Saturday, November 19, 2005

Wal-Mart Deals In Person

I was at Wal-Mart a few minutes ago and found several neat deals and confirmed some others. Some have to do with postpaid, but there are prepaid deals too. There are also postpaid ripoffs...


1. Heard of Movida, the 20-cents-a-minute Spanish-oriented prepaid? Right now they're giving $45 worth of airtime, equivalent to 225 minutes, with at least their Nokia 2270 phone, which is $30, at least at my Wal-Mart. Calling the phone free the cost per minute would be about 13.3 cents a minute. Not bad for Sprint service with a free phone that doesn't need any rebates, though I wouldn't get anything beyo0nd the phone as STi's rates are so much better in the longer run, plus you get a fancier phone for free.

2. I saw the Nokia 2126. This has to be one of the neatest-looking budget phones out there. Personally, I don't like the slightly overstated look of the original Nokia Shorty (too shiny on the front) but the form factor is to be beat and the 2126does it right. I didn't see a price today but the Wal-Mart guy told me this little gem is $19.88 when I called yesterday so it looks very, very good. One small problem is it has a paltry fifteen ringtones, but there are probably some good ones in there.


1. I reconfirmed what I saw last time: at least my Wal-Mart is offering the Sanyo 2300 phone for free with a 2-year Sprint contract, or for $40 with a 1-year, or $190 without any contract whatsoever. I have a feeling this one is going to show up on STi sometime soon, since reps hinted about it last month, though I may have to search bricks and mortar stores to find it. It is on the large side, but has a super speakerphone (look at that lovely grill on the outside :) ), a nice big screen, web access and ReadyLink. I heard tell that the last is being offered (I'm assuming using this phone) on STi for 9 cents a day. If this phone comes in as free with a rebate, which it probably will, I'm going to have a heck of a time deciding which phone to buy, this one, which most likely has the great Sanyo reception that its phones on Sprint are known for, or the LG 225 cameraphone.

2. First, the neat thing about the new Sprint plans: both networks (Sprint and Nextel) now have an unlimited plan direct from the carrier. Granted, it's $200 a month but for Sir (or Madam) Talks-A-Lot (and I mean A LOT as Sprint\Nextel also has up to 4000 minute Fair & Flexible plans, though the tab for this is in the order of $150 a month) will love having no overages...EVER. Oh, and it looks like roaming is included on the Sprint plan so we now have a cell phone that you can talk on almost anywhere for as long as the battery holds out every day of the month and not worry about the bill being larger than...something... For $10 you can get unlimited Walkie-Talkie or ReadyLink, whichever technology (Nextel for the former, Sprint for the latter) you choose. Nextel has had an unlimited plan for quite a while now, but I'm thinking it was maybe $20 more expensive or so. Qwest also had an unlimited plan (they run off of Sprint) but it too was around $220 and limited to Sprint's home network.

3. Now the bad things about the new Sprint plans. On Nextel they have a Fair & Flexible plan for 1000 minutes, which is $56. Thank you very much, but for $50 I can get a plan on T-Mobile with half again that many anytime minutes. They also have a new lower end Power Connect plan (unlimited local Walkie-Talkie, otherwise like any other carrier's normal plan, with free nights and weekends, but no mobile-to-mobile) for $36, with a paltry 300 minutes. Again, T-Mobile has a similar plan (though without the free nights or Walkie-Talkie) for $30. For $4 more a month you get 100 extra minutes. Of course then you could just get T-Mobile's 1500 anytime minutes promo, which is about what "unlimited" carrier users call per month anyway. There is also the incredulously expensive $30-for-200-minutes Fair&Flexible deal on both Sprint and Nextel, as well as the horrendous $60-for-400-minute Sprint PCS Fair&Flexible family plan. If my memory serves me right you can get 500 minutes and the same features for $50 on T-Mobile, though I think SPrint Fair&Flexible is the America variety which means that up to half of your minutes can be off-network roaming.

And that's about all I found out at Wal-Mart tonight.

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