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  1. #1
    Mixed Member
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    Default Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    I don't get the Smart Phone thing but am willing to try. Years ago I had a Palm and its ability to function as a phone outside cities was woeful. Kyocera FTW.

    I imagine Smart phones allow you to browse the net, email, and access Google Maps etc. Some have GPS.

    All very well but I can't believe the average school kid has enough money to afford the data costs. My son yesterday spent a few minutes browsing Google maps to then discover that cost him $3 on his prepaid. He had no idea.

    So what am I missing here? Do phones use very little data compared to pcs? Or do people regularly pay $80-100/month for their Smart phones?

  2. #2
    Pedantic & Cynical Member Snorkbox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    As usual most people like me don't know for a fact until they get the bill. By then I would suspect it's too late.

    Possibly Mother and/or Father pay the bill?

    Have you read the contract from supplier?

    Phones do not use any more data than PCs it's a question of the plan I suspect. Was the son using roaming phone data?

  3. #3
    IT Consultant johcar's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    I'm paying over $150 a month for mine (postpaid, on plan): 180 anytime minutes, 5000 texts and 2GB of data. I often get over 500MB of data in a month (despite using WiFi at home) but have never gone anywhere near the 2GB (it's a piece of mind thing). Luckily, my phone is a business expense for me, so although I still have to pay ridiculous amounts, it is offset against the tax I have to pay on my income.

    Smartphones aren't being marketed at schoolkids, which is not to say that schoolkids aren't buying them in droves. It's just the telcos being telcos and slow to react to new technology - which is bizarre, because that's the space they operate in....

    <rant>

    The thing that really peeves me about the charging rort (and the hugely expensive data charges) is that voice is transmitted in much the same way as data, so why the differential pricing? The infrastructure required to move packets of data around is pretty much the same for both 'products'...

    I'll answer my own question. Because they can and there is still virtually no competition. And because data was traditionally targetted at businesses, who, rightly or wrongly, were deemed able to pay whatever the going rate happened to be.

    Apparently there have been studies done that show that 90% + of smartphone data users never use more than 500MB of data a month - so why not make 1GB the same price as the 500MB and seem generous to your customers??? There would be minimal impact on the infrastructure as far as traffic is concerned. See bolded bit above...

    </rant>

    It is impossible to defeat an ignorant man in argument. -William G. McAdoo, lawyer and politician (1863-1941)

  4. #4
    Member bk T's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Using Wifi phones in NZ are just tooooo expensive. Wonder how many people (average wage earner) can afford it? Or when can our politicians make it become more affordable or it's going to be just a dream for an ordinary man (or woman) on the road?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Just changed from prepaid to one of telecoms Smart Phone plans. $50 a month for 50min calling, 2500 texts and 500MB data.

    I'll see how it turns out

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Boy that was quick, thanks everybody. The thing is, members here regularly discuss smart phones and talk about Android/Zimbian?/Windows7 as though everyone else completely understands. The impression given is that everybody is using smart phones and emailing/browsing from river banks or cycle races - everywhere.

    And its completely lost on me but to be honest, I've hesitated to ask. All the articles online assume you know about these wonderful tools already.

    My 16yr son certainly has friends with Smart phones and wanted a Galaxy...which we talked him down from. He doesn't even make phone calls let alone go on the net but some other kids have this stuff so naturally...

    I won't even try to understand "apps" yet.

  7. #7
    Where is Metla these days Chilling_Silence's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Get your Son on the $10 a month for 100 MB. Otherwise it's usually $1 per day on the days you use it (up to 10mb a day).

    They're surprisingly cheap when you add it up vs a gps, browsing on the go makes life easier a lot of the time for me, as well as the added benefit of email coming instantly to my phone


  8. #8
    Rad Member bot's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Quote Originally Posted by johcar View Post
    I'm paying over $150 a month for mine (postpaid, on plan): 180 anytime minutes, 5000 texts and 2GB of data. I often get over 500MB of data in a month (despite using WiFi at home) but have never gone anywhere near the 2GB (it's a piece of mind thing). Luckily, my phone is a business expense for me, so although I still have to pay ridiculous amounts, it is offset against the tax I have to pay on my income.

    Smartphones aren't being marketed at schoolkids, which is not to say that schoolkids aren't buying them in droves. It's just the telcos being telcos and slow to react to new technology - which is bizarre, because that's the space they operate in....

    <rant>

    The thing that really peeves me about the charging rort (and the hugely expensive data charges) is that voice is transmitted in much the same way as data, so why the differential pricing? The infrastructure required to move packets of data around is pretty much the same for both 'products'...

    I'll answer my own question. Because they can and there is still virtually no competition. And because data was traditionally targetted at businesses, who, rightly or wrongly, were deemed able to pay whatever the going rate happened to be.

    Apparently there have been studies done that show that 90% + of smartphone data users never use more than 500MB of data a month - so why not make 1GB the same price as the 500MB and seem generous to your customers??? There would be minimal impact on the infrastructure as far as traffic is concerned. See bolded bit above...

    </rant>
    They should make a custom BB tag for rant, with a bright red background
    ~NOBODY CARES~

  9. #9
    Pedantic & Cynical Member Snorkbox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    "apps" are Applicatons like running Excel on your phone and uploading the resultant spreadsheet elsewhere. Or downloading said sort of data to your phone maybe.

  10. #10
    Misc. User of PressF1 somebody's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are Smart Phones Expensive To Run?

    Quote Originally Posted by bk T View Post
    Using Wifi phones in NZ are just tooooo expensive. Wonder how many people (average wage earner) can afford it? Or when can our politicians make it become more affordable or it's going to be just a dream for an ordinary man (or woman) on the road?
    What on earth are you on about bk T? Why is using a "Wifi" phone expensive? Using a smartphone on WiFi doesn't cost you anything beyond the cost of the internet connection you're connecting to. Also, why shoud "average wage earners" be able to afford them - they're a luxury, not a basic need like food or shelter. If you expect the govt to step in, then you'd also expect them to make diamond rings affordable to the "average wage earner".

    Winston001: Work pays for my smartphone plan, which I think is around $50 a month. I use under 120MB of 3G data a month, the majority of which is work email (with a small amount of web browsing). Price wise I think it's reasonable - with Telecom (prepaid or postpaid) you can buy blocks of data, which is cheaper than paying per kb. 120MB costs $12 for example, which is enough for me.
    Any views expressed here are my own and do not necessarily represent the views of my employer or any affiliated 3rd party.

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