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Mac / Razr / Bluetooth / Broadband?


benos

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I recently switched to T-mobile, and finally got a modern cellphone... Geoff mentioned briefly the other day that he got his razr to connect his Mac Powerbook to the internet via Bluetooth and broadband. Any tips on that? At the minimum, do I have to have T-mobile's web plan active on my account/phone?

Thank you,

be

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I have a Cingular account and Yes, I do pay a fee for broadband web access for the cellphone. I am billed for the amount of data transmitted.

I have used it less than a half dozen times for testing and a couple quick email duties, seemed like fast dialup. Doesn't seem to cost too much, so far ;-)

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Brian, I have used my cingular/razr a couple of times as a modem and I highly recommend buying your data up front/a package. When on vacation I wanted a faster than 24K dial up so I used my cell phone. It was nice, most speeds were from 120-250k. The problem was when I got the bill, I had $100 in just data costs. If I had bought it up front I would have saved a bunch. Just an FYI.

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I have a Cingular account and Yes, I do pay a fee for broadband web access for the cellphone.

..."using the phone for broadband access" - is that differently configured (from the Mac's end) that using the phone as a dial up modem?

Thanks G,

be

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I use GPRS to connect not dialup. I set the phone up for this during the Bluetooth pairing process where I selected GPRS as the connection type as opposed to using a dialup script and my Earthlink dialup account. It is easy to re-run the pairing by setting the phone in Discoverable mode and running the Apple Bluetooth Setup Assistant again.

GPRS setup requires a username/password and what is known as a CID string from your service provider. It took me two hours on the phone with Cingular to get this part sorted out ;-/

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Thanks G. From what you've said and from the reply from HowardForums below, I think just getting the phone to work as bluetooth-modem with my ISP for dial-up will be best for me.

be

The GSM RAZRs are limited by their own hardware/software to relatively slow connections, so even if you were to use one on a network capable of high-speed connections the best you can hope for is speeds of about 48kbps or lower (roughly equivalent to the average speed of a dial-up wired modem).

Generally, every cellular company provides different tiers of data service. What tier of service you get depends not only the carrier's network and service plan you sign up for, but also on the kind of equipment you have. Going back to your example of the RAZR, it is limited as I noted, to GPRS connections even if the network to which it is connected is capable of higher-speed data offerings (T-Mobile has both GPRS and its faster variant, EDGE -- although EDGE is not "broadband"). T-Mobile also offers multiple data plans, varying from "free" to, I think, around $40/month; each data plan has features and limits commensurate with its cost. Bluetooth tethering is allowed on plans starting at $30/month.

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