AT&T

What smartphone and phone carrier should I get?

Samsung Galaxy S III

Episode 954

Cathy from Long Beach, CA

Cathy has to get a new phone and wants to change to something else from Sprint. She has ruled out AT&T and Verizon, so that leaves T-Mobile. It doesn't have the iPhone yet, though. The real problem could be coverage. Softbank just bought Sprint, so they may improve over time. Leo thinks T-Mobile is the best bet for Cathy and recommends the Samsung Galaxy SIII or the Galaxy Note 2.

Is Sprint's unlimited data plan a good idea?

Episode 938

Carlos from West Covina, CA

Carlos' contract is up and he's thinking of getting Sprint because they have unlimited data plans. Leo says the reason why Sprint has an unlimited data plan is that it's a crappy network. There's talk they're bringing more LTE 4G coverage, it may be worth it, but their WiMax 4G is terrible and 3G is slower now. AT&T is consistently rated the fastest, and since Carlos is with AT&T, it may be a good idea to just stick with them. They're certainly no worse than any other carrier.

How can I get notified on my iPhone of new voicemails on my standalone voicemail service? (Part 2)

VM Viewer

Episode 910

Steve from Hollywood, CA

Steve's wife has a standalone voicemail service that would page her Blackberry whenever she'd get a new message. Now that she's switched to an iPhone, that doesn't work anymore.

Leo recommends using Google Voice. She can port her number to it, and Google Voice will send her a text and transcript of the message. The chatroom also says there's an AT&T app on the iPhone called VM Viewer that can do this too.

Why has my AT&T reception been decreasing over the past couple months?

Episode 903

Alex from Mission Viejo, CA

Alex uses an iPhone 4 on AT&T and over the past couple of months, his reception has gotten so bad it doesn't work where he lives anymore. AT&T sold him a MicroCell to boost his signal but that doesn't help him when he leaves his house. Leo suggests asking people in his area what they use for their carrier, and maybe he could switch to something else.

Why does Outlook not download my mail from AT&T after the power outage we had? (Part 1)

Episode 889

Paul from Columbus, OH

Paul had a power outage and now his AT&T Uverse internet service is at half speed, and his email won't download in Outlook. Since AT&T's mail is through Yahoo, Leo suggested that Paul try accessing his email from mail.yahoo.com. Paul confirms that this does work. Leo thinks it's an issue on AT&T's end after the power outage in his area, and they don't have the Pop Mail server up yet.

Would buying my own modem and router improve my AT&T U-Verse service?

D-Link Router

Episode 887

Bobby from Los Angeles, CA

AT&T likely won't allow him to buy his own modem, but a new router might help. Leo likes D-Link routers, so he could use that instead of the 2wire. But Leo thinks it's the actual AT&T U-Verse service that's the issue, though. It could be bad phone wiring in or around the house, so he'll want to call and complain to AT&T.

Can I avoid paying rent for my AT&T U-Verse modem?

Episode 882

Susie from Ashville, NC

Yes. She is renting her router from them. She'll need two things to use her U-Verse connection. One of those things is the modem which takes the U-Verse that's coming in demodulates it into internet access. Then she needs a router which takes that internet access and allows a number of devices to use it. The unit she's renting is probably one box. Sometimes, it's possible to buy that box and eliminate the rental, but it's not possible with U-Verse.

When traveling to China, should I unlock my iPhone and get a SIM card there or get an international AT&T data plan?

Episode 876

Kevin from Beaumont, CA

When Leo went to China, he bought an international data plan from AT&T and his phone worked great everywhere. Leo doesn't recommend getting a SIM card in China. If Kevin wants to unlock the phone, he should ask Apple and AT&T. They will do it, but it's non trivial. Even though AT&T's plans may be expensive, there are a couple of reasons not to get a data plan in China: