Mobile Phone Guide

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There are many mobile phones on ebay but its very hard to choose the wright one. You can go on a plan or pre-paid, beware of a plan as they lock you into the network. Also beware of sellers selling them in bulk as they are usually fraudulant. Read this guide to buing a mobile phone correctly and think before you buy!

The mobile phone revolution looks to be unstoppable. The chunky house bricks of the 1980s have been replaced with lightweight, slim handsets incorporating the latest in communication technology allied to a strong sense of fashion. With the number of mobile phones on the market and the variety of tariffs, features and extras on each, picking the right phone can be something of a nightmare. To simplify matters we have identified three types of user and outlined the type of phone that might suit them best.

If that is all you want to do then any basic handset will suffice. You will be able to make calls, access voicemail, and send text messages. But even on the simplest phones there is more on offer, including games, the chance to download
ringtones and some additional services. There will also be a calculator, calendar, address book, and alarm clock. And even with all this functionality the handset will still be smaller than you might think. With a pre-paid you can guarantee that you will never have any nasty surprises with the bill, (though it will limit the choice of handsets) and while full access to the mobile internet may not be available you will definitely be able to stay in touch.

More and more technologies are converging in phone handsets to give the user the chance to communicate with more than just speech. Mobile phones that include digital cameras are becoming the norm. The ability to take a picture and send it to a similarly-equipped friend is an increasingly common phenomenon. Picture quality will be limited by the resolution, most camera phones use only 0.3 megapixels rather than the 3.0 now common in digital cameras, but they do work and convenience seems to be outweighing quality. You will also find full-colour screens to facilitate games playing and to display WAP information (web pages redesigned for the small screen size of the phone). And some phones will now take short video clips which can be sent via multimedia messaging. Colour flip screens for viewing digital images are also common and are a big benefit for the dedicated games player. Also available are phones with  bulit-in radios and/or MP3 players for listening to music. To get a feature phone for free (upfront) you will need to be on a monthly contract.

For the truly mobile worker the ability to connect to all of the tools back at the office is a major plus. Now available on an increasing number of handsets, operating systems like Symbian and Smartphone turn a phone into something closer to a laptop computer providing connections to data through browsers, e-mail clients and other custom-built applications.

The long-promised third generation (3G) phones have arrived and although take-up is not quite as quick as that desired by major manufacturers, network coverage permitting, full mobile internet access to reach your e-mail, video phone calls, and video survices like TV and sporting clips delivered straight to you are now all possible. All this comes at a cost, of course, with charges for the amount of data transferred or specific content prices being the norm; and even now network coverage in the UK, for example, is limited largely to urban areas. But things are moving fast and where 3G does not work it reverts to 2G - so you may find it worth investing in the near future right now. The number of features on phones of this type mean that the connections between it and your PDA, laptop or desktop computer become important as you try to co-ordinate your activities.

Getting to the bottom of tariffs can be extremely difficult. Most tariffs are scenario-based and rely on you knowing what pattern of calls (daytime, evening, weekend), texts, voicemail and other services you are going to be using. If you can not find a scenario that fits your profile exactly in the various online calculators that let you compare tariffs across all the networks our advice is to take a pay-as-you-go package for a short time, with an itemised bill, and then review your choice with real data to hand. There are two basic choices of tariff: pay-as-you-go or a monthly contract.

pre-pay calls allow you to make calls on the handset as long as you have sufficient credit. You can top up your credit with vouchers, swipe cards, and in some cases even from cash machines. The advantage is you only pay for services you actually use (and there's no surprise bill at the end of the month). The disadvantage is that call rates tend to be higher than contracts and that your choice of handset may be restricted.

On a monthly contact actual call rates can be cheaper, but you will need to sign up for a minimum of 12 months and normally pay by direct debit. For your set amount each month you get a number of call minutes, texts, and other services. But if you exceed the amount in your plan then you will pay for the extras at a per call rate. Contract users usually have more choice of handset - the more expensive ones are often only available for contract payers. Most networks charge less for calls to users on the same network. And if you are signing up to a tariff that offers free minutes make sure these are cross-network - so you can call whoever you like.

 




 

 
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