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Support Using the device overseas

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by ducpiloti, Oct 19, 2013.

  1. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    So, next month I am headed on a trip to India and wanted to use a local SIM in my new Note 3.

    Before going on I should relate my previous experience with my iPhone 4S. Verizon had told me that they had unlocked it for international use, so on my trip to China last year I went to a store and popped in a local Chinese SIM and it refused to work and kept displaying a message "this SIM is not authorized to work on this phone please contact Verizon wireless", it would not let me activate via iTunes which was the instructions I was given. In brief, the verizon "unlock" was worthless and was a lie, nothing was unlocked!!

    Now, I called Verizon again today and they say for the Note 3 an unlock is not needed as all 4G phones are unlocked by default. Can anyone confirm this?

    In addition, how does this exactly work? I have read some places that a phone using an LTE SIM will not work with a GSM (3g or 4g) SIM while other places say LTE and GSM SIMs are compatible with each other...which is true?

    When I land in India I plan to buy an Airtel 3G SIM and pop it inside, will it work out of the box? My concern is also with roaming. Once I remove the Verizon LTE SIM from the phone there is no chance for the phone to connect via International Roaming right?
     

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  2. Simon_Gardner

    Simon_Gardner Android Expert
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  3. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    well, my box did not have any sticker that says "Region locked". I believe Verizon is an exception to this because of the FCC rules, that is what I understand is that they cannot lock any of their LTE phones.

    After more research it looks like the LTE part of the phone is totally unlocked (700 Mhz) and the GSM is locked for use on US carriers but unlocked for foreign carriers - this is what I need to re-confirm.
     
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  4. drexappeal

    drexappeal Android Expert
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    What's funny is, I was actually trying to look for the region lock sticker and didn't see it anywhere on my Sprint version.

    Keep us posted on what happens.
     
  5. Limeybstd

    Limeybstd Well-Known Member
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    USA carrier ones are not region locked is what my research concluded ( ATT and T mobile at least) I will test it when I go to England shortly. I have only carrier unlocked mine and will buy a UK sim card once there.
     
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  6. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    Looks like the part where you add a new APN is locked/grayed out so how will this work? Verizon is full of BS and nothing but lies come out of their mouths.

    From what I see the only way to do this is to root the phone.
     
  7. jwither

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  8. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    Feedback :)

    I have returned from my trip to India. While I was there I purchased a local SIM from Airtel with a 1GB 3G package and 200 minutes of talktime for about 700 rupees ($10 or so)!!

    When I added the new SIM I got a message "Non-Verizon SIM detected" but apart from that voice worked just great. When I went into the APN settings the + was now active and I was able to add in the new APN settings for Airtel. After I did this the internet started working and I was able to get H/H+ speeds for much of my stay there.

    So yes, Verizon 4G LTE phones are truly unlocked for overseas use and you can just pop in a foreign SIM and go no worries...

    Cost of local SIM for approx 700MB of data/200 mins voice used: $10

    What it would have cost me if I used Verizon roaming: $20.48/MB x 700 = $14,336 + $398 = $14,734 :eek:

    What it would have cost me if I used the Global data plan: $573 (@ $25/100MB x 7 + $398)


    :D
     
  9. drexappeal

    drexappeal Android Expert
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    Thanks for the update. And had you checked your bill, just to be sure Verizon didn't/doesn't try charging you for roaming? That would be the first thing I'd check, just to be 100% sure.
     
  10. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    The question of roaming does not arise as my Verizon SIM was not even in the phone :) However, I did pay close attention to my usage on myverizon and my minutes and data usage shows as 0 for the entire period I was overseas.

    I did call a Verizon representative as well and they confirmed that they do not have any record of any voice or data activity during that period whatsoever.

    In addition, Airtel periodically flashes a notice on your phone with your data and voice consumption and the usage was from my Airtel account :)

    What is rather interesting is that I also had my Verizon iPhone 4S and put the same SIM in that one to try and it absolutely REFUSED to work. Although Verizon claims that the iPhone 4S is also SIM unlocked for international use, I have not had any luck getting it to work overseas.
     
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  11. drexappeal

    drexappeal Android Expert
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    Nice! Thanks for confirming. If Verizon didn't charge you, then I'd imagine it would likely be a non-issue with my Sprint Note 3 as well.
     
  12. ducpiloti

    ducpiloti Member
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    I'm not too sure about Sprint.. I believe Verizon unlocks 4g LTE phones due to some agreement with the FCC as part of the purchase for the 700 Mhz LTE spectrum, at least that is what I have gathered from reading about it on the net.

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-1035_3-57...ocked-vs-unlocked-phones-ask-maggie-explains/

    Verizon 4G LTE devices are unlocked out of the box
    One thing to note here in terms of software phone locks is that all Verizon 4G LTE smartphones come unlocked out of the box. The reason why is that the spectrum Verizon is using to build its 4G LTE network had restrictions put on it by the Federal Communications Commission, which required the company to allow "open access" to the network. So as part of this provision, Verizon has decided not to lock those devices. That said, its 3G devices are locked.

    So all Verizon 4G LTE devices are unlocked but since Verizon uses the 700 Mhz LTE band and virtually nobody in the world uses this LTE frequency, and i'm told that a Verizon LTE phone has only a 700 Mhz LTE radio and does not support multiple LTE frequencies, a Verizon 4G LTE phone cannot be used as a 4G phone anywhere else but on Verizon's network... however as my experience above shows it can certainly be used on all other networks as a 3G or 3G+ (H+) phone which for me at least is quite sufficient.
     

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