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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    My wife and I recently switched to t-mobile after years with Sprint. We had accumulated quite a collection of old phones with Sprint, so when one of our primary phones was out of commission, we would just go online and activate one of the old phones on the line by swapping ESNs.

    My wife just dropped her Nexus 4 and shattered the screen. The screen is no longer responsive, so she can not answer calls, type, etc. I have ordered a replacement screen but it won't be here for a few days. This made me realize that we have no backup tmobile phones available whatsoever. So she's essentially offline until the screen arrives and I figure out how to install it.

    So that this doesn't happen in the future, I'd like to buy a cheap "dumb" phone that we can use in a pinch like we used to use our old Sprint phones. A lot of the cheap ones I'm seeing online are for "prepaid" tmobile phones (say, from Best Buy). Do these take SIM cards? Must I set up a pre-paid account, or can I just put the SIM card from my wife's Nexus 4 in to this phone so she can call and text? This is my first foray in to GSM/unlocked/tmobile/SIM cards - I lived in a world of carrier-locked CDMA before where everything relied on ESN.

    So basically, is there a good cheap "dumb" phone I could simply put my wife's SIM card in until I fix her Nexus 4? Then when I fix her Nexus 4, I can just put the SIM back in and she'll be in business?
  2. #2  

    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    All T-Mobile phone require a SIM card so you should be able to just pop your SIM into any of them.
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  3. #3  
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    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    Quote Originally Posted by ccrs8 View Post
    My wife and I recently switched to t-mobile after years with Sprint. We had accumulated quite a collection of old phones with Sprint, so when one of our primary phones was out of commission, we would just go online and activate one of the old phones on the line by swapping ESNs.

    My wife just dropped her Nexus 4 and shattered the screen. The screen is no longer responsive, so she can not answer calls, type, etc. I have ordered a replacement screen but it won't be here for a few days. This made me realize that we have no backup tmobile phones available whatsoever. So she's essentially offline until the screen arrives and I figure out how to install it.

    So that this doesn't happen in the future, I'd like to buy a cheap "dumb" phone that we can use in a pinch like we used to use our old Sprint phones. A lot of the cheap ones I'm seeing online are for "prepaid" tmobile phones (say, from Best Buy). Do these take SIM cards? Must I set up a pre-paid account, or can I just put the SIM card from my wife's Nexus 4 in to this phone so she can call and text? This is my first foray in to GSM/unlocked/tmobile/SIM cards - I lived in a world of carrier-locked CDMA before where everything relied on ESN.

    So basically, is there a good cheap "dumb" phone I could simply put my wife's SIM card in until I fix her Nexus 4? Then when I fix her Nexus 4, I can just put the SIM back in and she'll be in business?
    AFAIK, you can buy any of the T-Mobile prepaid smartphones and pop in your wife's SIM card and be off and running.
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  4. #4  

    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    Not so simple as just picking up an inexpensive T-Mo phone as the N4 takes a micro sim and from what I have seen most of the cheaper phones take full regular sims.

    I am looking also and wonder if they make an adapter that lets you use your micro in the full slots.

    If anyone knows of a cheap smartphone that takes Micro from T-Mo please let us know, as even if an adapter exists it would be good to have a second prepaid phone with a different number using a micro to put into the N4 if needed as I use the $30 plan and on occasion run over the 100 minutes.

    This one appeals to me from Walmart
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  

    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    Quote Originally Posted by gtt1 View Post
    Not so simple as just picking up an inexpensive T-Mo phone as the N4 takes a micro sim and from what I have seen most of the cheaper phones take full regular sims.

    I am looking also and wonder if they make an adapter that lets you use your micro in the full slots.

    If anyone knows of a cheap smartphone that takes Micro from T-Mo please let us know.

    This one appeals to me from Walmart
    I saw that phone as well, but honestly I want the dumbest of phones as this back-up - not another phone that I'll have to keep up-to-date, set up accounts, etc. I think I'm going to go with this one:
    Purchase the Samsung T139 Phone at Walmart.com. Save money. Live better.

    And you are right, most of these flip phones take full-sized SIM cards. I just purchased an adapter on Amazon for a few bucks. It looks like you can actually make your own adapter with either an unused regular SIM card or an old credit card. Just need to position the microSIM in the right place within the cutout. I'm probably going to go to Walmart tonight to get that phone and between tonight and Saturday when the adapter will come in the mail, I may try the DIY method.
  6. #6  

    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    Quote Originally Posted by ccrs8 View Post
    I saw that phone as well, but honestly I want the dumbest of phones as this back-up - not another phone that I'll have to keep up-to-date, set up accounts, etc. I think I'm going to go with this one:
    Purchase the Samsung T139 Phone at Walmart.com. Save money. Live better.

    And you are right, most of these flip phones take full-sized SIM cards. I just purchased an adapter on Amazon for a few bucks. It looks like you can actually make your own adapter with either an unused regular SIM card or an old credit card. Just need to position the microSIM in the right place within the cutout. I'm probably going to go to Walmart tonight to get that phone and between tonight and Saturday when the adapter will come in the mail, I may try the DIY method.
    I still think I would prefer a more modern phone for the extra few dollars so that you can use decent wifi if needed while main phone out of commission. Also don't your contacts and stuff reside on your sim if needed
  7. #7  

    Default Re: Cheap phone for when Nexus 4 is out of commission

    Wal-Mart definitely has cheaper GSM phones. Haven't I been seeing commercials lately for a $100 gift card when purchasing a GS3?

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