Sunday, February 3, 2013

Got my vanity number with Sun Cellular's Name ur Number sim

Last time I checked, special or vanity numbers in Greenhills Shopping Center went for at least P400. Well, guess what. I am now the proud owner of a vanity number courtesy of Sun Cellular's Name ur Number sim -- 09xx-xxx-JANE (5263).

And you can have one too for just PhP 59. Yes, your eyes don't deceive you. That is a very affordable FIFTY-NINE PESOS ONLY!

This prepaid sim already comes loaded with 200 texts to other networks, 200 SUN texts and 70 minutes of Sun-to-Sun calls valid for 5 days.

To get your vanity number, follow these steps:

1. Dial *249#. This runs a code on the system.

2. You are presented with 2 options: OPTION 1- to choose your own vanity number or OPTION 2-  to select from available numbers that will be presented to you. 

3. If you select Option 1 (to choose your vanity number), you will be asked to key in the LAST SIX (6) DIGITS that you want. Unfortunately, you cannot choose your prefix (first 5 digits).

4. The system will tell you if the number is available or not. If it is available, you get a message confirming that the number is yours; if it is not, you are given several numbers that have similar ending digits as the one you wanted but with different prefixes. If you find a number there you like, input the 1-digit option (not entire number).

5. In the event you really want a vanity number and none of the presented choices appeal to you, just press "Cancel" and repeat the entire process from Step 1.

NOTE OF CAUTION: Be very careful choosing your vanity number because you can only do this ONCE. Once the number is assigned to you, that's it!

Okay, go get that prized vanity number you've always wanted with Sun's Name ur Number sim.

Smart LTE for iPhone 5: a Q&A with bloggers

If you have an iPhone 5 and you are on iOS 6.1, then you are ready for blazing fast internet speeds up to 42mbps!

Two telcos are now saying that they are offering LTE coverage for iPhone 5 users.

When Smart was still testing its LTE coverage as far back as middle of 2011, I was already one of the beta testers who had a chance to use the LTE dongle. It was unlike the usual USB sticks. It was huge and heavy, but fast! With LTE running on your iPhone 5, think of the possibilities: lag-free gaming, ultra fast surfing, buffer-free video streaming and more. Even livestreaming will be lag-free on an LTE connection! Smart seems confident that they can deliver on their LTE speeds as they claim that they have 4 times the fiber optic power of their closest competitor.

Read here about my experience beta testing the Smart LTE modem.

Of course, being a new offering, there are still many unanswered questions from subscribers so it was also timely for Smart to organize a Question and Answer forum for tech bloggers together with the Smart team.

Here's a bit of good news for the next few months.

Smart subscribers who get the iPhone 5 bundled with iPhone Plans 999 and 2499 or with Unli Data Plans 1500, 2000 and 3000 can automatically use Smart LTE FREE till April 30, 2013. During this time Smart will be observing the data usage behavior of its subscribers to determine future plans and pricing but in the meantime, LTE is FREE! After April 30 is another story.

Why is Smart planning to impose a Data Cap on Smart LTE plans?

Smart says the data cap ensures those who subscribe to the LTE plans do not experience network congestion and that resources will always be there. Even the monthly 1.5GB data cap, according to Smart's survey, is more than adequate for the average user. More data-hungry users who hit the data cap will be brought to a landing page where one can purchase additional data capacity based on available buckets.

Why LTE isn't working on iPhone 5 if subscriber was on an iPhone 4S plan

It needs to be provisioned at Smart's end. Those who got iPhone 5 devices bundled with plans were automatically part of the provisioning for LTE. Those moving from other plans who bought iPhone 5 will need to bring it to Smart so that the handset can be included in the provisioning. Once provisioned, the subscriber has LTE already if he upgrades his OS to 6.1.

Will an LTE handset purchased in Hong Kong work with a Smart nanosim?

Not automatically because it is provisioned with a carrier in Hong Kong. Same is true for handsets bought outside the Philippines. It must be included in Smart's provisioning. Bring handset to Smart and check if it can be included in provisioning. Note: Before you order an LTE-enabled handset like the iPhone 5 from contacts abroad, check that its band frequency will be compatible with Smart's band.

Will Infinity, Unlisurf All-in, Freedom Plan and other plan subscribers have LTE access on LTE-enabled devices?

Yes but they are being provisioned in batches. They should all have LTE soon.

Can prepaid iPhone 5 kits access LTE?

Prepaid iPhone 5 handsets are not yet in the LTE batch for now but it eventually will be. There may be a need to change sim but no change in number.

LTE Packages for LTE-enabled handsets

LTE plans are available for LTE-enabled devices (iPhone 5, Sony Xperia V, ZTE T82, Huawei Ascend D1 LTE to-date). So far these are the LTE buckets: P50 for 1 day, P200 for 1 week, P995 for 1 month which are available to regular plans, consumable plans, unlimited data plans and iPhone plans). More LTE buckets are being planned soon.

What happens if you are on unli data plan with LTE device but you are moving around?

If you are within an LTE site, you will get LTE. If you move to a non-LTE site, like a 3G site, the connection moves down to whatever is available. Because a data cap applies to the plan, the data used counts towards the cap ceiling, regardless of type of connection.

Current LTE sites

There are currently over 770 establishments across 10 cities in Metro Manila and select areas in Boracay, Cebu and Davao with LTE. For a complete list of Smart LTE sites, go to

Here's another announcement from Smart. Unlimited LTE for broadband plans (dongle and pocket wifi) is extended till March 31, 2013.

We are living in exciting times. My next smartphone will be LTE-enabled!