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Thread: Travelling to Japan

  1. Master Droid
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    Travelling to Japan

    I'll be travelling to japan soon and had a few questions. I understand the droid isn't quad band or capable of GSM so it won't work overseas. So if I take it to use it only on wifi then verizon won't charge me any roaming fees correct? or should I just make sure my phone is in airplane mode the whole time?
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  3. Master Droid
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    #2
    Quote Originally Posted by stanrc View Post
    I'll be travelling to japan soon and had a few questions. I understand the droid isn't quad band or capable of GSM so it won't work overseas. So if I take it to use it only on wifi then verizon won't charge me any roaming fees correct? or should I just make sure my phone is in airplane mode the whole time?
    You can turn off the phone and leave WiFi on and you will not be charged roaming. However, do be sure to leave the phone radio off. A couple of years ago, you had to get a Japan specific phone because they weren't GSM or CDMA, but now they have both in major cities, and you will go into quite expensive roaming if you make or place a call or have any data go through their network.

    Alan
  4. Master Droid
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    Ok thats fine, I will just make sure airplane mode is enabled the whole time.
  5. Junior Droid
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    I'm going to Japan in April, and I checked into this a bit. They do have CDMA networks there, but it looks like they're on different frequencies. I think you can get voice, but no 3G with the verizon droid, but I can't recall exactly.

    I didn't pay that much attention to it since I plan on just using Wifi and sipdroid while I'm there.

    And here's the next thing to note, apparently it's hard to find wifi in Japan. Hotels almost never have it. Actually, most hotels don't even have internet in the room, since the 3G network is so good and cheap there, everyone has 3G phones and 3G cards for their laptops.

    You can get wifi in McDonalds I think, and a couple other places, but it might be tough just roaming around looking for an open wifi signal.

    Some hotels will have ethernet internet in a room, so I think I'm gonna book one of those and get a travel router.
  6. Master Droid
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    Thanks for the heads up, I'll probably just turn my laptop into a hotspot and use that for my wireless.

    Just a heads up, be careful using the voice connection there. Voice charges for roaming are almost $2 or $3 a minute.
  7. Junior Droid
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    I'm not going to take a laptop over there, but I was wondering if you could rent a 3G hotspot while over there. That would be pretty sweet. I know you can rent cellphones over there.

    And as far as voice roaming goes, I've been pretty impressed with my sipgate/sipdroid/google voice setup.

    Sipgate one plans are free for incoming calls, and sipdroid seems to work just fine with it. I initiate a call from google voice, and it works out just fine. The delay seems to be about a quarter of a second. Calling from Japan will introduce more than that anyway.

    Of course this assumes your on a wifi connection that doesn't block SIP calls.
  8. Master Droid
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    Cool, I will have to setup something like that so I can make calls.
  9. Master Droid
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakster View Post
    I'm going to Japan in April, and I checked into this a bit. They do have CDMA networks there, but it looks like they're on different frequencies. I think you can get voice, but no 3G with the verizon droid, but I can't recall exactly.

    I didn't pay that much attention to it since I plan on just using Wifi and sipdroid while I'm there.

    And here's the next thing to note, apparently it's hard to find wifi in Japan. Hotels almost never have it. Actually, most hotels don't even have internet in the room, since the 3G network is so good and cheap there, everyone has 3G phones and 3G cards for their laptops.

    You can get wifi in McDonalds I think, and a couple other places, but it might be tough just roaming around looking for an open wifi signal.

    Some hotels will have ethernet internet in a room, so I think I'm gonna book one of those and get a travel router.
    Tulley's coffee shops have free WiFi. The Celestine Hotel in Tokyo has free Ethernet, but not WiFi. Also, the Holiday Inn near the airport has WiFi in the lobby and Ethernet in the rooms.

    I don't recall the name of the hotel I staid at in Kyoto, but they had Ethernet (it is the hotel attached to the train station). The Ryokan we then went to did not, but they did have two computers set up for guest use and let me plug my WiFi travel router into their Ethernet hub so I could use WiFi in my room.

    Alan
  10. Junior Droid
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    Thumbs down

    Just got back from Japan. I did have CDMA voice coverage in most of Japan, although I didn't use it. Never checked about 3G/data coverage, as I had that disabled in the testing menu so I didn't run up a big bill.

    I only kept the CDMA voice radio on so that the GPS worked, and it worked great. Seems like AGPS worked in the cities where I had CDMA voice coverage, because I got fast position locks, and it worked well even with all the tall buildings.

    Out in the sticks the GPS still worked fine, even without CDMA coverage, but again, the CDMA radio had to be on for the GPS to be able to get the initial fix.

    I was able to find open wifi spots around, and we had a travel router which worked out well. Every wifi spot I hooked up to didn't block SIP, so sipdroid worked just fine. I used it a number of times to call back to the US, and it worked really well.

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