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UK SIM cards in SO phones

UserPost

6:37 pm
January 8, 2011


Gothic

Member

posts 3

I want a pay-as-you-go phone in Canada that will enable me to replace the Canadian SIM with one from a UK provider, specifically T-mobile/Orange (they recently merged).

Can any kind person tell me whether a 7-Eleven SO phone will accept another SIM, or will the phone need to be unlocked? If so, how is this done?

Thanks in advance,
Norah


10:23 pm
January 8, 2011


bridonca

Moderator

posts 1077

It will not work. Speakout phones only use the North American GSM 850 mhz and 1900 mhz frequency band. It would be ill advised to use a UK SIM in Canada because the roaming costs would be astronomical, if it would work at all.

I am not quite sure what your purpose would be. But I suspect if you are in Canada, you would be better off taking a look at the current Canadian Cell phone plans and buy a phone from that carrier.

I will also add, all cell phone plans in Canada are awful, at least compared to the rest of the world.

5:28 pm
January 9, 2011


Gothic

Member

posts 3

Thank you bridonca, I'm sorry I didn't make my request as clear as I should. I want to use the phone in the UK, when I'm travelling, so want the UK SIM to pop into the Canadian cell only when I'm in the UK.

From posts on this forum I gathered that I would need to get any cell purchased in Canada unlocked for use on other networks. I hope I'm making sense — I'm a cell-phone newbie.

Norah

6:43 pm
January 9, 2011


iamdrumming

Niagara Falls

Moderator

posts 1839

To use a Canadian cell phone (with a UK sim) in the UK, it must be a quad-band phone. GSM phones in Europe use different frequencies than GSM phones in North America.

6:38 am
January 10, 2011


walter_wpg

Member

posts 64

Gothic said:

I want to use the phone in the UK, when I'm travelling, so want the UK SIM to pop into the Canadian cell only when I'm in the UK. From posts on this forum I gathered that I would need to get any cell purchased in Canada unlocked for use on other networks. I hope I'm making sense — I'm a cell-phone newbie.


I recently did this exact same thing. I used a Sony Ericsson phone that was originally used on a Rogers contract. This particular phone was quad-band (and needs to be to work in the UK and Europe). It worked fine with my Speakout SIM card, because of the Rogers lock. I don't know which, if any SpeakOut-sold phones are quad band, so you'll have to check your phone out before you go any further. To prepare for my trip to England, I purchased an unlock code on-line for the Ericsson phone, and unlocked the phone. Cost less than $10, and worked fine.

When I went on my trip, I brought the Ericsson phone and used the Speakout SIM while I was still in Canada. When I arrived in the UK, I went to a CarPhone Warehouse, and bought 10 pounds in airtime, with a free SIM card, for Vodafone. This gave me a UK mobile phone number. I was able to use the phone to call friends and motels in the UK, and also to call and text back home. Everything worked like a charm.

If you are going to use T-Mobile/Orange, check to see if they have a special plan for calling/texting internationally. Vodafone did, and it was a big saving.

One other thought… If you find that your Speakout phone is not a quad-band model, there's always the option of buying a cheap phone there when you buy your SIM card. All of the mobile providers sell very basic models for £10 or less when you buy some airtime.

We didn't need to use our phone that much during the 3 weeks in England, so we still have a bit or time left on our SIM. We brought along a netbook, and used free public wi-fi for e-mails to keep in touch back home.

Enjoy your trip!

2:51 pm
January 10, 2011


bridonca

Moderator

posts 1077

Currently, none of Speakout's phone lineup are tri-band or quad-band. They are all 2G GSM phones that only use the North American 850mhz/1900mhz frequencies.

9:48 am
January 13, 2011


Gothic

Member

posts 3

Thank you all so much for all this advice, what a helpful forum this is.

Norah