Mobile phone roaming abroad

Roaming abroad with mobile phones has always been an expensive business. Not only are the calls you make very expensive but you get charged for the calls you receive. It’s very easy to come home to an extortionate mobile bill.

A new service from Roam4free aims to remove this uncertainty & put you back in control of your bill. Last week Roam4free launched its prepaid mobile phone service that lets you receive calls & text messages abroad with no roaming charges in 65 countries (the service works in 115 countries worldwide). Savings can be as much as 90% of a typical mobile bill with roaming calls. For example, in Australia it’s free to receive calls & text messages, calls to most destinations cost 43 cents per minute and text messages cost 35 cents.

Roam4Free works with a SIM card that you buy from the company for €20. Either put this in a second mobile phone or swap out the SIM card in your main phone. The card comes with €5 calling credit and can be topped up at the Roam4Free website. The SIM card comes with a new mobile phone number for the Roam4Free service. At the moment this is an Estonian phone number but UK numbers will be available soon on a premium service.

If you’re planning to put the Roam4free SIM card into your existing handset you need to ensure your handset isn’t locked to your current network. If it needs unlocking Roam4free can do this for most handsets via their website.

To make a call you dial the number as normal, it then disconnects and Roam4free calls you back with a connection to the number you’re calling. This is much simpler than it sounds and allows Roam4free to offer its low call charges.

A great service for anyone who’s planning to spend more than a couple of days overseas.

PC slowing down?

One of the most common questions I get is what can you do about a PC that takes ages to boot. The older a PC the more likely it is to slow down with the stuff that Windows leaves behind in everyday use and from installing and removing applications.

A couple of goods steps here are [1] clear out the rubbish on your PC (temp files, unwanted registry entries etc) and [2] stop unnecessary programs from loading.

I use CCleaner regularly to clear out the rubbish plus Mike Lin’s excellent StartUp Control Panel to stop unnecessary programs loading at startup.

I’ve never had any problems with these applications but it’s always good to set a System Restore point in Windows & backup your registry (CCleaner offers this as an option) before making any changes to your PC’s configuration.

Why a blog?

I frequently come across technology and software that would be useful to friends and family. The idea behind this blog is somewhere I can post tips, tricks & ideas about technology.

Make a note of the URL or better still use a newsreader so you see new posts as they appear. I use Google Reader but there are lots of other ones.

As with anything technical you use these tips at your own risk and should always back up your data before making changes to your PC.

I hope you find this blog useful.

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