More on Phones...

Updated on March 13, 2013
M.P. asks from De Pere, WI
23 answers

Has anyone had a cell phone that has lasted their ENTIRE 2 year contract WITHOUT problems?! I am tired of phones that aren't durable enough to last as long as my contract. Any time I try to ask ATT, I get the same answer "we do offer 'insurance' plans"...I am sorry, but I don't think I should have to pay EXTRA (along with their too high prices and every other extra they charge you) for normal wear and tear! My car insurance doesn't cover the maintenance problems that arise due to normal use of my car!!

Second question -
What cell phone company do you use? How are their prices/service? Would you recommend them? I currently use ATT and I have NOT been's time to follow through on my threats and finally switch providers.

PS...I REALLY don't want to pay an extra $20 a month for a "smart" phone. I have no need for a data plan, so I really don't want to pay extra for it.

In order to get an iPhone, you need to have a data plan. Read above, I am not interested in paying for a data plan. We pay for internet at home, I don't need it in my phone.

Normal wear and tear includes talking on the phone and texting. It has not been spilled on, dropped, stepped on, or whatever else can happen to a phone.

I currently have a Pantech something. I have hated it since the day I got it. However, I took it back after the "month trial" and they wouldn't let me get something else because it was a 30 DAY trial. One day off and I am stuck with a crappy phone that does not work for me. Now the battery is dead and when I plug it in to charge, it will not charge. For a while I had to wiggle the cord "just right", but now it has stopped all together.

It really makes me cranky that in order to get a decent working phone, I need to get a smart phone. And in order to get a smart phone, I have to pay for a data plan. And then they are going to try and sell me the "insurance"...I hate dealing with cell phone companies :-(

PS...$220 a month for a phone plan?! holy cripes! Not in my monthly budget!

What can I do next?

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answers from Denver on

I have verizon and have for 6 years. I really like them a lot and you can go in and get a basic phone with no data plan. I know that the way of the phones is the smartphone and the data plan but there has to be ways around it. All my phones have lasted the full 2 years of the contract granted I am usually done with them by then but they are still kicking. I have a otterbox case on my iphone though just because I know if I drop it (or the kids) that it will more than likely crack and I dont like cracked screens or paying for something that could have been avoided. Anyway yes my phones have lasted, I love verizon and my husband and I have 2 smartphones, data packages and we are paying about 115 a month.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

I have the cheapest possible phone, a prepaid virgin mobile flip phone. I have had them for 10 years and I am only on my 3rd phone: I lost the first, the second stopped holding a charge after 4 years and they no longer make replacement batteries, so I bought another one for under $20 and I pay $20 a month for service (voice only, I don't text). But I believe you can get unlimited voice and text for around $40 and data for about $60. No way I would ever get a "plan".
It works great for me. I have an I-pod, and there is wifi almost everywhere I go, so I don't need data either.

Now my DH is on his 3rd Smartphone in 2.5 years.... more trouble than its worth if you ask me.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from Phoenix on

I bought a simple Smart Phone with Android operating system for about 60 bucks from Virgin Mobile over a year ago, and currently have their 35.00 a month plan which includes unlimited data and texting, with 300 mins of talk. You can go with a 45.00 plan which includes 1200 talk minutes. Either way, it's a smokin' deal. Oh, and they also have non-smart phones, so it may be worth a look. I don't blame you for not wanting an IPhone. I can't drink the Kool-Aid either. I have a computer at home and at work and I most certainly don't need the constant distraction.

I used to have the old school Motorola Razor flip phone through TMobile and I LOVED that phone. It lasted the full 2 years and then some.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

Yes, mine have lasted. However, I don't get "smart phones." I have the internet at home, and don't need it on a phone. You can get a phone and not pay the data plan. I do have ATT and have been very pleased. I have never had an issue with service there. There insurance plans are quite good, actually. My husband accidentally ran over his phone (don't ask) and we called and they overnighted a brand new phone, that was much better then his last.

Ask yourself what you mean by wear and tear. Electronics are NOT made to be dropped, spilled on, etc. If that's what is happening, that is not wear and tear.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I have AT&T. My iPhone is so much more durable than any previous phone I've owned. I bought a refurbished one.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

I get iPhones for my family.

Previous Gen = $1-$25

Many are still in use (as phones) for 2-3 years.

All STAY in use (as iPods/ data storage/ games/ books/ etc) for years longer.

Our oldest iphone still in use (not as a phone) we got in 2007 (promo). Our oldest iPhone still in use (as a phone) is 4 years old.

Our "newest" iPhone is the 4.
When the 6 comes out, I'll grab a 5

We use AT&T... Which isn't my fav.
But Tmobile is spotty
Until Verizon carries iPhones
I'll stick with AT&T /at&t/ att/ whatever their current company is
(Every time the change the letters, the company actually reforms, its not just rebranding)

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We've used AT&T for YEARS and since the IPhones came out originally, that is all we've used.

At this time, I have the 4, hubby has 4S and daughter has the 5. We've never had any issues with them breaking or defects within the 2 yr period.

In the earlier days, yes we got the insurance for daughter's phones because she was a teen and we expected something to happen. When it did, she got a new one at $169 vs the going retail rate of well over $200.

She did drop her 4S a long time ago and the screen shattered. We had that replaced and the phone worked very well until it was time to upgrade.

I typically don't upgrade when the time rolls around because I don't need all the bells and whistles. I've had my 4 since they first came out and i don't recall when that occured!

What kind of phones are you getting that fall apart like you describe? Each time after we've upgraded, we've sold the phones for no less than $100 each.

Figure out your usage, how you manage your phone, etc and then see what works best for you. I am loyal to AT&T because I've been with them forever.

I pay roughly $220 a month for our 3 phones and data plans. That is 3 IPhones and 3 data plans along with minutes. We are big texters here and minutes are used talking with customers, etc. We own our own company and these are our personal and business phones.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

I have a "smart" phone with their lowest data plan. I don't use the data much b/c I use the wifi in the house instead. We are on ATT and have been for years. My phone did fall and crack within 6 weeks (screens are NOT covered by anybody) and I replaced the screen myself and got a case for it. We've had Sprint in the past, then changed to Cingular who became ATT. It's all flavors of the same, IMO. My SD may change, though, because where she goes to college, ATT has crappy coverage. If you are hard on phones, consider the Samsung Rugby. DH got his for $50 and it holds up to a lot.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

My phones have almost always lasted for two years. The exception was my last phone, a Pantech touch screen (can't remember the model) which died for no obvious reason with four months to go on my contract. I got a $50 Go Phone to use until I was eligible for an upgrade.
I now have an iphone 4s and am hoping it will last as long as I've heard it does! Also, I didn't really think I needed a data plan either but I sure do use it and get my money's worth out of it. And I said no to the insurance and all the other extras, no need.
ETA: I am a long time AT&T user and have never had any problems. Maybe it has something to do with your location?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Augusta on

I havn't had a regular phone in 4 yrs. all of my phones have lasted the entirety of the 2 yr contract. I've always gotten name brand phones. The last two were Motorola droid phones. The one before that was a enV2 by LG. The kids use this one. We are on verizon have been for years . we ran away from AT&T about 9 yrs ago when we got REALLY crappy customer service.
They have plenty of basic phones. You might have to look on your cell companies website to find them though. There are many on the verizon website. We have 3 lines two data plans and pay 170 a month. I really like our provider. They are very helpful when we've had problems.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

I've had Sprint for over 7 years. Every phone I've had I've been able to keep for the required two years. Honestly, the last 2 phones I had I passed them along to a friend and they're still in use. These phones were bought in '06 and '08 respectively. The phone I currently have I've already have for over two years as well. I've never had any issues with my phones or Sprint.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Youngstown on

I have had verizon for 4 years and the service is excellent. I have had the same phone for almost 3 years and have never had a problem with it, and I travel a lot and get coverage everywhere. As a matter of fact, Verizon is the only service that can be picked up inside my house. Unfortunately, the cheapest plan I have been able to find for my son and I (we share minutes) is $210.00 a month and IS NOT unlimited. They make you pay $30 per phone for a data package (even if you are like me and don't use it all) unless you get a flip phone that doesn't have internet. I have been looking for a cheaper company, but haven't found any that are more than $10-$15 cheaper. I'm honestly considering switching to a prepaid phone to cut costs; my brother has one that has unlimited minutes, text AND internet for $50 a month.


answers from San Diego on

Every single phone I have ever owned has long outlived the initial contract from when I got it.
Most upgrades have either been forced because of SIM upgrade by the carrier (one time) or just personal preference. Only 1 was the phone truly broke, the battery was on the back of the phone and after years it finally got loose enough that simply holding the phone would jiggly the battey loose. In the last 13 or so years since my first phone I've only had maybe 5 at most different phones. One upgrade was to upgrade to the iphone 4s from the a 3G. The old phone still works.
I've always stuck to Nokia or Motorola for my non-smart phones and they've all held up for years. I've avoided the cheaper end phones because you're getting what you paid for on some of them.



answers from Minneapolis on

suspend your service-say you lost your phone or it was stolen-go to boost moble-had the same problem with sprint.costs you 50.00 a month unlimited change i ever made.i do pay the extra 5.00 month for ins.but with my job-i needed to.good luck



answers from Rapid City on

I have AT&T Samsun Model SGH-A687 and my husband has the one that the military uses. We haven't had any trouble with them, neither of us have internet, I do have 300 texts for $5.99 and he pays his which are like 25 cents each but he doesn't ever text so it isn't bad. We pay $89.98 a month and hate that it is that high but it does what we need it to and it is under $100. My orignal contract was years ago when it was Cell One. My husband tried Verizon for a while but couldn't get service as well as I have. Our phones are the ones we recieved when Al Tell switched to At&t, so a couple years old at least.



answers from Atlanta on

I know you don't want a data phone, but the only phone that has lasted me the entire two years (and still going strong) is the iphone. The only reason I opted for it was consumer confidance. I was sick and tired of having to deal with breaking phones.



answers from Minneapolis on

I had a $35 phone last me 4 years. It can happen. It was a Motorola. I was with T-Mobile for years and never had a single complaint. They were great. (the only reason I switched was that I wanted an iphone!)


answers from Reno on

I have the Samsung Galaxy 2 and have had it over two years. Love it.
only problems i have ever had are user error. (my 10 year old daughter knows more on my phone than i do :):) )
I am with Sprint, been with them almost 12 years.
The whole process with cell companies is very frustrating.
good luck to you and many blessings



answers from Madison on

I had a cell phone that we just couldn't figure out why it kept dying on us. Finally we went in to an ATT service store and told them our woes. The guy took the cell phone from me, opened up the back, and showed us that it was "green"--the sign that the phone had gotten wet. I've never dropped it. I've never spilled liquid on it, and it was never dropped into liquid. The closet thing we can conclude is that the way I carry the phone in my purse backpack, it got condensation/moisture (maybe from sitting on the phone, especially in winter) and that affected the phone.

AT&T managed to get me another phone (on contract). Ended up with a Rugby, which are used by Navy Seals and other Ops specialists--very popular with the military because they are virtually indestructable. I have had virtually no issues whatsoever with the phone since I got it.

The only issue I have now is that my contract with AT&T is up (so happy I can finally leave them) and I need to find a new carrier or buy pay-as-you-go. My teen daughter wants a phone, and I'm almost crying when I see what the monthly bill is for two phones, whether they are basic phones or data plans. Ouch!

It could very well be that the phone did, in some way, get wet or get enough moisture in it that it shortfired the circuits. I can't say it can't happen because it happened to me.



answers from Portland on

I've had 4 phones and they've all lasted the two years and beyond. My current one is on year 3, I think. My last one lasted for 4-5 years. I don't remember the brand but it was a freeby that came with the plan. So basic, tho I could take pictures. I didn't message or anything extra and do not remember if any of the extras were available on it but I just didn't use them.

My current phone, which finished 2 years last June is a PALM (android) from Verizon Wireless. I like it. It takes pictures, can access e-mail, can text, has Internet access, plays music and games. My grandchildren use some of that. I think it was free tho I remember something about $50. I don't pay extra for a limited amount of data. I need to get a new plan since my grandkids are using it so often.

I do know that Verizon has several phones for free when purchasing a 2 yr. plan that included some services that would've worked for me because I really just use basic services.

Years ago I had ATT, and then T-Mobile and switched to Verizon. My daughter and her family have Iphones with ATT and are very satisfied. I'm not satisfied currently with Verizon because I'm on the wrong plan (costs $85 and I was told it would be $50) and when I've tried to change it had difficulty talking with the reps who answered the phone. (I tried 3 times) My contract is up now and I'll start over with a live person and see what they will offer before checking with other companies. I must be honest and say that I didn't try very hard to get satisfaction.



answers from Seattle on

Verizon.. My Lg Venus lasted 2 years as well as my razor by moterolla



answers from Bismarck on

I use Verizon as my provider and I don't have to have a data plan...I do not have a smart phone as I don't need one. I went to and found a phone that I liked, it has been discontinued from the Verizon line but I love it...very durable and it has a querty (sp) keyboard...You may still be able to get it...Verizon Samsung Alias 2 SCH-U750. I just went to Amazon to check it out and yes, they still have it and it sells for $119.99. I paid more for mine a year ago from there! Go there and check it out and also check out Verizon for a phone plan without the data as I was told that I didn't have to have it with this phone. At first they automatically put it on and then I protested and they then said, that I didn't need I don't have good luck.



answers from Minneapolis on

All of my phones have lasted the entire contract and longer. I currently have an iphone, but I have had "cheap" phones too. Prior to this I had a Palm Pre and before that I think I had a Motorola. One of my phones, might be the Motorola (no camera or anything), lasted about 5 years. I did drop one in coffee once that I had to replace (rice trick didn't work), but it was already due for a change. The screen on the Palm Pre cracked, but it kept working. I drop my phones a lot so I always buy a good case for them.

I've always been with Verizon and have been happy with them.

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