Samsung Epic Gingerbread Update

A tipster sent me a message to let me know that Sprint has rolled out an update for the Samsung Epic that should be rolling out over the air over the next couple of days. If you are an owner and want the update a little quicker it is available for download directly from Google.  This download is the exact same update that would be downloaded to your phone and is safe to install.  (Just don’t pull the battery in the middle of the update, and make sure your battery is charged up.)

Here’s the directions, (from Android Central):

  1. Download the update from Google.
  2. Rename the file to (Make sure you don’t do if you’re on Windows.)
  3. Move the file to your SD card.
  4. Turn off your phone.
  5. Hold the Volume Down and Camera buttons, then press the power button.
  6. The update should automatically launch itself. Sit back and relax.
  7. Reboot the phone.

Price Plan Comparison (Part 2 – Sprint)

(Continued from previous post)
As the economy seems to not get any better from week to week everyone is looking into ways to save money.  Wireless plans are a place that you might be able to cut some spending in your budget.

If you live in the US and are looking into getting an Android phone you are probably a little overwhelmed by the options available to smartphone customers. We have thrown together this little guide to what plans are available on what carriers.

We are going to do up a comparison of what the cheapest plans are on the big 3 US carriers, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon – for both a single line of service or for a family plan.  Part one will be AT&T, part 2 will be Sprint and part 3 will be Verizon (Done in alphabetical order to be fair).

Sprint has a much more simplified approach to the data plans.  They offer an unlimited data plan for their smartphones that gives you a truly unlimited amount of data.  Their individual plans are as follows:

Simply Everything (Unlimited Voice/Data) $99.99
Unlimited Data / 450 Minutes $69.99
Unlimited Data / 900 Minutes $89.99

So with an Android device you don’t have to worry about going over on your data.  Also with Sprint using a CDMA network you have a ton of coverage because in the areas where there is no Sprint coverage it roams on other carriers towers (Verizon).  The main downside to the CDMA is the fact that you can’t talk and surf the web at the same time, UNLESS you are connected to WIFI.

Pros: Cheapest price plan, Best Android selection, Only unlimited plan.

Cons: Can’t talk and surf web unless on Wifi, Non-roam coverage

Google Wallet – Pay with your phone

 The future is here!  Well.., The future of mobile payments is here… As long as you have a Nexus S 4G on the Sprint network.  What this means is that you now have the ability to use the RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chip that is built into the Nexus S 4G along with the Google Wallet service to be able to swipe your phone at the checkout to pay for goods and services.

The antenna is actually built into the battery cover for the NFC portion of the phone (Short for Near Field Communication – Another name for RFID).  Once setup the checkout reader will see your phone just like a swiped credit card.  So (if you have the Nexus S) get yourself setup and enjoy the future today!

Asurion Insurance Extras

If your carrier is a US carrier you are probably offered insurance through Asurion.  If you decided to accept the insurance you might not even know that there are a few extra features offered to you through an Asurion app.  The Asurion app is different based on your carrier, so you just have to search for Asurion and your carrier name (ie: Sprint) and you can download the app for free if you are subscribed.

So what about these extras.  Using the Sprint example above you are given the ability to backup all of your contacts, because a large percentage of phones out there don’t have their numbers on Google or don’t know their password (or email address).  This is big if you use your phone for business, or have a ton of friends.  It’s always a pain to have to reload those by hand…

You also get the ability to locate your phone in the event that it is lost or stolen.  This may save you the cost of the deductible (which is still cheaper than the $600ish cost of the normal price of the phone).  Even if the phone is currently turned off it will tell you where the most recently located place was.

So if you decide to go with the insurance than you might as well download this free app and keep your contacts and phone safe.