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Sprint won't offer iPhone 4S with unlocked micro-SIM card slot

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
Contrary to initial reports, Sprint will not sell an unlocked micro-SIM version of Apple's iPhone 4S, forcing users to pay roaming fees when traveling abroad.

Earlier reports that Sprint users would be able to take advantage of an unlocked micro-SIM slot, allowing them to use international GSM chips to avoid roaming charges, were quashed by a Sprint representative, according to Ars Technica.

Confusion arose from early reports that both Sprint and Verizon's versions of the 4S would be unlocked.

In theory, an unlocked micro-SIM slot would allow customers to use pre-paid cards on networks outside the U.S., effectively bypassing Sprint's roaming charges. Service representatives have now denied that any such capability will be offered on the company's version of the new Apple handset.

Sprint said that iPhone 4S adopters will be able to roam internationally with the appropriate plan. Apple will launch an unlocked version of their popular device on November 5th, starting at $649, though it will only allow access to GSM networks within the U.S.

Verizon has yet to officially comment on their specific version of the device, however Michelle Mermelstein, a Sprint wireless device public relations representative, said that she believes the CDMA network's unit will work "in the same way."
post #2 of 35
Quote:
Verizon has yet to officially comment on their specific version of the device

Screw all of you telecom morons.

The idea behind one physical device is that you worthless piles of slime don't get your own "versions".

This is abject nonsense.

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post #3 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Screw all of you telecom morons.

The idea behind one physical device is that you worthless piles of slime don't get your own "versions".

This is abject nonsense.

I can't believe what i'm reading. I'm thinking about calling Sprint right now and canceling my order.


Does anyone know if this will be unlockable/jailbreakable??
post #4 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcahill009 View Post

Does anyone know if this will be unlockable/jailbreakable??

Everything is. It just takes time.

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post #5 of 35
Not sure why there's any confusion about this in the news media. From Apple's own website, if you seek information about an unlocked iPhone which is due in November, this is what they tell you:

"The unlocked iPhone works only on supported GSM networks, such as AT&T in the U.S. When you travel internationally, you can also use a micro-SIM card from a local GSM carrier. The unlocked iPhone will not work with CDMA carriers such as Verizon Wireless or Sprint."
post #6 of 35
REALLY!? Appleinsider you're re-re-reporting this when it's already been shown to be WRONG. The sprint rep thought they meant the sim card was physically locked in the phone, that's how stupid the rep was Ars spoke with. Engadget corrected this issue.

Sigh...macrumors, appleinsider, etc all just re-report each other.

http://www.engadget.com/2011/10/12/s...ock-for-intern
post #7 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

Not sure why there's any confusion about this in the news media. From Apple's own website, if you seek information about an unlocked iPhone which is due in November, this is what they tell you:

"The unlocked iPhone works only on supported GSM networks, such as AT&T in the U.S. When you travel internationally, you can also use a micro-SIM card from a local GSM carrier. The unlocked iPhone will not work with CDMA carriers such as Verizon Wireless or Sprint."

There hasn't been any confusion about the unlocked version. But most assumed naively that the cdma versions would be able to take advantage of the micro-sim while abroad.
post #8 of 35
Why does Sprint have problems with massive customer bailing? Hmm think this has something to do with it. Sprint has a practice of causing potential customers and existing customers to run to another company. SPRINT SUCKS!!!!! AHHH THEY SUCK!!!!!!!
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post #9 of 35
DUH! Telcos are going to loose big with iMessage and lost SMS revenue and they are simply greedy so it should be no surprise that they'd insist on maintaining their exorberant international roaming fees. On the plus side people who don't roam internationally can thank the others for the subsidy. If the telcos didn't have this they'd probably raise their normal rates. I doubt Verizon is gonna do any unlocking either.
post #10 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple will launch an unlocked version of their popular device on November 5th, starting at $649, though it will only allow access to GSM networks within the U.S.

This doesn't make sense.
post #11 of 35
shocker....

This is where TBell lumps Sprint in with the Verizon/AT&T collusion conspiracy.
post #12 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Screw all of you telecom morons.

The idea behind one physical device is that you worthless piles of slime don't get your own "versions".

This is abject nonsense.

If you can create a better wireless telecom company... go do it yourself! Sounds like you'd have plenty of potential customers available.
post #13 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Michelle Mermelstein, a Sprint wireless device public relations representative, said that she believes the CDMA network's [Verizon's] unit will work "in the same way."

Except MacWorld has a Verizon rep quoted as saying the opposite. Who are you going to believe has the right info about Verizon's policies, a Sprint public relations rep or a Verizon rep? (Ok, it's kind of a trick question, they may well both be wrong!)

http://www.macworld.com/article/1629...ld_phone_.html

Quote:
A Verizon spokesperson told me that this is Verizons standard policy for all world phones

As for...

Quote:
Verizon has yet to officially comment on their specific version of the device

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Screw all of you telecom morons.

The idea behind one physical device is that you worthless piles of slime don't get your own "versions".

This is abject nonsense.

Except it wasn't a telecom moron who referenced Verizon's "specific version". It was the author or the AI story who said that. I don't have a problem with you calling someone a moron. Just try to call the right person the moron.

Think, then speak (type).
post #14 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hudson1 View Post

If you can create a better wireless telecom company... go do it yourself! Sounds like you'd have plenty of potential customers available.

Check out http://www.yes.my ...They've got some ex-Sprint execs, ex-AOL staff (don't laugh ) and a number of other expats working in the region.

Mobile broadband at 2mbps-6mbps down sustained, 4G WiMax.

<doc>Permits for towers? Where we're going, we don't *need* permits...</doc>
post #15 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by NormM View Post

This doesn't make sense.

I'm thinking it worded poorly. As I understand AT&T's unlocked iPhone 4S, you get an unlocked "world mode" iPhone that is imited to GSM (and AT&T's UMTS/3GSM) in the US since the CDMA chips will still be unusable. Of course, you'll be able to use those same GSM/UMTS(3GSM) bands around the world where applicable.
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post #16 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcahill009 View Post

There hasn't been any confusion about the unlocked version. But most assumed naively that the cdma versions would be able to take advantage of the micro-sim while abroad.

I feel there has been confusion in the media, because of delayed reports like this one. This could have been reported days ago, when the 4S was first available to order.
post #17 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

Except it wasn't a telecom moron who referenced Verizon's "specific version". It was the author or the AI story who said that. I don't have a problem with you calling someone a moron. Just try to call the right person the moron.

Think, then speak (type).

So AppleInsider's the one who put the restriction on the Sprint and Verizon iPhones? How could it EVER be read in ANY situation that I'm calling anyone but the telecoms morons for THEIR actions.

Or maybe you're implying that AppleInsider IS the reason there are SIM locks on the CDMA iPhones.

Think, then speak (type).

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post #18 of 35
well then it's settled. Verizon it is.
post #19 of 35
Sprint is CDMA. Where the f... do you think CDMA network exist abroad to have unlocked version of this POS?

70% of this world is GSM. Wake up!

In Europe and South/Middle America as well as Canada you can put CDMA phones in your...


That's why I keep T-Mobile and I might go AT&T (as a poor alternative). After all I can buy SIM starter in Europe in many grocery stores and have my phone working in minutes without roaming.
post #20 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by maciekskontakt View Post

Sprint is CDMA. Where the f... do you think CDMA network exist abroad to have unlocked version of this POS?

Try reading the article.

THE MICRO-SIM is the thing being locked or unlocked.

Quote:
70% of this world is GSM. Wake up!

Which matters to people with MicroSIMs that now can't use them abroad with their phones that are designed for both CDMA and GSM networks and could very, VERY easily take it.

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post #21 of 35
I doubted it when I first read the news. It's too good to be true.
This is US; what do you expect?
In the rest of the world, different carriers usually just share the same 3G bands, which means you can carry your phone from one carrier to another.
Here we have only 2 GSM carriers and *somehow* they do not share the same 3G band, and thus phones (even after unlock) are usually not portable between them unless you want to be stuck with 2G speed.
AT&T's stopped providing unlock code for any phone now; not just iPhone.
Sprint and Verizon do not even allow you to bring your own phone to the network.
So, do you really expect these great corporations would allow you to escape from using their "cheap" international roaming service and provide you an unlocked phone?
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post

The unlocked iPhone works only on supported GSM networks, such as AT&T in the U.S. When you travel internationally, you can also use a micro-SIM card from a local GSM carrier. The unlocked iPhone will not work with CDMA carriers such as Verizon Wireless or Sprint."

Quote:
Originally Posted by ALUOp View Post

Sprint and Verizon do not even allow you to bring your own phone to the network.

I don't understand why the unlocked 4S can't work on Sprint or Verizon since both companies have programs in place that allows customers to bring their own device.

Sprint's is part of a court settlement and I believe Verizon's is the fruit of its own initiative.

http://news.vzw.com/news/2007/11/pr2007-11-27.html

http://www.engadget.com/2007/10/26/s...ocking-phones/

If Verizon's policy holds up, their phone may be the one to get if you eventually want to have the phone unlocked.
post #23 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

So AppleInsider's the one who put the restriction on the Sprint and Verizon iPhones? How could it EVER be read in ANY situation that I'm calling anyone but the telecoms morons for THEIR actions.

Or maybe you're implying that AppleInsider IS the reason there are SIM locks on the CDMA iPhones.

Think, then speak (type).

Dude, you were replying to the part of the article that YOU quoted talking about a Verizon having a "specific version" iPhone and then ranted about the "telecom moron" for thinking they had their own specific version. Whether that's what you intended or not, your post was clearly worded as taking the telecom morons to task for thinking they have a specific version. Go back and read your post. That's what it says.
post #24 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Duo View Post

I don't understand why the unlocked 4S can't work on Sprint or Verizon since both companies have programs in place that allows customers to bring their own device.

Sprint's is part of a court settlement and I believe Verizon's is the fruit of its own initiative.

http://news.vzw.com/news/2007/11/pr2007-11-27.html

http://www.engadget.com/2007/10/26/s...ocking-phones/

If Verizon's policy holds up, their phone may be the one to get if you eventually want to have the phone unlocked.

These are very old articles. If Sprint or Verizon allowed outside devices on their networks we would have heard about it in the last four years. They don't and we haven't.

I also wouldn't get too worked up about what various (obviously ignorant) Sprint reps say at this point. It'll all be clear enough when people get their hands on the phones and try international SIMs.
post #25 of 35
Isn't the contract sufficient at securing payment from the customer?

Do they unlock the device after the contract period expires? Could be a ploy to diminish the resale value.
post #26 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

Dude, you were replying to the part of the article that YOU quoted talking about a Verizon having a "specific version" iPhone and then ranted about the "telecom moron" for thinking they had their own specific version. Whether that's what you intended or not, your post was clearly worded as taking the telecom morons to task for thinking they have a specific version. Go back and read your post. That's what it says.

Nope. That's not at all what I was saying. Try reading it again. You're definitely smart, so I really don't want to break it down like sophomore English.

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post #27 of 35
That's lunacy! If they already sell you the contract and lock you in, they get their subsidy, so why are they double dipping?

And AT&T, since they are not the exclusive carrier anymore, they should allow you to legally unlock your iPhone after 90 daysjust like any other phone they sell....maybe they are constrained by Apple who knows, but they both should let you unlock it at SOME point.

I can't blame people taking matters in their own hands and unlocking the devices themselves.
post #28 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by maciekskontakt View Post

Sprint is CDMA. Where the f... do you think CDMA network exist abroad to have unlocked version of this POS?

70% of this world is GSM. Wake up!

In Europe and South/Middle America as well as Canada you can put CDMA phones in your...


That's why I keep T-Mobile and I might go AT&T (as a poor alternative). After all I can buy SIM starter in Europe in many grocery stores and have my phone working in minutes without roaming.

Perhaps it's dual band? Just saying, cause I heard the term worldphone being kicked around!

Agrred on GSM! There is some CDMA, especially in south and central America, some in Korea, and I think China, but I'm thinking they may not be even compatible with Verizon or sprint! Heck even Verizon and sprint are not compatible.
post #29 of 35
Someone please explain what this means physically? That is, is there something physically blocking the sim access or is it just some software/firmware setting, or some other electronic lock (perhaps a wired jumper?)
post #30 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by NormM View Post

This doesn't make sense.

Why doesn't it make sense to you?

Only GSM uses SIM card to determine which carrier it is on. CDMA requires the carrier to actually provision your phone's CDMA hardware to be recognized on their network. If the CDMA carrier refuses to provision your "unlocked" phone without locking it, then you can't use their network.
post #31 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by bcahill009 View Post

There hasn't been any confusion about the unlocked version. But most assumed naively that the cdma versions would be able to take advantage of the micro-sim while abroad.

And depending on their understanding of the words in use, they would be naively correct.

The Sprint iPhone 4S WILL have a pre-installed micro-SIM, and it WILL use that micro-SIM to roam internationally on a GSM-based roaming partner if the customer ever enters a country that doesn't have a CDMA-based roaming partner.

They may have naively thought that they'd be able to swap out that pre-installed micro-SIM to use a local carrier of their own choice rather than being forced to use Sprint's own roaming package. If that was their assumption, then they may end up being very disappointed.
post #32 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Apple will launch an unlocked version of their popular device on November 5th, starting at $649, though it will only allow access to GSM networks within the U.S.

I was planning to buy one to use in Central America and here on AT&T. What is the point? How can it be unlocked and yet only work in the US?

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post #33 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by maciekskontakt View Post

Sprint is CDMA. Where the f... do you think CDMA network exist abroad to have unlocked version of this POS?

70% of this world is GSM. Wake up!

In Europe and South/Middle America as well as Canada you can put CDMA phones in your...


That's why I keep T-Mobile and I might go AT&T (as a poor alternative). After all I can buy SIM starter in Europe in many grocery stores and have my phone working in minutes without roaming.

ever hear of china? sprint and VZW will make a fortune off people going there for business and expensing their phone calls with their employer
post #34 of 35
and they will unlock the micro-SIM on the 4S for 'customers in good standing' after you have been under contract for 60 days. I read it on the reps computer screen.

I was debating going with Sprint or Verizon (I am currently suffering 2G speeds on T-mobile)... looks like it will be Verizon. I travel to Europe a lot and am happy I can have it legally unlocked.
post #35 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wynn928 View Post

and they will unlock the micro-SIM on the 4S for 'customers in good standing' after you have been under contract for 60 days. I read it on the reps computer screen.

I was debating going with Sprint or Verizon (I am currently suffering 2G speeds on T-mobile)... looks like it will be Verizon. I travel to Europe a lot and am happy I can have it legally unlocked.


Ideally I would still need two phones when I travel. Since I am on AT&T roaming works really well for state side callers to reach me, albeit expensive, but I'm not the one paying the bill so whatever... On the other hand I still need a local phone number in the host country for local calling. You can't have both without two phones.

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