Mobile Phones

iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, or feature phones.

Can I use WhatsApp without a phone?

Episode 1413

Jane from Oregon
WhatsApp

Jane wants to know if it's WhatApp or WhatsApp. Leo says there's an "S," so it's WhatsApp. A clever way of saying "what's up?"

Jane is thinking of getting her first smart phone so she can use WhatsApp to make phone calls. Leo says that WhatsApp identifies users by their phone numbers, not their names. So when people ask to use WhatsApp to make a call, that means they want not only their phone number, but also their contact list. Facebook is doing that to cross reference contacts with Facebook contacts, but you can opt out of it when you sign up.

Does texting through Facebook Messenger affect my data caps?

Episode 1413

Larry from Las Vegas, NV
Facebook Messenger

Larry wants to know if sending messages via Facebook affect his data caps. Leo says it's a data only program, so that would be yes. But it's probably not going to affect his data usage by much. Messages from Facebook aren't SMS. They are data based messages. SMS messaging is on the way out. This is why carriers are readily offering unlimited texting plans.

How can I prevent anyone not in my contact list from calling me?

Episode 1412

John from Santa Monica, CA
Truecaller

John wants to know how he can limit the number of calls on his mobile device to only his contact list. Leo says that's called White Listing and since we're now being bombarded with spam and robo calls, that would be a very good idea. Google Voice can do it, but he'd need to get a new number. He can forward his number through it and Google Voice will then filter out unwanted calls, though.