I have been getting a headache reading/researching and would really appreciate some help with assessing what I want to do.
I have two cell phones (1 basic, 1 smart) on an expired Verizon Wireless (Vzw) contract. The contract is expired because when I renewed last time, they forced me to pay another $10/mo for a data plan on the basic phone even though I didn't have data capability on the phone. I now find that If I renew and upgrade phones this time, they take away my current Nationwide 700 plan and “unlimited” data and replace it with a new “Share Everything” Plan. This will force my bill $30 higher and give me less data. I am leaving Verizon because of the incredibly “stupid large” dollars for simple phone technology and their continued arrogance and complete disregard for Customers. A monthly tab of ~$150/mo for telephone communication is just ludicrous. Yeah, smartphone capabilities are nice, but I can do that mostly via wi-fi and without vital organs to pay a phone bill.
OK, that sets the stage. The decision is made and chewing on the wireless companies and trading war stories is not my intent in this thread.
Instead, what I am looking for is some guidance on the plan I have assembled involving three components:
1) I have decided on using a prepaid service from PagePlus. Gotta buy some phones, but no contract, would have to buy/upgrade phones on Vzw anyhow (pretty much a wash) and they get good marks. Plus it sits on the Vzw service network, so coverage & quality are good. Flexible plans and I can do two smartphones for about $67/mo if I can control our data to about 250mb/ mo. I’m testing that right now on the wife’s current phone and jusdiciuos use of Wi-fi.
2) I want to buy a device called on Obi202 (they also have an Obi100, but not an Obi Wan). This will do two things. One is to enable a cool use of Google Voice (see item 3) and also let me use the base set and 4 additional wireless handsets to ring throughout the house from calls on Google Voice/cell phones. Again, research yields good marks.
3) I will set up two new Google accounts and enable Google Voice, one each for me and the wife. That’s all those accounts will do (research directs you there). The GV phone numbers go into the Obi and I publish the GV phone numbers to friends and family. Using GV, I can forward calls to the cell phone. With a proximity awareness app, The cell won’t ring in the house (but the Obi enabled wirelss extensions will) and the cell WILL ring when we are out & about. Answering /making calls on the Obi extension phones using the GV number also saves minutes. Phones = data plans off, wi-fi enabled.
Here is what I THINK I need to do in the proper order and there are some questions and I could use some guidance.
First, I need to setup new dedicated and separate Google/ Google Voice accounts.
Second, buy, hookup and enable the Obi202. The house is hardwired for a network and my router is on the 2nd floor. I can , however, plug the Obi into a network switch port on the first floor and then plug the wireless phone base set in there (easy access to recording device).
Third, make the move to PagePlus.
BTW – I just saw the announcement about Walmart making the iPhone 4/5 available with their Straight Talk prepaid plan. I need to think about that, but it is more expensive/less flexible than the PagePlus options, although the option to pay for the phones at $25 per month with no interest is novel.
Does this plan make sense? What else should I be thinking about.