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International travel questions with VZW Droid & unlimited data

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by Lock-N-Load, Feb 21, 2010.

  1. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    so, I have a Verizon Droid and travel yearly to Europe. In the past, I just turned off the phone portion of my Centro and was still able to use localized apps and calendar and memeos and notes (I had no data plan) as I never used the phone, just the localized stuff on the phone. I do NOT want to make or receive calls, emails, or text.

    Well, now I have the unlimited monthly data plan so I wonder:

    1 - I can use the unlimited monthly data anywhere in the world to use the internet, and use my apps like foreign exchange calculators and maps at no additional cost, correct? Being over seas has no effect on using data plan usage, no? Internet is internet whether it is here or Europe?

    2 - if I turn off Sync ability (calendar, gMail, Contacts) and put the phone in "Airplane Mode" - so no text and calls incoming or outgoing - I should avoid the real issue which is using the "phone" ortion itself which is where you get killed on fees in international travel

    the goal is obviously to not incur any fees when traveling, but still use my apps and calendar and such.

    Am I missing anything? Anything more I would have to turn off?
     

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  2. ctlongley

    ctlongley Newbie
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    You probably aren't going to find ANY CDMA networks where you travel in Europe - the majority (if not all) are GSM. With that said, even if you did:

    - Unlimited data is only unlimited domestic. I travelled to Japan (where there is a splash of CDMA) and the outrageous cost of data was more than I was willing to pay.

    - As for the turning off of things, sync etc, to ensure your phone doesn't roam in data mode or sync anything extraneous - you really should set data to only use your Verizon network. But, this defeats the purpose.

    The bottom line, buy a local phone with data in the PAYG model which is what most of the world goes (I go to Thailand frequently and have a GSM phone with unlimited data for tethering - costs about $1 a day).
     
  3. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    first, there will no be buying a local phone. I guess you missed my point.

    As I said, NO desire or need to make calls or take calls or text.

    So that is off the table and not part of the deal or even need. That should also strike the worry about CDMA.. I do not want to use it as a phone.

    What I WANT to do is have access to my calendar and apps, and some apps have no need to use data or wireless access.. That is all.. so no need to buy a phone. This is about having localized app and calendar access and access to notes and memos. stuff that has no need to an actual phone, but which is on my droid.

    I did this on my Palms for years, just shut the "radio" - which is what the phone portion is called - off.

    I got you on the data, so unlimited data is only domestic and so no use of internet and apps like the maps.

    so the question is.. and again, don't recommend buying a phone as this is not about phone needs... how do you shut down all data phone usage to get no fees and to just use your phones calendar and a few apps that do not need to call out to the internet?

    From what I can tell:

    1. shut off Sync
    2. put phone in Airplane Mode
    3. turn off WiFi and GPS
    4. but how do you for sure turn off all data so an app or something cannot make a call out to get data or info?
     
  4. visualvalhalla

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    If you set your phone to airplane mode, the radio is electrically disabled. As long as the icon on your notification bar shows a plane, the radio is not operational. I was on a week-long trip to asia. I had my phone set to airplane mode for the entire trip and there were no data access via cellular.
     
  5. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    did you use any apps? were they able to make a call out or tried to?

    I assume you turned off WiFi, Sync, GPS also?
     
  6. CRPercodani

    CRPercodani OFWGKTA
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    No, airplane mode turns everything off so you don't need to mess with individual settings. Any app that needs internet access will not function, but the rest of the phone will work fine.
     
  7. Jake43

    Jake43 Well-Known Member
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    I don't think you are fully understanding. If you put the phone into Airplane mode your radio is shut off. Nothing will get through. No need to turn gps, wifi, or sync off. Just place it in Airplane mode. Nothing else.
     
  8. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    so, I just did this test, and sure enough, it seems no app that HAS to call out will work with Airplane Mode on

    BUT, then I went to Maps and it found my location (though BG blue ring and not precise). How was that possible? Or is it going on last known cached data?
     
  9. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    No, I admit I did not understand that and here is why...

    On a plane, they do not want you to make cell phone calls as they claim potential interference from the cell signal.

    BUT, you can use wifi and internet on planes - heck, some even provide it now

    So, I figured Airplane Mode just shut off the radio/phone portion and still allowed people to use internet and data related abilites as that is not a cell signal. Thus, it would still leave open a data channel that could ring up fees.
     
  10. Jake43

    Jake43 Well-Known Member
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    GPS does not require data to work. It uses satelites...hence globa positioning system is built from a network of satelites. It will find your location through gps. Once again, if you turn off the radio no data will be used.
     
  11. Jake43

    Jake43 Well-Known Member
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    Oh I see. Ok. Data on a phone is received through the radio just like a phone call or text.
     
  12. CRPercodani

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    GPS shouldn't be working in airplane mode, it is most likely your last known. To fully test this you can try it when your somewhere else. Even if GPS does work it doesn't matter because it is free anywhere, you just won't get any maps since that requires a data connection.
     
  13. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    that was my next thought..

    great, so you have GPS in Italy, but so what as - in MY case - I want NO data use and so GPS has no real value as I cannot use Maps on my phone without then incurring a charge for using the Map function since it needs data to run. Agreed?

    Thus, might as well shut that off.

    ps - yes, for the poster above, I know what GPS is and that it is free :), my point was it has no value if an app needing it would require data access when I want to limit data access
     
  14. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    I was also not aware of this.

    as I said above, I assumed the phone/radio ONLY took in cell signals and it seems in fact that portion of our device takes in the data signal as well. which is why I thought turn off the phone - Airplane Mode - but you still get data access for web surfing and app use - but I guess not
     
  15. visualvalhalla

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    Data access though wifi is free (if you can log onto an open network).
     
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  16. TXLady

    TXLady Member
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    As stated above, you just want to put the phone in airplane mode and keep it there. You should be able to use WiFi without a problem overseas and without additional cost. You may want to check out free WiFi Hot Spots before you travel.
     
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  17. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    ahhh... good tip

    so your saying you can be in Airplane Mode BUT have just WiFi open and jump on open networks and get data and not incur costs that way as it is coming in via WiFi and not the cell phone data channel?
     
  18. CodaMan

    CodaMan Newbie
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    I travel worldwide quite often where no network is available. I assure you you CAN use your Droid in Airplane mode and turn Wifi on. Works perfectly!!!
     
  19. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    an no costs.. great!

    so, how are you finding WiFi to jump on, just going it no Settings > Wi-fi Settings and seeing what it around?
     
  20. visualvalhalla

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    I just spent a week in a country with free wifi in all shopping malls and touristy sites. I had wifi enabled, but kept the phone in airplane mode. Facebook, emails, maps and other apps worked fine, except for GPS. It would seem like GPS requires a cellular network to download the initial satellite positional data. I could not get a GPS lock for the entire trip.
     
  21. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    good info, thanks

    are you using some kind of WiFi finder app to find signals to jump onto?
     
  22. radioz

    radioz Member
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    You need WifiFinder from the market.
     
  23. visualvalhalla

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  24. Lock-N-Load

    Lock-N-Load Android Expert
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    thanks... was looking for a recommendation as there are to many to select from
     
  25. cpetku

    cpetku Member
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    used my droid in tortola (bvi) in wifi only mode. internet stuff worked fine but voip didn't. was able to dial out and connect but no audio. checked the voice mail of the location I called when returning to the states. the calls went through but no audio on that end either.
     

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