Using Your Phone FAQs

  1. 1) How do I set up and retrieve my voice mail?

    Read the voice mail instructions for your area. (Instructions vary depending on where you live.)

  2. 2) How can I keep track of how many minutes I've used or how many I have left?

    You can keep track of your current usage with the call timer feature on your wireless phone. The timer will need to be reset every month on the bill cycle date. Further instructions for using the call timer feature are available in your phone's user manual.

    Please note that there will be a slight discrepancy between the call timer and the actual billed usage. This is because most phones record calls by the second and U.S. Cellular bills usage by the full minute. Furthermore, because of delayed reporting by other wireless carriers, some of your wireless usage, including that classified as home or extended home minutes, may be billed in a subsequent month(s) after your actual usage. The minutes used, and associated charges, will be applied against your monthly plan minutes in the month the usage appears on the bill rather than the month the calls were actually placed.

    You can also call #BAL from your U.S. Cellular phone to get detailed usage information on:
    Rate plan minutes
    Night and Weekend minutes
    Mobile to Mobile minutes
    Text messages sent

  3. 3) I have other questions about my phone's features. Can you help?

    In many cases, you can view user's manuals for your phone at the manufacturer's Web site. Click on your phone's manufacturer for more information.


  4. 4) I'm interested in downloading special ringtones for my wireless phone. How can I do this?

    With our easyedgeSM Data Services, you can download ringtones directly from your phone. Choose from hundreds of titles and artists. easyedge makes it easy to get access to all the latest ringtones. Simply choose our Pay-As-You-Go plan, the Data Plan, or the Data Plus plan. Visit our Ringtones page today.

    Please note: Consult your owner's manual or phone manufacturer's Web site for further details. U.S. Cellular does not endorse any form of unauthorized infringement of copyrighted music.

  5. 5) Can I have two wireless phones with the same telephone number?

    At this time we are unable to provide you with a single phone number for multiple phones. However, we do offer a call-forwarding feature, which can automatically forward your calls to another phone number, or to your voice mailbox if the line is busy.

  6. 6) Will I be charged for forwarding my wireless phone calls to another number?

    Yes. Even though calls will be received at another number, they must still be routed through the cellular "switch," which produces airtime charges. To avoid excess charges, ask the caller if he or she called your wireless number. If so, hang up and return the call from a landline phone.

    Please note that if you choose to use call forwarding, your voice mail will be deactivated and callers will not be able to leave messages. For more detailed instructions on call forwarding, please call us at 611 from your wireless phone (always a free call), 1-888-944-9400 or e-mail us.

  7. 7) What happens if I forget to press the END key after completing a call?

    If the END key is not pressed when you are finished with your call, usually the call will automatically disconnect when the other party hangs up. However, the call may continue, possibly resulting in unexpected extra minutes on your next bill.

  8. 8) What should I do if my wireless phone is lost or stolen?

    If your phone is lost or stolen, immediately call 1-888-944-9400 to suspend service, so we can quickly protect your account from fraudulent use.  If the phone has been stolen, then call your local police and obtain a police report number. Please be aware that customers are responsible for any charges incurred on the phone until the theft or loss is reported to U.S. Cellular.

    If you have Device Insurance from U.S. Cellular, call 1-800-480-0167 to file a claim. Provide the agent with the police report number so they can start processing your claim.

    A couple of tips to help prevent theft:
    Use your phone's security lock option to prevent unauthorized use of your phone. Until the unlock code is entered into the phone, a "locked" phone will not operate
    Protect sensitive documents containing your account information, wireless telephone number and your phone's Electronic Serial Number (ESN)

  9. 9) What should I do if I move out of my home service area?

    Simply contact a U.S. Cellular representative by dialing 611 from your wireless phone or 1-888-944-9400. First, we'll check to see if U.S. Cellular service is offered in your new area. If so, we'll make the change for you. If U.S. Cellular service is not available in the new area, we'll explain your options.

  10. 10) What are the major battery types available for wireless phones?

    Lithium-Ion - Lighter in weight than other batteries, these deliver the longest talk and standby times. Also, they have almost no memory effect
    Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) - These batteries generally have 30 to 50 percent more power capacity than Nickel Cadmium. NiMH batteries can be recharged before being fully depleted after being conditioned for the first time. NiMH batteries are made of non-toxic metals, so are safer for the environment
    Nickel Cadmium (NiCd) - Most phones used to come with a traditional NiCd battery. These last about 12 months with frequent use and must be totally discharged before recharging

  11. 11) What are some battery do's and don'ts?

    Charge your new battery for 12 to 14 hours without interruption, with a slow charger. It usually takes about five charge-discharge cycles before the battery accepts a full charge
    Press END before turning the phone's power off. Ending a call by turning off the power is hard on the battery
    Recharge your battery after one week of non-use
    Use a cigarette lighter adapter whenever possible to conserve your battery's power

    Store your phone and battery in a battery charger where it's continually recharging.
    Discharge and recharge your battery frequently
    Throw an old battery in the trash. Bring it to a U.S. Cellular store to be recycled properly and safely. Cadmium is especially harmful to the environment and cannot be put into landfills
    Leave your phone in direct sunlight

  12. 12) How do I care for my wireless phone?

    Wireless phones today are more durable than ever. However, they are still highly technological devices and cannot withstand abusive treatment. To ensure a long life for your wireless phone, avoid exposing it to liquid, direct sunlight and extreme temperatures.