Don’t worry if you’re not sure how much data you typically use. There is a way to check.On an Android phone, go to Settings > Network & Internet > SIM Card, you’ll see how much data you’ve used over the past month.tap Application data usage See which apps are using the most data, and you can scroll through previous months of data usage.On iPhone, you can go to Settings > Cellular > Mobile Data. If you regularly use less than 3 GB of data per month, the Flexible Plan may be your best option.
All prices above are single line prices; they drop slightly per line as you add more. For example, I plan to add a second line to my Unlimited Plus plan soon, which will make both lines $55 each, or a total of $110 per month (plus tax).
Activate your chip
After you choose a plan and sign up, Google will mail a SIM card. It took a few days for my shipment to arrive, but I’d happily accept a slight delay if it saves me from stepping into a brick-and-mortar carrier store. (if you are using iPhone or google pixelyou can set up Fi Use an eSIMwhich means you don’t have to wait physical card.)
Once the chip arrives, you need to use the SIM card tool to pull out the SIM card tray and insert the SIM card into the phone.Then, download Google Fi app (You’ll need to be connected to Wi-Fi to do this, as your chip isn’t connected to a network yet) and follow the steps there. If you’re porting an old phone number, it may take longer. For me, after setting up a new number, Fi was up and running in about 5 minutes. That’s it, you’re done.
I’ve been traveling and living in rural areas for the past five years and I’ve tried just about every phone and hotspot plan – none are easier.The only thing that comes close is red pocket phone, I still use it in addition to Google Fi. (we are in our cheapest phone plan guide. ) There are cheaper plans out there, but in terms of ease of use and reliability, Fi is hard to beat.
Use Google Fi in a hotspot
You can use Google Fi as an easy way to add cellular connectivity to any SIM-accepting device, such as a mobile hotspot. You’ll need to activate your Google Fi SIM card from your phone using the Google Fi app, but once activation is complete, you can put the chip in any device your plan allows. If you opt for the Unlimited Plus plan, that means you can put the chip into your iPad, Android tablet, or 4G/5G hotspot. You’re still bound by the 50 GB data limit, though, so make sure you don’t get too crazy about Netflix.
The easiest way to set up Google Fi on a hotspot is to order Pure data SIM. This way you don’t have to activate the SIM card with your phone first. Otherwise, there seems to be no difference between a data-only SIM and a regular SIM.
Your question, answered
- Do I need a Google Account? Yes, you do need a Google Account to sign up for Google Fi, but you don’t need to be fully committed to Google to use Fi. I have an Android phone and I use the Google app because that’s what we use at WIRED, but outside of work I don’t use any Google services other than Fi and it still works fine.
- Will Google Fi track my every move? Yes, but so does your current provider. Google Fi’s terms of service say that Google will not sell so-called customer-proprietary network information (such as call locations, details, and features you use) to anyone else.
- I’m traveling and want to use Google Fi abroad. Will that work? Yes. Fi’s terms of service do require you to activate your service in the US, but after that, it should work anywhere Fi owns Cooperate with domestic network. One possible problem is long-term travel.This Terms of Service says If you “mainly use Fi services internationally, your international capabilities may be suspended.” No official clarification of what “primarily” means, but informally, I know of several people who have left the US for years using Fi and haven’t encountered any problem. However, as they say, your mileage may vary.
Tips and Tricks
The Google Fi app offers some features you might not discover at first. One of my favorites is the old Google Voice feature, which allows you to forward calls to any phone you like. This is also possible in Google Fi. All you need to do is add a number to Fi’s forwarding list, and whenever you get a call, it will ring both your phone and that secondary number – whether it’s a home phone, a second phone, or your Airbnb on the phone’ in. This is handy in places where your signal strength is unstable – just route the call to a landline. Likewise, enabling Wi-Fi calling is worthwhile when you have Wi-Fi access but no cell signal.
Another feature that has become increasingly useful as the number of spam calls I receive is call blocking. Android and iOS calling apps can block calls, but this will only send the caller directly to voicemail, and you’ll still end up with voicemail. Block calls through the Google Fi app and callers will receive a message that your number is disconnected or no longer in use. As far as they know, you’ve changed the numbers.To set this up, open the Fi app and view phone setting for Spam and blocked numbers. tap Manage blocked numbers Then you can add any number you like to the list. If you change your mind, all you need to do is delete the list.
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