Question about smartphones

My girlfriend is on her parents plan. In their plan they dont have data included and we are looking for a smart phone that will work without data plan. When she is home she would like to connect to our wireless at home and use internet that way. At the store we were told that you can not use a smart phone without having data plan which to me doesnt make sense and this pretty much rules out all smart phones we were looking at. She is with AT&T and I will be buying this phone for her without service agreement (basically paying full price for it).

AT&T, as of sometime last year, forces all smartphone users to subscribe to a data plan. If you buy an unlocked phone, put an AT&T SIM into it, and use it without a data plan, they claim that they will detect that you have a smartphone, and force you to upgrade to a data plan.
If you can’t afford a data plan, you might consider the dumbphone + ipod touch route.

thank you . that answers my question. I guess a smartphone is not an option.

If you can buy a pay-as-you-go smartphone, try and find something like an Orange branded San Francisco, absolutely incredible phone for very little money, then go on a network which allows normal calls/ text with out a data-plan, install droidwall to block applications from trying to send data over the 3G connection, but allow it over wi-fi and you should be ok to go!

EDIT2: If you enable droidwall before the phone is able to send data over the 3G connection I can’t see AT & T ever finding out.

EDIT: The San Francisco is a rebranded ZTE Blade.

Amazing how complicated it seems to be in the states :open_mouth:

Here you buy a phone with your plan, usually you get one for free then, but are bound for 24 months, or you buy an open phone and then get a sim with a plan from one of the 7 providers in our little country. Either prepaid, pay on demand or with a fixed monthly fee.
And you pay like 12 euro per month, got 2.000 free minutes, and 2.000 free text messages, 1000 in the own net, 1000 to all nets each and unlimited 3g data traffic with full speed.
Many offer now small cubes, like Androids tethering, where you just put your phone when you come home and you can use it as internet router for your computers. All no problem.

And you don´t really need a dataplan for a smartphone. It´s more fun yeh, but at least here we got WiFi hotspots virtually everywhere anyways.

So did I get it right, you don´t have much choise when it comes to carriers, it is expensive and they force you to use a dataplan? o.O