Mobile Phones

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

Should I buy a phone locked or unlocked?

Motorola Moto G6

Episode 1512

Cheryl from Redondo Beach, CA

Cheryl wants to get a Motorola Moto G6 mobile phone and wants to know if she should get one locked or unlocked. Leo says that phones that are locked to the carrier means she can only use it with that carrier. But with Verizon, that phone should already be unlocked. The FCC has said, however, to all the carriers that if a phone is bought outright, then it would have to be unlocked. If she's buying one month to month, then they can lock it until she's paid it off. Ideally, she should get the unlocked one.

Should I switch my mobile provider?

Meter

Episode 1510

Jerry from Tri Cities

Jerry is a long time Verizon customer and is wondering if he should change to an unlimited plan from Spectrum for $45 a month. Leo says he'll have to look at the fine print because nobody really offers unlimited anymore without throttling down the speeds after a set amount. So like after 5GB of hotspotting, or 20GB of data, it'll get throttled down to 2G or 3G speeds. And the only real change, since Spectrum uses Verizon, is customer service. It's a Mobile Virtual Network Operator, or reseller.

Why does my phone keep rebooting?

Samsung Galaxy S5

Episode 1510

Larry from Tustin, CA

Larry's Samsung Galaxy S5 is rebooting all the time. What can he do? Leo says his mobile phone company wants him to upgrade, but before he does, he should perform a backup and reset. It will erase the phone and reset it to the day he bought it. He should make sure he backs up his photos and videos before he does it. For that, Leo recommends Google Photos. That will likely solve the problem. If it doesn't, then it's time to get a new phone.

How can I digitize my rolodex?

Flip phone

Episode 1510

Bob from Atlanta, GA

Bob is looking to dump his old flip phone for a smartphone. But he has bad eye sight and would like to transfer his contacts from his old rolodex to the smartphone. Leo says that Google Contacts is the best option. It'll sync to just about phone platform, as well as his desktop. He'll have to get the contacts into it first, and that will take some hand entry to type them all in. He may want to look into paying a college kid to do it.

Is it safe to keep my passwords in a spreadsheet?

LastPass Vault

Episode 1508

Bob from Tulsa, OK

Bob has all his passwords inputted in a spreadsheet. Is that secure? Leo says if it works for him, that's one step better than just using the same password over and over. But if someone gets ahold of that file, they have the keys to his kingdom. That's why using LastPass, which generates complicated and secure passwords is a good idea. Bob agrees, but he doesn't know how to use it to change his passwords. Leo says if he goes to LastPass's help desk, they describe step by step how to do it.

How can I use call waiting with a Bluetooth headset?

Plantronics M70 Bluetooth Headset

Episode 1508

Ed from Las Vegas, NV

Ed is blind and uses a Plantronics Bluetooth headset with his iPhone. When he gets an incoming call while he's on a call, he can't do anything without cutting off his current call. Leo says that call waiting is an imperfect technology and he doesn't use it. Leo says that if he can tell Siri to put it on hold, and take the other one, that would be great. Ed should talk to an Apple Genius at the Apple Store. They may know something.

Why can't I cast my phone's map app to my car's LCD screen?

Ford Fusion Energi

Episode 1507

Richard (The Old Chef Guy) from California

Richard bought a new 2015 Ford Fusion Energi car and he's trying to use his Google Pixel 2 with it. It's having issues showing up in the dash. Leo says that Android Auto is what many of the new cars use. His Ford with SYNC2 may not support that, however. The Pixel 2 has a Type-C port and he can use audio out. But Video may be an issue. It wouldn't be an unusual thing for the manufacturer to omit video from the Type-C connector.