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The Mobile Phone How to Guide

By Edited Feb 13, 2014 0 0

Mobile Phone Plans Explained

Got some questions about your mobile phone and service? Well, we've got answers. Whatever it is you're wondering, from how to get the cheapest phone deals to how to choose a mobile calling plan, today we're giving you all the information you need to make sure you get the phone you need and save money. So keep reading...

How to... Choose a Mobile Calling Plan...

When you sign a contract with a mobile operator you'll need to choose a calling plan. This is a set of monthly limits for the amount of calling minutes, mobile data and text messages you can use for your fixed monthly price. Choosing the right plan is the key to saving money. If the plan is too small you'll have to pay extra fees for exceeding your limits, and these fees are pretty expensive. On the other hand, if your plan is too big you'll be paying for services that you don't use, since you have to pay the same monthly fee even if you don't use any of your minutes, texts and data. There are two ways that you can find the right calling plan. Firstly, you can look at your old mobile bills and see what your general usage looks like. You can also monitor your phone usage for a month to see what your habits are and how high your limits need to be.

How to... Find an Operator...

There are plenty of mobile service operators in the UK, and choosing between them can be tough. Fortunately, the internet has made choosing an operator much easier. The first thing that you need to do is to check the OFCOM web site and look at their coverage map. This will show you which operators get good reception in your local area. Once you've done this, you'll need an idea of the kind of calling plan that you're looking for. Now you can go online and find a mobile operator comparison site. These sites let you put in the kind of monthly calling plan that you need, and then give you a list of plans with operators that match your needs. You can choose the cheapest operator and then go ahead and sign up.

How to... Get the Cheapest Phone Deals...

If you're looking for the cheapest phone deals, then again, you're going to be looking online. You can use a price comparison site to make sure that you're getting the lowest price that you can get on a device. Plus, nearly every retailer is going to give you a discount for online shopping. The overheads of selling online are much lower than those of selling in a physical retail store, and some of those savings get passed on to you as an incentive to shop online. You should spend a little time on this process, since prices change fast and new deals are offered all the time.

How to... Read a Mobile Spec Sheet...

Phones come with long spec sheets that detail the features of a phone and are loaded with technical jargon. But there are only a few of these specs that are really going to be important to you. Plenty of the information is about the display on the phone. Mobiles these days have such good screens that you really only need to worry about one spec, the size of the display. Look for at least four inches of screen size. CPU or processing power is important too, look for around 1 GHz or 1000 MHz of power to make sure that your phone is fast enough for up to date software. You'll need RAM of about 1 GB to make your phone responsive and stop it lagging or freezing. How much internal memory you need depends on how much data you want to keep on your phone, but about 8 GB is the minimum. Finally, your camera (or your rear facing camera if the phone has two cameras) should be around 8 MP to get good, clear photos. You don't really need to worry about the rest of the specs on your sheet.

How to... Cancel Your Mobile Contract...

You can cancel a mobile contract once you've signed one, but it's probably going to cost you money. Most contracts have a non-completion clause that imposes a penalty for ending the contract early. This penalty is usually a fixed fee multiplied by the number of months left remaining in your contract. The fixed fee varies by operator. The fewer months left in your contract, the cheaper it will be to leave it. Also, if you signed an incentive contract that came with a new mobile phone you'll have to pay the remaining balance left on the price of the phone before you can cancel your contract. Once these payments are made your service can be stopped. If your contract is already finished you can simply call the customer service line and cancel service whenever you want.

How to... Switch Operators and Keep Your Number...

Many people want to switch operators, either because they're not happy with their current service, or because they've found a better deal elsewhere. Switching operators is pretty easy, and it's simple to keep your current phone number so that you don't need to tell all your contacts that you have a new set of digits. Before you cancel your current service you'll need to call your current operator and request your PAC code. This code identifies you and your number. The operator will send you your code within a few days, it's free, at which point you can cancel your service. When you go to your new operator, simply give them the PAC code that you received and they'll make sure that you keep your phone number. Be warned that PAC codes have a thirty day validity period though, so you'll need to complete the process within that time frame. If you don't, your code will  become invalid and you'll need to start again by requesting a new PAC.

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