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Comment No more "waste of resources" than an iPod (Score 1) 252

[A pay-as-you-go plan] is cheap, but effectively worthless for anything other than a rare quick phone call or text message

I use it for exactly that. Longer voice calls wait until I arrive at home, where we have a phone on a different plan with unlimited minutes and zero texts. Longer text conversations wait until I arrive at home or at a hotspot, where I use Internet-based text chat or email.

and if it's actually a smartphone, then it's a waste of resources altogether.

I disagree. Even without cellular data, my Android phone is no more "a waste of resources" than an iPod touch. On this 5-inch tablet, I can still access locally stored information anywhere and connect to the Internet at any hotspot.

If you carry a device for emergencies only

I carry it not only for emergencies but also for the sort of urgencies for which one would have used a payphone in previous decades. The most common is calling home to arrange a ride after the city buses have stopped running for the night or for the weekend.

Comment Removing mobile number also removes TOTP (Score 1) 252

You have to add a mobile number to set up FIDO U2F key or a TOTP client but you can just remove it right after. IDK why they do it that way.

Last I checked, removing your mobile number from your account had the side effect of also removing FIDO U2F or TOTP from your account. At least Twitter does that. From "Twitter's 2-factor authentication has a serious problem" by Jack Morse:

What about just deleting your phone number from your Twitter account? Then it can't send you texts, right? Go ahead, but then you can no longer use the 3rd-party authenticator app.

Does Google also disable TOTP access after you have removed your phone number?

Comment Re:Cost per received message (Score 2) 252

I pay $35/month and that includes unlimited USA talk and text with my limited data. Maybe you need to get another carrier. Or at least another plan.

I currently pay $3 per month to T-Mobile and get 30 minutes of USA talk, 30 USA texts, or a combination thereof per month, and zero cellular data. Thus the price difference between my pay-as-you-go plan and your unlimited plan is $32 per month or $384 per year. I'm interested to read a good case for how 2FA would be worth that much to me.

Comment Must use SMS to set up TOTP (Score 3, Informative) 252

You are correct that Google publishes a TOTP client called Google Authenticator. But when I installed Google Authenticator, I discovered that Google is unwilling to offer TOTP authentication unless the account holder has already linked a phone on a supported carrier. From "Install Google Authenticator":

To set this up, first you need to complete SMS/Voice setup. Then, follow the directions for your type of device explained below.

Comment Cost per received message (Score 2) 252

The main reason that I haven't enabled 2-factor on my account is that U.S. cellular carriers charge not only for sent messages but also for received messages. T-Mobile, for example, charges its pay-as-you-go customers 10 cents to send and 10 cents to receive. And no, Google and Twitter don't allow use of a FIDO U2F key or a TOTP client without also having a mobile phone number set up.

Comment Peak bandwidth != sustaining bandwidth (Score 1) 253

I only watch TV about 2 hours a day, on average [...] If one service is getting 25mpbs, I expect all other services to be comparable.

Being able to peak at 25 Mbps for 30 seconds to download a 75 MB file doesn't put the same (amortized) load on cell towers as sustaining 25 Mbps for two hours. If you choose to live where fiber, cable, and DSL are unavailable, you can stream SD or rent BD.

Comment Feeling blue about your cell ISP? Get Blu-ray (Score 1) 253

You may have an XY problem here. You say want to stream in HD, but you probably just want to watch in HD. One workaround is to install a BD player in your camper or bring one with you to your hotel room. Another is to use a video service that allows downloading in advance for later play while offline and do so while connected to fiber, cable, or DSL. Or what makes those impractical for the use cases you describe?

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