For a children’s mobile phone contract, flexibility is right up there among the top features that you need. Children’s needs change rapidly ( and frequently ) and we know that what is needed today is often not what’s going to be needed tomorrow. Because all our users are children, and others with special needs, you know that we’re not surprised if a phone is list, damaged or confiscated and need to make rapid changes to the services we provide.
What should I do if my child’s phone breaks?
A broken mobile phone, when it comes to mobile phones in the hands of children? Well, it’s a matter of when, rather than if! We see phones in rivers, toilets, under busses, thrown over houses, you name it every day. This leads to the obvious and practical issues that follow.
In some circumstances it might be a matter of quickly replacing the phone and carrying on with things as they were but it’s not always possible.
Do I need a new SIM?
The first question is whether or not the SIM card has also broken with the phone. The SIM is generally well protected and, being small and buried deep inside the phone, will survive all but the most serious of phone destructions. The wood-chipper incident hasn’t yet landed in the ParentShield Customer Service department, but it’s only a matter of time.
If the SIM is broken, then ParentShield will always pull out the stops to get a new SIM in the post. A replacement SIM will be prepared with all the ‘profile’ information copied over from the original, so the child’s phone number will stay the same.
No charges for replacement SIM cards
ParentShield ships replacement SIMS every day of the week and there is never a charge. It’s actually a pleasure, not only because it’s a very simple thing to do, but because we know it’s keeping another child connected to home as quickly as possible.
Is a phone repair expensive?
It can be – and depending on the damage the phone has received, and the model and age of the mobile phone, it’s certainly something that can run into the hundreds of pounds quite easily.
Temporarily replacing the phone with a ‘simple phone’ until such time as it can repaired or replaced is certainly a common situation and it’s no problem to put the SIM in a temporary phone and then back into the repaired or replaced phone.
If you need a SIM that’s a bigger size, then you can use a SIM adapter, or the plastic surrounds that cam with the SIM if you’d kept them!
Providing a second-hand phone
If you’re getting a second-hand or hand-me-down phone for a child the same recommendations apply. Always make sure the phone is wiped back to factory settings and is thoroughly check to make sure it’s an unlocked phone , and in good working order. The last thing you want to do is have difficulty getting in touch.
Buying a replacement phone online
There are many good sources of mobile phones online. We have never heard any problems with, and don’t hesitate to recommend Carphone Warehouse which has a good range of SIM-Free mobile phones that it can ship very quickly. There are likely many, many others and as well as retailers of new phones, it’s possible to find good refurbished or renewed stock.
The same considerations apply however, and do make sure the phone is unlocked and working properly.
Be wary of Ebay and Gumtree for replacing broken phones
In our experience buying used mobile phones privately brings several new issues. The seller themselves will be unknown, and you don’t know whether the phone might be blacklisted or ‘rooted’ and potentially dangerous. There are a high number of fraudulent mobile phone deals so caution is always advised and don’t part with cash until you have the phone in your hand.
If you’re a knowledgeable phone user, then it’s potentially a good way of getting what you need, but for most people, it’s probably an unnecessary risk.
Suspending the contract if a phone is broken
If it’s not going to be possible to replace a child’s broken mobile phone straight away, you really don’t want or need to be paying a monthly contract for it.
For a regular Mobile Phone Contract, there is no provision for suspension or a ‘contract break’ in such circumstances. A call to your mobile phone company to try and organise such a thing would definitely become a bit of an ordeal.
It may be that you might choose to wait until the child has saved up to buy a new phone, or the new phone might be scheduled for replacement at the next birthday or something like that.
ParentShield will be understanding
With ParentShield, it’s a common situation and we can pause an account and put the service on hold until such time that it’s needed again. And certainly without any hassle, questions or objection.
The last thing you want is to be ‘stuck in contract’. Bringing up children is hard and expensive enough already. You don’t need additional stress.