Deal: Refurbished Verizon Galaxy Note 3 for Just $289

Verizon heads, the Galaxy Note 3 (in “manufacturer refurbished” condition) can be had through eBay today for $289.99 without a contract. For a phone that originally retailed for $699 off-contract and $299 on-contract, that’s a heck of a deal. Sure, it’s not brand new and the device is over a year old, but a sub-$300 price on a phone this good is always worth a look.

Like the One (M7) deal earlier through Best Buy, this is a great option for someone in search of their first smartphone or as a temporary replacement while you wait for something that really grabs your attention.

The deal includes free shipping.

eBay Link

Verizon Quietly Bumps ALLSET Prepaid Base Up to 1GB, $45 for 1.5GB of LTE Data

Update:  Verizon confirmed today that their ALLSET prepaid plan now includes 1GB of data, up from 500MB. The 1GB comes as a part of the $45 base plan, which includes full 4G LTE and XLTE speeds – there isn’t a speed difference, even though this is prepaid.

Back in July, Verizon added 4G LTE connectivity to its newish ALLSET prepaid plan. The much-anticipated move gave customers access to Big Red’s high-speed 4G LTE network for as little as $45 per month without a contract. At $45, customers were given a base data package of 500MB along with unlimited talk and text. At some point within the last week the deal got sweeter, with Verizon quietly bumping that base data package up to a full 1GB.  (more…)

Video: This is How Verizon Tests Devices

Ever wonder what goes into Verizon’s extensive (read: incredibly slow compared to others in the industry) testing process for phones? Through a series of videos called “The Device Lab,” Big Red is trying to take us through their procedures, from testing durability (something I thought manufacturers already did) to making sure your phone has the best connection to their network.

In the videos below, Verizon walks through the Antenna Chamber and drop test areas of their testing lab. In each area, they try to simulate things like windpant pocket drops during your Aunt Gertrude’s annual summer picnic at the waterslides or figure out why you have the worst cell signal out of the three brosephs you are chillaxing with on your way to the club.  (more…)

Hilarious Turn of Events: Carrier-Backed Payment System That Tried to Block Google Wallet Might be Bought by Google

You remember Isis Mobile Wallet don’t you? That would be the mobile payment system that carriers – specifically, Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile – created to be the only payment system you would need on your phone. That would also be the payment system that carriers used as reason to help block, but not admit-to-blocking, while still blocking because it was “different,” Google Wallet, for years while they took their sweet time getting Isis ready. And let’s not forget that the service has already been renamed to Softcard because of the growing entity known for terrorism that the original name matched. All caught up on Softcard and Isis?

According to a late Friday report out of TechCrunch, the payment system has been a massive failure to this point and is now in talks with Google to potentially be acquired.  (more…)

DROID MAXX, ULTRA, and Mini Receive Update With Advanced Calling 1.0 Fixes

The 2013 DROID family – MAXX, ULTRA, and Mini – is receiving an update today from Verizon to version 24.3.7. The update does one thing, so I hope it does it well. The only item listed on the changelog says that this update brings bug fixes and stability improvements to VoLTE, which Verizon calls Advanced Calling 1.0.

These three devices were some of the first to receive VoLTE with HD Voice and video calling, so I can imagine that early adopters who have been able to use the service will appreciate the fixes.  (more…)

Sony Xperia Z3v Gets Update to 23.0.E.1.44, Fixes Bugs

The Sony Xperia Z2…errr…Z3v (our review) on Verizon is receiving its first update today to software version 23.0.E.1.44. The update isn’t major, nor does it include VoLTE, which Verizon calls Advanced Calling 1.0. From the looks of the changelog, we are greeted with a bloatware updater, bug squasher, and minor UX tweaker.

Things like a reduction in mobile data notifications during calls, a simplified access to email notification settings, and improved NFC performance are all listed below. Bloatware like the Lifelog app is seeing some improvements as well.  (more…)

Verizon Announces Verizon Vehicle, the Reinvention of Roadside Assistance

During today’s press conference at the North American International Auto Show, Verizon announced Verizon Vehicle, a connected car service which will allow over 9,000 models of cars to become smart in the blink of an eye.

Expected to launch in Q2 of 2015, Verizon Vehicle offers drivers a few great perks, some of which may even save lives when deployed. Verizon Vehicle comes standard with a One-Button SOS Assistance system, which allows drivers who are in an emergency to be immediately connected to a live agent. However, an automatic SOS system will also detect if you have been in an accident, dispatching emergency personnel to your location in the event you can not reach the SOS button.  (more…)