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 Post subject: Mobile Phones
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 6:29 am 
I went to buy a phone a mobile for my son, who will start secondary school in Sept. I didn't realise what a nightmare it was, all we wanted was a budget phone.

Why cann't mobile phone companies have special deals for younsters?


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:50 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 11:23 pm
Posts: 452
Location: Hop County
Nevermind Voda_Dad!

My own view is that the pay as you go option is best for children. It encourages thrift (or highlights just which parents are the most generous/gullible) and can potentially discourage using internet services, monthly ring tone changes, game purchases etc., which are all too easy to get trapped into on a monthly tariff, where the supplier knows they will get their money. That being said - I am biased - I do know that with some providers (don't want to get into trouble with Mr Forum Admin by advertising) (the pink one) you can fix the tariff you want to pay if you insist on pay monthly.

I bought my daughter a phone for her 11th birthday on pay as you go. It was the second most basic phone, no internet; no camera etc which I explained to her was because I needed to see that she could handle it responsibly. Her friend spends £30+ per month changing ring tones, backgrounds and sending 1 word text messages (they all do that one) and my daughter has just passed the £20 mark (since December 2006). I have now given her a second hand camera phone and guess what – she does not use it! I hope that the initial four months without the gadget weaned her off (not sure on that one). But she loves the more graphically challenging games.

Well I suppose you choice will be influenced by how strict or otherwise you are :lol: :lol: :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:57 am 
Does he actually need a phone?

Most schools insist that they are turned off and put away during the day, and I would be concerned about it getting nicked from desk or cloakroom.

Also, phones are number one item youngsters get mugged for. One friend's boy was mugged twice in 2 weeks for his phone. The parents only gave him the phone because he had to change buses and they wanted him to let them know when he got off the first bus. They decided it was safer to have no phone.

I am just thinking of getting year 10 daughter one for her 15th birthday this summer, and I agree tarifs are confusing. So far my daughter has survived by having a BT chargecard; this allows her to call from any phone and the charge goes on our bill. There are fewer callboxes around these days, but we make a point of noting where they are. She travels to and from school on school bus which passes the end of our road.

Otherwise, during the school day she sends me emails from school computer.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 5:15 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
Queen Elizabeth in Barnet allows boys to have a phone (no camera, very basic) with them for safety reasons. The phone has to be switched off during school hours.
I plan to give my son a hand me down phone from the the old ones myself and my husband have, loaded with a pay as you go sim. Kids in secondary school do need a mobile phone. I put one in his pocket everytime we are in the park even if he wants to dissapear for just a second with his friends. If they are going to be using public transport then they are even more essential. There are plenty very unattractive, old fashioned, second-hand mobile phones out there and yes a 11 year old may very much need one in an emergency. It is daft not to get them one.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2007 5:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 10:05 am
Posts: 445
Location: LONDON
Quote:
I went to buy a phone a mobile for my son, who will start secondary school in Sept. I didn't realise what a nightmare it was, all we wanted was a budget phone.


Firstly ask yourself (as jah has already said) if he actually needs a mobile. If he travels any distance using public transport I would say possibly yes - if just to let you know if he has missed the bus and might be late. If he is local probably not. My oldest son who is at a very local school is not allowed to take a mobile into school and any found are confiscated and the parents notified. The school do this for the childrens protection ie. to stop them becoming a target of muggers (usually other children!). Interestingly in his year and a half at secondary it has not been a issue and I no longer worry if he is a bit late home because he has taken it into his head to kick a football around with his friends for 20 minutes......not sure if thats just me letting go or me being a negligent mother!!! He does infact own a mobile (purchased for under £30 with a pay as you go option) but after quickly realising mummy and daddy were not going to top it up on a whim he rationed his calls and now keeps it to a bare minimum mostly texting us if he is out with friends to beg for a extra half hours play. Interestingly he is so scared of being mugged that he won't usually take it to the local park.

There a cheap options out there. A quick look on the internet will find you a pay as you go for under £25. If your son is anything like mine cheap probably is best as it only takes one night of being left in the garden overnight by Mr Careless for it to get ruined in that unexpected downpour ....... just speaking from experience! If you want the name of the company doing the cheap mobile deal send me a pm (I don't want to break forum rules and get into trouble!)


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PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 8:17 am 
Having a mobile didn't save Milly Dowler.

If someone attacks you, you don't generally get a chance to get out your phone and call for help. When my poor sister was mugged, she was grabbed from behind and then they sent her glasses flying off.

The children have got to be street-wise, which means having their eyes and ears open and avoiding trouble. Walking facing on-coming traffic so you can't be kerb crawled and things like that.

Year 10 daughter is now getting to stage of wanting to shop in Birmingham City Centre alone. Getting a mobile is more for communication than for her safety.

At the moment if we go shopping in town we split into pairs and agree to meet at a key location like Waterstones or Druckers after an hour - hour and a half. It's a discipline sticking to meeting up like that; but it amazing how poor many people's timekeeping is now that they only have to text to say that they are going to be late.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 10:31 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
No, but it saves kids on an upturned car blocked in the sand by enabling them to ring for help (it has happened more than once where I spend my holidays in Greece) or in the middle of nowhere after having falling off their bicycle and are covered in blood (it has happened to me when I was 13 and believe me I wish mobiles were around then!).
It also helps us to help them improve their timekeeping by ringing them when late; starting early will get them into the habit of keeping in touch. In any case a mobile will not harm you child. Just put a very small & cheap one in their pocket (so that its outline does not show) and switch it in the vibrating only mode (there is no reason for all the world to know they have a mobile on them).

It is also allows communicating in text merry messages of the form "I will be a bit late" and the text reply "You are grounded!"




jah wrote:
Having a mobile didn't save Milly Dowler.


The children have got to be street-wise, which means having their eyes and ears open and avoiding trouble. Walking facing on-coming traffic so you can't be kerb crawled and things like that.


At the moment if we go shopping in town we split into pairs and agree to meet at a key location like Waterstones or Druckers after an hour - hour and a half. It's a discipline sticking to meeting up like that; but it amazing how poor many people's timekeeping is now that they only have to text to say that they are going to be late.

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sj355


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 11:09 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:49 pm
Posts: 1647
Location: berkshire
My son has a mobile......his dad's hand me down.... pay as you go.
This has allowed him to be more independent without giving me the jitters.
It was a godsend when I was caught in serious traffic (accident blocking the road) on my way to pick him up.
The school allows mobiles as long as they are turned off in school hours......some children travel quite a distance to my son's school by public transport and I would guess that there can be delays on the way home - a mobile is very useful for letting mum/dad know that there is a reason their child is 1/2 hr late.
:wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 12:50 pm 
Latest person to phone me on his mobile to say that he would be late for our meeting this morning was my boss!! As he was on his computer at home doing emails, he could have used his landline and saved some money.

His mobile is a GPS one, so if we lose him, we can track him down on the computer in the office!!!! :D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2007 1:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2006 7:10 pm
Posts: 8204
Location: Buckinghamshire
chad wrote:
My son has a mobile......his dad's hand me down.... pay as you go.


Am trying to work out why it's the other way round in our house - Son 1 has the snazziest mobile phone, we get the hand-me-downs! And guess who has the best computer, because nothing less will play all the dratted games, but you don't need a decent computer for Word, Excel and internet?! :evil:


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