Auto Ads by Adsense

Booking.com

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Cheapskate Guide to Getting a G1 Running

Let's say you get an unlocked developer's G1. If you're like me, you don't talk very much on the phone, and you spend most of your time in a WiFi zone. But the Android makes for a great convergence device (it's an ipod replacement, and a phone replacement).

It turns out that the AT&T Gophone plan is a pre-paid plan that includes data, but at an exorbitant rate (no big deal if you're mostly in WiFi zone). But the on-line plan wouldn't let me buy a SIM card without a phone, so I dropped by the AT&T store today and waited in line with the iPhone buyers to get a $10 SIM card (even a $5 SIM card will do). I then stuck the SIM card into my G1, dialed 611, and paid $4.99 for 1MB of data. (You can also pay $9.99 for 5MB --- overage is $0.01 cents/KB) Basically, if you use google maps once, you'll chew it all up, so it's strictly for low-data traffic, or for people who spend almost all their time in WiFi zones.

But that's not all. You still have to turn on the EDGE access. From the Settings application, select Wireless Controls->Mobile networks->Access Point Names. Push the menu button to pick "New APN". Then enter the following data:

Name: at&t gophone
APN: wap.cingular
Username: wap@cingulargprs.com
Password: cingular1
MMSC: http://mmsc.cingular.com
MMS Proxy: wireless.cingular.com
MMS port: 80
MCC: 310
MNC: 410

Then select this APN, and you'll be good to go. Instead of paying $55 for voice and data that you'll never use much of, this should get you down to about $5 or $10 a month, provided you're a light user of data. The one downside is that you can't get access to the AT&T 3G network.

And before you ask, yes I asked T-mobile if they had data access with their pre-paid plan, and the answer is no.

Update: Someone pointed out that I should warn users that you should only do this with a prepaid SIM card. Otherwise, you will end up with significant data bills should your pocket end up watching a youtube video!

14 comments:

fafoofee said...

Hi Piaw,

the "AT&T Gophone plan" link is incorrect.

Steve

Piaw Na said...

Thanks for the catch. I've fixed it now.

viesette said...

I bought an AT&T GoPhone SIM card. I will be using it in a GPS tracking device. The platform is asking me for the APN to set up the tracking. What do I need to put in for the APN?

Piaw Na said...

But that's not all. You still have to turn on the EDGE access. From the Settings application, select Wireless Controls->Mobile networks->Access Point Names. Push the menu button to pick "New APN". Then enter the following data:

Name: at&t gophone
APN: wap.cingular
Username: wap@cingulargprs.com
Password: cingular1
MMSC: http://mmsc.cingular.com
MMS Proxy: wireless.cingular.com
MMS port: 80
MCC: 310
MNC: 410

Keep in mind that the G1 is a massive data hog!

lorage said...

when i activated my at&t account, they provided me with a SIM card. however i did not know that i had to buy data space. does this mean the sim card will not store my phone info?

Piaw Na said...

If it's an AT&T SIM card, you can pay $10 for 5MB of data, or $5 for 1MB of data. Just add that "feature" to your prepaid card and you'll be good to go.

lorage said...

so if i'm not paying for data space, my SIM card isn't active right now? it is a one time fee?

Piaw Na said...

if you're not paying for a data plan, then when you follow these instructions you get charged per kilobyte. (Yup, per kilobyte!!!) You will quickly run up a huge phone bill or deplete your prepaid phone card.

tracfonedealseeker said...

This no workie no more...sorry folks

Jim Ancona said...

GoPhone has added a 100mb for $19.99 data plan that might make this more attractive.

mike said...

AT&T GoPhone/PrePaid now offers 100MB of data for $20/month.

brycen said...

Works great, thanks. I bought the $20 100MB data "feature" to try this out for 30 days, after which I'll drop down to light data usage.

brycen said...

Your instructions work great, I switched from T-Mobile ToGo to AT&T GoPhone today. Now my biggest Andriod feature request is a way to leave WiFi on, but disable the data radio.

Meaning: separate checkboxes for each radio [x]3G [x]2G [x]Voice [x]Bluetooth [x]WiFi. I'd normally leave Voice and WiFi enabled, 2G and 3G disabled. Right now I can turn off 3G, but not 2G.

Ravious said...

Or.. Get a prepaid sim card from T-mobile for the sidekick.. Download opera mobile on the device from wifi.. and enjoy totally free, fully unlimited internet on your g1. granted your limited to internet through the opera moble application (email apps also work) But still for totally free service. $9.99 for 5MB of data? Are you fking serious? Wheres hitler when you need him.

It does work, im using it still to this day, so dont argue saying it wont. The reason is.. Tmobile blocks the g1 on the sidekick plan, but blocking internet to t-mobile only means blocking port 80 and restricting you from their dns server. Opera Mini uses its own socks proxy and will still connect even if t-mobile "BLOCKS" you. Email ports are unrestricted and work from the defaul android email apps.

Also.. the ssh port is open so you can configure the g1 (rooted) to connect to a home ssh server, tunnel the data through your home internet connection, over the wireless network and to your phone for totally "network like" internet access.

These cell phone companies are only still charging these ridiculously gouged rates only because there have had no angry mobs of people with torches and pitchforks rioting outside their offices.

Like getting fcked raw? Keep paying these people money.