Hello and welcome to Ken's Tech Tips, one of the UK's largest independent mobile technology websites. Our mission is to demystify the world of mobile technology and to make it more accessible for the rest of us. Whether you're looking for the best deals on your mobile phone or information about mobile networks and smartphones, we're here to help.

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The UK’s Cheapest iPhone 6 Plus: EE, O2, Three & Vodafone Compared

September 17th, 2014

The iPhone 6 Plus is available to buy from four UK networks: EE, O2, Three and Vodafone. In this article, we’ll list and compare the UK’s best value deals for the iPhone 6 Plus.

iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6

The iPhone 6 Plus (left) side-by-side with the normal iPhone 6 (right).

The iPhone 6 Plus is a larger version of Apple’s latest flagship smartphone: the Apple iPhone 6. With a 5.5-inch Retina HD display, the iPhone 6 Plus is substantially larger than both the normal iPhone 6 and previous models of the iPhone. Part way between a smartphone and a tablet, the iPhone 6 Plus will compete directly against rival phablets such as the Galaxy Note 4.

Like the iPhone 6, the iPhone 6 Plus has an 8 megapixel iSight camera, Apple’s 64-bit A8 processor and NFC connectivity for making payments on your phone. There’s also been a couple of significant upgrades from the normal iPhone 6. The iPhone 6 Plus gains optical image stabilisation on its 8 megapixel camera. This gives clearer and sharper photos in low-light conditions. There’s also a substantially larger battery within the device (you can get up to 24 hours talk time from a single charge compared to 14 hours on the normal iPhone 6).

At launch, the iPhone 6 Plus will be available on four UK networks: EE, O2, Three and Vodafone. Between them, they have the handset on almost 80 different tariffs. With varying amounts of minutes, texts and data, it can sometimes be difficult to find the best deal. This article will try and make it easy for you to find the best deal: we’ve compared all the tariffs from each UK network in one easy-to-read table. We’ve also highlighted the best value deals for light, medium and high users.

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Best Places To Buy A Moto G 5-Inch & Moto G 4G: The UK’s Cheapest Deals

September 16th, 2014

The Moto G is one of the best value Android phones currently available. It has many of the specifications normally reserved for higher-end smartphones and starts from only £125 SIM-free and unlocked.

Moto G 5-inchIf you’re looking for a great value and affordable smartphone, my current recommendation is to buy a handset from the Moto G family. The Moto G 5-inch and Moto G 4G have fantastic specifications at an even better price point.

Both handsets have a HD display (720p resolution) and a quad-core processor which should easily keep pace with the latest Android apps. There’s a high-resolution 8 megapixel camera (5 megapixels on the 4G version) with a LED flash for taking photos indoors. Finally, both handsets in the Moto G family run on the latest version of Android: Android 4.4 Kit Kat. You’ll have full access to the Google Play store with more than 1 million applications available for download.

What’s particularly notable about the Moto G handsets is the incredibly low cost compared to rival devices. The Moto G 5-inch starts from £145 SIM-free and unlocked. Meanwhile, the Moto G with 4G connectivity starts from £129 on Pay As You Go. With the iPhone 6 and Galaxy S5 normally retailing for more than £500, the Moto G handsets are totally unrivalled in terms of value for money.

In this article, we’ll look at the three different ways of buying a Moto G: either SIM-free and unlocked, on a Pay As You Go tariff or on a Pay Monthly contract. We’ll find and review the cheapest deals in the UK for both the Moto G 5-inch and the Moto G 4G. We’ll also look at the first-generation original Moto G from 2013.

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The UK’s Cheapest iPhone 6: EE, O2, Three & Vodafone Tariffs Compared

September 13th, 2014

In the UK, the iPhone 6 is available on four networks: EE, O2, Three and Vodafone. In this article, we’ll compare the prices on each network and find the UK’s cheapest deal for buying a new iPhone 6.

Apple_iPhone_6The iPhone 6 is Apple’s latest and greatest smartphone: it’s currently available for pre-order and will be released in the UK on September 19th.

Compared to last year’s iPhone 5s, the new iPhone 6 has a larger display. The 4.7-inch Retina HD display is 38% bigger than on last year’s model. The larger screen should give you a better multimedia experience (for instance, when you’re browsing the web or watching videos on your phone).

The iPhone 6 also has a brand new design, Apple’s A8 processor for even faster performance and NFC connectivity for payments on your phone. Apple have also upgraded the 8 megapixel iSight camera. There’s a brand new sensor and faster auto-focus so your images should look clearer and better than ever before.

At launch, the Apple iPhone 6 will be available on four networks in the UK: EE, O2, Three and Vodafone. Combined, the four mobile networks offer the iPhone on nearly 80 different tariffs. Each tariff comes with varying amounts of calls, texts and internet. This article will try and help you to find the best deal: we’ve compared the tariffs from each network in one easy-to-read table. We’ve also highlighted the UK’s best deals, the tariffs to go for and the tariffs to avoid.

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EE Wednesdays: 2-for-1 Cinema Tickets & Pizza Every Wednesday

September 10th, 2014

Customers on EE get 2-for-1 cinema tickets and pizza every Wednesday. The offer is open to customers on a Pay Monthly contract, Pay As You Go tariff or EE broadband tariff.

EE WednesdayEE is currently offering 2-for-1 cinema tickets to customers every Wednesday. The ‘EE Wednesdays’ promotion is available to customers on both Pay Monthly and Pay As You Go tariffs. It replaces the ‘Orange Wednesday’ promotion which has been running in the UK since 2003. Until the end of September, the promotion also gives customers 2-for-1 at Pizza Express every Wednesday.

In this article, we review the EE Wednesdays offer. We’ll discuss the tariffs which you can use EE Wednesdays on and we’ll show you how to obtain an EE Wednesdays code. We’ll look at participating cinema chains and where you’re able to use the offer. Finally, we’ll discuss switching over to EE and how you’re able to keep your existing phone number.

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Your Smartphone SIM Type: Standard SIM, Micro SIM or Nano SIM?

September 5th, 2014

Find out the type of SIM card required by your new smartphone: Standard SIM, Micro SIM or Nano SIM.

SIM cardIf you’re getting a new smartphone, you’ll need to have a SIM card that fits in your device. You’ll also need to choose the right size of SIM card when ordering a SIM Only contract or a Pay As You Go SIM card. Depending on the smartphone you have, there are three sizes of SIM card that could be appropriate for your handset: Standard SIM, Micro SIM or Nano SIM.

In this article, we look at the differences between the three types of SIM card. We’ll find out the size of SIM card required by different handsets and look at how you can order a SIM card of the right size. Finally, we’ll look at changing the size of your existing SIM card (e.g. switching to a Micro SIM or Nano SIM).

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EE’s Pay As You Go Packs From £1/week: Bundles With A Quarterly ‘Free Boost’

September 3rd, 2014

EE now offers 3 types of Pay As You Go bundle: the Everything Pack, the Talk & Text Pack and the EE Data Pack. The bundles start from £1/week and include a ‘free boost’ every quarter.

EEEE has today announced a new bundle line-up for their Pay As You Go service. They’re now offering three types of bundle catering for different users. The most popular bundle (known as the EE Everything Pack) starts from £10/month with calls, texts and internet included in the plan. 4G connectivity is included in every bundle and there’s a free quarterly boost where you’ll gain 50 extra minutes or 250MB of additional free data.

For non-smartphone users, EE now also offers the Talk & Text Pack from £1/week. Finally, for users who only need the internet occasionally, EE now has a low-cost 4G Data Pack. £1 per week will get you 100MB of 4G internet: it’s advertised by EE as the UK’s cheapest 4G tariff.

In this article, we review the new Pay As You Go tariff as offered by EE. We’ll look at how you can buy one of the bundles and how the new bundles compare against rival offerings (e.g. giffgaff, O2, Three and Vodafone). Finally, we’ll look at the handsets you can use with the offer, the level of coverage available on EE and how you can keep your old phone number when moving to the service.

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Best SIM Cards for Using Your Smartphone in the USA

August 29th, 2014

If you’re travelling to the United States, using the right SIM card can save you a lot of money. We review the best value SIM cards for using your smartphone in the US.

USA Flag

Every year, more than 5 million Brits visit the USA. Whether you’re visiting New York to do a bit of shopping, visiting California to enjoy the beautiful scenery or visiting Florida to enjoy the theme parks with your family, you’ll probably want to use your phone when abroad.

Having a smartphone in America makes it much easier to stay in touch with friends and family in the UK. A smartphone can also be helpful in finding nearby restaurants and attractions and can help you to navigate around the country (e.g. using Google Maps).

The good news is it’s really easy to take a UK smartphone and to use it in the US. You can either roam using your UK SIM card or you can buy a US SIM card upon your arrival in the States. In this article, we review and compare the best SIM cards for using your smartphone in the US. We’ll look at pricing as well as network compatibility with UK handsets.

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How to unlock your iPhone from O2, Orange, Three, T-Mobile, Vodafone and EE

August 20th, 2014

You’ll need to unlock your iPhone before you’re able to use it on another mobile network. Save money by switching to cheaper SIM only deals and avoid roaming charges when travelling abroad.

iPhone 5SWhen you buy an iPhone, it’ll normally be locked to your mobile network operator. As such, the iPhone will only accept SIM cards from the network it’s locked to (for instance, an iPhone which is locked to O2 UK will only accept SIM cards from O2′s UK network). Insert a SIM card from any other mobile network and you’ll be told the SIM card is “not supported” on your device.

In the UK, the majority of iPhones are sold locked to a network. This includes most iPhones sold on a Pay Monthly contract or Pay As You Go tariff. It also includes iPhones from third-party retailers such as the Carphone Warehouse. If you have a locked iPhone, you’ll need to unlock it before using it on another network. This article will show you how to unlock an iPhone from the UK’s major mobile networks.

Some iPhones are already unlocked when you buy them from the shop. This would be the case if you bought a SIM-free iPhone directly from Apple. To use it on another network, simply grab yourself a free Pay As You Go SIM card or a SIM-only contract for much better value. For third-party retailers such as the Carphone Warehouse, a SIM-free iPhone will lock itself automatically to the first network used on the handset. You’ll need to contact that network if you’d like to unlock your iPhone. This article will show you how.

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Vodafone EuroTraveller & WorldTraveller: Use Your UK Allowances Abroad In 50 Countries

August 15th, 2014

For an extra charge, Vodafone customers can now use their allowances abroad in 50 other countries. The EuroTraveller and WorldTraveller offerings cost £3/day and £5/day extra.

Vodafone

Customers on Vodafone Pay Monthly can now take advantage of fixed price roaming when visiting one of 50 other countries. By opting in to the EuroTraveller and WorldTraveller offers, your UK allowances (including minutes, texts and internet) can be used abroad for one simple daily charge. It’s £3/day to use your allowances in a EuroTraveller country (discounted to £2/day until the 31st August 2014) and £5/day to use your allowances in a WorldTraveller country.

For many people, the new fixed-price roaming deals will provide better value compared to Vodafone’s standard roaming charges when travelling abroad. The biggest savings come when travelling outside the EU (travellers to the US would normally pay £1.35/minute to make an outgoing call, £1/minute to receive an incoming call, 35p to send a text message and £3/MB when accessing the internet). However, there are cheaper roaming deals available elsewhere (e.g. Three’s Feel At Home has no extra charge for using your phone abroad; a Pay As You Go SIM card with £10 of credit will give you up to 30 days of usage over in the US).

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Using Your Mobile Phone Abroad: Everything You Need To Know

August 12th, 2014

Everything you need to know before taking your mobile phone abroad. Find out how much it costs, what are the pitfalls and how to reduce data roaming charges.

Going Abroad

Each year, an increasing number of us are travelling abroad. Whether you’re travelling for business or for pleasure, your mobile phone is an essential tool for staying in touch, finding your way around and also researching local destinations.

In this article, we present our guide to everything you need to know when using your phone abroad.

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