Or maybe go pre-paid with no contract. $55 per month, which is probably more than you pay now if you are on a family plan, but not awful. Of course, you pay full price for the phone then but as you said, he's NMF, free tuition, free room.
Bb7- it looks like the closest us cellular store to Tuscaloosa is in Tennessee. Do they have coverage in Tuscaloosa, or will you be paying roaming fees? That may be the best reason to convince your husband to consider changing Providers.
I think a laptop is a must, considering UA is pushing for a laptop centered campus (look at the new SERC building, no computer labs). I've found that my smart phone can be so much of a lifesaver it's rather ridiculous. I love my Galaxy SII. A tablet is more of a luxury than a necessity IMHO, but it can be nice to have! Plenty of people take notes on tablets rather than bring bulky laptops.
However, they do not all need to be Apple products. Android rocks!!
The GalaxySII is very much equivalent to the iPhone 4....and I think the Galaxy3 has recently come out or will soon....don't know the differences between II and III. There are about 5 different Galaxy phones.
If you want to avoid having the additional cost of having your child on a separate carrier/data/texting plan, then have your son look at the GalaxySII.
The OP's son gets the iPad3 as part of his NMF scholarship package at the UA. He will need a computer and some sort of phone to keep in touch, so her question relates more to whether to go with the Macbook Pro and iPhone or PC and standard cell phone. It isn't necessary to insult her for seeking opinions.
I didn't realize the closest US cellular location is in TN, that surprises me.
We attended Bama Bound orientation and our cell coverage was great everywhere on campus, the dorms, the Ferg, everywhere. We have a nationwide plan so we will not have any roaming charges.
We're going back and forth between the iphone and Samsung Galaxy. Our son is working full time and he will contribute towards the phone. If he wanted to, he could just go out and buy one on his own and sign a contract. In our state an 18 year old is an adult, and he has the funds to do so.
I'm leaning towards a new Samsung Galaxy, as his current phone does not have data. This would keep us with US Cellular, which is our carrier of choice. He will receive the ipad as part of NMF, and we will buy him a Macbook pro as a graduation gift. I'm not familiar with the smart phones, as I have a "dumb" phone, just voice and text.
I know there is an Apple app store that seems to be popular, but I consider that an unnecessary luxury and that will not sway me towards spending more for an iphone.
For those critics out there-consider the fact that this young man has a NMF scholarship, which covers his tuition and board, if that makes me an indulgent parent, for planning to reward him with a smart phone and computer, that he will use on a regular basis, so be it.
if you are going to get an iphone, wait for the new one that will come out in September or so. it'll probably be the iphone 5 instead of a new version of the 4s. imo they are a lot better than any other smartphone..
^^^ Well said bamabound7. I am glad that the NMF students last were awarded a laptop rather than the ipad that is being awarded this year, otherwise I would have been facing and posting the same question you asked. As it was, we obtained an iphone for our son (his old non-smart phone was very old) as a HS graduation gift which included our covering the cost of the plan, which I don't feel makes him spoiled or us indulgent when we consider the money saved because he earned the NMF scholarship. Besides, the Iphone provides us some peace of mind because he tends to keep in much better contact with us via facetime than he did when we were limited to a voice connection and there are other features on the iphone that help him stay organized and on schedule.
D uses FaceTime to keep in touch with us and also likes being able to track the buses in real time on her iPhone. The UA offers a security app, the Guardian for added peace of mind. As random parent said, the smartphones offer man useful (but not necessary) apps to make life easier and help with organization. While you could use the iPad or the Macbook Pro for some of these, I'm not sure how practical it is to walk around with it all of the time.
Even if you have nationwide coverage, I would still verify with US Cellular that having the phone an extended time in Tuscaloosa won't be an issue. A few years ago T-Mobile sent us a letter terminating S1's line under our family plan because he was away as school in an area where T-Mobile didn't have their own tower and had to pay another company for coverage of that particular area.