Verizon

What's the best phone carrier for traveling all over the country?

Episode 1236

William from Michigan

Leo says this is difficult because it's all very geographical. If William said Kansas City, he'd say Sprint because they're really good there. If he said New York, his advice would be Verizon. Both of those companies originated in those places. William was thinking of going with Cricket Wireless, but Leo said he'd go with one of the big national carriers.

What's the best carrier in St. Louis?

Episode 1236

Elliot from Boston, MA

Elliot's aunt is visiting and wants to know who would be the best carrier to get her smartphone from in St. Louis? Leo says that his experience in the Midwest is that Sprint is really good. That's because Sprint was spun off the Southern Pacific railroad. But they can't go wrong with AT&T and Verizon. The best way to find out is to go to OpenSignal.com, enter the zip code, and they'll see who's got the best coverage in the area.

Is call quality better with Verizon now?

Episode 1215

Tina from Wisconsin

Tina wants to know if Verizon has improved their call quality. She left because it was so bad. Leo says that thanks to VoLTE, (Voice over LTE), the call quality has improved remarkably. Additionally, some carriers also support Wi-Fi calling, which has fantastic call audio quality. Most carriers offer two week trials where if you don't like the service, you can return the phone and cancel. So give Verizon another try. The quality has improved.

Verizon Drops Phone Subsidies and Contracts

Episode 1209

Following T-Mobile's lead, Verizon has dropped mandatory contracts and will no longer subsidize phones. So, users will either have to buy their phones at full price, or they can pay it out over two years. But you will no longer be able to buy a phone for $199. Leo says that while customers will experience sticker shock when they go to upgrade their phones, in the long run, it'll be cheaper, and they'll save about $30 a month.

Is Verizon a good option for International Travel?

Episode 1202

Moe from Ridgecrest, CA

Moe is going to be traveling to India in a few months and he wants to know if Verizon is a good choice for traveling. Leo says no, it really isn't. They've gotten better, since they've left CDMA behind for LTE and that means it could work in India. And the FCC requires all Verizon SIM slots to be unlocked. Moe will have to be sure that the frequencies are supported. He may also request his phone be unlocked as well. A better bet would be to get a cheap GSM compatible phone locally in India, with a local SIM card. He'll have a local number, but it'll work better.

Why is my Blackberry having issues after sideloading an update?

BlackBerry Classic

Episode 1201

Kevin from San Diego, CA

Kevin updated his BlackBerry to the new 10.3 OS and now some of his apps don't work. Kevin did a "sideload" to update his phone, and Leo suspects the issues he's having is due to the carrier, namely Verizon.

When sideloading an OS, he's not getting the approved carrier edition of the operating system, but the version directly from BlackBerry without Verizon's customization. It's likely that it's an APN setting issue within Verizon's servers that is causing connection issues with Kevin's phone. This is why sideloading can be problematic.

Verizon Buys AOL

Episode 1188

Verizon bought AOL for $4.4 Billion this week, which Leo says is a bargain. The sale includes Huffington Post, TechCrunch and a host of other properties. Leo says that Verizon really wanted AOL's mobile ad platform. With over half of internet searches being Mobile, the mobile ad platform is really valuable. But Leo wonders how you put an ad on such a small mobile screen.

Meanwhile, Google is going to put a buy button in their ads to encourage more commerce.

What pay as you go phone is good for Verizon?

Episode 1185

Mike from Indiana, PA

Mike's contract is up with Verizon and he's looking to get a new phone. He wants to buy his own phone and go month to month and get off the contract. Leo says that family plans are beneficial and he wonders why people just don't get together to get one. Leo says that the Droid Turbo is quite nice. The MotoX is a nice size. If you can still get a Samsung Galaxy SIII phone, it's a great phone, and you may be able to get it free. Verizon also allows you to bring a phone to your pay as you go. The One Plus One may be able to work on Verizon.