Saturday, July 14, 2018

Which Cell Phone Service

 As more and more seniors start to use smartphones,  I get more and more questions about which cell phone service to choose.

At the moment, in general I am recommending Consumer Cellular,  especially for use with an iPhone, and for iPad owners. CC is easily accessible by phone.

That does not mean that there are not plenty of excellent alternatives.

In the past I have recommended Republic Wireless as costing a bit less.    Republic Wireless does not communicate by phone but only by email. Recently a resident had to go through a procedure of taking out the SIM card and upgrading to restore a locked up phone back to use, before re-inserting the SIM.

I have also used PureTalk.      Phone support is very good and prices are competitive.    This service uses AT&T as opposed to the others here which use Sprint.     I have heard that Pure Talk belongs to AT&T.

FreedomPop offers the lowest cost service but phone support is terrible.   I use it anyway.

Another service with low cost is Tello, which I have not tried, but offers phone, text, and data at just $10 a month.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Your Old Smartphone

 Users love to upgrade their old smartphones and show off their new ones.     

Often there is a good reason, such as getting a cheaper or faster plan, selecting a larger or smaller phone, or upgrading the operating system.    But maybe just for fun.

Yet if the phone is simply not running well,  there is a better solution.

That solution is a reset.   

I did both a factory reset, and a reset in settings where I deleted all my data.      The factory reset for my Moto G and Moto E is simply done by holding down the Run and Volume Down buttons at the same time for 30 seconds and then selecting reset with the up and down button.

The result can be miraculous.

The phones run just like new.

Memory is a bit short on the Moto G, and this time I employed a new approach from my efforts in the past to make the best use of memory.

I just installed as few apps as possible.      Instead of installing news apps,  I mainly had my news delivered by email.

I then simply installed:

Accubattery to assure that my battery was still good, Hangouts, Kindle Reader, Amazon. Microsoft News, Amazon Music, eBay, Google Podcast,  WeatherBug, and ConnectDrive to run media from a separate Wi-Fi equipped flash drive.

Google apps, especially the essential Google Docs, had been installed by default.

That way,  I came nowhere close to using up the limited memory.     In the Moto E I was able to install a separate 32 GB flash drive.   Most of the above apps are transferred to it.

If I need other apps, I can install and use them when I need them,  and then delete them If necessary.

Alternatively, I can run applications from websites designed for access from small devices.    These I can then add to the home screen just like other apps.

   

Saturday, June 30, 2018

FedEx Woes

Fedex Pickup  

(A few days after this posting, I received a FedEx Delivery Manager code giving me the ability to control deliveries online: at fedex.com/delivery)


Ever receive a fedex shipment which needed to be returned?    Hold your breath!



When you receive a fedex shipment, a return label will be included.     Or you may request the label to be emailed from your seller. The label may be copied onto adhesive label paper to make it easier to affix.



The label will include a tracking number.

Now, to get it picked up…

Tap or click to fill out this form, once you have a tracking number.

Or phone 1-800-463-3339  (1-800-GO-FEDEX) to authorize a pickup.  Ask for the "Return Manager" and have the return label at hand.    

You may find that you are required to have a fedex account.   If so,  tap or click here,

If you live here at Happy Valley, don’t be surprised if it is not picked anyway.   If not picked up at one concierge desk, try another.

Happy Valley’s pickup is actually listed for a non-Happy Valley location elsewhere, but under the same name, at a grocery store nearby, and your item may not appear on fedex’s pickup list for our front desk(s), but for this nearby dropbox at 200 WV Square.

You then need to drive you package to the nearest depot as a last resort.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Libby

Check this out for iPad and iPhone.Tap or click

Monday, June 25, 2018

Podcasting is ready for prime time

Podcasting has been around for a long time but only now is ready for prime time.

Podcasting is broadcasting over Internet for on-demand access. Anyone can do it.

The problem has always been in finding the podcast that addresses your particular interest.

That is being fixed with the new Google podcasting app. Apple has a similar app.

Having an interest in ragtime, I was delighted to find a podcast from Ethan Uslan.

See what you can find. Go for it.