Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 Next 185 Replies Latest reply: Apr 27, 2014 11:56 AM by cheme75 Go to original post
  • KiltedTim Level 8 Level 8 (41,720 points)

    Fine. Believe whatever you want.

     

    Don't come whining to us when your phone becomes a useless brick.

  • Stephen White Level 1 Level 1 (95 points)

    Hi, Tgara. Assuming you've had the phone with Verizon for at least 60 days and your account is in good standing, it makes sense to consider having them unlock it. The pay-as-you-go rates overseas are generally much better than what you'd pay roaming on Verizon. Incoming calls/texts in Europe are free, for instance. The only downside is that you'd be using a foreign phone number. However, I simply email my friends my "new" number once I get there. It may even be possible to set up your phone to forward calls automatically overseas to the foreign number. I know you said pricing wasn't an issue, but who doesn't like saving some $$?

  • Tgara Level 4 Level 4 (3,540 points)

    Stephen White wrote:

     

    Hi, Tgara. Assuming you've had the phone with Verizon for at least 60 days and your account is in good standing, it makes sense to consider having them unlock it. The pay-as-you-go rates overseas are generally much better than what you'd pay roaming on Verizon. Incoming calls/texts in Europe are free, for instance. The only downside is that you'd be using a foreign phone number. However, I simply email my friends my "new" number once I get there. It may even be possible to set up your phone to forward calls automatically overseas to the foreign number. I know you said pricing wasn't an issue, but who doesn't like saving some $$?

    Thanks Stephen.  I appreciate the suggestions, but doing all that simply isn't practical for my business needs and would be very inconvenient for my clients who try to reach me by phone.  As for the cost issue, my partners and I pay for the total cost of the corporate program we have with Verizon already, so in a sense, I've already paid for the overseas use.  So for me, it is actually worth it to use Verizon's system without the SIM card hassles.

  • Tgara Level 4 Level 4 (3,540 points)

    Meg St._Clair wrote:

     

    Tgara wrote:

     

     

    I think they contacted Verizon, and then told me to dial *228, hit send (which I did last night), and the plan will be upgraded for international use.  After doing this, the iPhone did respond with something like "Your carrier settings have been updated" or something like that.  However, nobody has told me that I need a new SIM card.  Will my phone work without it?  Without a new SIM, will I pay Verizon's international charges?  The cost isn't a concern -- rather, I want to make sure the phone works for both voice and data while in Europe.

    What Verizon did was enable your phone for international roaming. By default, all Verizon accounts (and it's really the account and not the phone itself) are blocked to prevent international long distance and international roaming. This is to prevent people from making incredidibly expensive calls unawares (or before Verizon is satisfied that they will be able to pay for them). Unless you have your phone unlocked and get a local SIM, you will be paying (varies by country) about $1.99/min per call and $25/100mg for data.

     

    Yes, thanks Meg, I understand now.  After researching this a bit last night, I learned that my Verizon iPhone 4S includes both CDMA and GSM capabilities, but only the CDMA is turned on in the US.  I guess I knew this, but didn't appreciate the real difference until now.  Anyway, in order to make the phone work outside the US, Verizon "turns on" the GSM portion of the phone and updates my account.  This is all done without the need for a SIM card.  Using this method, I will be paying whatever Verizon charges for data and voice streams, as you stated.

     

    Apparently, the other way to achieve this result is to ask Verizon to unlock the GSM portion of the phone, then buy and install a local prepaid SIM card.  This is a cheaper method, but more of a hassle since you will have to use a local phone number, choose a carrier, must have an account in good standing for 60 days, etc. etc. 

     

    For me, it's easier have Verizon activate the service and pay the higher fees.  It's one less thing I have to worry about, and the costs are classified (at least for me) as a business expense.

  • Meg St._Clair Level 8 Level 8 (41,405 points)

    Tgara wrote:

     

    Verizon "turns on" the GSM portion of the phone and updates my account.  This is all done without the need for a SIM card.  Using this method, I will be paying whatever Verizon charges for data and voice streams, as you stated.

     

    Almost. it does require a SIM card. GSM always does. What you probably didn't realize was that there was already one in your phone. Verizon iPhone 4Ss come with a SIM (it's a Vodafone SIM) already installed. If you have international roaming enabled on your account, you'll be able to use the phone on GSM networks, as well as other CDMA networks but you'll be paying roaming rates.

     

     

    Apparently, the other way to achieve this result is to ask Verizon to unlock the GSM portion of the phone, then buy and install a local prepaid SIM card.  This is a cheaper method, but more of a hassle since you will have to use a local phone number, choose a carrier, must have an account in good standing for 60 days, etc. etc. 

     

     

    Yes, it is a bit more of a hassle but it's what I'm planning to do when I go to Japan next month as I regularly use 3-4 gigs of data a month and, even for 10 days, can't, as an individual, justify the cost at $25/100 megs.

  • Stephen Longworth Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Kiltedtim is wrong about the unlocking. I just had it done yesterday in prep for UK. The phone, as per Verizon tech who walked me through the process, is SIM-unlocked permanently. No need to do it again. Ever.  This jibes with what I've researched elsewhere. 

     

    Also, the Verizon SIM card is not necessary for the iPhone to function in the US. I removed it in order to "unbrick" and got on to T-Mobile's roaming network here in the US. I then removed the SIM I'll use in the UK and DID NOT REPLACE THE VERIZON SIM. The phone works fine without it.  All I had to do was shut the iPhone down completely, then power on and punch in *228 and chose option 1 and the phone is reprogrammed to Verizon CDMA network.  

     

    IT does seem to default to whatever carrier's SIM card is in the slot, so for instance, after the unbricking with the T-Mobile SIM in the slot, I couldn't get back onto Verizon in US without removing the SIM.  My SIM card slot is empty now and will remain so until landing in the UK at which time I'll put the T-Mobile SIM card in and be on T-Mobile's UK GSM network.

     

    The process was fast and simple to do while in the US but ONLY if you already have a foreign SIM card to put in it.  APPLE does the "unbricking" after Verizon sends them a message saying it's OK.  

  • taniafromoregon city Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    where did you get your information from? it's nonsense.

  • taniafromoregon city Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    so i called verizon today and they said that my iphone is already unlocked and i can put a foreign sim in when i go overseas. there is also an option to turn cdma off in the settings menu. has anyone else been told there phone was already unlocked when calling verizon?

  • troopie313 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    hmm... very useful information.  I wish I had found this thread before leaving for Africa.  I was without email, phone, texting, and internet service with myVerizon iPhone 4S for two long weeks.  Four calls later to Verizon's International division and I was still without service.  Why didn't any of the four people I spoke with tell me any of this information?  In fact, the first person I called insisted on getting an address such as "123 Main St, Cabinda, Angola, 12345" in order to open a service ticket.  Even though the address I gave him was good enough for DHL or FedEx it aparently wasn't good enough for Verizon. 

     

    The entire two weeks in Africa I wished I had brought my Blackberry with me.  I could have at least had them transfer my number from the iPhone to the Blackberry and had service.  Six previous trips to Angola and the Blackberry never once let me down.  Imagine my disappointment with Apple and Verizon, though I mainly blame Verizon.  Colleagues had the same experience while in China and again my Blackberry didn't fail me there either. 

     

    After reading this thread now I am truly even more upset with Verzon for not offering to "unlock" my phone for me if the procedure was available.  I'm hesitant to try these steps for my next trip overseas and will most likely switch back to the Blackberry. 

  • Stephen Longworth Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    troopie313 . . . the sad fact is that the only good thing one can say about Verizon is that they probably aren't any worse than the competition. Even though they got the unlocking done for me (it's actually Apple that does it, at their request) the girl with whome I spoke described the process I'd have to initiate at my end incorrectly. Fortunately it turned out to be simpler than she'd described, othewise I'd have been back on the phone with them.

     

    One other Verizon person I spoke to didn't think it could be done at all, so bad information OR deliberate mis-direction at Verizon seems to be endemic to the organization. I suspect plain incompetence, though at times it seems to rise to a level at which one is forced to entertain the possibility of corporate malice aforethought.

     

    There's something about running a phone company, either now or back in the old "wired" days, that invites or requires said company to adopt an aversarial stance towards their customer base.  Maybe we expect too much, and so to deliver what's possible they have to protect us from the ugly realities of the business.  Who knows.

  • Brian Shaw3 Level 1 Level 1 (135 points)

    junglekingmowgli:

     

    I still need some help. I have an iPhone 4S that Verizon unlocked for me last year (they just re-verified that fact).I bought a T-Mobile SIM from British SIMS (who no longer answers their phone; otherwise I'd ask them for help). I put the T-Mobile SIM in the phone and connected the phone to my Mac running iTunes (10.6.3). iTunes does not present me with any dialog or other indication as to how to proceed with activation. I am leaving for the UK in two days and want to be able to actriovate the SIM before I leave (in order to test the assigned number so that I can be assured it will work as my emergency contact number while traveling).

     

    Do you have any idea what I am missing here?

     

    Thanks!

  • Stephen Longworth Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Brian,  

     

    when you put the T-Mobile SIM into the iPhone, and turn it on, do you see a carrrier designation at the top left?  

     

    You shouldn't need to "activate" the SIM.  Just put it in and I bet you'll see the phone looking for a signal and then once it's found it, you'll see that it's on T-Mobile's network over here.  You can't use the T-Mobile network in the US without hefty "roaming" charges, but you'll be on it, which will tell you the SIM is working and is OK.  Then when you get to the UK you just put the SIM in, turn the phone on, and you'll be up and running on T-Mobile UK. 

     

    That's how it worked for me. 

  • Brian Shaw3 Level 1 Level 1 (135 points)

    Stephen:

     

    The phone still shows Verizon. Might the entire issue be because I am in a location where T-Mobile has no service? If so, I can drive into town where they do have service and give it a try, but I'd need to find Wi-Fi signal too, right?

     

     

    Brian

  • Stephen Longworth Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    No, if the SIM is in the phone you can't get on to Verizon network.  Also, if there is NO SIM in the phone you can still get on to Verizon network.  In other words, the Verizon SIM that comes with the iphone isn't needed except for use in other countries.  I there is simply no T-Mobile signal it will still say T-Mobile at the top left (I think) but just will say "no service" or something. It won't say Verizon if there's a T-Mobile SIM in place.

     

    SO . . . I suspect that the T-Mobile SIM isn't making contact with the iPhone and thus the phone thinks there is no SIM installed.  Are you sure the SIM is the correct size and shape? Compare it to the Verizon SIM you removed. Make sure it looks the same or close to the same. The contacts should be in the same place etc etc.  It's pretty well impossible to put the SIM in the wrong way around so I can't see that being the issue. Are you sure there isn't some tape or something over the contacts on the SIM???

  • Stephen Longworth Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Also, the SIM itself could be dead . . . do you have another unlocked phone to try it in? or a friend who does?

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