It’s been rumored for quite a while that Verizon’s unlimited data plan for smart phones will be going away. I still can’t find anything official on Verizon’s site, their Data Packages page still states that Smartphone’s data plans are Unlimited, but this discussion on RV.net’s forum is pretty convincing that the unlimited plan will be no more as of 7/7/2011. It will be replaced with a 2GB limit for the same $30. If you’ve been considering this purchase, you should visit the store before the 7th.
Is Unlimited Data Important?
Your data plan is a separate line item from your phone’s voice plan. Your voice plan gives you minutes of talk time, your data plan gives you Internet usage measured in GigaBytes. If you just want your email, and some basic web browsing, and you only use your phone’s data plan for your phone, then 2GB may be sufficient. But, if you want to watch videos on your smartphone, or if you want to use your phone’s data plan to tether to your computer, then you’re going to go over that limit.
How do you know you’re going over? You can check your data usage at any time on your Verizon account. There is also a setting to have Verizon email you when you’ve used over 50%. The unlimited data plan means you don’t have to worry about it! And, heaven knows, we could use one less thing to worry about!
Do you want a Smartphone?
If you’re anything like me, you do! There is some learning involved but, the more you learn, the more you like! Rather than listing all its virtues, let me tell you a story.
One of the first things we learned how to do was to tether the phone to the computer so it could provide the Internet connection for the computer to browse the Web. It took a while for me to fully appreciate that my Droid *IS* a computer!
My Droid Traveling Story
We were driving north on I-95 in Georgia and it was about time to start looking for a campground for the night. I see a likely candidate on our Streets and Trips program, but I want to look at the website. OK, I need to find the cable so I can tether the Droid to my laptop computer and get on the Internet.
DOH! No I don’t! I can just search the web directly on the phone. The Droid *is* a computer with its own web browser.
Ok, so the website looks nice. Now I need to find pencil and paper so I can write down the phone number so I can call and see if they have space for us tonight.
DOH! no I don’t! I can just touch the phone number on the Droid’s screen and it will dial the number. The Droid is a phone after all.
Ok, they say they’re ready for us. Now I need to write down the address so I can feed it into the Garmin GPS …
DOH! No I don’t! Just touch the address on the Droid’s screen and it will start to navigate. The Droid is a GPS after all and it has its own Google map and navigation program.
That’s just one example. For every Droid, or iPhone owner you know, you can hear many similar stories of discovery. The more you use your smartphone, the more you’ll discover. And, the more data you’ll need!
Like I said, get your Verizon Droid or iPhone before July 7. And enjoy!
Geeks on Tour is a membership website with hundreds of Tutorial Videos on topics of interest to travelers, such as managing digital photos with Picasa, Route-Planning with Streets and Trips, and sharing your travels with a website using Blogger. Members can view all of the videos in the Learning Library.