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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default wifi only / foreign use

    In a few days I'll be in Amsterdam and Germany. As far as I know, there is no way to temporarily activate my phone over there.

    Ideally i'd love to be able to send/recieve texts and make phone calls, but functionality will be limited, so I was hoping this group's collective wisdom may have some helpful suggestions.


    Below is what I've done up to this point.
    (currently using Reborn)

    I began looking at what I could do on the phone by enabling airplane mode, then turning on wifi.

    It looks like the wifi turns off when not in use (normally good since it uses a lot of power).
    my phone will not recieve anything until i manually turn on my phone.

    Enhanced Email: seems to check my exchange email as soon as a connection is valid
    Google Voice: recieves text messages only when i open the app
    Google Mail: recieves emails only when i explicitly tell it to refresh... and then it still doesn't show my latest emails until a few minutes after (many refresh attempts)
    I can send text messages via Google Voice, but not make phone calls.
    I can call via Skype and get charged 5+2 cents/min

    -is there a way to have my phone wake up to check for email/text/etc periodically while "off" in my pocket? (assuming there is an available wifi connection)
    -is there a way to have gmail and voice actively running while my phone is on? (can they notify me when i have messages without opening the app first?)
    -any key settings or cool apps that people use for travelling?

    thanks!
    -B
  2. #2  
    drewwalton19216801's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by bweb View Post
    In a few days I'll be in Amsterdam and Germany. As far as I know, there is no way to temporarily activate my phone over there.

    Ideally i'd love to be able to send/recieve texts and make phone calls, but functionality will be limited, so I was hoping this group's collective wisdom may have some helpful suggestions.


    Below is what I've done up to this point.
    (currently using Reborn)

    I began looking at what I could do on the phone by enabling airplane mode, then turning on wifi.

    It looks like the wifi turns off when not in use (normally good since it uses a lot of power).
    my phone will not recieve anything until i manually turn on my phone.

    Enhanced Email: seems to check my exchange email as soon as a connection is valid
    Google Voice: recieves text messages only when i open the app
    Google Mail: recieves emails only when i explicitly tell it to refresh... and then it still doesn't show my latest emails until a few minutes after (many refresh attempts)
    I can send text messages via Google Voice, but not make phone calls.
    I can call via Skype and get charged 5+2 cents/min

    -is there a way to have my phone wake up to check for email/text/etc periodically while "off" in my pocket? (assuming there is an available wifi connection)
    -is there a way to have gmail and voice actively running while my phone is on? (can they notify me when i have messages without opening the app first?)
    -any key settings or cool apps that people use for travelling?

    thanks!
    -B
    For voice calls, grab yourself a copy of Groove IP. It integrates with the system dialer to make phone calls using Google Voice over a WiFi connection.

    Google Voice and GMail should give you notifications upon receiving messages, mine sure do.

    About WiFi turning off every time the screen turns off, this actually can waste power depending on how often the screen turns on/off. To disable this behavior, go to the WiFi settings, hit Menu, tap Advanced, and change WiFi sleep policy to Never.
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  3. Thread Author  Thread Author    #3  

    Default Re: wifi only / foreign use

    Quote Originally Posted by drewwalton19216801 View Post
    For voice calls, grab yourself a copy of Groove IP. It integrates with the system dialer to make phone calls using Google Voice over a WiFi connection.
    Cool, i just noticed someone else mentioned this in the other forum. I started looking at it, but I'm left with a slight dilema. how are we supposed to be secure now adays? every app we put on our phone asks for so many privliges, and this app actually asks for my password. I made a new account so I could play around with this app, i wish there was a way to do this safely.

    Quote Originally Posted by drewwalton19216801 View Post
    About WiFi turning off every time the screen turns off, this actually can waste power depending on how often the screen turns on/off. To disable this behavior, go to the WiFi settings, hit Menu, tap Advanced, and change WiFi sleep policy to Never.
    Good tip, I thought I knew where that was, but I hit a dead end. I hadn't tried using the menu button while in a menu already.
  4. Thread Author  Thread Author    #4  

    Default Re: wifi only / foreign use

    Quote Originally Posted by drewwalton19216801 View Post
    Google Voice and GMail should give you notifications upon receiving messages, mine sure do.
    to clarify, the apps notify you even when your radio is off?

    Here's my test.
    1) airplane mode enable
    2) wifi on
    3) sit at launcher home
    4) from a different pc send (a) text to phone (b) send an email to work and gmail

    within a few seconds, enhanced email tells me that I have an email to my work email.
    I waited many minutes before opening Google Voice, after opening I got notifications and the text.
    Then I open Gmail... nothing. manually "refresh" and the email shows up.

    I'm assuming that the phone gets notified via the radio that a new message exists (push)?

    Is there any way to change this behavior? Think it has anything to do with the ROM or application only?

    Gmail 2.3.6
    Gvoice Build 0.4.2.54
  5. #5  
    drewwalton19216801's Avatar

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    Default Re: wifi only / foreign use

    Push notifications happen over 3G or WiFi. Your cellular radio being off or on has nothing to do with it.

    Before my Nexus S got stolen I received all notifications and it wasn't even activated on any network! Something must be funky with your GMail and Talk apps.

    Have you double-checked the sync settings?
  6. #6  
    basotl's Avatar

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    I've been using Google Voice, Gmail, K-9 mail and Skype in Afghanistan and Kuwait. They all work well on my Optimus S and Nook Color. Updates come as they should. It sounds like something else in your settings is causing issues.

    Sent from my NookColor using Tapatalk 2
    Sent from my NookColor w/ CM7
  7. #7  

    Default Re: wifi only / foreign use

    You can also use SIPdroid + Google Voice as a free alternative to GrooveIP. You'll first have to sign up for a free US-based Google Voice number if you don't have one. (That's what I've been using for over a year.) Then (like with GrooveIP) anytime you have a WiFi connection (whether in the US or abroad), you can make and receive calls from/to your Google Voice number as though you were in the USA. All calls to the US & Canada are free.

    Messaging, email, etc will work over WiFi regardless of whre you are and regardless of whehter or not you've loaded a SIP client like GrooveIP or SIPdroid.

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