/2600Mhz. I'll have to double check that but if that's the case that's amazing. DC-HSPA+ (42Mbps) on 850/1900/2100 too.

    Now the big question: Coke or Pepsi? I mean do you get the HTC One next week on the 19th or do you wait another 2 for the Galaxy S4? One things for sure, HTC's One delay is going to cost them. ...
    by Published on 04-04-2013 01:04 PM
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    2. Devices,
    3. News,
    4. Carriers

    HTC, AT&T and Facebook have just announced the HTC First. It's basically an Android 4.1 phone with what sounds like an overlay made by Facebook. From the specs it sounds like a mid-range phone with a 4.3" display, Snapdragon 400 processor and LTE. It will be an AT&T exclusive.

    The overlay is called Facebook Home so it sounds like a Facebook-centric homescreen that has cover feeds (friend's news feeds), notifications, chat heads which sounds like the ability to Facebook messenger without leaving your current app, App Launcher and built-in Instagram.

    From its specs it sounds like it's not aimed at phone nerds but rather people who less concerned about specs and more interested in Facebooking.

    Pre-orders start today and will be available on April 12 for $99.99.

    Who's getting one? Quick! Someone make a MySpace phone! ...
    by Published on 04-01-2013 08:48 AM
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    2. News,
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    I didn’t see this coming but Industry Canada has just approved a surprise merger between Bell and TELUS.

    While Bell and TELUS have been sharing networks for a few years, they’re separate companies that compete with each other.

    A Bell spokesperson had this to say

    “A merger of equals will create unparalleled value for our shareholders. By consolidating the market we’ll be able to increase ARPU substantially while at the same time cutting costs. Further, the combined company will be able to dominate the upcoming spectrum auction. We can start charging extra for LTE, introduce 4 year contracts, 250MB ‘unlimited’ data and a new Network Access Fee.”

    You’re probably wondering why Industry Canada would approve such a merger given that they’re trying to increase competition. Turns out one of Industry Canada’s key conditions for the merger is that the newly merged company not operate under the name Bell or TELUS. That’s right, the new company won’t be known as Bell or TELUS.

    In order for the merger to be approved Bell will transfer their trademark to Wind Mobile which going forward will be known as Bell Mobility while Mobilicity will now be known as TELUS.

    Besides being able to merge, the combined company will be allowed to keep their combined spectrum.



    That leaves a big mystery as to what the new company will be called. My sources say that there is a shortlist including: Bellus and Canadian Regional Telecom (CARTEL). In the meantime, they’re going with the name “TELL”.

    It will also be interesting to see what will happen to Koodo and Virgin Mobile. Rumor has it that they will also combine into Voodoo Wireless.

    More details on the merger will follow shortly.

    ...
    by Published on 03-21-2013 03:15 PM
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    2. News,
    3. Carriers

    First round of bids are tomorrow, according to The Globe and Mail:

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/repor...ticle10062360/

    How is it I am not surprised? ...
    by Published on 03-14-2013 07:58 PM
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    2. Devices,
    3. News,
    4. Carriers
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    Today Samsung announced the Samsung Galaxy S4.


    • 4.99" Full HD Super AMOLED display. 1920x1080, 441 ppi with Gorilla Glass 3
    • 1.9Ghz Quad-core processor or 1.6Ghz Octa-Core processor.
    • Android 4.2.2
    • 13 and 2 megapixel cameras
    • LTE with support for up to 6 bands (for roaming).
    • 16/32/64GB built-in storage which can be expanded with MicroSD cards
    • 2600mAh removable battery
    • 130g and 7.9mm thin
    • physical home, menu and back keys
    • available in white or black


    The body is now poly carbonate with a special finish on the back.

    On the software side, Samsung has some new software features including Samsung Smart Pause. This allows you to pause videos by looking away. It also allows you to scroll the browser by looking and your face and what you're doing with your wrists and scrolls the page up or down.

    Both cameras can record pictures or video simultaneously. The camera software allows you to choose frame effects before you take the simultaneous shot.

    There's a Dual Video Call feature which allows you chat with both cameras at once (I think this requires Chat-On).

    There are 2 shooting modes including a Drama shot (no, it doesn't make your wife look fatter causing more drama). Drama shots snaps up to 100 photos in a 4 second span and then chooses specific pictures to create a shot where the subject appears multi times. It's great for action.

    Story Album takes your pictures, puts them into an Album. You can order a physical album if you want.

    Group Play allows you to share music, photos, documents and games without having to be connected to the network or a WiFi access point (presumably this is WiFi Direct). There's a cool Share Music feature which lets you play the same music through up to 8 supported phones.

    S Translator can translate both text and voice. You can say something to the GS4 English, it will translate it into another Language, hear the respond and translate it into English. Very cool.

    Air View allows you to hover over content to preview it without having to open it. This is similar to what you can do with a S-Pen on a Note 2.

    S Voice Drive is a car optimized feature which allows you make calls, check messages, etc while you're driving.

    Samsung Optical Reader is a OCR program/QR code program. It can translate, call, text message and search.

    Samsung WatchON is a fancy name for the IR Blaster which allows you to control your home theater. It can also pull information from an EPG (Electronic Programming Guide, nice).

    S Health is software to tell you you're fat using built in sensor. Certain functions will require you to buy accessories which include a S-Band (presumably like a Nike fuel band), heart rate monitor, etc.

    The new S4 looks nice but many of the new software features while very cool and snazzy aren't features I'd use in my everyday life. Many of them are very niche like S-Translate, Share Music, etc.

    The only one I could see myself using is the Drama Shot feature, WatchON (the IR Blasters) and maybe the driving feature. And all someone would have to do is write software to recreate Drama Shot (I have this on my iPhone already and I'm sure someone made an Android version). Ditto for the driving feature.

    Hardware is a evolution of what you have now. With the exception of the IR blasters I'm not sure the GS4 will really allow me to do anything I can't already do with a GS3.

    In Canada the Samsung GALAXY S 4 will be available from Bell, Eastlink, Fido, Koodoo, Mobilicity, Rogers, Sasktel, TELUS, Videotron, Virgin Mobile and Wind Mobile in Q2.

    In the 'States it will be coming to AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless, as well as US Cellular and Cricket.

    Who's getting one? Or are you going to keep what you have now or go get a Sony Xperia Z/ZL, HTC One or wait to see what Apple comes out with later? ...
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