Visible Adds eSIM Support to its Phone Plan

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

Prepaid carrier Visible updated its app recently with two major features. First, it now supports eSIM, which can be used on iPhone Xs and later. But this appears to be an option only for new phone numbers. I contacted customer support yesterday to see if I could transfer my existing number to the eSIM but I wasn’t able to. Another new feature with this update: You can pay for your Visible plan with cash at over 12,000 Wells Fargo ATMs across the U.S., and you don’t need to be a Wells Fargo member to do this.

Visible Adds eSIM Support to its Phone Plan

Visible Offers Deal for iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 12 Mini

· Andrew Orr · Cool Stuff Found

Phone carrier Visible has launched a new campaign with Dan Levy of Schitt’s Creek called “Unlimited Eyebrowsing.” They’re sharing a deal for US$20 off your first month with the code BROWS20 (the YouTube page also mentions SAVE20). Additionally, Visible is offering a deal for the iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 mini. Purchase one of these devices through them and get a free pair of Bose wireless headphones with a port-in of your phone number. Plus you can get a US$50 Mastercard virtual account.

FCC Unsure Whether to Punish Carriers for Selling Location Data

· Andrew Orr · Link

Two years ago we found out that US carriers were selling real-time location data of its customers. The FCC has wrapped up its investigation, and maybe it will punish the carriers…or maybe not. Who knows? Chairman Ajit Pai doesn’t.

Pai’s statement went on: “Accordingly, in the coming days, I intend to circulate to my fellow Commissioners for their consideration one or more Notice(s) of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture in connection with the apparent violation(s). We are unable to provide additional information about any pending enforcement action(s) beyond what is stated in the letter.”

If that seems unusual vague: that “one or more” mobile operators “apparently violated” the law by selling location data, you’re not the only one.

Here’s What the ‘Race to 5G’ Really Means

· Andrew Orr · Link

Karl Bode writes about corporations talking about the “race to 5G”, saying that it’s more like a race to bigger profits.

The “race” rhetoric is largely an illusion created by companies eager to do the bare minimum in exchange for as many subsidies, regulatory favors and tax breaks they can grab. This mindless regulatory capture has resulted in a US Telecom sector that routinely ranks in the middle of the pack in every metric that matters. While 5G will be a good thing when deployed at scale, it’s foolish to think the new wireless technical standard will address the deeper rot that plagues the sector.

Over 90% of Postpaid Phones Sold are Apple and Samsung

· Andrew Orr · Link

Man holding a green iPhone 11

Over 90% of the postpaid phones sold at the Big Four carrier stores in the U.S. are either iPhones or Samsung phones.

Apple and Samsung together sold 94 percent of phones at Verizon stores, 95 percent at AT&T stores, 94 percent at Sprint stores, and 91 percent at T-Mobile stores, according to the report. The most popular phone at all four carriers in December was the iPhone 11, the firm says. The top-selling Samsung Phone was the Galaxy S10.

I’d say it’s probably because the price of most iPhones and Samsungs are high enough to where the stores can make money off them.

Which Carrier Really Has 'America's Best Network"?

· Andrew Orr · Link

cell towers on a purple sky

Every carrier at one point seems to be crowned “America’s Best Network” but which one is actually the best? It turns out that the companies that perform these tests use different methodologies and so reach different conclusions.

In recent weeks, three key studies have reached conflicting conclusions about the top four nationwide carriers, which includes Sprint. But reports by RootMetrics, OpenSignal, and PCMag that, respectively, gave top honors to Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T aren’t wrong—not if you understand how they were put together.