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First mobile phone for nearly 13yo boy - he wants a Blackberry?

(15 Posts)
jodee Tue 13-Nov-12 19:25:13

DS is only now, in Y8 wanting a mobile phone (he wants to keep in touch with his friends who went to a different school, that is one reason), he is quite a reserved, sensitive boy and I think the 'cool' lot are getting to him in the playground.

His Dad uses a Blackberry for work and his 16 yo cousin has one. But I read on a MN thread that Blackberrys are the only phones that don't have parental control, which worries me.

What would be a good phone for him? I don't want to get him a really basic one, yet again I don't want to go for a top of the range iphone? Ideas greatly welcomed, also contract or payg? Thank you!

APMF Wed 14-Nov-12 23:35:13

Don't get a Blackberry. The camera tend to be of a lower resolution compared to the competition and the library of apps is quite limited.

The original selling point for BlackBerrys, at least for kids, was the free text messaging service. Well, these days Android phones also offer free texting via the app whatsapp. That and a much larger apps library has seriously dented BlackBerry's fortunes.

All the Android phones are very much the same technically speaking so it just comes done to which design your DC likes.

Ponders Wed 14-Nov-12 23:38:44

PAYG better than contract at that age IMO - then if they lose the phone nobody can run up vast bills before it's reported

giffgaff are good (you'd need an unlocked phone though)

how bothered is he about things like camera, jodee?

Ponders Wed 14-Nov-12 23:44:40

if he mostly wants to talk & text, just a simple one like this Nokia would do

Tesco do loads of sim-free phones - maybe look at them with him & see what features he'd like?

APMF Wed 14-Nov-12 23:47:50

.... re parental control, I don't know about the others but T-Mobile allows you to request that DS's phone shouldn't be allowed to go to age restricted web sites.

CointreauVersial Wed 14-Nov-12 23:50:55

DS (13) has a Blackberry, because that's what most of his friends have, and they communicate constantly on BBM, which is free. The monthly package is pretty cheap.

He is however getting a bit pee'd off with the rubbish apps and will probably get a smartphone once his contract runs out. But he won't be getting an iPhone, no matter how much he thinks he'd like one.

TariffHound Thu 15-Nov-12 12:14:58

For a 13 y/o, getting a phone like a BlackBerry that doesn't have a lot of app selection could turn out to be an advantage, as you may want him to be contactable by call or message, but not constantly having his head in a Fifa football app.

One option may be to buy the phone outright on PAYG (the BB 9320 is a good pick at around £130), and then get a 12 month SIM Only tariff for around £10 a month which will allow ample talk, text and data allowance. You can then review the arrangement after a year to see how it's working.

Last time I checked, O2 and Voda had some good deals on 9320's coupled with a SIMO tariff.

£130 for the phone, and then they have a great SIMO tariff.
£10.50 for 300 minutes, unlimited text, 500MB data, BlackBerry services. If you buy online, they'll also throw in unlimited calls to other Vodafone numbers, and 750 MB BT wifi. This is also a 12 month contract.

£130 for the handset, or you can get a refurbished one for £100
£10.50 for 100 min + 500 extra O2 to O2 minutes, unlimited text, 100MB data, BlackBerry services.
With O2, the 100MB data allowance is throttled - so if you went over 100MB, you could still access the internet without extra charges - you'd just have a slower speed. You would also receive a text message advising the data was being throttled once you went over the 100MB.

If you do go down the BlackBerry route, make sure the data element of the tariff plan included "BlackBerry services" which ensures the email and BlackBerry Messanger (BBM) features of the phone will work.

As for adult content control, this can be done at a network level by adjusting the account profile settings via the operator website. In other words, you set up an online account on the O2 or Voda (or whoever) website and you can then put in place adult content restrictions.

Hope that helps!

jodee Fri 16-Nov-12 11:02:47

Thank you all for the great replies, just thinking that he probably doesn't have many friends with Blackberry that I know of! (one of his 'friends' told him a Blackberry is for girls yesterday, shock but he always seems so neg about everything DS says, jealous maybe, I don't know, DS takes things very personally).

He said he would want to take pics and videos, definitely.

Can you explain Giffgaff, and unlocked phones please? I'm on a contract with Three, if we go down the contract route should DS be on Three also?

Jins Fri 16-Nov-12 11:08:13

My two DSs (older teenagers) have blackberries and wouldn't change to anything else. They reckon the combination of blackberry and ipod gives you all you need.

I have contracts with Vodafone for £15 pm and the phone was free. That was a while ago - haven't checked recently what the deals are like

KittyLilith Fri 16-Nov-12 11:20:00

Virgin do very cheap deals and have parental controls. They're even cheaper if you're already with them for phone/tv/internet.

Ponders Fri 16-Nov-12 11:26:32

wiki on giffgaff

they only do SIM cards, not phones; they use the O2 network so you could get him an O2 phone.

I don't know if there are any extra benefits to putting him on the same network as you - might be worth talking to 3 to see what they can offer you

my DS2, 19 now, has had a Blackberry 8520 for 2 years - he was perfectly happy with it to begin with but was desperate to switch to a 3G (??? I'm not up on the jargon grin) phone this time & has just got a Samsung Galaxy SIII - which is about twice the size, I'm worried he will lose it purely because it doesn't fit so neatly in a pocket.

The camera was never very good & it's broken now (I don't know how hmm). Phone still works OK despite a hard life for the last 2 years, although battery life is short now so we've bought a new one as DS1 wants to use it (over his own cheap as chips not-smart phone!)

Ponders Fri 16-Nov-12 11:27:22

The keypad is very tiny btw. Not good for fat fingers!

Startail Fri 16-Nov-12 11:32:43

DD1 has a Samson ace she seems to get on with.
DD2 face times or Kik messages from her iPod or texts from a Nokia c300.

Looks like a BB, cheaper and I think a horrible interface.

No parental controls set, both have had lap tops for years and years. I'm very sceptical that controls don't just encourage kids to look for ways round them.

Me, I've joined the dark side, but it is B'day and Xmas for the next 2 years.
(Sent from my iPhone)

Ponders Fri 16-Nov-12 13:53:16

DD1 has a Samson ace she seems to get on with
DD2 face times or Kik messages from her iPod or texts from a Nokia c300

(Sent from my iPhone)

excuse me while I snigger wink

olibeansmummy Mon 19-Nov-12 22:26:29

Tesco mobile do contracts that you can cap so they can't go over their limit. It's the only type I'd get for a teenager!

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