Cell Phone Use in China

Discussion in 'Travel Technology' started by garyst16, Oct 26, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. garyst16
    Original Member

    garyst16 Silver Member

    Messages:
    963
    Likes Received:
    1,028
    Status Points:
    825
    Apologies if this has been asked/answered previously.

    I will be traveling to China (Shanghai) next month for a couple of days. I have an HTC Inspire 4G which I do not want to unlock and take with me (because I was told it is not compatible with China Mobile). What are my options for cell phones while traveling? Should I buy a "pay as you go" plan, or buy a throw away phone and then purchase a China Mobile SIM when I arrive, or????
     
  2. kemchong

    kemchong Active Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status Points:
    90
    Get your HTC Inspire 4G unlocked -- it is a GSM quad band phone and will work in any Asian countries (except Japan). When you reached Chiina, purchase the China Mobile SIM as it will be a lot cheaper than roaming using AT&T.
     
  3. garyst16
    Original Member

    garyst16 Silver Member

    Messages:
    963
    Likes Received:
    1,028
    Status Points:
    825
    I was told if I unlocked my phone, the 4g would no longer work
     
  4. kemchong

    kemchong Active Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status Points:
    90
    Not sure if 4G will not worked in an unlocked HTC Inspire 4G using AT&T service -- maybe someone give you misleading info. There is no 4G service in China.

    All China Mobile SIM you buy in China are Pay as you go plan. Most vendors on the street just sell the SIM and refills card. If you want to buy a phone there, tnen prepare to pay higher price than what you will expect to pay for your phone in the US with contract. Not worth buying another phone for a few days trip. You can get the unlock codes for free from AT&T.

    You can also buy clones in China which is very cheap (as low as RMB 250) but their quality s#$# and don't expect it to last long.
     
    garyst16 likes this.
  5. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,504
    Likes Received:
    20,198
    Status Points:
    16,520
    Sorry for side-tracking, but why would it not work in Japan? My iPhone 3G and 4 both worked... well, at least the data part (I didn't make an voice calls).
     
  6. COFlyerCLE
    Original Member

    COFlyerCLE Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,848
    Likes Received:
    5,420
    Status Points:
    4,070
    I just returned from Beijing. Our AT&T iPhone 4 worked great there - we just turned it on and it worked. It automatically connected to the China phone network. We had full access to calling, texting, and all apps (including Facebook/Twitter). Not a single problem with our locked phones. (We did get the international data plan though, before we went, which make the data costs a non-issue).
     
  7. ACMM
    Original Member

    ACMM Gold Member

    Messages:
    25,789
    Likes Received:
    113,116
    Status Points:
    20,020
    I have never had an issue with my locked bell mobility phone working. It is just the roaming charges that minimized my use.

    [From my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
  8. garyst16
    Original Member

    garyst16 Silver Member

    Messages:
    963
    Likes Received:
    1,028
    Status Points:
    825
    Here is the email I received from a web based unlocking site. It states if I unlock my phone it will no longer work on any 3g or 4g sites! I guess I am better off buying a pay as you go phone for the short time I will be there.

    From: UnlockThatPhone [mailto:sales@unlockthatphone.com]
    Sent: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 9:46 AM
    To: Garyst16
    Subject: Re: Offline Message: Live2support


    it will work yes but it's the same story for any network once you unlock it , it will only work on edge (2g) and not have the 3g/4g capabilities.
    On Wed, Oct 26, 2011 at 11:43 AM, Garyst16 <garyst16@xx.com> wrote:
    I am reading through some other forums and found this information saying my Inspire 4G will NOT work in China. Comments?
     
  9. kemchong

    kemchong Active Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    3
    Status Points:
    90
    Unlocking will remove the carrier's restriction on the phone so that it can accept other carrier's SIM card in the phone. It doesn't mean that you cannot use your current AT&T service in another country if it is not unlock - seems like a few replies here don't know the difference. It doesn't make your phone losses 3G/4G service. The info from UnlockThatPhone is misleading.

    As long as the other carrier support your phone network, it will work in that carrier's SIM card. My unlock phone work in T-Mobile without problem. It also work in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand using the local carrier's SIM card - I buy the local SIM card as it is much cheaper than using T-Mobile's when in other countries.


    2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
    3G Network HSDPA 850 / 1900

    If you use your current A&T service in China (make sure you get Global Roaming turn on from AT&T),. you don't need to unlock your phone.

    If you want to use China Mobile SIM card, then you have to get your phone unlock. Don't buy the unlock codes from other places -- get it from AT&T -- it is FREE from AT&T.
     
    krusty and garyst16 like this.
  10. Tivoboy
    Original Member

    Tivoboy Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    460
    Likes Received:
    283
    Status Points:
    595
    I did this a couple months ago, bought cards from china unicom prior to arrival. it was really pretty cheap, 30$ all in to start, delivered to hotel prior to arrival (yes, it is cheaper in country at a store, but one has to find the store, do the paperwork, etc.,) for 200 min local countrywide roaming calling, 500MB data, etc. The funny thing about chinese paygo sims/plans is that they are 1/1-1/30, so a month, DURING the month, so if you go say on the 25th, till the 9th, you'll need TWO months of plans.
     
    garyst16 likes this.
  11. garyst16
    Original Member

    garyst16 Silver Member

    Messages:
    963
    Likes Received:
    1,028
    Status Points:
    825
    Thank you so much for this information. I called AT&T this morning and received the unlock code for my HTC Inspire with no hassle and without cost!!!
     
  12. Miles
    Original Member

    Miles Silver Member

    Messages:
    288
    Likes Received:
    980
    Status Points:
    695
    I wish they were so free with the unlock codes for iPhones, even the old 3GS models.
     

Share This Page