十二生肖快速推算法有哪些?


东亚地区很多国家民族使用。
印度:其名称和顺序为:鼠、牛、狮、兔、摩睺罗迦、纳加、马、羊、猴、金翅鸟、狗、猪。根据印度神话《阿婆缚纱》的记载,十二生肖动物原为十二个神的坐骑,它们分别是招杜罗神的鼠、毗羯罗神的牛、宫毗罗神的狮、伐折罗神的兔、迷立罗神的摩睺罗迦,安底罗神的纳加、安弥罗神的马,珊底罗神的羊、因达罗神的猴、波夷罗神的金翅鸟、摩虎罗神的狗、和真达罗神的猪,因为印度的生肖有可能起源于中国的生肖。

越南:卯年对应的不是兔年,而是猫年,起因是传入时读音的错误。除此之外,越南的生肖与中国的生肖相同[4]。也有说是生肖被引入越南时,越南还没有兔这种动物,故而使用猫代替[5]。

泰国:由中国人古时引入,所以与中国的相同。不过其中生肖龙在泰国被称为“纳加”(Naga),并非中国传统的龙。

日本:十二生肖与中国的相同,但“猪”在日文里指野猪,而不包括家猪(日文称“豚”),这与古汉语中的汉字意义基本吻合。

缅甸:

说法一:星期一属虎,星期二属狮,星期三上午属象,星期三下午属无牙象,星期四属鼠,星期五属天竺鼠,星期六属龙,星期天属妙翅鸟。
说法二:只有八个生肖,以星球为名,从周一至周日排列,星期一出生的人属太阳,星期二出生的人属火星,星期三上午出生的属水星,下午出生的则属睽星,所以到周日也就共有八个生肖了。
埃及:分别是牡牛、山羊、猿、驴、蟹、蛇、犬、猫、鳄、红鹤、狮子、鹰。

希腊:与埃及生肖基本相同,只是其中有鼠没有猫,但奇怪的是有鸭。

古巴比伦:牡牛、山羊、狮、驴、蜣螂、蛇、犬、猫、鳄、红鹤、猿、鹰。

Chinese_Zodia_Years

7 Stages of Alzheimer’s Symptoms | Alzheimer’s Association


7 Stages of Alzheimer’s & Symptoms | Alzheimer’s Association.

Alzheimer’s symptoms vary. The stages below provide a general idea of how abilities change during the course of the disease.

Stage 1: No impairment
Stage 2: Very mild decline
Stage 3: Mild decline
Stage 4: Moderate decline
Stage 5: Moderately severe decline
Stage 6: Severe decline
Stage 7: Very severe decline

Not everyone will experience the same symptoms or progress at the same rate. This seven-stage framework is based on a system developed by Barry Reisberg, M.D., clinical director of the New York University School of Medicine’s Silberstein Aging and Dementia Research Center.

Stage 1: No impairment (normal function)
The person does not experience any memory problems. An interview with a medical professional does not show any evidence of symptoms of dementia.
Stage 2: Very mild cognitive decline (may be normal age-related changes or earliest signs of Alzheimer’s disease)
The person may feel as if he or she is having memory lapses — forgetting familiar words or the location of everyday objects. But no symptoms of dementia can be detected during a medical examination or by friends, family or co-workers.
Learn more: Risk Factors Identifying Mild Cognitive Impairment 
(approx 21 min.)

Stage 3:

Mild cognitive decline (early-stage Alzheimer’s can be diagnosed in some, but not all, individuals with these symptoms)
Friends, family or co-workers begin to notice difficulties. During a detailed medical interview, doctors may be able to detect problems in memory or concentration. Common stage 3 difficulties include:

  • Noticeable problems coming up with the right word or name

  • Trouble remembering names when introduced to new people
  • Having noticeably greater difficulty performing tasks in social or work settings Forgetting material that one has just read
  • Losing or misplacing a valuable object
  • Increasing trouble with planning or organizing

Learn more: Know the 10 SignsSteps to Diagnosis and Related Dementias

Inside the Brain: An Interactive Tour
Learn how stages of Alzheimer’s relate to physical changes within the brain.


Stage 4:

Moderate cognitive decline
(Mild or early-stage Alzheimer’s disease) 

At this point, a careful medical interview should be able to detect clear-cut symptoms in several areas:
  • Forgetfulness of recent events
  • Impaired ability to perform challenging mental arithmetic — for example, counting backward from 100 by 7s
  • Greater difficulty performing complex tasks, such as planning dinner for guests, paying bills or managing finances
  • Forgetfulness about one’s own personal history
  • Becoming moody or withdrawn, especially in socially or mentally challenging situations

Help is available

Your local Alzheimer’s Association chapter can connect you with the resources you need to cope with the symptoms and challenges of Alzheimer’s. Find a chapter in your community

Our free 24/7 Helpline provides information, referral and care consultation by professionals in 170 languages.

Our Greenfield Library houses more than 5,000 books, journals and resources. Access it online.

Our Alzheimer’s Navigator helps guide you to answers by creating customized action plans and providing access to information, support and local resources.

Stage 5: Moderately severe cognitive decline
(Moderate or mid-stage Alzheimer’s disease)

Gaps in memory and thinking are noticeable, and individuals begin to need help with day-to-day activities. At this stage, those with Alzheimer’s may:
  • Be unable to recall their own address or telephone number or the high school or college from which they graduated
  • Become confused about where they are or what day it is
  • Have trouble with less challenging mental arithmetic; such as counting backward from 40 by subtracting 4s or from 20 by 2s
  • Need help choosing proper clothing for the season or the occasion
  • Still remember significant details about themselves and their family
  • Still require no assistance with eating or using the toilet

Learn More: Daily Care and Behaviors

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Stage 6: Severe cognitive decline
(Moderately severe or mid-stage Alzheimer’s disease)

Memory continues to worsen, personality changes may take place and individuals need extensive help with daily activities. At this stage, individuals may:
  • Lose awareness of recent experiences as well as of their surroundings
  • Remember their own name but have difficulty with their personal history

Remember:

It is difficult to place a person with Alzheimer’s in a specific stage as stages may overlap.

  • Distinguish familiar and unfamiliar faces but have trouble remembering the name of a spouse or caregiver
  • Need help dressing properly and may, without supervision, make mistakes such as putting pajamas over daytime clothes or shoes on the wrong feet
  • Experience major changes in sleep patterns — sleeping during the day and becoming restless at night
  • Need help handling details of toileting (for example, flushing the toilet, wiping or disposing of tissue properly)
  • Have increasingly frequent trouble controlling their bladder or bowels
  • Experience major personality and behavioral changes, including suspiciousness and delusions (such as believing that their caregiver is an impostor)or compulsive, repetitive behavior like hand-wringing or tissue shredding
  • Tend to wander or become lost
Stage 7: Very severe cognitive decline
(Severe or late-stage Alzheimer’s disease)

In the final stage of this disease, individuals lose the ability to respond to their environment, to carry on a conversation and, eventually, to control movement. They may still say words or phrases.
At this stage, individuals need help with much of their daily personal care, including eating or using the toilet. They may also lose the ability to smile, to sit without support and to hold their heads up. Reflexes become abnormal. Muscles grow rigid. Swallowing impaired.

Learn more: Late-Stage Care

Vascular Dementia | Signs, Symptoms, & Diagnosis


Vascular Dementia | Signs, Symptoms, & Diagnosis.

Vascular dementia is a decline in thinking skills caused by conditions that block or reduce blood flow to the brain, depriving brain cells of vital oxygen and nutrients.
About 
Symptoms
Diagnosis

About vascular dementia

Did you know?

Every heartbeat pumps 20 to 25 percent of your blood to your brain, where billions of cells use 20 percent of the oxygen and nutrients your blood carries.

Inadequate blood flow can damage and eventually kill cells anywhere in the body. The brain has one of the body’s richest networks of blood vessels and is especially vulnerable.

In vascular dementia, changes in thinking skills sometimes occur suddenly following strokes that block major brain blood vessels. Thinking problems also may begin as mild changes that worsen gradually as a result of multiple minor strokes or other conditions that affect smaller blood vessels, leading to cumulative damage. A growing number of experts prefer the term “vascular cognitive impairment (VCI)” to “vascular dementia” because they feel it better expresses the concept that vascular thinking changes can range from mild to severe.

Vascular brain changes often coexist with changes linked to other types of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease and dementia with Lewy bodies. Several studies have found that vascular changes and other brain abnormalities may interact in ways that increase the likelihood of dementia diagnosis. Sign up for our enews to receive updates about Alzheimer’s and dementia care and research.

Vascular dementia is widely considered the second most common cause of dementia after Alzheimer’s disease, accounting for 20 to 30 percent of cases. Many experts believe that vascular dementia remains underdiagnosed — like Alzheimer’s disease — even though it’s recognized as common.

Learn more: Key Types of DementiaMixed Dementia


Symptoms

Related dementias share some common symptoms

Vascular changes that start in brain areas that play a key role in storing and retrieving information may cause memory loss that looks very much like Alzheimer’s disease.

Symptoms can vary widely, depending on the severity of the blood vessel damage and the part of the brain affected. Memory loss may or may not be a significant symptom depending on the specific brain areas where blood flow is reduced.

Vascular dementia symptoms may be most obvious when they happen soon after a major stroke. Sudden post-stroke changes in thinking and perception may include:

  • Confusion
  • Disorientation
  • Trouble speaking or understanding speech
  • Vision loss

These changes may happen at the same time as more familiar physical stroke symptoms, such as a sudden headache, difficulty walking, or numbness or paralysis on one side of the face or the body.

Multiple small strokes or other conditions that affect blood vessels and nerve fibers deep inside the brain may cause more gradual thinking changes as damage accumulates. Common early signs of widespread small vessel disease include impaired planning and judgment; uncontrolled laughing and crying; declining ability to pay attention; impaired function in social situations; and difficulty finding the right words.

Learn more:  Warning Signs from the American Stroke Association

Diagnosis

Because vascular cognitive impairment may often go unrecognized, many experts recommend professional screening with brief tests to assess memory, thinking and reasoning for everyone considered to be at high risk for this disorder. Individuals at highest risk include those who have had a stroke or a transient ischemic attack (TIA, also known as a “ministroke”). Additional high-risk groups include those with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or other risk factors for heart or blood vessel disease.

Professional screening for depression is also recommended for high-risk groups. Depression commonly coexists with brain vascular disease and can contribute to cognitive symptoms.

If brief screening tests suggest changes in thinking or reasoning, a more detailed assessment is needed. Core elements of a workup for vascular dementia typically include:

  • A thorough medical history, including family history of dementia
  • Evaluation of independent function and daily activities
  • Input from a family member or trusted friend
  • In-office neurological examination assessing function of nerves and reflexes, movement, coordination, balance and senses
  • Laboratory tests including blood tests and brain imaging

According to a 2011 scientific statement issued by the American Heart Association (AHA) and the American Stroke Association (ASA), and endorsed by the Alzheimer’s Association and the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), the following three criteria suggest the greatest likelihood that mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia is caused by vascular changes:

  1. The diagnosis of dementia  or mild cognitive impairment is confirmed by neurocognitive testing, which involves several hours of written or computerized tests that provide detailed evaluation of specific thinking skills such as judgment, planning, problem-solving, reasoning and memory
  1. There is brain imaging evidence, usually with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), showing evidence of either:
    1. A recent stroke, or
    2. Other brain blood vessel changes whose severity and pattern of affected tissue are consistent with the types of impairment documented in neurocognitive testing
  1. There is no evidence that factors other than vascular changes are contributing to cognitive decline.

The guidelines also discuss cases where the diagnosis may be less clear-cut, such as the common situation where vascular changes coexist with brain changes associated with other types of dementia.

Learn more: AHA/ASA Scientific Statement: Vascular Contributions to Cognitive Impairment and DementiaMixed Dementia

Help is available

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with dementia, you are not alone. The Alzheimer’s Association is one of the most trusted resources for information, education, referral and support for Alzheimer’s and other types of dementia.

Call our 24/7 Helpline:800.272.3900
Locate a support group in your community
Join our online community
Visit our Virtual Library

Causes and risks

As with Alzheimer’s disease, advancing age is a major risk factor for vascular cognitive impairment or dementia.

Additional risk factors are the same ones that raise risk for heart problems, stroke and other diseases that affect blood vessels. Many of these vascular factors also raise risk for Alzheimer’s. The following strategies may reduce your risk of diseases that affect your heart and blood vessels — and also may help protect your brain:

  • Don’t smoke
  • Keep your blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar within recommended limits
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Exercise
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Limit alcohol consumption

Learn more: Be Heart Smart

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Vascular health can impact brain health. Stay-up-to-date on the research linking brain health and heart health.   Subscribe now


Treatment and outcomes

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved any drugs specifically to treat symptoms of vascular dementia, but there is some clinical trial evidence that certain drugs approved to treat Alzheimer’s may also offer a modest benefit  in people diagnosed with vascular dementia.

Controlling risk factors that may increase the likelihood of further damage to the brain’s blood vessels is an important treatment strategy. There’s substantial evidence that treatment of risk factors may improve outcomes and help postpone or prevent further decline.

Individuals should work with their physicians to develop the best treatment plan for their symptoms and circumstances.

Like other types of dementia, vascular dementia shortens lifespan. Some data suggest that those who develop dementia following a stroke survive three years, on average. As with other stroke symptoms, cognitive changes may sometimes improve during recovery and rehabilitation from the acute phase of a stroke as the brain generates new blood vessels and brain cells outside the damaged region take on new roles.

Learn more: Clinical Studies for Dementia

TOP RESOURCES

Infections, Eating Problems Signal The End in Advanced Dementia


Infections, Eating Problems Signal The End in Advanced Dementia.

By John Gever, Senior Editor, MedPage Today

Published: October 14, 2009
Reviewed by Zalman S. Agus, MD; Emeritus Professor
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and Dorothy Caputo, MA, RN, BC-ADM, CDE, Nurse Planner

The final months of advanced dementia are marked by “distressing symptoms and burdensome interventions,” investigators concluded in the first systematic, prospective investigation of the disease’s late-stage clinical course.

Among 323 patients with advanced dementia in nearly two dozen nursing homes who were followed for 18 months, more than 40% developed pneumonia, while half had at least one febrile episode, and 85% suffered eating problems, according to Susan L. Mitchell, MD, MPH, of the Hebrew Senior Life Institute for Aging Research in Boston, and colleagues.

Some 55% of the sample died during follow-up, the researchers reported in the Oct. 14New England Journal of Medicine. Most suffered from Alzheimer’s.

During their final three months of life, 41% of dying patients underwent at least one intensive intervention, such as hospitalization, transport to an emergency room, tube feeding, or parenteral treatment.

“Patients, families, and health care providers must understand and be prepared to confront the end stage of this disease, which is estimated to afflict more than 5 million Americans currently and is expected to afflict more than 13 million by 2050,” Mitchell and colleagues wrote.

They also found that when patients’ surrogates and guardians understood the expected clinical course, burdensome interventions were much less likely during the final three months of life (adjusted odds ratio 0.12, 95% CI 0.04 to 0.37), relative to proxies with poor understanding.

In an accompanying editorial, Greg A. Sachs, MD, of Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis, said the study “moves the field forward in major ways with respect to both prognosis and the terminal nature of advanced dementia.”

Not only should clinicians, nursing home staff, and patients’ families be aware of the study results, Sachs suggested, but so should Congress and the government’s major health agencies.

“Much more research is needed on the use of palliative care for these patients, including studies on prognosis, patients in less advanced stages of dementia, alternative care settings, intervention trials, and, eventually, the effects of implementing programs designed to improve current systems of care,” he wrote.

The study focused on nursing home patients in the Boston area who could no longer recognize family members or walk independently.

About 72% had scores of zero on the Test for Severe Impairment, and the mean scores on the Bedford Alzheimer’s Nursing Severity subscale was 21.0 (SD 2.3). The mean age of the group was 85, and patients had been in nursing home care for a median of three years.

Dementia was related to vascular insufficiency in 17% of the patients and to Alzheimer’s disease in 72%. Symptoms in the remainder had other causes.

Patients underwent exams every three months. Caregivers and guardians or other surrogate decision-makers were also interviewed regularly.

In particular, each guardian or surrogate was asked whether he or she thought the patient would survive another six months. Also, at study baseline they were asked whether they understood the general clinical complications that might be expected in advanced dementia and whether they had discussed these issues with a nursing home physician.

Median patient survival was 478 days, Mitchell and colleagues reported. They calculated the following probabilities of complications:

  • Pneumonia: 41.1%
  • Febrile episode: 52.6%
  • Eating problems: 85.8%

 

Patients developing these problems had relatively high mortality rates in the following six months: 46.7% after a bout of pneumonia, 44.5% after a fever, and 38.6% after eating problems began.

On the other hand, patients who could eat normally were very unlikely to die. Only about 10% of these patients died during the entire follow-up period, compared with about 70% of those who developed eating problems at some point.

Other sentinel events included 14 cases of seizure, 11 gastrointestinal bleeds, and seven hip or other bone fractures. But only seven of the 42 sentinel events occurred during the last three months of life for those who died during follow-up.

Symptoms causing acute distress were also common in the study. From 40% to 45% of patients suffered one or more of the following: dyspnea or pain for at least five days per month, pressure ulcers at stage II or higher, and aspiration. Nearly 54% experienced periods of agitation, the researchers found.

Among the entire study sample, about one-third received parenteral therapy, while 17% were admitted to a hospital, 10% had an emergency room visit, and 8% were tube-fed.

Pneumonia accounted for more than two-thirds of the hospitalizations, Mitchell and colleagues said.

Only 30% of those who died during follow-up had been referred to hospice care, and 22% of the overall sample.

The interviews with surrogates and guardians showed that 96% believed that comfort was the primary goal of therapy. Less than 20% said a nursing home physician had discussed prognosis with them.

About 80% indicated that they understood the medical complications likely to occur, but only 33% said they had discussed them with a physician.

Mitchell and colleagues noted that most of these findings had been observed in previous studies, but those were either retrospective or cross-sectional analyses or had focused on hospitalized patients. “The clinical course of advanced dementia has not been described in a rigorous, prospective manner,” they said, prompting their study.

They said their results “can be used to inform families and care providers that infections and eating problems should be expected and that their occurrence often indicates that the end of life is near.”

They added, “Families and providers should also understand that although these complications may be harbingers or even precipitants of death, as they are in other terminal diseases (e.g., the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, cancer, and emphysema), it is the major illness, in this case dementia, that is the underlying cause of death.”

In his editorial, Sachs said it was important that clinicians and patients’ families approach advanced dementia “as a terminal illness requiring palliative care.” He argued that these patients should qualify for hospice care whether or not they have other serious illnesses.

He also criticized moves by the government to restrict hospice care in nursing homes. “Although no one can argue against the need to root out fraud and unseemly conflicts of interest, it would be a shame to take hospice away from patients with dementia, who could truly benefit from it,” Sachs wrote.

Mitchell and colleagues noted that their study was limited by its narrow geographic focus and its reliance on charts and nursing reports for some data. They also emphasized that their reported survival times do not represent survival from onset of advanced dementia.

They also noted, “We can report only the associations between the health care proxies’ perceptions of prognosis and of the complications expected and the use or nonuse of aggressive interventions — we cannot draw conclusions about cause and effect.”

Choosing an iPhone 5 carrier | iPhone Atlas – CNET Reviews


Now that T-Mobile is offering the iPhone 5, CNET breaks downs all the nuances and offerings of each of the handset’s major four U.S. carriers.

by | April 11, 2013 3:06 PM PDT, Updated: April 11, 2013 3:06 PM PDT

Choosing an iPhone 5 carrier | iPhone Atlas - CNET Reviews

AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint will carry the Apple iPhone 5 with 4G LTE.
(Credit: CNET)

One of the most important aspects of a handset’s overall user experience is which carrier it’s operating on.

Now that T-Mobile is offering the device, the iPhone 5 is finally available on all four major U.S. carriers. (Regional networks like U.S. Cellular, Cricket Wireless, and C Spire sell the handset as well.)

Each of these four networks — AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile — have different plans, prices, and bundles. In addition, T-Mobile’s iPhone in particular comes with a number of differences compared to the others. However, with all the little nuanced phone plans offered by these companies, it can get confusing for those of you who are free agents looking for a new carrier contract to sign.

To make it clearer, we broke down some of the basic but important facts worth considering when shopping for the new iPhone. Keep in mind, however, that network performance depends on a number of factors that individual users must look into, especially when it comes local coverage. If you have more questions about the device itself, be sure to check out our FAQ and our full iPhone 5 review.

Editor’s Note: This piece originally published on September 18, 2012 and has been updated April 11, 2013, 3:06 p.m. PT.

AT&T

  • 4G LTE network coverage: Launched September 18, 2011. Currently available in 161 markets with 300 million people covered by the end of 2014..

  • Unlimited or tiered data plans?: AT&T offers no unlimited data option for new users. However, customers can enroll in a Mobile Share plan that ranges from $30/month for 4GB to $335/month for 50GB.

  • Talk, text, and data plan price range (for Individual): $59.99 to $119.99/month. Senior plans start as low as $29.99

  • Monthly plan breakdown: If you’re under 65 years of age, the cheapest nationwide talk plan is $39.99/month for 450 minutes. Unlimited talk is $69.99 a month. Adding data will be at least an extra $20/month for 300MB. The most expensive is $50/month for 5GB. For unlimited text messaging, that’s an extra $20/month.

  • Hardware costs: With two-year contract: 16GB, $199.99; 32GB, $299.99; and 64GB, $399.99. Without: 16GB, $649.99; 32GB, $749.99; and 64GB, $849.99.

  • Overseas use: AT&T’s GSM unit will function overseas, and customers will need to get a unique PUK code to unblock their SIM cards.

  • Simultaneous voice and data: Just like AT&T’s iPhone 4S, customers will be able totalk and surf the Web at the same time on the 5.

  • FaceTime over cellular network: iPhone’s video-calling service, FaceTime, works over a cellular connection with iOS 6.

  • Release date: September 21, 2012.

  • Other considerations: Though AT&T neophytes won’t get an unlimited option, those who’ve been grandfathered in with its $30/month unlimited data plan a long, long time ago, will still be able to keep it when purchasing the iPhone 5. Just keep in mind that after reaching 5GB, you’ll get throttled.

  • Conclusion: The carrier is ideal for the ultimate multitasker, since you can carry on conversations and use data simultaneously.

Verizon Wireless

  • 4G LTE network coverage: Launched December 5, 2010. Currently available in 486 markets with 273 million people currently covered.

  • Unlimited or tiered data plans?: Verizon doesn’t offer an unlimited data plan for new customers, but it does have Share Everything Plans that start at $50/month for unlimited talk and text with 1GB of shared data, and maxing out at $375/month for 50GB.

  • Talk, text, and data plan price range (for Individual): $69.99 to $169.99 a month.

  • Monthly plan breakdown: If you want unlimited talk and text, the cheapest rate is $99.99/month for 75MB of data (the other options are $119.99/month for 2GB, $139.99/month for 5GB, and the most expensive is $169.99/month for 10GB).

  • Hardware costs: With two-year contract: 16GB, $199.99; 32GB, $299.99; and 64GB, $399.99. Without: 16GB, $649.99; 32GB, $749.99; and 64GB, $849.99.

  • Overseas use: Verizon users will be able to roam GSM networks overseas, and the company will unlock global SIMs for customers who are in good standing and have stuck with the carrier for 60 days.

  • Simultaneous voice and data: Unfortunately, Verizon customers need to be on Wi-Fi if they want to surf the Internet and place a call simultaneously. While there are plenty of Verizon 4G LTE phones that allow talk and data at the same time, Verizon’s iPhone 5, however, won’t be able to do this due to a lack of a third antenna.

  • FaceTime over cellular network: Verizon offers FaceTime over its cellular network.

  • Release date: September 21, 2012.

  • Other considerations: The Big Red is a little confusing with its unlimited plan for existing users, but here it is in a nutshell: Once upon a time, customers had unlimited data for $30/month. At the time of its launch, users who wanted to keep this unlimited plan and get the iPhone 5 had to purchase the phone for the full, unsubsidized price, which ranged from $649.99 for the 16GB model to $849.99 for the 64GB.

  • Conclusion: One of Verizon’s biggest incentive is the breadth and availability of its 4G LTE network. Given that, customers should always research carrier coverage for their prospective towns, but with 486 networks under its belt, chances are that Verizon will have you covered.

Sprint

  • 4G LTE network coverage: Launched July 15, 2012. Currently available in 100 markets

  • Unlimited or tiered data plans?: Sprint offers unlimited talk, data, and messaging for $109.99/month.

  • Talk, text, and data plan price range (for Individual): $79.99 to $109.99 a month.

  • Monthly plan breakdown: Sprint’s most bare-bones plan is its “Basic” option, which offers 200 anytime minutes for $29.99/month (450 minutes and 900 minutes cost $39.99/month and $59.99/month, respectively). If you want unlimited messaging, that’s an extra $10/month (though, there is no unlimited messaging option for just the 200-minute plan). If you’re cool with these talk limitations but want unlimited data, that’ll be an extra $30 a month stacked on top. That means if you start out with the 450 minutes a month plan, it’ll be $79.99/month for unlimited text and data.

  • Hardware costs: With two-year contract: 16GB, $199.99; 32GB, $299.99; and 64GB, $399.99. Without: 16GB, $649.99; 32GB, $749.99; and 64GB, $849.99.

  • Overseas use: Similar to Verizon, Sprint users can’t switch to a GSM network in the U.S., but can do so overseas. And if you’ve paid your bills on time and have been with Sprint for 90 days, it will unlock your SIM for global usage.

  • Simultaneous voice and data: Sprint confirmed that customers will not be able to access voice and data capabilities simultaneously. Similar to Verizon, this is because Sprint’s iPhone 5 doesn’t have a third antenna that would make this feature possible.

  • FaceTime over cellular network: There will be no restrictions on cellular usage for FaceTime over Sprint’s network.

  • Release date: September 21, 2012.

  • Other considerations: The iPhone 5 features wideband audio (or HD Voice), which lends to better call quality. Sprint offers HD Voice, but confirmed that it won’t be available on the iPhone 5.

  • Conclusion: The carrier trails behind Verizon and AT&T in terms of number of 4G LTE markets covered, but it’s the only network aside from T-Mobile that offers unlimited data.

T-Mobile

  • 4G network coverage: Launched March 26, 2013. Currently available in seven cities and projected to reach 200 million Americans by the end of 2013.

  • Unlimited or tiered data plans?: T-Mobile has an unlimited talk, text, and data plan for $70/month.

  • Talk, text, and data plan price range (for Individual): $50 to $70 a month.

  • Monthly plan breakdown: T-Mobile offers unlimited talk and text and 500MB of high-speed 4G data for $50/month. For an extra $10/month, you can get an extra 2GB of data, and if you want unlimited high-sped data, you’ll need to pay $70 a month.

  • Hardware costs: Without two-year contract: 16GB, $579.99; 32GB, $679.99; and 64GB, $779.99. A $20/month for 24 months payment plan is also available, with down payments starting at: 16GB, $99.99; 32GB, $199.99; and 64GB, $299.99.

  • Overseas use: The phone will operate on a GSM network. The carrier will unlock your SIM if your account is in good standing and you paid off your handset. If you have yet to pay it off, T-Mobile requires that you stay in active service for at least 60 days before it unlocks the SIM.

  • Simultaneous voice and data: Customers will be able to chat and use data at the same time.

  • FaceTime over cellular network: There will be no restrictions on cellular usage for FaceTime over T-mobile’s HSPA+ and 4G LTE networks.

  • Release date: April 12, 2013.

  • Other considerations: We caution current iPhone 5 users who want to port their unlocked device over to T-Mobile because the existing model won’t be able to fully support T-Mobile’s entire network. If you want to take full advantage of the carrier’s data speeds, we suggest purchasing the phone directly from the carrier, or from Apple on and after April 12.

  • Conclusion: If you want the iPhone off-contract, T-Mobile is your most economical bet. But keep in mind that while its 4G LTE speeds are impressive for now, its fledgling network is only available in a handful of cities.