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Using a Smartphone without the Data Plan

Discussion in 'Alltel' started by ndrwsybs, Feb 6, 2008.

  1. ndrwsybs

    ndrwsybs New Member

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    I'm wondering if anyone knows if I can get a smartphone (such as the Blackberry Pearl, Palm Treo 700Wx,HTC touch, Etc.) without getting a data plan at Alltel. What I really want is a phone and a planner/calendar combo, but I don't think I can justify the data plan. Is it possible to buy an Alltel compatible one on eBay (or somewhere else) and call and activate it on my existing plan?

    If so, any suggestions?



    › See More: Using a Smartphone without the Data Plan
  2. tinadubose

    tinadubose New Member

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    I called Alltel about this last week because my daughter wanted to change her phone out to a smart phone and I was told that if you have a smartphone.....you have to switch to a data plan.
  3. ndrwsybs

    ndrwsybs New Member

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    I did the same thing... twice actually and both times I was told that I could have a smartphone without the data plan. So I promptly went out and bought one (the palm treo 700wx), and am waiting for it to arrive. If they try to pull anything on me, I'm not going to be happy...
  4. tinadubose

    tinadubose New Member

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    Hummm....let us know when you get it activated so I can call alltel back again and ask them why they lied to me! Strangely though I have never seen anyone with a smartphone w/o being on a data plan at alltel. If you really think about it, getting the smartphone and not using it on a data plan would really seem to be a rip off as you won't get to use it at it's full potential.
  5. Bandit390

    Bandit390 New Member

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    Only blackberrys and other smartphones bought at contract price have to be on the smartchoice plan. If you are able to get past it with a rep, it will be changed for you during an audit. If the BB was not bought during a contract upgrade, then the 44.99 feature will be added.

    Without the smartchoice plan or a data feature, then any data will just go against your minutes. So you still get to the use the smartphone the same....if you have a data feature/plan or not.
  6. tworrell

    tworrell New Member

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    Can you let me know if you ended up getting charged for a data plan?
  7. instantwill

    instantwill New Member

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    As stated above, you do not have to purchase or upgrade to a smartchoice plan unless you get the smartphone from Alltel at a discount. I've bought all of mine off Ebay. I've been using several different Palms on my account for almost two years now without issue. I've used a Palm Treo 650, Treo 700wx, Moto Q(very briefly) and Treo 700p on my account, no problems. I only use the data connection once a week or so, so it's works out great for me. We'll see how Verizon approaches this though.
  8. switchflare

    switchflare New Member

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    A few things I have learned:

    I bought my PPC phone at contract time before there were smartphone data plans and it was a $30 optional add-on. I still got it, but I made sure that it wasn't locked into my contract so that I could cancel at any time if necessary. They made it a requirement for contract-discounted phones to have a data plan in Feb '07 I believe, but I was grandfathered out of this. I changed my plan once a few months back and they tried to tell me that I was required to have smartphone plan because I have a smartphone, which are a lot more expensive and have a lot of other features I won't use. I cited the clause and they checked with a manager and confirmed I was right. I kept my $30/month data option and regular plan. I use data several times a day. I believe you can still get the $30/month option if your phone is not contract-discounted.

    Then I bought my wife a Moto Q off eBay. I had no trouble activating it on my existing plan after I reassured them that I didn't want to change my plan and I didn't want a data package for her phone. Oddly enough, I've asked several reps what would happen if she used internet/data, they scratch their heads and admitted more or less that they didn't know but did not recommend it. We've found out by experimentation that it just uses minutes while you're connected with no extra charges, which is great! She checks her email when she's out maybe 5-10 times a month and only logs 5-15 minutes for the month while she's connected. No extra fees and certainly doesn't justify a data package!

    I believe Blackberries are required to have have a smartphone data plan regardless because of their connection to RIM servers.

    I'm dreading the Verizon takeover and what it will do to my bill based on my current setup. I'm hoping to renew my Alltel contract as soon as I am eligible in October in hopes that it will give me more time with a reasonable bill since supposedly existing contract terms will not be affected by the takeover. Verizon's data plans and charges are a ripoff.
  9. hghlander

    hghlander New Member

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    I have a Verizon Samsung Omnia that I bought off of Craigslist. It was no problem getting it activated on Alltel. Just called up and did it over the phone. Depending on the carrier that it belongs to, you will have to find the number that will connect you to alltel for the prl portion of the changeover. For my phone, instead of *228, I had to dial *22801. The agent didn't give me any trouble at all, in fact was very helpful. I just told her that I had been having trouble with my phone and had purchased one off the net and wished to transfer the number to the new phone. No change in plans, and with the wifi, I can still connect to the internet. Only problem I am having is getting it to connect to the net via #777. If anyone has any ideas how to do that, I'd love to hear from you.
  10. Darwinist

    Darwinist New Member

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    I work for Alltel, so I can clear up a few misunderstandings here hopefully.

    If you buy the equipment outright (retail pricing, usually over $400), there is no obligation to get a smart choice plan. You bought the equipment, its yours to keep and use how you wish.

    The exceptions are:

    If you buy a blackberry of any type. Blackberry service is always on, there is no way to turn it off. I'm not entirely sure, but I think Blackberry is your service provider, they network the phone on our behalf for data purposes and to ensure security at all times. But no matter what, if its a BB handset, it has to have a data plan or you're gonna get suckerpunched with a massive data/overage charge on that next bill. There's no avoiding it.

    If you buy the phone at a promotional discount. Part of the discounts that carriers offer now, is with the understanding that you will agree to service on the higher priced plans for a two year period. It's how company's like Alltel can offer a $600 phone for free (or close to free) and still stay in business. It's a working partnership. You agree to the free phone for two years, we give you the expensive phone for a fraction of the price.



    If you're looking for something LIKE a smart phone, but without the data package, then you should look into something like the Motorola Hint.
  11. Nathaniel3090

    Nathaniel3090 New Member

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    So Darwinist, you're saying that if you buy a smartphone at retail pricing, you can use a basic plan? Does the Verizon/Alltel merger affect any of this? Will it affect it in the future?
  12. Darwinist

    Darwinist New Member

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    That is correct. If you buy the equipment outright (or provide your own equipment) instead of at the contract pricing, you are not obligated to the smart phone packages. You bought it, its yours to use how you decide.

    Only exception is the Blackberry phones. Since it has an always-on connection to blackberry's secure network, there is no way to turn this off, you're required to have a plan for that handset only no matter the contract and pricing.

    But Palm Treo, Moto Qs, Samsung Delves, HTCs... buy those at retail pricing and you can keep a basic National/Greater freedom plan.

    Also, do the math ahead of time - but Alltel never froze the old promotion code AML2, which also gives the data service for non-Blackberry phones for just $29.99 - depending on your rate plan, this might even be cheaper than a Smart Choice package. Just mentioning this because currently, the newer promotion code to sell the data service separately is $44.97 - but this is just reference only. If you bought the phone outright, neither program is required (unless its a Blackberry).
  13. wulfy_tw

    wulfy_tw New Member

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    Hi,
    I was wondering if you also don't need a smartchoice plan if you purchase a HTC 6800 off ebay? I called today and asked, and one rep said yes and the other said no. And if you could hook it up, would the connect pack 1 that i have now work? And would the wi-fi also work?
    Sorry for all the questions, but it would be very helpful if you knew any of them.
    Thanks,
    Ty
  14. wildwillie6

    wildwillie6 New Member

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    Here was my approach to using a Smartphone without a data plan -- not for those who need constant connectivity, or who have plenty of money -- but works for me and is inexpensive:

    I got a T-mobile Pay as You Go account with its associated SIM card and put enough minutes on it to qualify for Gold status. Now my minutes don’t expire if I keep renewing the card. I then bought a Nokia 5800 unlocked smartphone from Dell for $228 (after rebate and coupon) and put the SIM card in. The phone works great with T-mobile. All calling features, plus my contacts’ phone numbers from the SIM, came over just fine. Text messaging is a breeze too.

    The Nokia’s standalone music player, camera, and other bells and whistles work just fine.

    When I want to surf the web or check email, I’m usually within range of a Wi-Fi network, which the Nokia handles very easily. No charges there. Out of range, I use Google SMS for weather, movies, restaurant search, airline flight status -- just search "Google SMS" for that.

    My post on this is at plainmoney-dot-com (newbie can't post the link, of course).
  15. Darwinist

    Darwinist New Member

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    or perhaps the link is banned and you just don't want to get flagged for spamming some stupid money making website that has nothing to do with the topic, forum, or theme of this discussion.

    As for your question sir, the connect pack 1 works with Mobile Web. Far as I'm aware, the smart phones do not use this program - but instead connect to the internet directly. So no, connect pack 1 would not work with this.

    If its customer maintained (and not a BB), you do not need a smart phone plan. Seriously - this has gotta be like the tenth or eleventh time I've said that. I don't mind sharing the wisdom - but the least you can do is read some of the other two dozen posts on the first page that asks this same question.

    /groggy and angry from the flu
    1 person likes this.
  16. wildwillie6

    wildwillie6 New Member

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    some stupid money making website that has nothing to do with the topic


    I would gently respond: Before you condemn the post and site you didn't visit, you might go look. And you would find that it's not off-topic or scammy at all. Plainmoney.com was way ahead of the curve in helping people save money with prepaid wireless, back before it was popular. And now Plainmoney.com has, as its first post, a complete account of one person's successful use of a smartphone without the data plan, complete with links on the handset and prepaid plan used.

    Still in the spirit of helping visitors to this board: this thread is "Using a Smartphone without the Data Plan," and Plainmoney.com's first post is on exactly that topic. Perhaps someone will benefit from visiting that post?
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2009
  17. dalogan

    dalogan New Member

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    Darwinist, can you elaborate on the promo code AML2? Is that $29.99 in addition to what you are paying now? Also is that "unlimited" data? Your information is very helpful.

    I just purchased the HTC Touch from a friend and I want to use it with my regular voice plan for now, but if I can get an inexpensive data plan then I would certainly consider it. Thank you again for being so helpful.
  18. JennoftheDead

    JennoftheDead New Member

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    Darwinist- I just wanted to thank you SO MUCH for the information you have provided on using a smartphone without a special plan. My dad is giving me his Q and I was hoping to be able to use it just as a pda/cell phone. I just want my planner to be portable and not have to carry two seperate devices for cell phone and pda. I am anxious to get the phone and start using it! Thanks again for the info!
  19. DataTate

    DataTate New Member

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    Select Hybrid Smart Phones w/o Data Plan at Discounted Price - Wal-Mart Only

    Delve, Tritan, and Evoke for sure

    Select Hybrid Data Phones are available at Wal-Mart Locations with a connect pack 3 or greater w/ data use.

    This is new and may only be available in areas not affected by the merger.

    Wal-Mart does not seem to be advertising it but it does print on their pricing placards. When I saw this I asked an employee and was informed it is true.

    The phones are 2yr contract pricing and are data capable.

    I also asked about the 1 yr contract at the same price deal as it appeared on one of the Alltel brochures but the Wal-Mart pricing placards still have a 2yr and a 1yr price.

    I was told that there system cannot do a 1yr contract for the two year price, something to do with the merger, but that they could call afterwards and have it reduced to a 1 yr.

    I called Alltel on my phone by dialing star 611 and they basically said it was not true and that they were not suppose to be doing that, then tried really hard to get me to buy the phone from them.

    I went back to Wal-Mart yesterday and some rep from Alltel was there talking to the guy, I kinda talked with both of them and then got the tritan. It seems to work just fine.

    If they change anything on my plan,I'll demand a release from my contract, but it seems to be lagit.

    I'll let ya know if something changes, but if you do not hear from me its good news :)

    Tate M.
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2009
  20. DataTate

    DataTate New Member

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    So Far
    So Good

    Tritan is a pretty nice set up

    Data and everthing is working well on the Connect Pack 3

    Tate M.

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