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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 4 18, 2:26 pm 
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Hoot45 wrote:
I downshifted my smartphone usage about a year ago and I genuinely feel healthier for it. The real trick wasn't to ditch the smartphone but rather to change my data plan in a way that modifies behavior. I went from an iPhone on a data thirsty Sprint plan to a Moto X4 on a hassle-free pay as you go plan on Google Fi. I still have all the upside but am forced to be more intentional about how I use my phone.

Instead of burying my face in my phone while waiting in line for a burrito at Chipotle, I force myself to interact with the people around me. Of course I could browse the internet to pass the time, but that'll cost me money. When you're forced to pay for what you use you realize how meaningless a lot of your data usage really is. And when you pick your head up, you realize how interesting the real world is around you.

(By the way, I use no more than 0.5GB per month now. And this is without depriving myself. I work from home, rely hopelessly on e-mail and Slack, and frequently travel for work. It's amazing that once upon a time I let Sprint convince me that I needed to pay for 8+ GB per month of data.)

I'm not saying this is the right way for everyone to live. And I certainly haven't beat the twitch to reach for my phone nor have I perfected mindfulness - I still play Super Stickman Golf, watch MLB highlights, and browse Reddit while out and about - but I at least do it with some awareness of what I'm doing. The smartphone was never the problem. I was. And paying for what I use has helped me exercise some self-control.


I actually went the other direction and left Project Fi for T-Mobile and use my phone as my only Internet connection at home. It wasn't really on purpose but it has been nearly a year and a half now and I haven't looked back. In March or April of 2017 I threw a tantrum over how much I was paying Charter for my Internet and cable and cancelled them both thinking I would switch to U-Verse since I had received offers for U-Verse not too terribly long before. Of course when I got around to trying to actually get U-Verse they had decided that you can't have that anymore and have to get DirecTV and the only Internet option I have at my address is DSL. My phone is faster than DSL.

Without Internet at home I ended up switching to T-Mobile's unlimited plan for $75 per month and just went with watching TV channels that I could get over the air and my phone as a hot spot for anything else I needed. Then when YouTube TV came around I signed up for that and found that I can use my phone as a hot spot and stream YouTube TV to the Chromecast and it works great. I don't have any problems with quality. The stream never fails, stutters or suffers from degradation. T-Mobile throttles the speed at which I can tether (definitely not full 4G) but it still doesn't cause any problems. I don't even have problems working from home either.


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 4 18, 2:28 pm 
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Joined: April 26 11, 6:06 am
Posts: 23181
Location: Columbus, OH
Swirls wrote:
CardsofSTL wrote:
Hoot45 wrote:
I downshifted my smartphone usage about a year ago and I genuinely feel healthier for it. The real trick wasn't to ditch the smartphone but rather to change my data plan in a way that modifies behavior. I went from an iPhone on a data thirsty Sprint plan to a Moto X4 on a hassle-free pay as you go plan on Google Fi. I still have all the upside but am forced to be more intentional about how I use my phone.

Instead of burying my face in my phone while waiting in line for a burrito at Chipotle, I force myself to interact with the people around me. Of course I could browse the internet to pass the time, but that'll cost me money. When you're forced to pay for what you use you realize how meaningless a lot of your data usage really is. And when you pick your head up, you realize how interesting the real world is around you.

(By the way, I use no more than 0.5GB per month now. And this is without depriving myself. I work from home, rely hopelessly on e-mail and Slack, and frequently travel for work. It's amazing that once upon a time I let Sprint convince me that I needed to pay for 8+ GB per month of data.)

I'm not saying this is the right way for everyone to live. And I certainly haven't beat the twitch to reach for my phone nor have I perfected mindfulness - I still play Super Stickman Golf, watch MLB highlights, and browse Reddit while out and about - but I at least do it with some awareness of what I'm doing. The smartphone was never the problem. I was. And paying for what I use has helped me exercise some self-control.


I need the extra data for dikpiks


For sending or receiving? :-k



I archive everything


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 5 18, 6:36 am 
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gone fission
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Joined: December 11 07, 4:15 pm
Posts: 7999
Location: Twin Cities, MN
tlombard wrote:
Hoot45 wrote:
I downshifted my smartphone usage about a year ago and I genuinely feel healthier for it. The real trick wasn't to ditch the smartphone but rather to change my data plan in a way that modifies behavior. I went from an iPhone on a data thirsty Sprint plan to a Moto X4 on a hassle-free pay as you go plan on Google Fi. I still have all the upside but am forced to be more intentional about how I use my phone.

Instead of burying my face in my phone while waiting in line for a burrito at Chipotle, I force myself to interact with the people around me. Of course I could browse the internet to pass the time, but that'll cost me money. When you're forced to pay for what you use you realize how meaningless a lot of your data usage really is. And when you pick your head up, you realize how interesting the real world is around you.

(By the way, I use no more than 0.5GB per month now. And this is without depriving myself. I work from home, rely hopelessly on e-mail and Slack, and frequently travel for work. It's amazing that once upon a time I let Sprint convince me that I needed to pay for 8+ GB per month of data.)

I'm not saying this is the right way for everyone to live. And I certainly haven't beat the twitch to reach for my phone nor have I perfected mindfulness - I still play Super Stickman Golf, watch MLB highlights, and browse Reddit while out and about - but I at least do it with some awareness of what I'm doing. The smartphone was never the problem. I was. And paying for what I use has helped me exercise some self-control.


I actually went the other direction and left Project Fi for T-Mobile and use my phone as my only Internet connection at home. It wasn't really on purpose but it has been nearly a year and a half now and I haven't looked back. In March or April of 2017 I threw a tantrum over how much I was paying Charter for my Internet and cable and cancelled them both thinking I would switch to U-Verse since I had received offers for U-Verse not too terribly long before. Of course when I got around to trying to actually get U-Verse they had decided that you can't have that anymore and have to get DirecTV and the only Internet option I have at my address is DSL. My phone is faster than DSL.

Without Internet at home I ended up switching to T-Mobile's unlimited plan for $75 per month and just went with watching TV channels that I could get over the air and my phone as a hot spot for anything else I needed. Then when YouTube TV came around I signed up for that and found that I can use my phone as a hot spot and stream YouTube TV to the Chromecast and it works great. I don't have any problems with quality. The stream never fails, stutters or suffers from degradation. T-Mobile throttles the speed at which I can tether (definitely not full 4G) but it still doesn't cause any problems. I don't even have problems working from home either.


I hear you. When the wife and I were in downtown St. Paul, we had 150 Mbit, and when I'd run the Speedtest app I was routinely pulling over 200 Mbit on both my laptop and my phone. At our house now, we are technically within the city limits but right on the edge (we have 5 acres) - the only thing we can get is Frontier. In the heart of town approximately 1 mile away you're able to get 150 Mbit, but we are relegated to 12 Mbit DSL... and we are just under 5000 feet from the node, so we actually only pull about 6-7 Mbit. I can't even reliably stream MLB.tv on my Amazon Fire Stick without it freezing and buffering every 5-10 minutes (at best).

The base price isn't *terrible* it's $25/month for that crappy DSL service. But they require you to use their modem/router, which is another $10/month. My other option is HughesNet satellite internet which is slightly better at 25 Mbit, however it runs $130/month for a 50 GB data plan, and after that you get throttled down to >1 Mbit for the remainder of your month. My wife works from home via VPN several days per week, and we stream a ton of content, so 50 GB of data won't really work for us. Plus there's the whole not-working-in-a-storm thing.

She has a Verizon phone and I have an AT&T phone (we both use Straight Talk), and we both only get 1-2 bars of strength at our house, so switching to some form of cell phoned based data isn't ideal, either.

I guess [expletive] internet is the downside to having a 5 acre lakefront log cabin only a few minutes outside the Twin Cities?


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 5 18, 7:26 am 
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Swirls wrote:
CardsofSTL wrote:
I need the extra data for dikpiks
For sending or receiving? :-k

You don't get the CardsofSTL Gameday Dikpik?


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 5 18, 8:14 am 
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Joined: April 26 11, 6:06 am
Posts: 23181
Location: Columbus, OH
Hoot45 wrote:
Swirls wrote:
CardsofSTL wrote:
I need the extra data for dikpiks
For sending or receiving? :-k

You don't get the CardsofSTL Gameday Dikpik?


Those premium members are for premium members only


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 5 18, 9:27 am 
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tl;dr

Joined: May 21 09, 12:41 pm
Posts: 4593
Swirls wrote:
I guess [expletive] internet is the downside to having a 5 acre lakefront log cabin only a few minutes outside the Twin Cities?


That doesn't sound like such a bad trade to me! I just got a warning this morning that I've used 48GB of data this billing cycle and they may throttle my speeds (on the phone, they can't throttle the hotspot any more) during times of peak demand if I go over 50GB before the end of the cycle. The billing cycle ends today I think. Bring it T-Mobile!!!

I'm actually surprised that I have only burned through that much. When I paid the $10 for the hot spot option I could tether at 4G speeds for the first 10GB. It takes less than 4 hours of watching hockey or baseball to blow through that and then the speeds slow back down. That was a waste of $10 the couple of months that I paid for it. They are going to have to raise the data caps when 5G rolls around or else people will be blowing through their caps mere minutes.

I should have also noted when talking about streaming YouTube TV through my Chromecast, Google seems to have included a buffer feature into Chromecast when streaming YouTube TV because not only do I never get any pauses or buffering like I do at times with Hulu or other services, I can turn off the hotspot or restart my phone and whatever I am watching will still continue to play for a couple of minutes. That's probably why it works so well with the slower tethering speed. I have literally restarted my phone and been able to turn the hotspot back on in time to not have any interruption in what I'm watching before. That's very nice.


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 5 18, 9:47 am 
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gone fission
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Joined: December 11 07, 4:15 pm
Posts: 7999
Location: Twin Cities, MN
tlombard wrote:
Swirls wrote:
I guess [expletive] internet is the downside to having a 5 acre lakefront log cabin only a few minutes outside the Twin Cities?


That doesn't sound like such a bad trade to me! I just got a warning this morning that I've used 48GB of data this billing cycle and they may throttle my speeds (on the phone, they can't throttle the hotspot any more) during times of peak demand if I go over 50GB before the end of the cycle. The billing cycle ends today I think. Bring it T-Mobile!!!

I'm actually surprised that I have only burned through that much. When I paid the $10 for the hot spot option I could tether at 4G speeds for the first 10GB. It takes less than 4 hours of watching hockey or baseball to blow through that and then the speeds slow back down. That was a waste of $10 the couple of months that I paid for it. They are going to have to raise the data caps when 5G rolls around or else people will be blowing through their caps mere minutes.

I should have also noted when talking about streaming YouTube TV through my Chromecast, Google seems to have included a buffer feature into Chromecast when streaming YouTube TV because not only do I never get any pauses or buffering like I do at times with Hulu or other services, I can turn off the hotspot or restart my phone and whatever I am watching will still continue to play for a couple of minutes. That's probably why it works so well with the slower tethering speed. I have literally restarted my phone and been able to turn the hotspot back on in time to not have any interruption in what I'm watching before. That's very nice.


That would be wonderful to have. Since I'm outside the Cardinals viewing market, I have to use MLB.tv to watch games. My PS3 is not reliable enough anymore to stream games from it's MLB.tv app, so we use our Amazon Fire Stick. Amazon doesn't get along with Google, so unfortunately YouTube TV isn't an option for us for regular streaming (we use Hulu Plus Live). Although I'm thinking about side-loading Kodi onto my Fire Stick to see about potentially bypassing Hulu entirely. Being out-of-market really sucks (it's even worse for football since, despite being less than 30 minutes from Wisconsin, we can't catch Packers games most of the time - we have to go to a sports bar that has Sunday Ticket).


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 7 18, 8:20 pm 
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I hit the free data threshold on Google Fi every month. I need more of an incentive than $10/mo to diligently download podcasts ahead of time and not check GRB off of wifi.


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: September 8 18, 12:34 am 
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haltz wrote:
I hit the free data threshold on Google Fi every month. I need more of an incentive than $10/mo to diligently download podcasts ahead of time and not check GRB off of wifi.


See the aforementioned premium dikpik plan


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 Post subject: Re: Smartphones suck
PostPosted: December 3 18, 1:52 pm 
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Joined: September 4 07, 1:48 pm
Posts: 24645
Location: St. Louis
My wife and I are trying to get our daughter's apple Iphone fixed through insurance we have on it with provider Sprint.

It's like trying to break in to Ft Knox. I figured out how to get into my sprint account. But also need to get into the apple account. I have an android myself w/ sprint, so I can't just go on and fix the stuff with apple. I found my user password for the apple account,. and hot damn they are correct....but they ask for verification code,...which is sent her broken phone. The alternative verification takes time and witchcraft.

I've been thru this twice before, with fraudulent charges to my cc, via apple. Took a couple days, and hours of effort.

Anyways, am feeling sorry for myself. As someone who navigates through bureaucracy as part of a job, I've never been so frustrated as with dealing with Apple. We used to [expletive] about DMV for inefficiency and poor service.

I understand the need for security and privacy, but security and privacy is a joke on these phones and apps. It is mostly effective at blocking out the real user.


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