A few years ago, after being assured by a Verizon sales clerk that the LG VX-8100 was the phone of choice for Verizon employees and the best value for the money, I bought one. Shortly after getting it home, I was disappointed to learn that I couldn’t text message ring tones to my phone. The software Verizon installed on my phone locked me into their phone-based menu for downloading (and paying for) a ridiculously small selection of ring tones.
Having a camera phone was great, but I quickly learned that I’d have to pay to get pictures off the phone.
To add insult to injury, if I wanted to use the calendar as a serious tool, I’d need to purchase a separate kit from Verizon that would enable me to sync my phone to a calendar on my desktop.
I was in a state of limbo, counting down the months until I could use my trade-in allowance to upgrade to a new phone–and then I discovered BitPim.
BitPim is a free software app that enables you to download photos from your phone, import your Google (or Outlook, or CSV-formatted) calendar into your phone, sync contact info and memos, and import ring tones to your phone.
BitPim isn’t the only program of its kind–just the most widely used. Here’s another, similar site.
In addition to the software, you need a USB cable. You can buy a music kit from Verizon for $25, or you can buy a bare-bones cable on eBay.