App of the Week: Checky

Are you glued to your smartphone screen? Can’t make it through a Facebook-free dinner without resorting to The Phone Stack?

If you think you’re becoming the next “Texting Teresa” or “Snapchat Steve,” Checky is your saving grace. This simple app tells you how often you wake your device every day, putting your usage in perspective to help you get back on track.

It’s available for both Android and iOS smartphones, and is completely free. If you think your phone usage is interrupting your everyday life, Checky could be the wake-up call you need.

Scroll down and let Kyra tell you more!

Bringing gigabit fiber to Charlottesville, VA. It’s happening.

The Internet is a funny thing. You have an idea and a few days later you’re online, open for business and making money.

A terrible oversimplification, of course, but it is, at least, conceivable.

Building the network that gets people online doesn’t happen at quite the same speed. With some great people on the ground and in the the office there, though, it is certainly happening in Charlottesville, VA, and it’s beginning to pick up steam.

In Charlottesville (where this article was started but alas not finished) it’s apparent that a lot of work goes into bringing next generation Internet to a community. This and more I saw first-hand on a recent trip to one of the first Ting gigabit Internet towns.

While in Cville for the Tom Tom Founders Festival, I accompanied the installation crew on a couple of outings.

Fo Fum, Change Gonna Come

I want to address Google’s new mobile service, Fi, starting with the obvious question:

Are you scared?

What?! Scared? Why would you…I’ve never been…sure, a little.

Google can do things nobody else can. They also have that uniquely Google thing where they might mess with folks over here just to ultimately achieve some totally different goal over there.

I definitely had that movie moment in my head where the giant lizard is stomping down the street and I’m hoping the foot lands a few inches to my right.

Then I got calm. (And it wasn’t because I realized you have to buy a $649 phone to use the service. Although that helped.) Then I started to get excited. Here’s how I think about it.

150,000 Ting subscribers might say, “Hmm, I should check this out.” 350,000,000 non-Ting subscribers might now lift their heads up and say, “There are choices beyond the major carriers?!”

Ask an Exec: How is Ting Internet coming along?

Dlister70 on reddit wonders how things are going with the development of Ting Internet service in Charlottesville, VA and Westminster, MD.

Get the latest news around our rollout of gigabit fiber Internet from Ting’s VP of Marketing below.

Ting tip for Android 5.0: Last longer with Battery saver

 Become a smartphone power user with the bare minimum of geekery involved. Each week, we’ll share a simple, useful mobile trick. No fluff – just the tips.

If your phone runs out of juice a little quicker than you’d like, Android 5.0: Lollipop includes a neat battery saving feature that’ll help extend your battery life. It’s easy to enable – just follow along with our GIF instructions below!

While Battery saver is super useful, your smartphone experience will be restricted. Device performance is reduced and background data is disabled, meaning you won’t get notifications from apps like Facebook, WhatsApp and Gmail.

Unfortunately, Battery saver is only available for Android 5.0: Lollipop and higher. If your device runs Android 4.4 KitKat or below and you’re looking to extend its battery life, check out Google Play for tons of third-party power saving apps.

Unboxing the iPhone 6 Plus in a minute

This iPhone 6 Plus was in a box when we started this unboxing. It wasn’t when we finished. Mission accomplished.

If you’ve got an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus or if you’ve been thinking of grabbing one, rest assured you can bring it to Ting.

#TEAMTING – Maureen Brondyke

#TEAMTING is a series where we showcase some of our favorite Ting customer stories, whether from an individual, a family, a tech-head or a retiree.

Maureen and her husband live in Charlottesville, Virginia and have an average bill of $50 a month for two iPhones with Ting.

We chatted with Maureen during Charlottesville’s annual Tom Tom Founders Festival last week and had the chance to ask why Ting is a good fit for her family.

“I use my iPhone constantly for work, I’m on Instagram, Twitter and I text often – basically use it the exact same way as before I switched to Ting, except our bill is $75 a month cheaper.”

Maureensmallerjpg

Ting tip for iOS: Download free apps without entering your password

 Become a smartphone power user with the bare minimum of geekery involved. Each week, we’ll share a simple, useful mobile trick. No fluff – just the tips.

Let’s face it, as great as Apple’s App Store is, the need to enter a password for a free app is pretty silly. Sure, it’s great to have an added layer of security, but if you trust yourself and those around you – it’s an unnecessary hassle.

Thankfully, Apple has heard our laments and addressed the problem with the latest update to iOS (8.3).

Additionally, more control has been granted when it comes to paid apps and in-app purchases. Now, you can give the App Store a 15-minute grace period with your password, making bulk buyings a breeze. That said we’re less inclined to recommend this option, as it paves the way for accidental berry purchases in FarmVille.

Actually, does anyone even play FarmVille anymore?

Below is our two-step GIF guide to password-less free apps.

tingtip13_header

#TEAMTING – Paige Hoogendoorn

#TEAMTING is a series where we showcase some of our favorite Ting customer stories, whether from an individual, a family, a tech-head or a retiree.

Paige goes to college in Delaware and uses a Samsung Galaxy S3 on Ting.

About a year ago, she discovered Ting and realized that she didn’t have to settle for a expensive monthly bill just to get access to a smartphone.

“Ting is easy, it won’t break your bank, it just makes sense. I think more people should switch to Ting, they just don’t know about it.”

By taking advantage of Wi-Fi and setting simple usage alerts, Paige was able to lower her phone bill by $35 a month!

“I changed my phone settings and I connect to Wi-Fi whenever I can.”

“Also, Ting customer service makes me feel like they’re my friend. I’d call one of them up just to have a chat lol.”

Paige Hoogendoornsmaller