KERIGA | Inspirer 1 | 09.24.2013 6:52 AM

As promised on the other TS thread, I've copied my original answers to your first questions about the new Samsung Galaxy Centura 738 that we purchased last Saturday. Please post any additional questions, comments concerns about the phone specifically and TracFone in general here and I'll try to assist you as much as I can.

This is my 6th handset from TracFone in about seven years. Before that, I had service through Net10, TracFone's sister company after switching from Verizon. Customer Service isn't perfect, but it has improved exponentially from the way it was even a few years ago. My experience can help you navigate the intricacies of problem resolution and I'm more than willing to share this information.

As promised, below are my original posts from the TS thread answering a few of the first questions asked about the Samsung Galaxy Centura 738.


Post #1

As soon as the clearance prices began appearing on the LG 800g and the LG 840g a few weeks ago, it was abundantly clear that something new and big was about to be introduced. This Samsung Galaxy Centura 738 Smartphone not only met, but exceeded, all expectations.

I'd been checking TracFone's website weekly and still there's nothing. What I noticed were the cut rates on these two former touchscreen stars. The reconditioned LG 800g is listed at $5; the reconditioned LG 840g now sells for $9.99.

It's absolutely true what HSN said about having the Galaxy Centura exclusive. It's not even available yet on TracFone's website.

You can't beat this deal, whether you're a new or existing TracFone customer, where everything rolls over and what are now only Talk minutes suddenly become Text and Data, too.

It's been years since I've purchased an airtime card. I just upgrade my phone every 18-24 months, getting the newest handset with accessories, bonus minutes and this time, that fantastic $25 gift card for the Google Playstore.

I can't wait to get this phone. I feel sorry for anyone who hesitated and missed Saturday's TS (Sept 21st) because today HSN is selling the same package for $149.95, a $20 savings over the MSRP when purchased directly from TracFone or conventional retailers (where it won't be available 'til mid- or late-October), but it's $25 more than the TS price and the ETA is Oct. 7th.

jeannellen your current LG 840g is not a true smartphone, but rather a hybrid built by LG to Tracfone's specifications. I'm sure you've noticed that while it was superior to its immediate predecessor, the LG 800g, there were so many things it simply couldn't do. Limitations regarding access to certain e-mail protocols and restrictions on the size of webpages it could load or even connect with often became frustrating. With this new Galaxy Centura, you'll be able to do everything that you currently do on an Android tablet. In fact, these phones are mini-tablet computers, often referred to a "phablets," for combination phones and tablets. With the 3g Wi-Fi, you won't deplete your stockpile of Data minutes and you can web browse at no cost just like you did on your LG. Always make certain the wi-fi is on and you're connected to a router or hotspot. Of course, if you're not in the vicinity of a freebie hotspot, you'll be able to access the Internet, but it's going to cost you in data mbs.

mooncat7, the best way for existing TracFone customers to port their current number, minutes and airtime to the new phone is to call Customer Service at TracFone. Rather than doing it yourself online, it's good idea to: (1) speak to a TracFone CSR (make sure that you get that CSR's name and ID number as a reference in the event that problems arise). (2) make sure the new phone is fully charged. They tell you that your new cell phone must be turned on during the process, so it's best to (3) call from a landline or another cellphone - not the new one that you're attempting to activate and to which you're porting and transferring. Do NOT turn off the new phone. They'll tell you that it can take up to an hour or more to complete the process. I've done it this way numerous times and it's never taken more than a few seconds to accomplish activation, addition of the bonus minutes and porting my number.

arinta, go to the TracFone website, click Support and click Technical Support followed by FAQs on the drop-down menu. Perhaps someone misspoke in the demo because there doesn't appear to be a third method of phone number porting.

Meezergeezer, you appeared to have some reservations, writing "...I hope if this phone doesn't work out I can transfer the minutes back to my old phone..." Of course, TracFone will allow you go retain your minutes and airtime, as well as re-porting your phone number, if necessary. It's a good idea to: (1) speak to a TracFone CSR (get name and ID number as a reference in the event that problems arise) for help in doing this and (2) make sure you do this before returning the new phone, because you'll be asked for information contained therein. Also note that if you've de-activated the old phone, it may be necessary for TracFone to send you a new SIM card to re-activate, therefore you may find yourself without cell service for several days.

4kitties, you said you're not terribly fond of touchscreen, especially in cold weather. Have you considered using a stylus? I just ordered a mini-stylus for this new Galaxy with a plug on one end that fits snugly in the audio jack, to reduce the chance of losing it. Of course, a screen protector is a must when using a stylus. Were you aware that there are gloves with small pads made of a special fabric at the fingertips that will permit body heat transfer, thereby allow you easy use of your phone, tablet, etc. even in cold weather? Personally, I'd find that cumbersome, so I'd simply prefer to use a stylus. Even when you size the icons and widgets to Normal or Large (some phones even have XLg), there's a tendency to touch more than one, especially if you have long nails.

Linny535, let me see if I can answer your questions. Data is defined as all the webpages you view, as well as songs, games, books, magazines and apps, etc. that you download.

Currently with your LG 840 g, you buy minutes and that translates into voice and text. When you text, 1 voice minute = 3 text messages. The new Samsung will have a 1:1 ratio of voice-to-text, which is still cheaper than a conventional wireless plan. For example, if you had Verizon now, your basic wireless plan of 350 minutes may cost $39.95/month, but you'd have to add a text plan that could cost another $30/month and a data plan that could cost $30+/month.

With TracFone and this new Galaxy Centura 738 smartphone, whenever you buy additional minutes (whether it's an airtime card, online purchase or you add on through the phone), whatever minutes you purchase will triple automatically (e.g. - 200 becomes 600) and they will also split into 3 separate buckets (e.g. - you'll get 600 voice, 600 texts and 600 mbs of data - all for the same price). When you go to a retail outlet, you're not going to see separate cards for data. Simply add the airtime and TracFone does the rest for you.

Remember, too, that just like your LG 840g with Wi-Fi, you won't deplete your data supply if you web browse, download, etc. while using a hotspot or a Wi-Fi router.

BTW - it's a good idea to hang onto your LG 840g as a reserve even after you've activated your new Samsung Galaxy. Suppose your new phone is lost, stolen or damaged. With the old de-activated LG 840g still in your possession, while you're waiting for a replacement Galaxy, you can call TracFone and request that they reactivate the LG (say it's an emergency and they can do it immediately over the phone) or send you a new SIM card to insert in the old phone and bring it back to life with all your minutes and airtime intact temporarily, until your replacement smartphone arrives. Yes, you'll have to switch back eventually, but you won't be left without a phone.

After you've done your Bluetooth transfers, it's also a good idea to leave your CONTACTS and other important info in the old phone that you've stored carefully in a very secure place until you're absolutely certain that you're going to give it away or recycle it. Then delete your personal information by restoring Factory Settings.

You also asked about buying a new phone from HSN, returning it but keeping the minutes for your old phone. I'm guessing they won't let you do that because the minutes are part of the package. Just buy minutes anywhere from the more than 80,000 retailers nationwide. Or go online or buy minutes through the phone. Often you'll find that Walmart and Target will discount the airtime card. Additionally, unless you tell them to stop, TracFone will bombard you with special offers for airtime, usually coinciding with holidays and back-to-school.

I sincerely hope that clarifies everything for you. If you have additional questions, I'll try to answer them for you.


Post #2

Meezergeezer wrote:
A huge thank you to KERIGA - you were some complete and thorough in answering all of our questions. My husband and I ordered two - pretty excited to get the new Centura phone Smiley Happy God bless, be well, Meezer Smiley Happy

mooncat7 wrote:
Thank you so much, Keriga, you were just as helpful when I bought my 840G last year. Can you imagine what a zoo it will be at Tracfone as HSN customers start receiving their phones, with over 30,000 sold on Saturday?...

You're very welcome, mooncat7 and Meezergeezer. The Centura is going to be my first true smartphone, so I'm going to be learning its inner workings right along with everyone else. It's a simple matter of paying it forward because when I got my first Android tablet, I was ready to pitch the thing after a few frustrating days. There was a wonderful person on this Forum who was so incredibly patient. She answered my questions, offered helpful suggestions and generally got me to the point where I was comfortable with it. I went from wanting to return it to never leaving home without it in less than a week.

I had to laugh mooncat, when you theorized that TracFone Customer Service will be inundated in the next few days as the thousands of HSN buyers begin receiving their new phones. I can tell you from experience that many CSRs are relying on the same manuals that are available to the public online. In fact, in some cases, I found that I knew more about the LG 800g and the LG 840g than the "expert" on the other end of the line.

I'm amazed at how much content we've generated on the Electronics Forum with our LG 840g Q&A. It's pages and pages. As always, I'm happy to help whenever I can. I'll try to do the same with this Galaxy. Since this thread is mainly for the TS and already it looks as if we're going to rival the volume produced on those LG 800g and 840g threads, I'm going to copy the responses that I posted here and transfer them to a new Galaxy Centura 738 thread on the Electronics Forum. That way, after the phones arrive, if anyone has questions, we can explore and learn together without monopolizing this thread. Please post your questions over there.

The main thing to remember is to relax - don't stress - you've got a wonderful, brand new toy in your Galaxy Centura. Play with it; have fun with it. Quite honestly though, I expect it to be a fairly easy transition for those already using other Android devices because the phone has the same OS with widgets and icons. Even if you're upgrading from the LG 840g/LG 800g, there shouldn't be much of a learning curve, because you've already mastered the basics from this semi-smart hybrid phone. If you run into any obstacles, I promise to do my best to help you resolve those issues.

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mooncat7 | Admirer 2 | 09.25.2013 3:50 AM
It's my first Android phone too, Keriga, although I've had a Nexus 7 tablet for a couple of months. I had discovered Howardforums, and today found more Centura posts at Looking for info, cases, batteries, reviews and etc. the phone is also called the Samsung SCH S738C and the Galaxy Discover S730G. has loads of pretty cases (I've even ordered a bling-y one!) and Amazon also has cases and spare batteries. Going to get a microSD card at Fry's on Saturday, and should be set!
mooncat7 | Admirer 2 | 09.25.2013 3:41 AM
I sent an email to CS when I got home from work about when the phones would ship. Their reply saying it had shipped today, as well as the "It's Shipped!" Notice from HSN arrived a couple of hours later :-) "On or before" Oct 1st. I hope it arrives Friday so I can charge it up and try the porting/transfer call on Saturday.
jr29 | Admirer 2 | 09.25.2013 1:24 AM
I just got an email saying I would get my phone on Thursday. I ordered it sometime Friday night, can't remember exactly what time. Thank goodness! I don't think I could stand to wait until next week lol. As for the Netgear item, I would check out the reviews over on Amazon. Then I'd get the one with the better review. I've got a Roku and I've never had any problems with it.

I think the reason for the slower delivery service is that they've taken to using UPS to the closest distribution point, and then they give it to the post office to deliver, which adds a couple of days to the time. I figure the government must be giving them a tax break for doing this-- gotta use whatever means necessary to keep the post office in business these days. Plus I'm sure it saves on overtime and/or extra personnel during peak periods.
KERIGA | Inspirer 1 | 09.24.2013 11:59 PM

Still absolutely giddy at the prospect of receiving the Galaxy Centura; can't wait! I checked the status of my smartphone and still it says "Packaging." I wondered has anyone's status had changed to shipped? I placed this order online at about 2 AM. I know HSN was inundated, but they should've anticipated the overwhelming response. I'm wondering why it's taking so long? If shipping is so delayed now, this doesn't bode well for the holiday season. Perhaps we all need to order extra early to ensure our gifts arrive on time.

Recently I've noticed that it takes longer to receive HSN orders. I purchased a Netgear Media Streamer on Sept. 19th and it seems as if it took days to process. Now the order status is showing that it should be delivered on the 30th. That's even slower than the usually snail-like pace of QVC.

Coincidentally, Target has a Roku this week for the same price - $99. I'm thinking of cancelling the HSN order because it took too long to arrive. Also, with Target, I don't have to pay S&H and get a 5% Red Card discount. (If you're interested, check Sunday's circular - pg 13).

ShopNBC is about the fastest, followed byThe Liquidation Channel, which has the best shipping rates. I ordered a pair of Tanzanite earrings last Thursday, paid $1.99 standard shipping and the package arrived today with a DHL label.

UPDATED 10:54 PM - Status: "Shipped."

GardenMama | Admirer 2 | 09.24.2013 1:30 PM
This is going to be my 7TH or 8TH Tracfone & everything you said KERIGA is correct. Tracfone also has a Facebook page where you can go for assistance. You can file a support ticket and they will work w/you through your email. If you prefer a live chat, they also offer that on their Facebook page.

Another great place for Tracfone info is HowardForums with the usual before & after. They have all kinds of forums for ALL kinds of phone.

Enjoy your new phones everyone!:d/ .
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Inspirer 1
Posts: 341

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

Responding to your questions, pammypalm:

1. Tap the phone icon on the homescreen.
2. Then long press "1" on your keypad. That will take you right to Voicemail, where you may be asked to enter a Passcode. (Select a 4-digit code).
3. What follows are instructions on using the standard greeting or customizing by recording your own.
4. Just follow the prompts that will walk you through the rest of the instructions, including directions on how to repeat a section if necessary, then proceed.

For more info, including Message Playback and Accessing Voicemail From Another Phone, see page 11 of the Samsung Galaxy Centura Quick Reference Manual that came in your package with the phone.

As for the $25 Promo Card, sorry, but I can't help because as I attempted to peel off the strip, my number came off with it and shredded into tiny bits and pieces. Yet another stroke of genius in this entire debacle. I managed to retrieve 13 of the 15 digits, but the rest was toast (or shredded wheat).

The website directs those having trouble to an online Customer Service Contact Form, which I completed, along with some choice comments about TracFone's unpreparedness, $tu*pid*ity, ineptitude and unprofessionalism exhibited throughout this entire process. If it was their goal to make it as frustrating and cumbersome as possible, then mission accomplished. I also pointed out to them that they misspelled "recieved" (sic) in their drop-down menu on the Customer Service Contact Form. Typical!

According to the message, a reply will be issued within 48 hours. We'll see. This should be interesting.

Posts: 7

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

My Google Play card was definitely a scratch off, while someone else reported theirs was a peel off.

Redeeming it was a bit of a hassle as you don't just redeem code on card directly at the Google Play store. First you must redeem the card, and then you are given a Google Play code. The web address on the card did not work until I figured out it was case sensitive:
Admirer 2
Posts: 3,769

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

You can add contacts to your Home screen as direct dial shortcuts. When you touch the shortcut, your device will dial the contact's phone number you have selected.

To add a direct dial shortcut to the Home screen, navigate to the Home screen you want to add the shortcut to, and touch Apps Apps Icon . Touch the WIDGETS tab, and scroll through the available widgets until you see Direct dial. Touch and hold the direct dial widget to open the Home screen edit menu. Move the shortcut to the desired location and release. Select the contact you want to call with the shortcut. If the contact has more than one phone number associated with it, touch the phone number you want added as a shortcut. The shortcut is placed on the Home screen, and if the contact you added has a contact photo, the contact photo will appear as the shortcut thumbnail.
Happiness grows at our own firesides, and is not to be picked in strangers' gardens.
Douglas Jerrold
Admirer 3
Posts: 66

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

The free app called Zedge, found in the google play store lets you pick from many different ringtones or wallpaper.
Admirer 2
Posts: 36

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

Very interesting. I got an email from HSN asking me to review the Centura. When I came to HSN dot com, it appears the Centura has been removed. It is no longer listed in the phones or Samsung category, and when I click on the link through My Orders, a page for the phone does not appear. That being the case, I will NOT review it unless and until it's "back in the line-up." They are back to selling the 840G for $99.99, when it previously could be had, immediately pre-Centura, for $49.99 on HSN and less than that on the TF website. I'm just not liking the smell of this all that much. Now that I have the phone I like it, but TF's part in promoting, selling and providing customer service for this phone has been abysmal, and right now I'm feeling that TF itself isn't worth taking a chance on with any future phones.
New Friend
Posts: 2

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

Thanks to all who have posted about this situation, especially the additional Tracfone numbers. I have been a Tracfone customer for years, but this experience has been a fiasco. My online conversion did not complete so I am in "limbo". My phone number does not exist to Tracfone, but it is on my new phone. The latest Tracfone call said the problems was that I tried to activate it outside my zipcode. That's true. I tried to activate it at work - 15 miles away. So, now I am waiting 3-5 business days for a new phone to try again. Like someone else posted, you can not return the new phone because they won't reinstate service to the old phone. If the next attempt is not successful, maybe HSN support can help

I agree with previous posts that both HSN and Tracfone dropped the ball on this. The staff in both places were not properly educated on this. Activation instructions and service display should be clear in the demonstration.
As a current Tracfone usere, kept looking on the phone for a prepaid icon that is not going to be there.

Now, I ask for one more clarification - the additional bonus minutes and matching texting and data plans require a second call with the information on the red card?

Also, one more observation - I noticed that data time was being deducted for apps that operate behind the scenes. I think they can be changed, but I haven't figured all that out yet.

Thanks again, everyone
Admirer 3
Posts: 613

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

Also, one more observation - I noticed that data time was being deducted for apps that operate behind the scenes. I think they can be changed, but I haven't figured all that out yet.

Thanks again, everyone

n/ suggestion was incorrect....we are all learning...:-)

Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.
- Abraham Lincoln

Admirer 3
Posts: 613

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

I'm beyond frustrated with trying to get my minutes transferred......tomorrow will mark 1 week for me and I can't begin to add up how many hours spent in phone calls and on TF's community forum with their online tech.....I keep being told my issue has been escalated but no one is giving me an answer or time frame on getting this resolved (yes I have called their resolutions office in Miami 3 times this week)......I have a feeling my minutes are gone and seriously doubt I'll ever get them or have them restored to my old phone.....I'm not a heavy cell phone user so a TF was perfect for me but this experience has left me with a sour note towards DH bought this phone for me so I'll let him send it back for a refund and I guess I'll need to shop around for something different....maybe try the Virgin Mobile plans....anyone have experience with them?.....I don't want to go from bad service to worse!!!!

Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.
- Abraham Lincoln

New Friend
Posts: 1

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

I purchased the Samsung Galaxy Centura on 9/24/13, what I really loved about it was the fact that the representative stated that if you transferred your old phone number to this new phone any of your old tracfone minutes would carry over to this phone and would also triple and be split as talk, text, and data. After trying to have Tracfone activate my new phone after 4 calls they finally did, then I found that my minutes were not credited correctly. Tracfone had transferred my old minutes but did not triple and the minutes that came with my new phone from the airtime pin was not credited at all. The representative at Tracfone told me I was misinformed about the minutes I was transferring over and that they do not triple. I called HSN and talked with a supervisor who told me that he had heard about the problem and will make sure that misinformation is not spoke in the future! I am really not happy with his response, He basically told me there was nothing that could be done about it, I told him that we were misinformed and legally they can not sell an item over TV and then not offer what was indicated. The supervisor offered only an apology. I told him customers who purchased this phone should have been contacted about this problem, it caused me alot of frustration since I was not aware that the minutes would not triple and had been on the phone trying to have it corrected with the Tracfone representatives. One of the reasons I got the phone was because I could get triple minutes from my old minutes which my old minutes were a total of 1918 minutes which should have tripled as told over the TV. I am very dissapointed in the way HSN has handled this! Shame on you HSN!!!! By the way after 7 phone calls to Tracfone I did receive the triple minutes that came with the phone but my old minutes will not be tripled!
Admirer 3
Posts: 259

RE: Samsung Galaxy Centura 738

I feel badly for all of you who have had such a bad time with your new phone. If we had your experiences, we would be returning it. We have had none of your difficulties. Our old minutes were tripled when we switched along with the data and text added. All of this was done through a TracFone customer service rep who was pleasant and not hard to understand. We did wait a few days after activation to be sure we liked the phone before calling to switch over our old minutes. I sure hope you all get satisfaction soon.
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