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Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Ted DuPuis, Jan 8, 2020.
Well, I have been called a horse’s ass so maybe the Man is already on to me.
Personally, I've had a ton of bad experiences with Verizon. Even something as simple as setting up new prepaid hotspot service. Had one Verizon store manager (company employee) tell me that he wouldn't use them if he didn't work there. Heck, even said hotspot was slower than TMo phone in the hotspot mode while traveling Amtrak between Boston and New York. cellphone or wireline, personal or business account, their customer service made it clear that I wasn't important to them. Arrogance personified.
Yeah, their coverage tends to be pretty good, except in a couple of rural spots where I need to have service. ATT beats the signal bars off of any Verizon wireless device in those spots.
I went TMobile because of international travel - they beat Verizon outside of the US. It's tolerable in the US for most places I go. And with so many of the calls/texts being spam or scams, I don't miss much when I'm out of the coverage area. Free wifi fills in many of the gaps.
For me, it's TMo 99% of the time and a low-limit Verizon prepaid hotspot when I know I'm going somewhere that I need service and TMo doesn't cover. There are less and less of those these days, the key exception being large swaths of WV and eastern Ohio.
Very regional. AT&T and others are barely “also rans” out here in rural CO. Ranging from useless to dial up modem speeds.
The only carrier that works consistently is VZ.
Get into the cities and tourist towns here and it’ll vary wildly depending on who spent money on fiber backhaul, even neighborhood by neighborhood.
There’s also historic licensing silliness like my rural county being served by a weak little regional called Viaero Wireless because they have the claim to all the original low band licenses needed for widely spaced towers and nothing but microwave slow ass backhaul networks from clear back to the AMPS A and B side networks. AT&T and TMo are simply roaming on them out here. The old licensing border is right on the county road everyone uses to commute on, so NO carrier on the old GSM side of things actually covers that road for 20+ miles. They don’t want to cross over the RF boundary.
So again, VZ wins by default. Barely any coverage but at least you can “hilltop” their low band.
Ostensibly Viaero customers get to roam BOTH AT&T and TMo for free with unlimited data which is a screaming cool deal on paper. But most phones today do a horrid job of roaming in and out of whole networks and the process is way too slow on the device to bounce networks on each rolling hill on that road. So you essentially have no coverage at all as the phone slowly scans around trying to figure out which network it can join and fails registration as you go over the next hill. Then tries again.
I’ve tested this with two different manufacturer’s phones with a Viaero test SIM and neither worked.
VZ on the other hand will have momentary dropouts at hill bottoms but will hold the call while in motion.
So... it’s all very tech and tower and terrain specific. I’d love to keep a fake county address out here and get that AT&T / TMo roaming deal from the regional but live in the city. Ha. Better than Google Fi. Cheaper too.
But the regional is known for cutting off customers who “roam too much in town” where they literally have zero coverage. Haha. Nice move on their part. They just cancel paying customers. Or so I hear. I won’t risk them after testing their multicarrier roaming and seeing how utterly broken it is in both iOS and Android along a carrier boundary.
Just wait until you try to unlock your phone while at a Halloween costume party.
I’m sure it won’t work then (although I don’t go to costume parties), but I’ve been impressed with how well it works, even in low light.
That's partly because FaceID has a dedicated infrared scanner.
That makes sense!
My new iPad has the facial recognition unlock and I thought I’d dislike it but I’ve been pleased with how well it unlocks in the cockpit. My old iPad mini required the code to unlock which was a pain if I forgot to tell it not to lock before takeoff.
Yep, it's regional. None of them cover as they claim. As you note, even the roaming stuff. Verizon has the biggest footprint because it bought out a lot of the smaller carriers and (like BellSouth) applied and won both A and B blocks depending on whether it were in territory or out. They simply were handed a very strong preference. BellSouth did the same before it merged with SBC and took the ATT name. TMobile started out using the PCS spectrum when it was new - but BAMS (Verizon) and both Orange and Blue were already well deployed.
The RSAs were a different animal. Years ago I reviewed some technical stuff on a deal between an RSA owner and BAMS in the old AMPS service. First time I'd ever heard of a small SUV named "Kia", and remember dropping the rental at the airport thinking "I never want to see one of these again...".
We must need Cingular back. They’d fix it all.
Mmmm. Tasty rollover minutes.
Traveling all over, I find it very rare that Verizon doesn’t have signal for me. But it’s a very individual thing depending on where you go.
Having spent a bit of time with the new phone and upgrading it to iOS 13, I do feel like it’s a noticeable improvement in speed. The extra size is a bit more cumbersome, but it’s fine. The bigger screen will be really nice while flying and the camera is way better.
It’s funny thinking about how much cellular service and phones have changed over the past 20 years. My first cell phone was a StarTac, which was indestructible and small. Actually most of my early phones were indestructible, with a few exceptions. Now they're large (mostly because they do so much besides being a phone and the screen size is nice) and fragile, although I was surprised how long my last phone went without breaking after I released it from the Otterbox case. If I’d put a new case on it’d still work fine, but I still had my reasons for wanting to upgrade.
Lesson learned: deals may exist where you least expect it.
So you were orange and not blue?
Or while wearing sunglasses.
It works pretty much all the time with sunglasses.
For those who may not know, in those edge cases where face recognition doesn’t work, all you have to do is type in your 4 or 6 digit unlock code.
An interesting legal aside...
The government can’t compel you to provide a password to unlock a device or unencrypt one at a border crossing.
They can however compel you to unlock or unencrypt a device with biometrics.
Just the current state of the law. Don’t ask me why. I dunno. You can store a password in your brain but you must provide an eyeball or a finger.
Only one can get you charged with a crime for refusal.
You can be detained indefinitely for either one.
Could have changed by now but was a topic of discussion in security forums right after the Apple exec was held at the border for refusing to unlock a beta iPhone with corporate data in it.
I'm a few days in with the new phone. As far as functions go, I'm very happy. Screen is big and readable, processor is fast, and I do think iOS 13 has some usability improvements over previous ones.
The phone itself is really big, which of course I knew. One negative with that is that I often have to adjust my hand to perform different functions, and that's a bit annoying. I have a belt clip coming for my Otterbox case as I think that will be the preferred mode of carrying it typically.
I'm trying to figure out a good solution to placement for my truck. I have a suction cup mount holder that can fit on the window, but I don't really like it since it blocks some of the forward view, especially with this big of a screen. I'd like some kind of mount in the rough area of the picture below:
But I also don't want to drill holes in the dash, so I may just be out of luck there. I'm willing to glue but not drill.
ProClip - they make mounts that clip into various seams on the dash. I haven't tried them, and they aren't cheap, but they do look like they are an interesting option:
That's an interesting solution. I'd end up close to $100 for a mount which I'm not sure I spend enough time in my truck to make that kind of expenditure worthwhile.
The one thing about iphones that is really nice is that if you travel internationally, you can use imessage, or Face Time audio or video to call back to another person back home for free using a data connection.
Also, the Find Iphone feature is really nice, and I used it yesterday to located my phone which was taken from the gym. It's a long story, and I got it back. I stupidly left it on the cardio machine while I went swimming, and dude took it because he thought it was his wife's. By the time I showed up at his front door, his wife said he already left to go back to the gym to turn it in.
I thought FCA supported Apple CarPlay. If your truck has it, just leave the phone in the center console and use the CarPlay interface. Works great for Gmaps, Waze, Pandora, Amazon music, etc.
I have UConnect 8.4, which doesn't do CarPlay. It does interface with the Bluetooth wireless phone stuff.
Beat me to it. This would be my go to for anything I didn’t want in a RAM mount.
Goose neck to your seat rail...
We are currently using small magnetic mounts. Fairly inexpensive - I got ours from Amazon but I think I’ve seen them in Dollar General. Require a metal plate on the phone. Ours fit inside our cases and still have enough “bite”. One downside is the metal late may interfere with wireless charging, but that’s not a factor for us.
Photos to follow...
How well does that work in a bouncing car?
Mounts secured with 3M “SuperLock” Velcro so we can move them from car to car.
I would definitely take Samsung Galaxy S..
One other comment on this large phone - it is definitely less convenient for phone calls when you're trying to keep it sandwiched between head and shoulder. The smaller phone was more convenient for that.
I use a cheap vent magnet mount. Works great. That said, I am looking for a wireless charger right now and a decent way to mount it.
Apple would have you purchase a set of AirPods. It's a conspiracy to extract more money from you.
Surely The Man already has your DNA, finger prints and other personal info already, right?
Now having had my new phone for about a week, I can say that I've more or less gotten used to the size. I still have to figure out a method for mounting it in the car/truck that's acceptable to me (that'll take a bit more), but the belt clip works for normal mounting purposes. I do love how good the battery is. I use the phone all day and it only goes down about halfway by the time I go to bed. If it wasn't for an app I use overnight that monitors my sleeping, I would probably be able to go two days between charges.
The camera? It is definitely improved, although I'm not sure how much of that is because the old phone was so scratched up externally vs. that the camera is truly better.
So, I suppose you could say that I'm happy.
Ended up with the Akron tablet mount. I needed that big of a size to hold the phone.
I ended up finding an existing hole and screw I could use so no drilling. Works well for visibility and not getting in my way!
iPad mini 5.. it is much easier to see and manipulate in flight and still small enough to fit many places...
I have a 10xs max.. same as the 11 max or pro, whatever they call the big one.. with the Apple case/extended battery it lasts a long long time
personally had droids for years, like them a lot.. but Foreflight is an apple only app, and FF is where I have built my checklists, logbooks, paperless file cabinet and use it for plates and filing
having the iPad mini 5 and the large phone gives me redundancy and easy mobile access for planning and use
After last night's balloon run, my wife also got to use the phone mount as the chase vehicle. We both agree the mount and placement is really good. Doesn't distract from the road but easy to see and acknowledge/answer calls and let Siri respond to texts. So, it works for us.
same issues for me. I went from SE to 11 Pro and the larger size is nice for viewing, but it means i'm always jockeying my hand grip to reach different parts of the screen, and I do have large hands (this is when operating one handed, obviously easy to do two handed). I really hope they come out with a new SE with a small form, but fast chip and really sharp screen, in which case I'll give this to Eileen (she likes larger screens) and use the new SE for me.
Does the RAM have good Bluetooth pairing and the iPhone app play or whatever it's called? I'm looking at new radios for the scout and considering an aftermarket with these features.
Who knew you could respond to most texts with “I don’t understand” and it usually works out great!
The Ram's "UConnect 8.4" does not feature Apple CarPlay, just has its own Bluetooth integration. We bought a Kenwood 2-DIN height radio for the E55 that had CarPlay built in and liked it. The positive of it is that the navigation and integration with the phone is good, so you open something on Maps and it shows/displays on the radio. With my Ram if I want to navigate I either have to enter the address in the on-board navigation or use my phone, I can't take an address I find easily on the Maps ap on my iPhone and then simply dump it into the truck's navigation.
The real negative of CarPlay is that it makes the radio essentially an external screen for your iPhone and you can't multi-task. We found this annoying last year when at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta. Laurie did most of the navigating and would plug a route into the phone, it would display on the radio through Apple CarPlay. Then she'd go to Google to look something up while I was driving and the map directions (including voice prompts) would disappear. We figured after a bit to use one phone for nav and the other phone for other stuff.
For any sort of retrofit application, I think there are a lot of benefits to CarPlay. But other than a few things I'd like to improve with the Ram's setup, I think it works better overall.