Sticking it to Vodafone
I recently wrote about how I am very unhappy with Vodafone's service. Basically, I have a 3G data card with them that doesn't work with my new MacBook Pro and they've made it clear that they can't care less. They wouldn't, for example, freeze my account until they have a card that does work with my computer. Instead, they want me to keep paying them for the data card until my contract runs out in February. In my last post, I felt helpless about it. Today, I don't.
I discovered that T-Mobile has several plans where you can use your phone as a modem for your laptop. They actually have data plans that support this. AFAIK, this makes them the only company currently to offer a mobile data solution for Mac users with new laptops. I just signed up for their Flext 35 + web 'n' walk Max plan which comes with "Unlimited Internet".
Of course, the "Unlimited Internet" claim is pure Grade-A bullshit. They have a "fair usage policy" of 10GB/month. Fair usage policies are a dishonest practice that should be made illegal. A fair usage policy basically misleads customers into thinking that they are getting an unlimited service and tries to justify it by using tiny print to disclose that the service is, actually, limited. It is misleading and shouldn't be tolerated.
So, in addition to the 10GB/month data, you get a £180 talk/text allowance for £57.50 / month (with an 18 month contract.)
T-Mobile definitely are not saints but they have a service that I can actually use.
For an additional £20, I ordered the T-Mobile MDA Vario II phone which uses Windows Mobile 5.0. Apparently there is a straightforward process for getting it to work on OS X. I was going to go with the Nokia E61 but it doesn't have a camera or a touch screen and that put me off of it big time. (That and the sub-par experience that some of my friends have been having with the N70s and N80s.)
I'll post a review of how it all works once I receive the phone tomorrow.