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Old 11-13-2013, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
1,559 posts, read 3,259,918 times
Reputation: 852

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Ok, I don't have a cell phone and neither does my husband. We are moving to rural Vermont and did not pay to bring the land-line phone to the house. We figured we might as well just invest in cell phones since up there, you really don't want to be stranded anywhere if at all possible, plus - we'd be using it as a hot spot since there is no high speed Internet service.

Any suggestions? There are two networks that provide coverage in our area - ATT and Verizon.

Of course I initially leaned towards the Samsung Galaxy S4 (after Apple refused to upgrade their phone) but have also been looking at the HTC One, and the Moto X, LG G2. Obviously, my husband and I need to play with these phones first hand and that may also make a difference, but wanted to get some feel for what folks like and don't like about their phones.

BTW - little back ground on me....I'm 38 and have waited for the day I can justify a cell phone, lol. Currently living in the DC area but moving my husband to Vermont next week and I'll be soon to follow . Will also be using the device as a hot spot for two computers and one tablet.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:05 PM
 
Location: Hard aground in the Sonoran Desert
4,682 posts, read 8,954,900 times
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Are you sure there is adequate cell phone service to use as a hot spot in that rural area? Not having access to high speed internet is usually a good sign that there may be only basic cellphone coverage that isn't fast enough to use as your internet service provider. The absence of unlimited data plans makes it expensive to use cell service for your home internet access.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:15 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
34,484 posts, read 60,055,075 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LBTRS View Post
Are you sure there is adequate cell phone service to use as a hot spot in that rural area? Not having access to high speed internet is usually a good sign that there may be only basic cellphone coverage that isn't fast enough to use as your internet service provider. The absence of unlimited data plans makes it expensive to use cell service for your home internet access.

Agreed.
I would add, some phones have better radios (That is, the PHONE function,) and I would think getting the best phone radio you could would be important for somewhat rural use.

Samsung may take a back seat to HTC and Motorola on phone radio capabilities.
Check reviews.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:19 PM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
1,559 posts, read 3,259,918 times
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Yes. Verizon just put a cell tower up in the neighboring town and ATT has very good coverage too. My little brother came up with his phone and it worked out well.

We don't use the computers for too much, or the tablet. Just news, searching for things, shopping, email, facebook. I do play candy crush (every so often) and words with friends.
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Old 11-13-2013, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
1,559 posts, read 3,259,918 times
Reputation: 852
Quote:
Originally Posted by LBTRS View Post
Are you sure there is adequate cell phone service to use as a hot spot in that rural area? Not having access to high speed internet is usually a good sign that there may be only basic cellphone coverage that isn't fast enough to use as your internet service provider. The absence of unlimited data plans makes it expensive to use cell service for your home internet access.
In town, they have high speed, but since we aren't right in town - Verizon won't come up the mountain road. We are just about a mile away from high speed.
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Old 11-15-2013, 06:09 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis
1,617 posts, read 4,795,327 times
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Verizon should have 4G-LTE service anywhere they have service at all (although signal issues sometimes send the phone into 3G mode), and AT&T has either 4G-LTE or "faux-G" HSPA in most places now. (HSPA is technically 3G, but it usually yields a good 2-5 Mbps for downloads.)

I'd suggest trying whichever one you like the plan/phones best on, and if it doesn't satisfy at home where you need it most, return the phones within 14 days, and try the other. If that doesn't work, you might at least be able to get 1.5 Mbps DSL from the phone company, which is better than dial-up or satellite.
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Old 11-15-2013, 10:22 AM
 
14,781 posts, read 36,755,275 times
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My gut says Verizon is probably going to be the best choice. I would take Thegonagle's advice and get a phone, try it out at the house and see if it will work. I'm not familiar with ATT's plans, but Verizon will also have a good setup for you.

The plan will be a family share plan where you pick the amount of data you want and then pay extra for each connected device to that data pool. For instance, $50 gets you 1GB shared, $60 gets you 2GB, $70 jumps to 4GB, etc. Each smartphone added costs $40, but you get unlimited calling and text. You can then add a Verizon Jetpack for a small fee which will work as a wifi hot spot in the house for all your devices and share the data pool. The Jetpacks also generally are able to get a stronger 4G signal than just the phone.

You may also want to check out Verizon HomeFusion Broadband. It's basically a full featured broadband connection over the 4G network with much higher data plans. It starts at $60 for 20GB and adds another $30 for each additional 10GB. This would let you balance your home interent needs with your mobile data needs. They mount an external powered antenna which can generally get a very good 4G signal and give you a consistent connection and speed. The antenna connects to a router in the house which can power up to 20 devices over wifi.

You can merge the HomeFusion with your existing share plan as well as long as you have at least 10GB shared. Basically, Verizon has the best network and it looks like they probably have the best overall solution for your needs.

http://www.verizonwireless.com/b2c/h...ion/hf/main.do

ETA: I don't have that setup myself, but my friend lives in a more rural area near me where he cannot get cable or high speed internet. He can however get a 4G signal. He uses satellite TV and the HomeFusion from Verizon.
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Old 11-29-2013, 04:47 AM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
1,559 posts, read 3,259,918 times
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Thanks for the advice. I put in my address for HomeFusion Broadband and Verizon says it isn't available for my area yet? What? I had friend's up at the house and they said they were getting awesome signals with their phones, lol....so that's a good thing.

Can't I just use the phone as a hotspot? Or do I really need a jetpack? Just seems like another expense. Thanks.
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Old 11-29-2013, 12:43 PM
 
Location: Maryland not Murlin
8,193 posts, read 22,653,444 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vermonter16 View Post
Ok, I don't have a cell phone and neither does my husband. We are moving to rural Vermont and did not pay to bring the land-line phone to the house. We figured we might as well just invest in cell phones since up there, you really don't want to be stranded anywhere if at all possible, plus - we'd be using it as a hot spot since there is no high speed Internet service.

Any suggestions? There are two networks that provide coverage in our area - ATT and Verizon.

Of course I initially leaned towards the Samsung Galaxy S4 (after Apple refused to upgrade their phone) but have also been looking at the HTC One, and the Moto X, LG G2. Obviously, my husband and I need to play with these phones first hand and that may also make a difference, but wanted to get some feel for what folks like and don't like about their phones.

BTW - little back ground on me....I'm 38 and have waited for the day I can justify a cell phone, lol. Currently living in the DC area but moving my husband to Vermont next week and I'll be soon to follow . Will also be using the device as a hot spot for two computers and one tablet.
I lived in rural New England (Maine) for three years and one in Boston. Spent a considerable amount of time in western Mass., Vermont, and New Hampshire, too. Verizon is the only phone carrier that really covers rural New England, and why I reluctantly got service with them, but even Verizon is not everywhere seeing as how much of New England, is, well, not very populated outside of Boston. Heck, Silver Spring has a higher population than Vermont's largest city. I should also mention that if you are near the Canadian border, you may pick up a Canadian signal; namely Rogers. I am not sure about AT&T, but with Verizon you will not be charged roaming if you remain on the U.S. side. At least that's how it was a few years ago.

Honestly, I would get a land line. I am not sure if you lived in NOVA/DC your whole life, or what you really know about Vermont, but Vermont gets a lot of snow. And I mean a lot. And it can get even more. The state-wide average snowfall is about 80-90 inches, if I remember correctly, and there are parts of northern Vermont that can get over 200 inches, and parts of central Vermont that can get over 120 inches. There is also a lot of cold wet rain and ice that can bring down power lines.

As for the hot spot, yes you can do this but not all phones are outright capable, and I would suggest researching which ones and which ones aren't over the Internet. I mean, go into a Verizon store and start talking about tethering and they will try and sell you a mobile hot-spot. Also, even if you get a hot-spot/tethering enabled phone, you need to get a large enough data plan. Or else you risk extremely high monthly bills. Honestly, I would just get the landline with DSL. Or if you will be getting cable or satelite TV, a bundled Internet package. Depending on your Internet usage, you can be as low as 5gigs/month shared, or over 300gigs.
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Old 12-02-2013, 04:19 AM
 
Location: Manassas, VA
1,559 posts, read 3,259,918 times
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THank K-Luv, I was born and raised in Vermont and have lived in NOVA/DC since the late 80s and all of my family still lives in Vermont with the exception of one of my brothers....of course, they live near South Burlington, not where I'm going. I looked into getting a landline but currently, the phone company (Fairpoint) does not offer DSL to our particular location so I'm going to go ahead and nix that as there is just no point to have a cell phone and a landline.

I don't need a lot of Internet, just some to keep in touch. I have looked into the 'how many GB do I need' and I guess I won't really know until I actually start using it.
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