A while back I cancelled my North American roaming plan, replacing it with a Canadian only plan. I also reduced the minutes on my BlackBerry calling plan, and added a consumer plan from Rogers with unlimited evenings and weekends. I use the Nokia N95 with WiFi for this purpose. In addition, I added both MobiVox and TruPhone accounts. Both services are free or nearly free for the majority of calls I make.
The impact has been reasonably substantial. It's shaved about $250/month off my bill.
However, it still leaves me with the "how do I handle travel in the US" problem. Here's what I did at VON this week, which worked quite well.
- In Boston, I replaced the Rogers SIM in my N95 with a $.10/minute Cingular SIM. That SIM gives me nationwide US calling, but not international to Canada.
- TruPhone, of course, automatically detected the new SIM in the N95, and updated its database. Now every call made to my TruPhone number would end up routed to the US on my N95 — the same phone, just a different SIM. I simply gave out my TruPhone number to everyone back at home, and told them to call me on that number.
- I went to my MobiVox account next, and asked MobiVox for a local Boston dial-in number. With that in hand, I was able to make a local call to MobiVox (at my $.10/minute rate) and basically call anywhere in the world using their incredibly low rates.
From that point forward, all incoming calls were routed to my N95 where I took them either on cellular or on WiFi. Outgoing calls were handled by either TruPhone (if in a WiFi zone) or MobiVox (if not).
So let's cut to the chase. What did I spend on mobile calls at VON?
- $0 with Truphone. All my calls were free.
- $0.158 with MobiVox. Many of my calls were free with them. Yes — you read that right. A little less than 16 cents.
- $4 with Cingular for about 40 minutes of cellular calls that simply couldn't be made on WiFi.