Christopher Price is the Founding Editor of Today, he leads the team building Console, Inc. - a new kind of Android™ device. He still likes to pontificate... a lot. You can visit his personal blog at

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34 responses to “PSA: Avoid Droid X Mobile Hotspot Charges, Carry a Pre Plus or Pixi Plus as a Backup”

  1. Jason

    Here we go again Phone news and Chris…

    Do you have any any official information from Verizon please post a link ?

    Press release of this information ?

    Any real proof and news???

    See above why Phones news is not news its just a tech blog

  2. Joe K

    Oh no, here come the naysayers again.

    I couldn’t care less what you, or anyone else for that matter, calls It’s kinda creepy how much some people care about that stuff.

    Do you think Verizon, regardless of what you call, is ever going to tell what they have planned in the future? No way.

    If you read between the lines, it’s pretty clear that they’re running this now, so that people can lock in their Pre/Pixi on Verizon and get grandfathered before anyone thinks to change the rules.

    Wise up, meanwhile, I’m gonna go save a ton of money… by switching to Palm Pre. Then I’m gonna renew my contract and get a Droid X, and swap between the two.


  3. jim *

    ROFLMAO!!!! I’m sorry, (coughs, wipes tears rolling down cheeks) but this is just too funny. No argument VZW is King of the Telco Ripoff Artists, as I’ve ranted on in other threads but I mean, really…c’mon.

    I gotta say though, that *228-3 trick is pretty sslick. Thought ESN swap was strictly a call-in/online deal. Sure beats swapping SIMS. But with VZW using SIMS for LTE, this too, like tethering plans, is subject to change, like the weather.

  4. Ryan Potratz

    How is it legal for verizon to charge $20 for hot spot tethering in the first place. We (the customer) are already paying for an unlimited data plan. Tethering is a feature of the phones os not the network. The phone is mearly acting as a proxy. Aren’t they double dipping in there fees. They say unlimited data and then recharge us for using the data plan you already payed for. How I use my technology is not there business if I paid for it. There are no additional fees to verizon for providing the tethering service. Nor are there additional fees for providing Sync to exchange functionality. Its Free in the os. ITs free from Microsoft with Exchange Active Sync (comes with Exchange Server). Not to mention Active sync is just a web service. We are just so used to paying the Blackberry fees we assume there is a cost for the exchange fees. There isn’t! Stop ripping us off verizon and treat your customers fairly and with respect!! Everyone should just root there phones and get the OS as it was intended instead of just the features verizon releases without charging more!

  5. JJ

    The reason they can do it is because no one is stopping them. At the same rate they can’t stop the user from using programs like pdanet or other tethering programs. Until the rules are set in writing companies will continue to take advantage of the consumer and the techsavvy consumers will continue to find ways to exercise their right to use their device any way they please just like a highspeed modem at their house.

  6. Verizon Launches Motorola DROID X |

    […] 2GB allotment available for the same price on top of the requisite $30 monthly data plan (see here for an […]

  7. chris

    so if i wanted to use the hotspot for the free 5 gb a month, i would have to purchase a pre plus/pixi first under a new contract then get the droid x, or i can buy the droid x and then go on ebay to buy the pre plus/pixi?

  8. Angelo A.

    Couldn’t you just unlock it your self via PDAnet…you can buy the program for 30 bucks. I’m sure by now…or soon that the drivers will be available. Why carry around 2 phones….that’s pointless. I’ve seen many phones unlocked still working on major carriers networks with the hot spot unlocked for FREE. (sort of)

    This was for the old Droid. I’m sure the X will be done soon.

  9. HTC Droid Incredible Update Rolling Out with 720p HD Video Capture |

    […] enables 720p HD video capture along with support for Verizon’s paid mobile hotspot service (see here for an alternative) and preinstalls the Skype application along with new boot animation. var […]

  10. chris

    christopher price- thanks for the info, i’ll look into that when im ready to make my purchase. and yes on ebay they are fairly cheap between 90-100+.

    so on the pre/pixi, we get up to 5 gb free of hotspot right?

    then just need to do *228 then 3 to activate each phone whenever i swap between phones?

  11. Angelo A.

    My point is, Verizon will not let you activate a Droid X bought through them without the data plan. Were you may be able to get a used or new Palm from Ebay at 100 – 150 bucks…you still need to pay for the data plan on the Palm. An unlocked Droid X will run you 600 to 700 dollars with the online vendors. If I did my math right it might cost you more using two phones

    Unlocked phones cost (2 phones): about $750.
    Phone service for Droid (cheapest plan) 39.99
    Data plan for Palm (29.99)
    total equipment cost: $750.

    There’s a difference of roughly 500 bucks. So you’d be spending about 20 more over 2 years or .83 cents more a month. I’d rather pay the .83 cents then carry two phones.

    If you managed to get your Droid activated without the data plan through Verizon and still pay the 199.99 or less please let me know how you did this….I’ll get mine in a heart beat!

  12. Angelo A.

    ahh…I see what your doing. Swap “when needed” between two phones. Sorry for my ignorance, but I still see that as a pain in the A$$. Nice to know that you can do that, but may not be convenient for some.

  13. Angelo A.

    I did see that they were able to get the HTC EVO wireless tether unlocked…google “android wireless tether” but you would have to root your phone. They’ve also have if for the Droid. I’m sure it will be done soon for the X.

  14. Jason

    So does that mean you don’t have to pay for the second data plan for the Pre/Pixi plus?

  15. Jason

    Also, I have another question. I currently have only one phone (Droid X) on my plan. If I get a Pre/Pixi, will it cost me anything besides the $90-100 to use it as mentioned in this article? Thank you for sharing.

  16. Angelo A.

    What he’s doing is this… have a new Droid X from Verizon with all the required contract plan etc. Then you get a used or new Palm pre/pixi from ebay or else where…and dial *228..then press 3. this will change your plan from the droid X to the Pre/pixi. You will not get phone calls on the device…only on the pre/pixi. when you done using the hot spot….revert it back to the Droid X. You’d still be able to use the Droid as a internet browser and video player etc…just not make or receive any calls from it, unless your using skype.

  17. Angelo A.

    The palm Pre/pixi has free wifi hotspot. by doing this trick…you wouldn’t have to pay for it on the droid. you’d just have to carry two phones and keep reverting back and forth between phones. One thing that was not mentioned was how may times can you change back and forth between phones in a 24 hour period? Some carriers only allow 1 time in a 24 hour period.

  18. Verizon Updates Data Block for Old Smartphones, Makes it Easier to Get a Virgin Mobile MiFi Instead of VZW Data |

    […] are many combinations for Verizon customers looking to pair a Virgin MiFi instead of paying exorbitant tethering charges. For example, you can use a Verizon feature phone or older smartphone, the data block, and a Virgin […]

  19. dfdkfj

    Interesting tactic and i’m surprised its actually officially supported by Verizon. But a bit complex and unnecessary you think? The touchphone you probably have is already hard enough as it is to operate without prior experience.

  20. Mike McKay

    Verizon now has the Pre Plus and Pixi Plus FREE with a 2 yr contract. With no cost for the phone you’re only dealing with the monthly data cost.

  21. Microsoft To Mandate Free Tethering on Windows Phone 7? |

    […] tethering capability at no additional cost is the Verizon Palm Pre Plus, which has extensively covered previously in regards to taking advantage of the service. var SurphaceSettings = { s4id: […]

  22. Larry Iwaki

    Do you have to pay an activation fee for the Palm Pre Plus if you get it from eBay and use the *228 #3? Thanks.

  23. Berry Black

    Very interesting post Christopher, thank you. I’m intrigued by your idea though I wonder about one thought: avoiding the Droid altogether and going with the Pre as the full time device? Until tonight, I never heard a good thing about the Pre….then my buddy sold me on how cool it is and I played around with it–not bad. Anyone on here happy with their Pre?

  24. Pre Plus & Pixi Plus on Verizon Enjoy 5 GB Tethering with New 150 MB, $15 Data Plan |

    […] access. Android customers on Verizon pay $20/month for an optional 2 GB of Mobile Hotspot coverage, thus saving webOS customers on Verizon up to $720/year in tethering charges (when compared to using 5 GB/month on an aircard or […]

  25. Pre Plus & Pixi Plus on Verizon Enjoy 5 GB Tethering with New 150 MB, $15 Data Plan | alnilesat

    […] access. Android customers on Verizon pay $20/month for an optional 2 GB of Mobile Hotspot coverage, thus saving webOS customers on Verizon up to $720/year in tethering charges (when compared to using 5 GB/month on an aircard or […]

  26. Deal: Palm Pixi Plus for $65 + 5 GB/month Mobile Hotspot for $15/month |

    […] Verizon We’ve tried, and tried, and painstakingly tried to tell people about Verizon’s 5 GB of free mobile hotspot to anyone with a Pre Plus or Pixi […]

  27. Deal: Palm Pixi Plus for $65 + 5 GB/month Mobile Hotspot for $15/month |

    […] Verizon We’ve tried, and tried, and painstakingly tried to tell people about Verizon’s 5 GB of free mobile hotspot to anyone with a Pre Plus or Pixi […]

  28. Verizon Wireless Pulls Pixi Plus From Online Store |

    […] with Wi-Fi radio and support for Verizon’s then new Mobile Hotspot option. We’ve even advised to purchase one as a […]