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By Gloria Diaz
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Fort Wayne Reader
I was long overdue for a new phone, but darn it, my Samsung Galaxy III was good enough, smart enough, and I liked it. It was pretty cool to get online, but one of the best things about the phone was the camera. It had some really cool filters--red/yellow effect, blue effect, green effect. To those not in the know, if you used those filters, like the red/yellow effect, the picture would be in all black and white, except for the red/yellow. Same with the blue and green. There was also posterize, solarize, sepia, negative, warm, cool, and no effect. I vowed I would never trade in the phone, because I loved the camera so much.
Well, I dropped the phone a couple weeks ago and the screen went black. After purchasing two replacement phones for cheap (and not being able to access apps on either one of them) I decided to get a new phone through my Verizon contract.
It makes sense nowadays to have a spare phone. If I still had a landline, I might not have caved so quickly. But smartphones are just so handy. I thought I would purchase a Verizon pre-paid phone. The activation process was a nightmare, compounded by the fact that trying to reach a human to figure out what was going on was impossible. One weekend, I spent around three hours trying to activate it. I couldn't do it online or by phone, because I was never given a phone number. All weekend, the phone was trying to activate, but no matter what I did, it wouldn't work.
Meanwhile, I'd gotten my G3 back, but it was stuck in safe mode. A co-worker finally figured out that the volume up/down button was stuck, and she dug it out with a razor scraper. It worked, but when I turned it off to conserve the battery, then turned it back on, bam! stuck in safe mode again. And it wouldn't budge.
I'd returned the Verizon pre-paid phone, but the discount store I bought it and the card from wouldn't refund the card. They said to go to Verizon. I did, but they said since they don't sell cards there, they couldn't help me either, and to go back to the store where I purchased it. After telling them their customer service sucked, the store manager put the $45 I'd paid for the card towards a credit on my contract phone.
I'd bought another phone, on clearance, and set it up through Cricket. No problems there, competent, English-speaking help, and I was grateful and told the woman so. But--even though I'd downloaded the apps I'd needed/wanted, they disappeared.I couldn't access them on the phone.Google Store SAID I'd downloaded them, but they were nowhere to be found.
Hit with the double-whammy of the app-eating new phone and the permanently down volume button on the old one, I walked in to a Verizon store and pondered the G7 versus the G7 Edge. The Edge had a wrap-around screen, which, after a few seconds of thought, I felt that the screen would probably be more likely to break. It looked cool, but I knew a wrap-around screen wouldn't magically transform my life, so I settled for the cheaper, less snazzy G7, but sprung for a $35 case, which I don't know if it was a moment of weakness, paranoia, or stupidity.
And the set up for this contract phone? Smooth. The only mess-up was transferring all the stuff. Because my old phone is stuck in safe mode, I cannot download any apps or access them. So, do I go back to the phone repair place and get them to fix it? Or do I just move everything over to my laptop and pick and choose? I saved the dick pic my former mechanic sent me, because people didn't believe it when I told them about the incident, but I don't want it on my new phone. There's also some music that I don't want, and some songs that didn't get titled properly, so I never know which one of my Track 15s is "Vogue" by Madonna, or something else entirely.
The phone is cool and all, but I'm going to have to look at the instruction book. A picture I took and posted on Facebook has disappeared from my phone. I just took a picture a few minutes ago, and instead of zooming in on some trees, I ended up taking 27 burst shots. The salesperson said the phone on the G7 is "a million times better" than on the G3. I disagree. The eight filters on the G7 range from super-boring to boring. Just download the filters you want, you're probably thinking. Yeah, but will they work?
Everything's going well with this phone, but I'm a bit shocked at the quality of customer service at Verizon with their pre-paid plans versus the contract. It was impossible to talk to a human who knew anything about the pre-paid plans, but the contract situation was glitch-free. I was met by a greeter, had someone help me in 15 minutes, and then was handed briefly off to someone else. I'll never go through Verizon for pre-paid again. Why Cricket can afford to have real people on real phones to help and Verizon can't, is a mystery. But one thing is obvious: the days of having a landline with a phone that's been there since the day it was installed back in 1955 are long gone. Don't get too attached to your phone--it's temporary, much like everything else in this day and age.