Activation – the process by which a cellphone account is created, phone number
assigned, and cellphone programmed so that a subscriber can make and receive calls
Activation fee – a one-time fee paid to create a subscriber’s cellphone account.
Bundling – grouping services together as a package and charging a discounted price.
For example, offering various services such as Internet, television cable or
cellphone service; or cellphone features such as voicemail, call display or call
Cancellation Fee – a fee charged by the provider for terminating cellphone service before the
end of a contract.
Cellphone – also known as a mobile, a cellular phone or a cell. A cellphone is a type of
Coverage – refers to the region within which a cellphone can reliably receive and make
calls and send and receive data.
Data – any type of information, including music, picture and text files, as well as
messages and other information that can be sent, received or downloaded
onto a cellphone.
Local/Long Distance Calling – usually refers to calls made between users of two different local calling areas. Additional fees will be charged, depending on your service plan. Some exceptions apply. Contact a provider for more details.
Service Plan – the rate plan selected when choosing cell phone service. It may include a
fixed amount of minutes per month, and features such as call forwarding, call
Service contract – the agreement a subscriber makes with a provider to receive cellphone service for a specified amount of time.
Smartphone – a handheld device that integrates various cellphone and PDA capabilities together. A smartphone may allow users to store information, access email, install programs along with sending and receiving cellular phone calls. Examples of smartphones are the Android phones, BlackberryTM, and the iPhoneTM.
Incoming call – a call received on a cellphone.
Outgoing call – a call made on a cellphone.
Prepaid plans – a system allowing subscribers to pay for cellphone service usage in advance. Instead of paying a fee for a fixed amount of minutes per month, a subscriber purchases cards or vouchers that pay for the calls in advance.
Roaming – a service offered by most cellphone service providers that allows their subscribers to extend the geographic coverage by using another provider’s network. Fees apply and vary depending on the provider used. Roaming requires an agreement between providers of technologically compatible systems in individual markets to permit customers of either provider to access the other’s systems.
Shared plans – a single service plan which can be shared by more than one user, with more than one telephone number. Some providers allow users to add additional phones and users to any of their monthly plans (for a fee). Most often, providers only offer the possibility of adding additional phones and users to monthly plans that have been specifically designed to be shared by multiple users.
SMS/Text Messaging – stands for Short Message Service. A service that allows subscribers to send short written messages (usually about 160 characters) to and from wireless handsets. These messages can be sent from a Web site or from one wireless phone to another and enhancements are being made to support special presentation of text and graphics.
Voicemail – a service that allows callers to leave a voice message if you do not answer. This service will take messages if the subscriber’s phone is either switched off, if the subscriber is already on the line, or simply does not answer the call.