Keep In Plan

Keep In Plan

An application to monitor call, SMS and data usage on Android phones.

Keep In Plan arose from the need to monitor landline calls provided at no cost as part of a small business Vodafone plan. Every other app we looked at initially wasn't capable of separating the landline data from normal 'any network' data - so we wrote our own. It became clear to us that it may be useful to other UK Vodafone customers and so we have released the app on the Android Market. Please note that while developed for Vodafone plans the app settings are flexible enough to cover many plans from other UK mobile phone providers such as O2, T-mobile and Three.

Getting started

After installing the app you are invited to launch the settings screen. Click OK on the dialogue or use the usual 'menu' button to navigate to the settings page.

Keep In Plan Settings
Keep In Plan Settings

The first thing to do is set the start day for your plan entering the number (between 1 and 31) that your plan runs from.

Before exploring the call settings screen you can also quickly set your SMS allowance by tapping SMS limit and your data allowance by tapping Data allowance.

Please note if you have 'unlimited' SMS or data allowances you should enter the 'fair use' figure here. Currently on Vodafone this is 3000 texts and 500MB.

Once these are set tap on Call settings.

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Keep In Plan Call Settings
Keep In Plan Call Settings

Tap Plan minutes and enter your minutes allowance for your plan.

By default the app allocates all calls to mobiles and landlines against your included minutes. The next three settings enable you to customise which numbers are excluded from or included in your plan. Please refer to the section below on how to enter the numbers effectively.

Free numbers allows you to add numbers which are totally free. This may include calls to the plan provider (eg 191 on Vodafone) or it may also be calls within your own VPN on some business plans.

Add numbers to plan allows you include other numbers in your included minutes total. On some plans calls to voice mail (121) are free while in others they are deducted from your included minutes. If they are deducted add '121' in this section.

Exclude numbers from plan allows you to filter out numbers which would normally be included in the inclusive minutes total but for which your provider charges. An example of this would be 'Isle of Man' mobiles or certain reduced cost international mobile numbers (07744).

If your plan includes a separate landlines allowance (or unlimited) ensure that the next setting 'Separate landlines' is checked. Otherwise leave unchecked and landline calls will be allocated against your included minutes.

If landlines are separate you will be able to enter the Landline minutes allowance as well as the limit for an individual call. This call limit on Vodafone plans with 'unlimited' landline calls is currently 60 minutes. Any calls over this limit will have the excess minutes added to the included minutes total.

The final setting enables you to recalculate the data for the current month. This should only be necessary if you have discovered you have called a number that should be filtered in or out of your plan. Please be aware that if you have deleted any calls from your call log during the current month then this recalculation will not be accurate [clear]

Entering numbers in the filters.

Keep In Plan Excluded Numbers
Keep In Plan Excluded Numbers

The filters are flexible enough to enter any UK number.

The first item on any list screen allows you to add a number.

The example shows the filter for the international version an 'excluded' mobile prefix. The * is only allowed at the end of the number to match any number with this prefix. You would probably also want to add the non-international version of this number 07744* as well.

Clicking on a number in the filter list allows you to edit or delete that number. [clear]

Limitations

The app has some limitations of which you should be aware. In order to save on battery usage the app limits checking call, SMS and data logs to once every 20 minutes. If your phone shuts down due to low battery or is rebooted due to an update then the data logged between the last check and the reboot will be lost. The best way to keep the data accurate is to launch (view) the Keep In Plan window before you reboot which will ensure that the data logged up to that point is captured.