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Ventured Into "The Walled Garden"? Please post your experience.

Discussion in 'GENERAL Wireless Discussion' started by charlyee, Feb 8, 2013.

  1. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Interesting, I usually get the 300 mb data plan but this time I had a 300 mb local data SIM. Even with a data plan/or local data SIM, I keep my Roaming Data turned off unless I need it.

    Do you have all Push functions like email etc on or do you switch to manual while travelling overseas? Having had a $750+ bill with my Treo 750 while on a 10 day trip to Porugal I am too chicken to keep Roaming Data on. It is easy to burn through 300 mb, I used 176 mb in 15 days, even though almost all the lodges had WiFi and I only turned data on a few times per day while on the road. I have Push Notifications from 3 email accounts, Facebook, Tweeter, iMessage, GroupMe etc. however.
     
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  2. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Re: Ventured Into "The Walled Garden"? Please post your experience.

    This is what I do:

    Set all mail to manual. I'm on vacation, so I just check mail as needed throughout the day. So therefore no notifications, if it is set to manual.

    I keep other notifications minimal, but most of them are on. I do keep Facebook on, since I do travel logs for friends. Also I keep on NYtimes, Beejive GT, BoA, iMessage, Calendar and Weather.

    I have keep Locations Services on for all my app, since they are only used if I use that app, so I control that too. Sometimes I've turned Facebook Location, but I found it doesn't use much data.

    This seems to work for me, and keeps the phone working normally. While traveling I use iMessage, Facebook and Camera more than normal and I keep to 300 Mb over 2 weeks...just barely. And of course use WiFi as often as I can.

    The reason I keep mail to Manual is because the lowest check rate is 1 hour and that is a lot, plus if the mail server hangs..it will churn data time like crazy.
     
  3. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    My friend swears about his off-line maps on Android when he goes to asia...hates using any data roaming. I haven't seen it myself, but the party apps that save maps for iOS, seem to operate the same...save a map to memory. But I found it not as good as the 'live maps' app, Google or Apple. I either forget to cover the whole area, or there is some details missing, like little street names and the like. It is good for coarse driving or walking info, but there is a lot missing. Perhaps I haven't played with it enough. Certainly am no expert.

    I've been satisfied with my need via live maps...no preplanning necessary, and the current POI are there as said before...that is really useful when traveling, especially in a city like London or Paris when you are looking for places to eat or visit. I would not do it years ago, but data has become very cheap while roaming.

    VF
     
  4. dmapr

    dmapr Silver Senior Member
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    Re: Ventured Into "The Walled Garden"? Please post your experience.

    I wouldn't know about destination, since I've only tried on Nexus devices which have no external memory :)

    - - - Updated - - -

    The pre-planning involved for me just means keeping the maps updated (on the Nokia), which is pretty easy — check a week before I go :) I agree that live maps are the most convenient, but I'm not convinced that roaming is cheap. The data on my global roaming SIM is definitely very expensive (starting at $.39/MB) and voice roaming is too expensive for me to consider using AT&T abroad regardless of their data prices :)
     
  5. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Re: Ventured Into "The Walled Garden"? Please post your experience.

    With ATT I using start at the 120 Mb for $30 add on...and if I go near, up it to 300 Mb for $60. The way it has worked, they just charge the $60. So that is only $0.2/Mb...but 300 Mb goes a really long way for a couple of weeks...can iMessage forever.

    I'm with the younger generation...never use voice...unless it is at the hotel and I skype or Facetime.
     
  6. dmapr

    dmapr Silver Senior Member
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    On the recent trip to Spain we had to call ahead of our arrival a couple of times to arrange check-in (rented apartments where we could, we much preferred that to hotels). When I go to Russia I text a lot more than talk, but obviously it's so much cheaper to use a local SIM than roaming with AT&T that it doesn't even occur to me to try :) Europe is the only place I go where my solution (EKIT) is not an obvious winner.

    BTW, how does that add-on work? It's quite often that my trips would start before and end after a billing cycle, even when going on a week-ish trip. Would that mean I have to get two? Does it prorate?
     
  7. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Ah my "favorite" topic. It gets messy when you straddle billing cycle. You get billed (prorated) from the time you started for that billing cycle and the next full one. After you come back and take it off you get credit for what you didn't use.

    There are 3 options to start it, from today, from next billing cycle start, and from previous billing cycle start. Death Star did something somewhat sneaky this time, I marked next billing cycle start on the last day of my existing billing cycle, I didn't have to just wanted to get it out of the way, so they added the $60 to that bill even before the option became active.

    Also you would manually need to take it off there is no way to put in a end date.


    Makes sense?




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    #67 charlyee, Apr 26, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2013
  8. dmapr

    dmapr Silver Senior Member
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    Makes sense. I could never figure out how AT&T's "in advance" billing system works, it's possible that where your $60 came from. So when you take it off, do you wait for all roaming usage to post or do you just take it off immediately when you come back?
     
  9. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    ATT has been very good to me with data roaming. Never been incorrectly charged. If I'm gone for 2 weeks, say in the middle of the month, I start at the beginning of the month or a few days before departure....and terminate in a few days after I'm back. It used to be that I got prorated for part of the month, as opposed to how much data I used; but i think that is changed. If I used 300 Mb in a week, I get the full charge. Nothing really unfair about that...I think before I was getting a free ride.

    The internal data counter is very accurate and that is what ATT recommends to use...no need, I found, to 'wait' for data to catch up with you, like voice roaming days of old.

    I have the 'My ATT' app, which is very useful for changing data plans while traveling. I've used that app, while in a cafe and realized that I might go over the 120Mb. Very good app for adding/ removing features on the road.

    Last year, I had a BrightRoam SIM for France (and England). It's pay as you go voice, for $30. You can add 1Gb of data for the month for $60 (France). (UK was $40 for 500Mb) I thought that very good. Much better than ATT. But in the end, since I would have to get one for England, and another for France (for a local number), I just got the voice plan. If I was in one country , or just Europe, I consider it. Plus they will ship to your home (from Canada), before you leave.

    http://www.brightroam.com/France-SIM-Card-P28C0.aspx
     
    #69 viewfly, Apr 26, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2013
  10. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    I give it 72 hours after I come back to be sure. That's what AT&T recommended.
    On my last trip in October/ November, I took off the add on 20 days into my billing cycle and I was credited for the 10 days and also the data available was prorated to 200 mb. Which I thought was fair.

    This time it is almost the same scenario except it is 21 days, when I get the bill I will see if they credit/prorate differently than last time.

    On the att app it said, the roaming data was added on 4/3/13 and will be prorated accordingly.

    If I understand you right though the data allocation is no longer prorated, correct?

    Thanks much :)




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    #70 charlyee, Apr 26, 2013
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2013

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