How to Use Your G1 on AT&T Without a Data PlanGeneral

How do you access the internet on your G1?

  1. I use WiFi and don't have a data plan

  2. I usually use WiFi, but like having the convenience of EDGE/3G

  3. I use WiFi when availiable, but usually stick to EDGE/3G

  4. I use EDGE/3G almost exclusively, and have little or no need for WiFi

  5. EDGE? 3G? WiFi? Who needs 'em?!


Last Updated:

  1. devin

    devin Member

    I'm already part of an AT&T business plan, and would just as soon continue to use AT&T. Using T-Mobile with my contract-free G1 isn't an option, as they don't have coverage in my area.

    Also, I live in a small town where WiFi is available almost everywhere. It would be nice to have Internet access while commuting, etc. but I don't think I would use an unlimited data plan enough to justify spending upwards of $20/month for the convenience.

    For these reasons, I wanted to use my G1 on AT&T's network without purchasing an unlimited data plan. Here's what I did.

    Activating and Unlocking

    Upon inserting my AT&T sim card and booting the phone, I was presented with an unlock message. I dismissed the message, entered AT&T's APN settings and attempted to sign in to my Google account. As expected, it failed.

    With AT&T's APN settings set, all I needed was an unlock code. I purchased one from They were fast - I got my code within hours of ordering it.

    I restarted the phone and got the unlock prompt. I entered the code, and it was accepted.

    With the correct APN settings still intact I tried again to sign in to my Google account. It worked! No T-Mobile SIM required.

    Disabling Data

    Now that the over the air activation was complete, I wanted disable cell data completely. As one unfortunate T-Mobile customer discovered, cell data can't simply be turned off. It seems that the G1 uses small amounts of data even in standby. While this isn't a problem with an unlimited data connection, it can get expensive if you're roaming or on a per kilobyte rate.

    My solution was to leave the username and password APN settings blank. That way, the G1 simply doesn't know how to use the data connection.

    These are the settings I used:
    Name: AT&T
    APN: wap.cingular
    Proxy: leave blank
    Port: leave blank
    Username: leave blank
    Password: leave blank

    Server: leave blank
    MMS Proxy:
    MMS Port: 80
    APN Type: leave blank

    Voice, SMS, etc. still work fine. If I am not connected to WiFi and I try to access a webpage, or perform some other action that requires an internet connection, I get a network error.

    freeg1unlockcodes likes this.

    N3TWORK BURN3R Well-Known Member

    Forgive me if i sound stupid here, but if you can afford an AT&T voice/data plan, why not use the iPhone? Im not advocating the iPhone by any means, but why go thru hoops trying to get a G1 to work on the AT&T network, when you can just keep it simple and go with a iPhone? I love the Android OS on the phone, but hate the HTC Dream hardware (bad builds, sagging screen etc) i can understand you want to have some kind of open source software and all, but in the end, is it really worth it? Just a thought in my head. :)
  3. upgrayedd

    upgrayedd Member

    Here's another way to disable cell data:
    1. Use Anycut to create a shortcut to "Testing"
    2. Click on Testing.
    3. Click on Phone Information
    4. Hit Menu button
    5. Click on More
    6. Click on Disable data connection

    This turns off all data access. Note that GPRS service switches to "disconnected".
    Now you should have a phone that does voice calls, but no data access.
    To re-enable cell data, do the reverse.

    I now do this when I am not planning to use cell data for a while. It seems to improve the battery life.
  4. Phases

    Phases Community Manager Administrator

    Some will agree with ya. Some will want the G1. Now those people will have instructions! :D

    N3TWORK BURN3R Well-Known Member

    Understandable. I wouldnt want the iphone, but it seems like an obvious choice for att people. :D
  6. devin

    devin Member

    1. I don't want an iPhone. I want a G1. :)
    2. I don't need a data plan - AT&T or otherwise. In my original post, I explain how I disabled EDGE so I don't accumulate fees on my per-kilobyte rate.
    3. If you want any modern smartphone without a data plan, you'll probably need to jump through a few hoops. Contracts and data plans are how cell providers make money.
    I think you're right though - many people will choose the iPhone over the G1. But if you want a phone that is cheaper, open source, has conversation and push capable Gmail, etc, a G1 without a data plan might be the way to go. :cool:
  7. devin

    devin Member

    Awesome! I didn't know it was possible to disable the data connection this way.
    Sounds like a good solution if you plan on re-enabling later.
  8. Ageless Stranger

    Ageless Stranger Well-Known Member

    There is a nice little app on the market called "Toggle Settings", a nice clean interface to toggle all those nice power draining functions.
  9. notaooo

    notaooo New Member

    Does mms and sms still work with att when you disable data connections/set username to something that isnt cingular?
  10. devin

    devin Member

    SMS and voice work. I haven't been able to get MMS working. It isn't something I use often, so I haven't tried very hard.

    I'll be sure to post back here if I have any new info. Has anyone else been able to get MMS working on AT&T?
  11. 4UnaVuCr

    4UnaVuCr New Member

    Is it possible to activate the G1 without ever having a data plan? Like over wifi?

    On the other hand, I think my means of obtaining a G1 may have the answer to that problem. My plan is to upgrade to an iPhone- I'm on AT&T, while my friend, who is on T-Mo, upgrades to a G1, then we basically trade (with some $ changing hands too). Neither of us wants the data plan, but we have to buy into them when we buy the phones, along with the 2 year service agreement.

    My understanding is that neither of us has to keep the data plan for any amount of time after purchase, so should I just be sure to activate the G1 before I cancel the data plan?

    On the other hand, I'm not sure I would have any extra costs on my monthly service bill if I signed up for the data plan then ended up canceling it before I had used any data.

    I'm leaving the iPhone unlock up to my friend, doing the G1 myself.
  12. devin

    devin Member

    Sounds like a good plan, will you be able to cancel the iPhone plan without too much hassle?

    Unfourtunatley, you do have to transfer some cell data to activate the G1. I was able to get my unlocked G1 activated by temporarily enabling data and disabling it as soon as the activation was complete. I did have to pay a little bit on AT&T's per KB rate, but it was worth it.
  13. shermanatrix

    shermanatrix Member

    Does this mean you're using the internet for free? Just a bit confused, myself, I entered in your code and I am now accessing the internet--but I know it's not on a wi-fi connection at the moment.

    <3 Holly Pocket
  14. devin

    devin Member

    Are you with T-Mobile or AT&T?

    In general, cell network companies have two types of data plans - unlimited and pay per Kilobyte. If you want to use your G1 to browse the internet, push Gmail, etc., a pay per KB plan is basically useless, because you'll probably end up paying more per day or week than an unlimited plan costs. I don't spend any money on a data plan, because I use WiFi exclusivley.

    If you haven't explicitly purchased an unlimited plan, you have a pay per KB plan, and you should disable cell data immediately by changing the APN settings as I described in my original post so you don't get hit with a huge bill.

    Hope that helps,
  15. shermanatrix

    shermanatrix Member

    Well I followed your post instructions exactly, to reformat the APN--I have AT&T by the way--but I've used it a few times so that WILL be a charge per KB, right?:confused:
  16. Nak#57

    Nak#57 Active Member

    I tried what you had stated by deleting username and password but it still used internet so i just deleted the whole apn settings.

    Has anyone confirmed if this actually worked i know its a bit old topic now
  17. leahguillermo

    leahguillermo New Member

    I tried these settings also, but data still shows that it's on, and edge network is in the header, so i deleted the apn.
  18. g1 master

    g1 master New Member

    its best to delete the whole apn because if you dont you will be charged with internet access. i have att with unlimited text but not internet. i just click on make new apn and left the way it is without typing anything in but if you hhit the back button it wont let you so all you got to do is hit the home key and thats that. but this will charge you internet idk how but it does. im in like $30 for the charge of internet so i deleted the whole thing and use wifi cuss i got fios and its fast so im good.
  19. #1thunderfan

    #1thunderfan Member

    Is this still working for everyone? I want a g1 to work on AT&T without a data plan.
  20. kilobyte_mike

    kilobyte_mike New Member

    using the above settings my device was still able to access browser, maps, market ect. through the cell network (not using wifi). checking my AT&T account confirmed that i had used data through the wap.cingular connection. i fixed this by changing
    APN: wap.cingular to
    APN: mangled

    it will not allow you to put nothing in the field so i just typed in mangled, and viola everytime i use browser/maps/anything data outside of wifi i get a connect error SMS and phone calls seem fine, havent tried MMS but seeing that it has its own server field i think it will be OK.

    i'm not sure if maybe since the original post AT&T changed there network to not require username/password (they know who you are through the sim card) and so the APN address alone is enough to transmit data and they'll just charge you later (and they will trust me about $3 for >1MB while activating and figuring this out over the week)
  21. Capsaicinburn

    Capsaicinburn New Member

    I had T-Mobile and moved to an area with no access. I switched to AT&T. Before I left I received the unlock code from T-Mobile and applied it successfully. I then put the phone aside and used the MyTouch phone I also had. Now I am interested in using the G1 also and I have a problem.

    This is my problem. I boot the device and I am prompted with three options.
    1. Create a new Google account
    2. Log into an existing account
    3. Place an emergency call

    I tried logging into an existing account many times and then tried creating a new one. All attempts failed with the error "There is a problem communicating with the Google servers". I understand that I may need to create an APN for data stuff but I don't believe I need to create one to simply log into the Google account.

    I currently have a data plan with AT&T and it works fine on my MyTouch phone because I created the custom APN. It, however, did not need the APN to log into Google initially so I am assuming it isn't required for the G1.

    If I am wrong here then how can I enter/create an APN without first logging into the Google account thus making the phone interface viewable. I'm confused on how to proceed and would greatly appreciate any assistance.


  22. n4th4nd0ftw

    n4th4nd0ftw New Member

    Okay, sorry if I sound alittle stupid of if this question has been asked before, but...
    If you disable data on your G1, will you still be charged for it? From what I am reading it seems like people are disabling data to save data and batteries. I may be wrong, but can somebody answer my Q?
    The reason i may be switching is because my dad doesnt want to pay for a data plan, and because at&t is really stubborn and just adds data on your iphone even when you dont need it. I might get an unlocked G1 and I want to avoid data charges. Thanks!
  23. fratermus

    fratermus Well-Known Member

    You can munge the APN and it should keep data from flowing over the mobile network. That doesn't mean they won't charge you for it, of course. It's up to the carrier.
  24. Hom

    Hom New Member

    My AT&T Phone broke and I had a T-Mobile G1 laying around. I got an unlock code and I inserted my AT&T Sim card into the phone, inputted the unlock code and now everythings working smoothly. My question is how are my rates going to apply? Will I get charged for using the internet? What happens when I buy an app? On my old phone, I only had 200 texts a month, is this still the same? THANK YOU!
  25. crz6662

    crz6662 Active Member

    Your plan should remain the same. It's tied to your sim card, not the phone. Whatever plan you had previously should apply.
    You do know you only have Edge speeds with that phone on AT&T, don't you ?

    I realize this is an old post but, any changes made to APN settings won't matter anymore, if your using data, they will see it and charge you accordingly.
    There were 3 APN settings changes that could be made to remove the data throttle on T-MO when you hit your 5GB and they slowed your data to a crawl. It was really pretty cool. But T-MO caught on and now instead of keeping track of data use at the phone end, it's now done at their end.
    Unlimited is not really unlimited. It's Unlimited to 5GB/Unlimited-Throttled @5GB & up, to dial up/slower than Edge speeds.
    I assume AT&T is the same way now.

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