Friday, December 09, 2011

T-Mobile Holidays

I attended a T-Mobile Blogger Social Wednesday evening. It's funny, considering hubby works for AT&T, that I'd want to go. However, I'm all about knowing what's what and such, so I figured it was a good opportunity to find out more about the company (other than what I see on TV and knowing it's NOT AT&T).

I have to admit, that I was pleasantly surprised by how helpful and friendly the staff were.

I know, I know. They're trying to sell something, of course they're friendly and helpful. Actually, for the group that was there, we weren't buying. We were being educated.. and fed yummy stuff like this..

But I was also able to find out quite a bit about the company and some of the things it offered. Being the parent of a young (read, just turned) teenager, I found the fact that you could but XBOX Live stuff on a MyTouch phone to be cool. After the meeting, I realized I'd seen various ads that stated this, but I'd never made the connection.

Then there's the "I want to know where my kids are" problem. My kids currently use Kajeet (a phone service aimed specifically for kids), which works well for us for now. T-Mobile (and potentially others) have Apps specifically geared at parents that want that extra security blanket. FamilyWhere uses GPS to track where your kid is. It will even send you an update at specific times if you want to check in automatically. Family Allowances controls the minutes, texts, downloads, etc on the phone. That way, as a parent, you control the phone bill when it comes in. Web Guard limits the web access from the phone.

My favorite App that they talked about is one called DriveSmart. It automatically turns off incoming text-messages and auto responds as soon as you get in the car. It sends all incoming calls to voicemail too. Pretty cool tool, all said. Is it over controlling for kids? Not really. It should help them get in the habit of NOT using it while driving, so that at some point it can be turned off. Just a peace of mind thing, really.

The other big thing they talked to us about was the restructuring of the stores. As of Tuesday night, only 18 stores had been redone to the new configuration (see below). They plan to roll it out over the next year to 800(?) more stores. It's a very clean line, very similar to other stores I've visited.

The highlight for me was being able to drool over the Samsung Galaxy 2S. Originally when I went shopping for a better phone (and before the Galaxy had been released, though it had been announced) it was what I'd decided I really wanted. Due to cost, though, I "settled" for the free phone that came with the plan I picked. When I went back to upgrade, turns out AT&T doesn't offer this phone (don't know why). An unfortunate turn of events, but I'm managing with my iPhone.

At any rate, while I'm not a customer of T-Mobile, it is one to consider when looking at new phones. They seem to have some very good rate plans to go with some very nice phones. It was an entertaining evening (thanks to those who put it on) and very informative.

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