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Unicom Hongkong SIM "Cross Border King Dual Extra"

Unicom Hongkong SIM "Cross Border King Dual Extra"

Old Apr 4, 16, 7:38 am
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Unicom Hongkong SIM "Cross Border King Dual Extra"

Anybody using a Unicom HK SIM Card in Mainland China? I bought a "crossborder sim" couple of weeks ago and used it in Mainland. Data was fast and without any blocked website. I used the card in Shanghai, Harbin and a small town in Heilongjiang Province.
I could make outgoing calls in Shanghai and Harbin, but couldn't make any outgoing call in the small town. Incoming calls and Data was possible everywhere. I contacted Unicom HK and also went to the local Unicom Service Center. Finally HK Unicom called the local Unicom Service center, but even together they was still unable to find a solution. After I returned to Harbin I could make outgoing calls again. So must be some local problem.

I need this SIM card in september again. They charge HK$18 a month for the cross border option ((跨境王加强版)行政費(HK$18)) Can I cancel this option and activate it later again or should I keep it for the 4 month I don't use the card?
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Old Apr 4, 16, 9:03 am
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Why not just buy a new sim 4 months from now? And, consider going with Mobile instead if you are going to be in small towns (not Unicom's strong suit).
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Old Apr 4, 16, 12:01 pm
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Can use only 2G with China Mobile with my phone, so Unicom is the better option. There was a pretty good signal in the "small town". I could receive any call and mobile data was fast. There was just no outgoing calls possible there.
I still have ~HK$100 on the card, so no need to buy a new one.
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Old Apr 23, 16, 11:51 am
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Anyone know if the Unicom HK Cross Border SIM cards have access to the LTE network in Mainland China? It looks like the Unicom SIM cards sold through Lvycom and mychinaunicom.com *do* have access to LTE, but I am not sure about the cross border cards. Then if that's the case, there's the question of what will give me faster access to the sites I want to visit: 3G access directly through HK, or LTE access through a VPN.
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Old Apr 23, 16, 1:05 pm
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Can't remember that I had a 4G in the Display, I guess it was always just H+.
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Old Apr 24, 16, 11:31 pm
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I don't think that SIM supports LTE, my girlfriend only managed to get 3G connection when she head back last CNY (in contrast the China mobile one does managed to get on 4G, but drop to miserable 2G if out of range as China Mobile 3G is based on TD-CDMA which not many phone supports)
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Old Apr 25, 16, 12:27 am
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Originally Posted by 31570324 View Post
Can't remember that I had a 4G in the Display, I guess it was always just H+.
Originally Posted by ChrisLi View Post
I don't think that SIM supports LTE, my girlfriend only managed to get 3G connection when she head back last CNY (in contrast the China mobile one does managed to get on 4G, but drop to miserable 2G if out of range as China Mobile 3G is based on TD-CDMA which not many phone supports)
The phone must support either LTE band 3 (1800 MHz) or TDD-LTE on band 40 (2300 MHz) or 41 (2500 MHz) in order to get LTE on China Mobile or China Unicom.
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Old Apr 25, 16, 12:38 am
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Originally Posted by STS-134 View Post
The phone must support either LTE band 3 (1800 MHz) or TDD-LTE on band 40 (2300 MHz) or 41 (2500 MHz) in order to get LTE on China Mobile or China Unicom.
My phone (Samsung S5 Mini) support band 3, but I never saw 4G or LTE in my display with these Cross Border King Sim.
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Old Apr 25, 16, 12:40 am
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Originally Posted by 31570324 View Post
My phone (Samsung S5 Mini) support band 3, but I never saw 4G or LTE in my display with these Cross Border King Sim.
When was this? I think China Unicom and China Mobile have only been running LTE for about a year or two (and I'm not sure what cities they had it in back then): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...tworks_in_Asia

As of January 2015, I didn't see LTE in Beijing (Chaoyang district), even though my phone has LTE Band 41 support.
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Old Apr 25, 16, 1:42 am
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Originally Posted by STS-134 View Post
When was this?
About four weeks ago. I was also in Shanghai, I guess if they provide 4G it should be available there.
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Old Apr 27, 16, 10:43 am
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Originally Posted by 31570324 View Post
About four weeks ago. I was also in Shanghai, I guess if they provide 4G it should be available there.
Well I emailed China Unicom HK. They replied that LTE is not accessible in Mainland China with that SIM card, so that explains your observations.

Well this sucks. I'm left with a choice between moderate speed data service, and fast data service that requires a VPN. If the VPN's bandwidth sucks, I'll be left with...slow to moderate speed data service.
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Old Apr 27, 16, 10:58 am
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Originally Posted by STS-134 View Post
Well this sucks. I'm left with a choice between moderate speed data service, and fast data service that requires a VPN. If the VPN's bandwidth sucks, I'll be left with...slow to moderate speed data service.
Which VPN do you use? Will you be in places with good LTE coverage?
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Old Apr 27, 16, 11:08 am
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Originally Posted by moondog View Post
Which VPN do you use? Will you be in places with good LTE coverage?
I use several VPNs. I'll be in Shanghai and Beijing (which I'm assuming have good LTE coverage; I'd expect those places to get it first out of all places in China).

For free VPNs (which are the only type I've used so far), I've used OpenVPN (connection to my home server). I've also used Psiphon. (Psiphon, BTW, seems to have a hell of a lot of bandwidth, at least from their TX and NJ endpoints. I once watched an entire MLB.TV game over Psiphon to get around MLB.TV's blackout policies).

I want to try Shadowsocks and I might even also pay for ExpressVPN and/or VyprVPN. 2 trips to China ago, OpenVPN was repeatedly experiencing annoying disconnections every 5-30 minutes. Maybe Shadowsocks or VyprVPN will be better (I have an Android phone, which can use the Chamelion technology and maybe this will stop the annoying disconnects).

Last edited by STS-134; Apr 27, 16 at 11:13 am
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Old Apr 27, 16, 2:29 pm
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Don't think you can get close to the speed that the cross border cards have with any VPN in mainland. Technically these SIM cards also use VPN as you get a HK IP address, but you don't need any software for that. H+ Speed is the best you could get. I tried some VPN in mainland, but all work pretty slow specially in the evening when all chinese use them.
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Old Apr 27, 16, 4:06 pm
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Originally Posted by 31570324 View Post
Don't think you can get close to the speed that the cross border cards have with any VPN in mainland. Technically these SIM cards also use VPN as you get a HK IP address, but you don't need any software for that. H+ Speed is the best you could get. I tried some VPN in mainland, but all work pretty slow specially in the evening when all chinese use them.
Whether you use a VPN to HK or you're using a CUHK SIM, it's all going through the same backhaul. Question is whether the bottleneck is the VPN (if your VPN provider sucks) or the bottleneck is the air interface of the 3G link. I'm also curious about what type of bandwidth I'd get via Psiphon because as I've said I've literally watched an entire baseball game over that and it did not have any freezes/buffer issues.
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