The Smartphone has been a blessing for us Contractors. The amount of time they save us and convenience they provide is a huge windfall, and causes them to be a critical tool. So, it gets a bit hellish on days like last Thursday morning, when both mine and Michael’s smart phones stopped charging. What a coincidence that happened at the same time — we got to go through mobile phone hell together.
It started with a trip to the mobile phone store that lasted no less than four hours. We negotiated for new devices, switched plans and started up the new phones. Then, early that evening, I realized my new phone wasn’t charging, so back to the phone store at 10am Friday morning for another two hour round of mobile phone hell, which was compounded by the stress of being out of communication for nearly two days. They finally got it working — seems it needed to be reset by some secret combination of pushes that only some technician that was hard to reach on the phone knew about.
Much of Saturday was spent sorting contacts and becoming one with the new phone. At the end of the adventure, I’m really happy with the new phone and learned some things that make my phone experience better, and saves some money.
Here are some tips and insights on Smartphones:
- The current Smartphones are a disposable device with about a two-year lifespan, which is normally the contract commitment for the mobile phone service. This 24 month lifespan is primarily due to technological advancements — they just keep getting better. If the phone is used a lot, something is going to break, like our charging systems. Looking at the device as disposable puts the cost into perspective; $500.00 over 24 months is $20.83, in addition to your monthly service fee.
- Think long and hard before buying insurance. The salesmen make it seem like a no brainer, but they are just trying to up the sale. $150.00 or so for the policy, $100.00 or so deductible, they replace your phone with one just like it in a few days through the mail while you are phoneless, and usually don’t send a battery. So you end up with a technologically old phone, with an old battery, when for $200.00 or so more you could have a brand new phone. To me it seems better to self-insure.
- Learn about the data usage plans. It used to be the number of calls or texts would drive the cost, now it’s the amount of data used. If you aren’t playing interactive games or watching movies on your phone, you’ll be surprised at how little data you use and how much you can reduce your bill. Michael and I signed up to share a data plan, which provides way more than we need, and our bill dropped over $50 per month. This will more than pay for the new devices we purchased.
- The smart phones will sync with your email contacts. Keep your contact database in your email clean and updated. This will keep you from losing contacts when you switch phones in the future.
New Business – This past week we filed for a permit to build a patio cover and garage addition. We break ground in a couple of weeks and I look forward to sharing pictures and discussion of the process.
Have a great 4th.
We are blessed to live in this great country,