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Thread: Use without a sim card?

  1. Droid
    dbronstein's Avatar
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    #1

    Use without a sim card?

    Is it possible to be able to use the phone without a sim card? I don't want to use it as a phone, I just want to be able to install some games on it for my kids, like an ipod touch. Is there any way to get it to boot up without one?
  2. Droid Newbie
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    #2
    As you have found out by now. Yes you can. The only problem I had was after a factory reset, the phone would just loop in the intial setup screen until I put a sim card in. Only then was I able cancel out of the setup and remove the sim card. My wi-fi stratosphere is fully functional network wise, except for 4G and cell.
  3. Droid Ninja
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by tufur View Post
    As you have found out by now. Yes you can. The only problem I had was after a factory reset, the phone would just loop in the intial setup screen until I put a sim card in. Only then was I able cancel out of the setup and remove the sim card. My wi-fi stratosphere is fully functional network wise, except for 4G and cell.
    I'm hoping one of you can explain the sim-card concept -- isn't this a Verizon CDMA phone? I would have assumed the sim card is only relevant when the phone is unlocked and used on another CDMA network, correct? In other words, won't one work without the sim card as is on Verizon?

    -Matt
    Meaning of gadgetrants:
    (1) Goes on rants about gadgets
    (2) Gadgets put him in a trants (er...um, trance)
  4. Droid Ninja
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    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by gadgetrants View Post
    I'm hoping one of you can explain the sim-card concept -- isn't this a Verizon CDMA phone? I would have assumed the sim card is only relevant when the phone is unlocked and used on another CDMA network, correct? In other words, won't one work without the sim card as is on Verizon?

    -Matt
    OK, answering my own question here: just called VZW, and they kindly explained that 4G requires a sim card. They also said the card is tied to the line (so don't buy a "blank" card, I suppose) -- just give them a call and they will send you a properly configured card for free.

    -Matt
    Meaning of gadgetrants:
    (1) Goes on rants about gadgets
    (2) Gadgets put him in a trants (er...um, trance)
  5. Master Droid
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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by gadgetrants View Post
    I'm hoping one of you can explain the sim-card concept -- isn't this a Verizon CDMA phone? I would have assumed the sim card is only relevant when the phone is unlocked and used on another CDMA network, correct? In other words, won't one work without the sim card as is on Verizon?

    -Matt
    LTE (Verizon's implementation of 4G) is not CDMA, it is a different technology all together... All 4G phones get their "ESN" number for CDMA and LTE from the SIM card similar to how GSM operates, this is why you can take a your Verizon SIM and move it from a Verizon 4G phone to another one and everything just moves with it. The phones are not like GSM in the "unlocking" category though, Verizon will not (cannot?) unlock them to another carrier and no other carrier will let you activate them, although some "global mode" phones can be used on other carriers. So to answer your question, no, a Verizon 4G phone will not work without a SIM card.
  6. Droid Ninja
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by acejavelin View Post
    LTE (Verizon's implementation of 4G) is not CDMA, it is a different technology all together... All 4G phones get their "ESN" number for CDMA and LTE from the SIM card similar to how GSM operates, this is why you can take a your Verizon SIM and move it from a Verizon 4G phone to another one and everything just moves with it. The phones are not like GSM in the "unlocking" category though, Verizon will not (cannot?) unlock them to another carrier and no other carrier will let you activate them, although some "global mode" phones can be used on other carriers. So to answer your question, no, a Verizon 4G phone will not work without a SIM card.
    Thanks, that makes it a lot clearer. Is it correct then that because they "get their ESN for CDMA and LTE from the card" that the 3G (i.e., CDMA) radio won't work without the SIM card either? I've heard owners say "I'll run it in 3G mode and save battery" and imagined the two were functionally separable. It's a moot point since Verizon presumably gives the card out for free, but since I'm planning to pick one up used I want to be sure I understand the process.

    (I also wonder then why a used 4G phone needs a clean ESN if it actually depends on the SIM card -- isn't the phone in that case just a "shell"?)

    -Matt
    Meaning of gadgetrants:
    (1) Goes on rants about gadgets
    (2) Gadgets put him in a trants (er...um, trance)
  7. Droid Newbie
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by gadgetrants View Post
    Thanks, that makes it a lot clearer. Is it correct then that because they "get their ESN for CDMA and LTE from the card" that the 3G (i.e., CDMA) radio won't work without the SIM card either? I've heard owners say "I'll run it in 3G mode and save battery" and imagined the two were functionally separable. It's a moot point since Verizon presumably gives the card out for free, but since I'm planning to pick one up used I want to be sure I understand the process.

    (I also wonder then why a used 4G phone needs a clean ESN if it actually depends on the SIM card -- isn't the phone in that case just a "shell"?)

    -Matt
    A smartphone also has an IMEI number in firmware. This number is unique to each phone. The FCC is requiring all the major cellphone carriers to create a single database of phones reported stolen or lost by March of 2013. The days of using a stolen phone easily will soon be over. The IMEI can currently used to block the phone's activation on the original carriers service. It will be interesting to see when the database of stolen and lost phones goes online, if all previously stolen phones go off-line.
  8. Droid Newbie
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    #8

    Lightbulb Bypass setup without sim card

    If you don't have a SIM card to get you through the setup, go back to where you can make an emergency call
    then, on the dialpad hit the numbers the correspond to " *#TESTMODE "

    (Don't forget star and pound)
  9. Droid Newbie
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    #9
    When I tried the '*#TESTMODE' on a Strat I'm preparing for sale, it does work. I hit the home key at the bottom and blew through the loop. Thank you...
    Last edited by tufur; 01-08-2013 at 12:51 PM.
  10. Droid Newbie
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    #10
    Ok so I have a somewhat related question: I have a galaxy note 2 for Verizon. I have the grandfathered $30 per month unlimited data. I have seen from youtube that I can take my sim card out of my phone and put it into a Verizon Mifi Hotspot device that I buy from ebay and use the unlimited data through the hotspot instead of phone. My question is, at that point would I still be able to use my Galaxy Note 2 to make calls and receive texts? I know I wouldn't be able to go on the internet with the phone unless I connected to my WiFi. Hope that question isnt too confusing. Thanks.
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