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Thread: Smartphone without a data plan?

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    Smartphone without a data plan?

    My brother is wanting to buy his son a new phone for his birthday but is not willing to pay for a monthly data package. Is there a smartphone out there with a slide out keyboard that doesnt require a data plan? Or is there a way to get around the data plan on most phones?

    Thanks

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    All smartphones require data plans.

    A smart phone without data plan is no longer a smart phone. The "smart-ness" relies on data.

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    Would you buy a car but not put gas in it?

    Smartphones generally use data even when you aren't using it. Even if in small amounts.

    Unless you want to mortgage your house to Verizon, you need a smartphone plan to go with a smartphone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whitetigergrowl View Post
    Would you buy a car but not put gas in it?
    I would if I did not want to be a victim of Corporate greed. You have the option of making your own gasohol or biodiesel for your vehicle. On the same note people should have the option of using their own or free pubic wifi for data service. For the moment I personally am carrying a ipod touch for data services and a dumb phone for making phone calls, but am seriously considering signing up for the new carrier Republic wireless, which is offering service for 19.99 a month on smartphones.

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    Yes, I told him that. He was telling me that the reps at Verizon were telling him that there were a few phones that met his criteria and didnt require a data plan but they had none at that location. He went all over town and didnt find anything so he called me last night and I told him I would ask here.

    As far as a car without gas, it isnt the same thing. He just wants to get his son a device that does everything a normal smartphone can do but on Wi-Fi only with cellular service only to make and receive calls. Basically, a small tablet that can make and receive calls.

    Again, I told him I didnt think there was anything but that I would ask around to be sure.

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    The Verizon reps were probably talking about the feature phones (they're called "basic phones" on the Verizon website) that have slide out keyboards. Looking at the Verizon website, these are

    LG Cosmos 2
    LG Cosmos Touch
    Samsung Intensity II

    These are not smartphones, so they do not require a data plan, although you could use data on them to browse, Facebook, etc. Without a data plan, you would be paying per MB for data usage, so if your brother does not want his son to use data period, he needs to make sure that Verizon puts a data block on his phone, otherwise a MB here, a MB there can quickly add up to a big shock when the cell phone bill comes in the mail.

    One other thing is if your brother's family plan (assuming it is a family plan) has unlimited text messaging on it, then his son can use the Verizon IM application for instant messaging over Yahoo, Live, or AOL without data. The Verizon IM app sends the IM's as text messages.

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    unfortunately, right now all the big cell companies require data plans for droid phones, I have heard you could get some of the older windows phones that had wifi activated with out a data plan and use wifi for data, but I have not tried this yet. The another option that just opened up is republic wireless they use a hybrid wifi/cellular system and are offering service for 19.99 a month on a droid phone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whitetigergrowl View Post
    Would you buy a car but not put gas in it?
    This is not a valid comparison: A smartphone without a data plan still serves it's primary function (phone calls) while allowing many more features than a non-smart phone. A car without gas does not realistically serve it's primary function at all.


    Depending on your lifestyle and if you're in school/college, you can easily be in wifi range more than half of every day. Potentially, much much more than half of every day. It's extremely beneficial to get email notifications, and be able to just pop out your phone to check on something on the web.

    Not only this, but any modern smartphone has wifi, therefore OP's brother's son can install apps, games, download movies, etc that have no need, or even any use for, data.

    A smartphone without a data plan, while less convenient, is not much less useful than a smartphone with a data plan.
    Hi. I'm Dan.

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    The Kin2m is the only current Verizon model which meets all his criteria:

    Verizon data plan not required
    Slide out keyboard
    Can access the Internet by wifi

    It has an old Windows OS and is rather limited in the "smart" things it can do. But a lot of pre-teens have them.

    The Cosmos and Intensity series meet the first two but they do not have wifi capability.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dsDoan View Post
    This is not a valid comparison: A smartphone without a data plan still serves it's primary function (phone calls) while allowing many more features than a non-smart phone. A car without gas does not realistically serve it's primary function at all.


    Depending on your lifestyle and if you're in school/college, you can easily be in wifi range more than half of every day. Potentially, much much more than half of every day. It's extremely beneficial to get email notifications, and be able to just pop out your phone to check on something on the web.

    Not only this, but any modern smartphone has wifi, therefore OP's brother's son can install apps, games, download movies, etc that have no need, or even any use for, data.

    A smartphone without a data plan, while less convenient, is not much less useful than a smartphone with a data plan.
    That may apply in larger cities where there is plenty of Wi-Fi and if you rarely leave the city, but in more rural areas it really doesn't. Wi-Fi isn't everywhere in smaller more rural cities. Kinda sucks traveling with a Wi-Fi only phone if you are rarely near Wi-Fi or are in an area Wi-Fi isn't widely available. Wi-Fi only smartphones are also not where the money is at.

    And it's extremely beneficial to be able to be in more rural areas and pop it out of your pocket to surf the web and check your notifications beyond relying on just Wi-Fi. Kinda hard to do that on Wi-Fi only. Not every gas station, restaurant, etc. has Wi-Fi.

    I also wonder how long it would take for people that got Wi-Fi only phones to start complaining because they can't get service everywhere. Not long I would bet. Especially when they see their friends or family able to use their smartphones beyond Wi-Fi and they realize they now just have a crippled smartphone handset. Then they try and see if they can find ways to add 3G without paying for data because they realize that while it was fine where they were at before, now it's not any longer viable where they have gone to and they now realize they are screwed.

    While it may not have phone capabilities, the IPod Touch can do most everything the IPhone does. And it's Wi-Fi only.

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    That's absolute stupidity to say a smart phone relies on data, if your implication is that it must be data provided through the carrier. A smart phone does not need to use data through a carrier data plan in order for the consumer to make use of the features of a smartphone. There are many apps, that have no requirement for data at all and can be loaded onto the phone over wifi or through a data cable. The problem is that carriers have been allowed to force consumers to purchase data services through them even when the customer has no need of that data service. Many of the apps I use do not need nor use any data through Verizon, not even to download and install them on my phone. Now if you wish to say that there are many apps for which carrier data is needed to get the most convenient interaction, then I'd agree with you. Verizon Navigator or even Navigator are both services which would not function on wifi.

    Now to the OP, sadly there's not a smartphone out there that you can buy without being screwed over with a data plan if you don't need the data plan. But I think I remember that at one time, there were a few smartphones which were grandfathered in without data plans. If you could find a list of those phones, purchase one used or refurbished, maybe that would suit his needs.
    Quote Originally Posted by borland View Post
    All smartphones require data plans.

    A smart phone without data plan is no longer a smart phone. The "smart-ness" relies on data.

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    Or like I said you could just get a cheap phone and IPod Touch. Problem solved. Especially since its obvious you wouldn't be using the IPod Touch everywhere anyways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by whitetigergrowl View Post
    Or like I said you could just get a cheap phone and IPod Touch. Problem solved. Especially since its obvious you wouldn't be using the IPod Touch everywhere anyways.
    And if you think "I always have WiFi so I don't need a data plan" then you should be glad the carrier forces you to sign up for a data plan. With no data plan (pay as you go data), they charge you $15 per MB. If you are out of WiFi range, smartphones will automatically connect to the cellular network and use data over that. The other day I pulled up a NY Daily News article (through their news widget) to read on my Android phone. After I read the article, I went to the index and looked at the current headlines. That "data session" lasted probably all of 5 minutes and my phone (according to my Verizon data usage) sucked down 27 MB of data. At $15 per MB, those 5 minutes could have cost me over $400 at pay as you go rates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sam73065 View Post
    Now to the OP, sadly there's not a smartphone out there that you can buy without being screwed over with a data plan if you don't need the data plan. But I think I remember that at one time, there were a few smartphones which were grandfathered in without data plans. If you could find a list of those phones, purchase one used or refurbished, maybe that would suit his needs.
    On Verizon, that was any smartphones released prior to November 2008 (except Blackberries, Blackberries always required data plans). From what I recall, I believe there were only three smartphones that met this criteria AND also had WiFi capabilities. One was the Samsung i760, the other was an HTC phone (although I cannot recall the model) and I believe the third one was the Motorola Q.

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    I've had plenty of PDA's without a dataplan. This is the FCC/FTC not doing their job to protect consumers. There is no reason that the end device you use should determine what service plan you're forced into.

    Forgetting the politics, I'm with the poster that suggested the ipod touch or an ipad/android tablet. Using that and Google Voice, you can do SMS, listen to voicemail and VoIP over wifi. With that and a "feature" phone you'll do pretty well.

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