Sunday, January 28, 2007

972 Minutes

T-Mobile Dash
T-Mobile Dash,
originally uploaded by daverebelxt.
My billing cycle at T-Mobile doesn't end until Feb 10, but I checked my minute usage and was curious how it all breaks down. Specifically, I wanted to know how many minutes were mobile-to-mobile, how many were nights, how many were weekend, and how many were daytime sans mtm.

The Breakdown
Thus far I have used 972 minutes
542 of those are mobile-to-mobile, most likely to Mrs. Mata and the little Matas
245 weekend minutes
112 nights
651 peak, of which roughly 300 are mtm.

This means that thus far, I would have used about 300 minutes not including weekends, nights, and mobile to mobile. Of course, these numbers will change as I approach the end of the current billing cycle. I suspect my usage should fit in around the 600 minute plan with the nts/wknd and mtm free.

Another thing you should know about your rate plan is that if you are getting close to going over, you can ask to upgrade your plan immediately rather than at the end of the cycle. Say you are jumping up from 300 to 600 minutes and have 5 days left until the end of the cycle. You will receive all 600 minutes for those 5 days. They can prorate the charge, but not the minute bucket. Be aware, however, that you extend your contract when you do that.

Most people don't know that you can ask for call breakdowns like that. In fact, you can have them filter your calls in almost any configuration that makes sense to you. I used to work for T-Mobile, which helps in making decisions for my rate plans. For now, I have 2,000 minutes remaining, a ridiculous quantity for me.

The phone I got for this venture into the Texas Capitol is the T-Mobile Dash. It was NOT my first choice. I wanted a Crackberry, but they sold out of the cheap ones. The Dash was available at a discount, so I went with it. I've been surprised by it's functionality. The battery has a long life, except when I go crazy taking pics and emailing them out. That drains the battery pretty quickly, unless I hook up to a HotSpot.

Another cool thing is that I bought a 1 GB memory card for it. This allows me to store music and listen on headphones. This battery drain for playing MP3 music is pretty minimal. It goes for hours. Even making long calls doesn't make big dents in the battery. I love the camera. It's not super-clear, but good enough for the web. I can post to my blog using my G-Mail account. More importantly, my phone uses Push Technology like the Blackberry does, so I can access my Outlook calendar, to do list, email, and address book anywhere. Of course, there's wireless web using WiFi or the new EDGE technology for GSM.

My only peeve is that programs have not been written for download and use on this phone. You'll find some that will install and run, but they cause the Dash to crash from their memory consumption. Something I installed has a memory leak.

I have to admit that I was not expecting much from this phone, but have been pleasantly surprised. Plus, it's much smaller than the Blackberrys. The phone nearest to this one's size and functionality is the Motorola Q, which lacks a couple of features. I look forward to exceeding the 1,000 minute mark now that I've gotten to know my phone so well. I think I am now comfortable with the prospect of buying a bluetooth headset to complement the phone.
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