weird phone problem - help me Mister Wizard!

Discussion in 'The Green Room' started by oldfella1962, Oct 2, 2019.

  1. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    Old people get the "Mister Wizard" reference - anyway I have a cheap Samsung flip phone (don't hate!) and it's been working great up until a couple of days ago. I'll charge it up, and the power drains incredibly fast, despite not using it any more than usual. So that would make me think that the battery won't hold a charge as well as it should. But wait, there's more!

    Without changing my location (phone is sitting on my desk or whatever) a message pops up "out of service area" or something like that. :huh: Then in a minute or so it says "entering service area". :unsure: Again, I'm not in my car driving through tunnels, or in the mountains, or whatever. The phone is in one location. And of course while the phone is "out of service area" I can't make or receive calls.

    Could it be that I accidentally enabled some feature I don't use and I don't realize it, and that's what is draining my battery so quickly and doing the "out of service" dance at random times?

    Yes I tried the old trick of pulling out my battery then reinstalling it and powering it back up - still the problem remains. Any thoughts?
  2. ed629

    ed629 Morally Inept Banned

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    It could be the battery, a bad battery not only has a shorter run time, but also puts out less power. That could be enough to cause issues like you're having.
  3. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    that makes sense! I'll see who sells the type I need then - thanks!
  4. The Night Funky

    The Night Funky BMF Staff Member Moderator

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    If you can't buy it directly from Samsung, or your phone company, I'd be very leery of getting one. There are a lot of folks out there selling counterfeit batteries and these have the annoying habit of exploding, either while charging or in your pocket. If it explodes, it could start a fire, or severely injure you.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    :doh: I just did! Hopefully it won't explode! It was expensive.....as....hell too. :brood: The Verizon office (my first stop) doesn't sell batteries. But there was an actual battery store a few blocks away. I get home and....damn if the "entering/leaving service area" game didn't start again, in my house and in the woods when I was electronically "signing out" from my hunting area. Like I said it's a very intermittent problem. There's no way to predict when or where it acts up. On the bright side I do have a brand new battery in my phone that may or may not work if I need to call 911 if I get bit by a water moccasin.
    Oh joy! :brood: Technology hates me. :weep:
  6. The Night Funky

    The Night Funky BMF Staff Member Moderator

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    Now that I think about it, how old is your phone? If it's around 10 years old, you might be fucked, unless it says 4G/LTE on it. Phones sold before about 2010 or so were 3G, and I don't know when/if 4G/LTE flip-phones came out. Phone companies are now switching to 5G, and don't really care about their 3G networks (they've already killed their 2G networks). This could mean that if there's problems with the 3G towers in your area, Verizon is going to take their sweet ass time about fixing them. Or, they're starting to pull them down. In either case, you're not going to have much hope of solving the problem with your phone without replacing it.
  7. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    hmmm.....that could be why my phone gives me the "out of network/searching for signal" type of things all of a sudden! I don't know how many G's my phone can pull (HA! Some aviation humor there) but it's a super cheap Obama flip phone. How cheap? The battery I bought yesterday costs more than my phone! :lol: It's about a five year old phone but the model goes back fifteen years or so.
    My last resort is getting a new "smart phone" and here is why I dread that day:

    1) I will break it or lose it - 100 percent guarantee of that
    2) I am a very slow learner and the learning curve (and retaining said knowledge) will drive me clinically insane

    When it comes to technology I feel like the aging cowboys/gun fighters in The Wild Bunch as my way of life winds down. :(
  8. The Night Funky

    The Night Funky BMF Staff Member Moderator

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    Yeah, you might be fucked. However, I'll let you in on a little secret, if you don't get your phone in the store, you can actually get a cheap smartphone from them, so it won't matter if you break it or lose it, and the phone won't be so complicated that you won't be able to figure out how to do things like make a call or send a text message. This pre-paid Verizon phone is a mere $40. Their cheapest pre-paid plan for the phone is $40/mo. That's $80 for a phone which is really only good for making calls and texting. You can use it for a month to see if you can figure it out (and if it gets better reception in your area). If you can, and it does, you can have your current number ported over to that phone and it moved to your current plan (assuming it's better than the pre-paid) option with little hassle. Just remember to be very nice to the folks you deal with. If you get pissy with them, they'll suddenly find ways to tack on fees to your current plan.
  9. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    the link you included didn't work. :( Probably the settings on my computer, it's funny like that.
  10. oldfella1962

    oldfella1962 light & lethal

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    UPDATE! The battery wasn't the problem. So I had to bite the bullet and buy a new cell phone. Verizon said they didn't make my current model any more, but would sell me the next step up for 80 dollars. :unsure: So I went to Walmart and they didn't have my current model either, but their next step up was 20 dollars! :yes: Not a smart phone (I don't want one) but a slighter bigger sized flip phone "e-talk" or something. Of course when I tried to activate it at home the automated system was getting into what kind of product I bought like 3G, 4G, etc. and I have no idea what all that means so I hung up, and tried calling a human. 40 minutes on hold (using my wife's phone of course) and when I got somebody they said they were going to transfer me to another department! :shakefist: So after about 10 minutes on hold again, her phone went dead. I figured I would just go down to the Verizon office the next day to get help activating the phone.

    So the next day I told them I needed help and the woman helping me was running into problems. :brood: She got help from another worker, and finally got it activated for me. And I get a huge discount on my next two monthly bills (I'm on the same 30 dollars a month plan) for upgrading to a G-4 phone. :yes:

    Now I'm getting my ass kicked figuring out how to use it. :lol: It is not laid out like my old phone. For the first day I couldn't answer phone calls. You don't just open the lid and start talking. So I had to hang up when I got an incoming call, then call that number back! :lol: When I got home from work I consulted the manual. I would have never guessed how to answer on my own - it is NOT intuitive by any stretch.

    More hilarity ensued when I realized that I can't simply control the volume by physically pressing a button on the side of the phone when the alarm clock function goes off. :( I have to open the phone, choose menu, choose tools, then select the particular type of volume (media, ring tone, etc) I want to adjust. This is just a ton-o-fun at 3:30 AM and my wife whining until I take the phone out of the bedroom to turn the volume down. Thus I have to consult the manual to learn the "one touch" button to turn off the alarm.

    Thus there is a learning curve involved, which is why I wanted a replacement of my original model, but sadly it's not made any more. Hey, at least I don't have to learn how to use an actual "smart phone" which would cause me severe stress and frustration and trips to Verizon. :shep:

    Side note learning disabilities and working memory impairment is not as much fun as it sounds kids! :no: