As a recent Android convert, I have been jealous of those with stock Android installs on their mobiles. My Samsung Galaxy S3 looks and acts mored like a Samsung phone than a “Google phone,” and rightly so. Samsung is making those devices so that’s their decision. Of course, there are ways to root and flash mods to get a more streamlined and stock Android experience, but as someone fresh from the Apple orchard, I was hoping for a little more ease.
The Nexus 4 is also an unlocked phone. That means I can sign-up with TMobile or ATT here in the US and pop in a sim card without a worry for carrier fees or a 2 year contract.
That’s a scary proposition for most folks. I’d make the correlation between deciding to “cut the cord” with your cable tv and go the route of using an AppleTV or Roku or a laptop or Mac Mini or XBox or PS3 etc as the main source of your entertainment. I “cut the cord” back in 2003 and haven’t looked back. I’ve loved the freedom of using an AppleTV for some content, my beloved Roku for other content, an XBox 360 for some things and finally a laptop with an HDMI connection. I have a state-of-the-art huge TV and it feels right to me (and simpler) to use those boxes to get the shows I want to watch.
The same goes with cutting a connection to a mobile phone carrier. As an experiment with this new Nexus 4, I signed up for a $30 a month pre-paid TMobile 4G plan. I can ramp that up or down as needed. I can go grab an ATT account if I want. There’s no commitment and that’s awesome. I rarely “talk” on my phone so 100 mins for me are probably too many. However, the unlimited texting and unlimited browsing (4G speeds up to first 5 gigs) are the real winners for me. There are more expensive plans, of course. I’m assuming most people need more than 100 minutes of talk time for their phones. However, with Google Voice on my laptops and Skype, I don’t do much in the way of using a phone as a phone.
That takes me to the final part of this transformation… porting my number over to Google Voice. With a $30 a month plan in place that I’m really enjoying, I’ve decided to take the plunge and get away from my Verizon account by porting my number over to Google Voice and using that as my main telephony.
I love Google Voice and have been a long-time user of the service since it was called GrandCentral back in 2005 and not affiliated with Google. When Google did acquire the service in 2007 I was hopeful about it’s future and how Google could reinvent texting and telephony just as it changed email forever with GMail.
It has been a slow progression, but as a steady Google Voice user over the years I’ve been waiting for the right set of circumstances to make the leap to using the service as my full time provider (in a sense) rather than just the extra number that some of my closest friends have.
With this awesome T-Mobile plan, an amazing Nexus 4 device that I’m literally head-over-heels about and the always-there passion to cut the cord to Verizon, now’s the time.
I just started the porting process and will keep updating on how things go.