International Traveling Technology Travails, Part 2: Phones
OK, I know I said I was going to cover cameras next, but it occurred to me there was more to say about phones, so I thought I’d cover that first. When last we left me, I had decided to bring my iPhone even though I wouldn’t be able to use it’s phone features. But that wasn’t the whole story.
I had considered various options. One was using T-Mobile’s new international roaming plan. I looked at getting a phone, transferring my number and using that (for data and texting), as Chile is one of the countries on their plan. But even with their cheapest phone and plan that was going to cost several hundred dollars over four months, and while I would have liked the additional access, it didn’t seem worth it. If I had a larger and more generous client base maybe I could justify it, but not under current conditions.
Another option I investigated was using Google Voice. I had looked at this before a long time ago, but this seemed like a potential winner. After making my way through their instructions and talking to my Google expert (thanks Rabbi Daniel) I eventually determined that this also wasn’t going to really work. According to their instruction, if I wanted to transfer my number to Google Voice, I still needed a mobile carrier. This kind of defeated the point. So while I did end up with a Google Voice number to give people, mostly if they wanted to text me, I’m not sure it’s going to be used. (503) 765-6279 if you’re interested.
Option 3, which was option 1 for Cecile, is what we eventually went with. Obviously we needed some form of phone, so before we arrived Cecile went to one of the major providers here, Movistar, and bought a couple of cheap Nokias so we can call each other when necessary. I feel like I’m back in the early 2000s or, gasp, the 1990s.
If I find a Virgin Mobile store here I still might bring in my iPhone and see if they’ll “fix” it, or maybe one of the major cell providers. Who knows.
Next up: cameras, and this time I mean it