using US iPhone w/foreign SIM while abroad

devonair

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Nov 30, 2008
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This may be a dumb question, but forum and google searching hasn't quite answered my question (its possible that I just don't know of the correct keywords to search with, though):

Given that many companies/countries use different 3G frequency bands than each other, how well will a US-bought iPhone 3G work outside of the US when using a foreign SIM? For example, would I be able to travel to someplace like Germany, pop in a pre-paid SIM local to that country, and be able to use 3G data and voice comparable to being at home in the US?

I ask, because I know that many phones imported from Europe to the US will work for voice, but are often limited to Edge-speed data due to incompatible 3G frequencies...
 

Rene Ritchie

Old Man Ritchie
Jan 12, 2007
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If your iPhone 3G is not locked to AT&T (i.e. you bought an iPhone from HK unlocked or had it officially unlocked in a country like France) it should work on any other carrier that has the iPhone 3G, anywhere in the world (since the hardware is all the same).

If you unlocked via yellowsn0w, results seem to be varying wildly. You takes your chances.

If you're still locked to AT&T, it won't work anywhere else.
 

devonair

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Nov 30, 2008
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Ahhhh... very nice. =) Then its even MORE of a shame that T-mobile went with their own weird frequencies for their 3G. But its good to know that I could "theoretically" travel the world with an unlocked iPhone.
 

markkinn

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Pre-paid US T mobile card in German iphone - will it work?

Ahhhh... very nice. =) Then its even MORE of a shame that T-mobile went with their own weird frequencies for their 3G. But its good to know that I could "theoretically" travel the world with an unlocked iPhone.

Hi, I have a similar question but the other way around. I have a German iphone with T-mobile, the provider in Germany. I am travelling to the US and would like to purchase a US pre-paid card to use in the iphone when i get there. If I buy a T-mobile pre-paid will it work in the iphone? Will it be blocked or will it work as I am already a T-mobile customer albeit in Germany, thanks!
 

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