Weblog:   Bluetooth Phones and Mac OS X in Perfect Sync
Subject:   Which carrier?
Date:   2004-03-12 14:00:49
From:   vineetb
Which carrrier in the US provides this phone?

- vineet

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  • Derrick Story photo Re: Which carrier?
    2004-03-12 14:46:53  Derrick Story | O'Reilly AuthorO'Reilly Blogger [View]

    Ah, I knew it was just a matter of time before someone asked this question. I'm sure that phone experts with more knowledge than me will chime in on this, but I'll get you started.

    There are basically two ways to get set up with a new phone. The first is the "traditional" way where you go to a dealership, pick out a phone, choose a plan, and they get you up and running. This is probably the preferred way for most people because the dealer does most of the work for you.

    Problem is, for some anyway, you're limited to the phones they offer. So if I go to Dealer X and want a SE Z600, and it isn't on their list of available phones, that's it. I either have to check with another dealer, or settle for another phone.

    However, some wireless carriers use "Smartcards," such as Cingular, AT&T (I believe), and T-Mobile (pretty sure). They provide more flexibility. I have Cingular, so all I did was pull the smartcard out of my old phone, put it in the Z600, and I'm in business. The Z600 is a triband phone (900, 1800, 1900 networks) and Cingular has a pretty good 1900 network, so I'm OK in the US and parts of Canada.

    One thing to keep in mind though, is to make sure your new phone is "unlocked" when you buy it so you can access it with your current network.

    I'm sure others will have plenty to say about this. But for now, I'm pretty sure you can use the Z600 with Cingular, AT&T, and T-Mobile.
    • Re: Which carrier?
      2004-03-12 15:33:23  brocklee [View]

      The Z600 is a GSM phone, so you'll need a GSM carrier. Currently T-Mobile, AT&T, and Cingular are the big U.S. carriers that provide GSM. AT&T and Cingular also have an older TDMA network that they're trying to transition people off of.

      The so-called "smartcard" is more commonly referred to as a "sim card". It contains your basic cellular account information, and sometimes your address book as well. So by moving it between phones, you can switch phones with great ease.

      Phones purchased through carriers will be locked to the carrier's own sim card. Each carrier has a different unlocking policy. T-Mobile's is pretty liberal. AT&T refuses across the board I hear.

      Their are third parties that will unlock a phone and various tools available for free or for purchase on the Internet.

      I took my SE T610 to Europe in December, and I could purchase pay-as-you-go sim cards there, giving me a local phone number. That came in very handy.

      And yes, Bluetooth is wonderful!
      • Re: Which phone is the right phone for me?
        2004-03-31 19:10:10  mlecho [View]

        if you don't mind me asking, which phone is the phone for me? I have a sonyericsson t68i...originally i thought i wanted to upgrade to a sonyericsson t610. I spend half the year in europe (italy, mostly), the other half in the states. Not sure where will be spending time next year between the two. What phone do i want that will still work with iSync, and satisfy my network needs. T610 gets aces for europe, and cries in the states....T616 gets it visa versa...any thoughts or advice. This phone must be unlocked from any service commitment, yet affordable...nothing like a nokia 6600 with every bell, whistle and video....needy heh?
        finally, are all symbian phones isync compatible?
        thanks all

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