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Use prepaid SIM Card for international travel on Motorola Razr HD & Suspend Verizon Bill?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by saldesign, Aug 3, 2013.

  1. saldesign

    saldesign Lurker
    Thread Starter


    I'm going to Indonesia and pay $120 for my Verizon plan. I have a brand new Razr HD with latest Jellybean update.

    From what I read you can add a $5.00 per month global plan and then pay out the ass for its usage in other countries.

    Is it possible to "Root" or unlock the phone to use a prepaid SIM card I get in Indonesia for phone and data access? I could add the services via Verizon control panel as is, and just pay. Of course I don't want to do that.

    From what I read the phone is "unlocked" already, or call Verizon and have it unlocked to use globally on my Verizon plan, still racking up heavy bills while I'm gone.

    I'd like to just put the phone on vacation suspend to freeze the Verizon bill, then insert the Indonesian SIM card on arrival and use just that with no occurring Verizon bill upwards of $150 a month.

    Can I "root" the phone and just forget about verizon? And use 2nd party SIM cards? With the same phone number, etc.?

    How does this work? What's the difference between "unlocking" and "rooting". If you root the phone does it becomes useless with Verizon? So you are basically dropping your entire plan and contract if you root the phone? Is this necessary for what I want to do?

    Sorry for the mass questions, but I'm sure some of you are experts at this and can provide a guide or some more details. It appears to be a fuzzy topic with many answers or methods. What exactly are the benefits of rooting? Probably to be able to use the phone for many carriers, etc.

    I wish to be able to freeze my bill, but a prepaid $30 phone/data SIM card from a street vendor in Bali in and use it, then unsuspend my bill when I get back in the states, insert my factory SIM card and continue with my plan. Or maybe there's an entirely better way to do this. Thanks in advance for all you help. Scott

  2. Davdi

    Davdi Android Expert

    Unlocking means removing the SIM lock that the carrier has, which prevents you from using any other carrier's SIM. If you think the phone might be unlocked, just try another carrier's SIM card. If the phone is unlocked it'll work just fine. If it's locked you'll see a prompt for the unlock code. If the phone's still under contract, you're out of luck, if it's out of contract, the carrier should be able to give you an unlock code (for a fee). This has nothing to do with rooting.

    Rooting is the Android term for Addministrator access. this lets you install alternative versions of Android, and remove bloatware (junk Apps which the carrier installs as System apps) and a ton of other cool stuff.
    Rooting usually requires an unlocked bootloader (Unlocking usually refers to the SIM lock). This is what *MAY* invalidate your warranty.

    Have a look in this sub-forum: Motorola Droid RAZR HD / MAXX HD - Android Forums

    and here for rooting RAZR HD / MAXX HD - All Things Root - Android Forums
  3. gtbarry

    gtbarry Android Expert

    The Verizon RAZR HD uses a SIM?
  4. mikedt

    mikedt 你好

    If it doesn't use a SIM it's not going to work outside of the US at all. Is this phone GSM capable? Or is it Verizon CDMA only?
  5. gtbarry

    gtbarry Android Expert

    RAZR HD comes in both variants. But, as Mikedt points out above, only GSM uses a SIM and will work overseas.

    If it is a Verizon CDMA phone, you are out of luck - it only works in the USA unless it is one of the small handful of Verizon phones that is a "world phone".
  6. dylo22

    dylo22 Android Enthusiast

    I have the original RAZR maxx with Verizon and it is gsm/utms capable. I can buy a prepaid card, replace the LTE sim card with it and use it in another country. So it fair to assume that RAZR HD can also do the same. However, unlike Gsm only phone where all you need to do is call the carrier for the unlock code, this feature would have to be enabled by Verizon through an update. With my Max, the update came several months after I purchased the phone. I don't know if that's the same with the HD.
  7. saldesign

    saldesign Lurker
    Thread Starter

    Hey thanks for the replies everyone I didn't get a notification...

    Yes my Razr HD has Global, LTE/CDMA and GSM/UMTS network modes.

    I guess the smart way to do it would be just to put your Verizon bill/account on a 90 day vacation suspension, put the phone in airplane mode and use the wifi when out of the country. I read that you could use the phone and all capabilities besides the phone itself over wifi, even with no account. I'm fairly certain I can put the account on vacation suspension, and still connect to wifi, use apps, Google Play store, email, etc. just not the phone.

    Who would you really call from Indonesia anyway? I could call my family using Skype, ooVoo or Tango video calling over wifi, just rely on email and video calling rather than phone and texting.

    I read also that the Razr HD came "unlocked" ready for global use, but may need an unlock code from verizon. I had fantasies of putting my account on a 90 day vacation suspension, getting to Indonesia and buying a $30 prepaid SIM card with minutes and data on it, sticking that in and programming the phone to use the SIM card. Then upon arrival back in the States just insert the Verizon SIM, unsuspend my account and go on about my life.

    I think the way Verizon intended global use is to add a Global option to your plan, $4.95 per month or something, unlock the phone, swap SIM's in indonesia, so you are paying a higher monthly bill as well as the prepaid SIM.

    There must be a solid, proven workaround to suspend service and use the phone in other countries.

    Or at least you can make changes and do this from other countries online, and if worse comes to worse you can just do a vacation suspension and rely on wifi only, Skype and email and all app usage.

    Thanks for all your input.
  8. dylo22

    dylo22 Android Enthusiast

    It's not a fantasy, you can do that now.

    I shared earlier, I own a razor maxx. I just came back from a trip from Hong Kong. While I was there, I popped in a local prepaid sim, turn network mode to Gms/Utms and was ready to go with voice and data. I didn't even suspend my Verizon account. After I came back, I popped in my LTE sim, switch it back to global and bam back on Verizon network. I am certain this works the same way for the maxx HD.

    From what I read, the razor maxx HD is already unlocked from the get go. This isn't a gsm phone, so there should be no need to use an unlock code. If it's unlocked, then you should be able to use it.

    Yes you can just use wifi. However, it was so handy having data, being able to use Google maps with gps for directions, check email, post pictures on Facebook. And since the sim card is prepaid, you can choose to use data for one day and not use it the next to save cost. It all up to you.
    bruce816 likes this.
  9. Lars

    Lars Android Expert

    The rmhd is sim unlocked. Just pop in another sim. I used my bionic in Jakarta, Makkasar and sorong in west Papua last year on several local carrier's. Service was spotty in the bush. You can use spare phone or talkatone apps with Google voice to call the USA free over WiFi. The airports have free WiFi though the Jakarta airport restaurant hotel you have to ask for the code. When I was there it was

    One more word of advice. If you use the vzw sim to roam, buy the $25 data package or you will regret it big time! Without it you can run up thousand of dollars in data charges. Accidentally turning data on and off for a minute without it will cost $50.
    bruce816 likes this.
  10. bruce816

    bruce816 Lurker

    Lars and dylo22,

    I see on the Motorola site that the Razr HD is GSM. I understand that you are saying to just pop in another sim card and you're ready to go.

    I have a quick question. I am leaving to go to Guatemala on Saturday. Tigo is the cell service there with the best coverage and I'm reading that I can go to a Tigo store, buy a sim and they will flash my phone....all for about $7

    Is it necessary to flash the phone?

    When you buy prepaid cards or you buying a certain amount of voice minutes and a certain amount of data?

    Thanks in advance
  11. Lars

    Lars Android Expert

    The closest thing to "flashing" I can think of is programming the APN so the phone knows what gateway to use for data. The phone has a bunch preprogrammed but more obscure carriers won't be in there. APNs can be set in the phone settings somewhere under mobile networks or by dialing ##Program on the phone and using a password of 000000. When you swap cards, you will have to reauth certain accounts on the phone such as google.

    The phone will switch to GSM bands if you have it in Global Mode.

    Most "travel" or temp sim cards I've seen work one of two ways. You buy the card for a set price and it includes x minutes and y data. You buy the card with x credit and voice costs y per min and z per MB. Most cards are rechargeable. Many foreign carriers do not charge for incoming calls.

    Be careful. If you have International dialing enabled on your verizon account, it will automatically work in Guatemala. If you have data roaming enabled it will access data and you will get charges. Personally for short trips I prefer using VZW so I still have my phone number.

Motorola Droid RAZR HD / MAXX HD Forum

The Motorola Droid RAZR HD / MAXX HD release date was November 2012. Features and Specs include a 4.7" inch screen, 8MP camera, 1GB RAM, Snapdragon S4 Plus processor, and 3300mAh battery.

November 2012
Release Date

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