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Unlimited GPRS With T-Mobile for $3

Now that I have a camera phone I had to add the $2.99 unlimited picture messaging option to my 3000 anytime minute plan ($49). I just a got note from T-Mobile that informed me that with this cheap option, I now get unlimited GPRS.

“Ooooh, big deal. So you’ve got a GPRthingamajig on your phone, but what the hell does that do?” you ask.

Handy geeky crap that’s what.

GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) is how cell phones transmit data packets for when you surf the web on your phone – they used to offer this service for 20 bucks a month.

Now, because I’ve got bluetooth and Mac OS X panther, I can use my Sony Ericsson t610 as a GPRS wireless modem with my Laptop. Better still, I don’t need a dial-up ISP (like earthlink etc) to access the web, it acts as my ISP. So I can check my saltedwound email and my mac.com email all as if I was connected to my cable modem at home – only slower.

Basically anywhere I have cell phone coverage I can now access the internet at nearly 3k per second (comparable to land line dial up) to check email, surf – whatever (Ozzy, you could surf for porn everywhere you go). I just choose connect from my modem menu, it finds my cell phone even if it’s 30 feet away in my jacket pocket, and dials out. It would also work with inferred, but but bluetooth is nicer because it doesn’t require “line of site”.

Simple, slick. You can read the extended entry for info on how I set it up.

My Setup:

Apple Powerbook Titanium G4 876Mhz.
Mac OS X Panther 10.3
D-Link DWB-120m Bluetooth adapter (other adapters and built in bluetooth will work)
Sony Ericsson T610 (would work with T630 or T68i as well)
GPRS data service of T-Mobile’s T-Zones $2.99

Steps:

First I downloaded the Modem Script or my phone called Ericsson GPRS Scripts. And installed them in Library -> Modem Scripts.

I then ran the bluetooth setup wizard choosing mobile phone setup. I had already paired the device with my computer, but I had to redo it with these new settings. The assistant asks if you want to use iSync, address book, and access the internet. I said yes to all three making sure to choose the “Use dial-up connection” option.

Then I entered the GPRS info. Enter wap.voicestream.com for the phone number (yes, enter a web address in the phone number field) and select Ericsson GPRS CID2 as the modem script.

Now click connect with the Internet Connect option (I added it to the menu bar), and your off and running. OS X will switch to the bluetooth dial up automatically even if you’re connected to an network. Nice.

Update: I just found a really good set of instructions that are much more complete. They also have one for Using your CDMA cell phone as a USB Modem in Mac OS X.

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