Why You Should Always Keep Data Roaming Turned Off
Something for all you iPhone and iPad 3G users to keep in mind as you head out for your March Break vacations this year: always, always, always ensure that the data roaming setting on your device is turned off.
Yes, it means you won’t be able to access the Internet (including e-mail) unless you have access to a Wi-Fi connection, but it is the best way to protect yourself from getting a nasty, expensive, surprise from your data plan provider.
Stories of shocked wireless customers are constant these days – customers who use their data roaming here and there while on vacation, only to come home to unbelievably HUGE bills, in the thousands of dollars.
Take these examples described by Gary Ng on his iphoneincanada blog:
- Vancouver woman hit with iPhone bill totalling $37,694.53 after using her iPhone data plan over a 2-week stay in Egypt!!! Sounds like she *asked* her provider to keep her data turned on even after it tried to control her usage by shutting her data service off – big oops – not a good idea…
- Winnipeg student comes home to an $18,000 iPhone bill after he uses data roaming to go on ebay, Facebook and to do some texting while visiting family in Trinidad.
- Calgary iPhone vacationer in Mexico receives an iPhone bill of $6,000 after using data roaming to connect with clients back home for just 4 hours.
The best idea? Never turn your data roaming on in the first place. The default setting for data roaming on your Apple device is ‘OFF’, but to be 100% sure, go to ‘Settings’ – ‘General’ – ‘Network’, and make sure your Data Roaming switch is set to ‘OFF’.
You can still use your iPhone or iPad 3G for Internet, email and zerofone worry-free with Wi-Fi. And free Wi-Fi is becoming much more widely available every day. Every Starbucks offers one-click access to free Wi-Fi (password no longer required), and so do many other coffee shops and the like. More hotel chains and public places are starting to offer Wi-Fi as well.
Where are your favourite Wi-Fi hotspots? Leave a comment to share. We’ll be sure to let you know of any good ones we come across, through this blog, and via the Zerofone Facebook page.