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Using my Droid2 global in south america, first impression

Discussion in 'Motorola Droid 2 Global' started by mastervader, Nov 17, 2010.

  1. mastervader
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    mastervader New Member

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    I arrived in Chile yesterday and I wanted to tell everyone how the service works.

    First, I called Global services and I activated my sim card while in the US. Since Chile has 3G, the rep also added a 65 dollar unlimited data plan so I could do email/web on my phone.
    I also got my phone unlocked by placing an colombian sim i had laying around and I was prompted for the unlock code. I did not have a chance to try a att/tmob sim but due to recent forums postings, i dont think it wouldve work.

    When I arrived in Chile, my phone got a 3G signal and I was checking email and browsing in no time. I been using google voice text service to keep in touch with my friends back home since google voice uses data to trasmit text. One note, i have GV forward my text to gmail so i can keep the sms thread going with gmail to make absolutely sure i dont get charge for txt messages through vzw.

    Now here is the best part.

    I purchased a sim from a local carrier here and i was making/receiving calls within seconds of swapping the sims out. I did not pick up 3G with that prepaid sim but i believe it has to do with the fact is prepaid service.
    Then I tried a friends sim from another local carrier and it worked great also. Once again, no 3G.
    I do not know what frequency those 2 carriers operate at here. All I know is that they are GSM.

    I am on my way to talk to a local tech to see if i can use a prepaid 3G card as I know that it works with my vodafone sim, so the phone is capable of using 3G.

    Hopefully this information will help future travelers. Ill update this posting if I can get 3G working with a local sim
  2. r314bd
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    r314bd New Member

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    This is very interesting. Could you tell us the name of the carriers you tried? My understanding is that Chile carriers only use the 1900 GSM band, which would prove my theory wrong about the 850/1900 bands being restricted.
  3. mastervader
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    mastervader New Member

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    The sim I purchased was from Claro PCS, which used to be Smartcom
    The other sim I tried was from Entel which is Vodafone's partner here in Chile and the carrier that my vodafone sim defaults to here.
    The third carrier which i havent tried is Movistar which is also a GSM carrier.

    Ill try to find someone that actually knows as the salesman at the stores dont have a clue
  4. r314bd
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    r314bd New Member

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    Oh man, now I feel like an idiot. Claro and Entel are both GSM 1900, which means I'm wrong. BRB editing my posts on like four different forums
  5. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    Most likely..

    I would bet that instead of locking frequencies (which is far more dangerous), they are locking the SIM carrier codes like: 310-410, 310-170, 310-380 (referring to Tmobile and AT&T). That would keep the frequencies open for locations that use 1900 (or 850) but still locking out other US carriers (you can use a US sim and it will connect to a non-US carrier).
  6. ddckylec
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    ddckylec New Member

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    I read about people having to call up Verizon to unlock the SIM. Do you have to do this? Thanks for the help, going to Hong Kong this month.
  7. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    Yes you have to.. otherwise you will get a subsidy lock prompt. Easy to do as others have mentioned. You can pay online for the unlock code which will do the same thing, but one is free (if you are in good standing with VZ) others will cost you money.
  8. leobg
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    leobg Member

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    I remember reading report from someone trying an UK sim card while in US and it did not work (did not see any carrier), so if it is just sim lockout and not network lockout, UK sim would have worked, no?
  9. mastervader
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    mastervader New Member

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    You are right. I found out that gsm operators in Chile use 1900mhz

    I also think I figure out why my 3G isnt working. You have to configure you APN's for the specific carrier you are using.

    Trying to get the local carrier to give me those settings so i can get them configured
  10. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    Not exactly.. there are three ways to do a restriction:

    1: A SIM Lock (which basically kicks out any US SIM). This would be bypassed by as you said, just use a UK SIM in the phone while in the US and you would connect. (Tested this with my Singapore and UK SIM's myself). But testing has shown that it doesn't work.

    2: A Frequency lock (blocking US GSM 1900 and 850 Frequencies) - a VERY bad idea since a lot of other regions in the americas (Central and South) use the same frequencies as the US (when I go home to CR, they use 1900 for GSM and it would make a World Phone less than useless). I'm going to bet that Motorola didn't do a special run just for VZ that has a dumbed hardware radio. (costs more money).

    3: A Carrier ID Lock (which is what I believe they have done) basically says, regardless of what SIM you add and what frequency its on, when the SIM says hello out there, the phone latches on a frequency, the Carrier says I am ID: XXX-XX (these are pretty well known and standardized). They have a lock on the US ones. So long as you are in AT&T and/or Tmobile territory (regardless of whatever SIM you are using) it will reject the carrier ID. (its why you can use a tmobile US SIM while in the UK, because you are not on Tmobile US's network, you are roaming on Tmobile UK's network). This would be the most effective and least costly. (put in an exception list to the carrier ID's that can be used and essentially you have a world phone that is somewhat intelligent.. I'll talk with anyone, except AT&T when you are in Verizon's territory (because the Carrier ID's are both geographically and company defined.
  11. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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  12. leobg
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    leobg Member

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    So lets put the facts together:
    1) phone is sim locked and will not accept non-Verizon(vodaphone) SIM without subsidy code. If unlocked - phone will accept any sim card without complains.
    2) phone will not work on US teritory with any of the US GSM/HSPA networks, no matter what SIM is inside (US/non-US) confirmation post
    3) phone will work if SIM is unlocked outside of the US if used with a non-US SIM card. confirmation post
    4) It is not confirmed yet will phone connect to a non-US 3G network using non-US operator SIM card

    did I get it right so far?
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010
  13. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    Regarding 1: That is correct
    Regarding 2: That seems to be correct (I don't know the specifics of what Verizon did, but I'm pretty sure they want to make sure that where they have direct coverage, you can/should be using them and only them).
    Regarding 3: That seems to be correct.
    Regarding 4: I can confirm that you can use a US SIM while on a non-US carrier (was in London using a Simple Mobile SIM (Simple mobile is a tmobile branded card) with my "unlocked" Droid 2 global). I didn't test full 3G because I was happy to get signal. I definitely know that the Verizon/vodaphone SIM will work there (on Vodaphone and O2).
  14. leobg
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    leobg Member

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    Thanks dstwins!

    The thought phone might work outside US with non-US network makes my heart skip a beat!

    I know this is the wrong forum to ask, but I assume I cannot buy the phone without a plan (if I am not a Verizon customer already). So I have to get it on month-to-month for the cheapest plan available and cancel the service right after that so I don't pay for more than a month of service. Or you can buy it without plan?
  15. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    I am not sure.. I think you could purchase it outright, but without a plan not sure. (you could claim its a gift).. but then I am not sure about getting the unlock code (since they won't give it to you unless your account is in good standing).. you can always pay an outside firm (like 7 - 15 dollars) to unlock it.
  16. mastervader
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    mastervader New Member

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    This is awesome.

    I finally configured APN settings and now i got full 3g internet with google services for about 2 bucks a day for 10 megs of data.

    Love my droid 2!
  17. leobg
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    leobg Member

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    Thanks mastervader, this is what I wanted to hear! Now the question remains can the d2g be unlocked by 3rd party unlockers. Wouldn't Verizon give unlock codes if phone is purchased without commitment (unsubsidised)?

    Sent from my Milestone using Tapatalk
  18. gilmourd
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    gilmourd New Member

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  19. webcenter
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    webcenter New Member

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    Last edited: Nov 17, 2010
  20. dstwins
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    dstwins New Member

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    Wow.. $50 a pop?... sheesh..
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