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Google Fi: Anyone care to post their experience?

Google Fi: Anyone care to post their experience?

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Old Dec 25, 18, 8:33 am   -   Wikipost
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Which countries are supported?

https://support.google.com/fi/answer...intl_countries

Note that in some locations Hangouts (and Gmail) are not available (e.g., China, Russia, Thailand, South Korea, Mexico, Argentina, and more: see link below for full list of excluded countries), so you will need a VPN to access them (or to make VOIP calls via Hangouts Dialer)

https://support.google.com/hangouts/answer/3205646

Exceptions:

Listed, but no/spotty service:
  • Ukraine (Aug 2018) - no service, all providers listed as "forbidden". Post #660
  • Alaska (Jul 2018) -- had voice service, but inconsistent/spotty data (try forcing Sprint)
  • Peru (Sep 2016) post 341, 360
  • Grand Cayman Island (Jan 2018) post 547

Not listed, *did* have service
  • Belize (Jan 2018) post 547 Belize now appears on the "supported" international list
If you are having trouble connecting, level 1 Fi reps recommend you try the following steps before they will escalate. Try each step in the order listed below to see if it fixes your issue - if not, move on to next step.

1- Reboot phone
2- Toggle "airplane mode" on/off. Wait five seconds after toggling off (it resets phone modem).
3- Try manually connecting to each available network (rather than using the auto select feature).
4- Toggle down from 4g to 3g (removing the recommended 4g option) and then try manually connecting to each available network.
5- Toggle down from 3g to 2g and then try manually connecting to each available network.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 4:44 am
  #976  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Belgium
Posts: 701
Originally Posted by boerne View Post
Actually I think it will let you use it as a hotspot internationally. It does on a Google Fi phone, and If I recall correctly it did on an iphone 6 I was using last year.
Also If you use Straight Talk in the US and have a Google Fi phone, pm me.
Due to some limitation somewhere between iOS and Fi, you can't hotspot an iPhone on Fi outside the United States.

It works fine on any phone within the U.S., and it works fine overseas on any Android phone (whether 'designed for Fi' or not). But you cannot tether or hotspot with iPhones overseas.
der_saeufer is offline  
Old Apr 11, 19, 7:01 am
  #977  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Cleveland, OH
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Originally Posted by der_saeufer View Post
Due to some limitation somewhere between iOS and Fi, you can't hotspot an iPhone on Fi outside the United States.

It works fine on any phone within the U.S., and it works fine overseas on any Android phone (whether 'designed for Fi' or not). But you cannot tether or hotspot with iPhones overseas.
Oddly in my iPad the "Data only Sim" allows me to do hotspots overseas.
LordHamster is offline  
Old Apr 11, 19, 9:11 am
  #978  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Belgium
Posts: 701
Originally Posted by LordHamster View Post
Oddly in my iPad the "Data only Sim" allows me to do hotspots overseas.
It may be the difference between the iPhone and iPad.

If my data SIM worked outside the US, I could test that. Sadly, it does not. If I ever get around to having Fi replace it, I'll test it

When I tested it with my 'real' SIM in an iPhone a couple months ago, tethering/hotspot appeared to activate but wouldn't work.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 10:56 am
  #979  
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 370
We've definitely had many different experiences with international use of regular and data-only SIMs and tethering, especially with iOS devices.

My understanding was that no iOS device can tether with either type of SIM, but that many Android devices, and more likely Fi-specific devices should be able to tether with either.

But I'd love some clarity on all of this.

The only device I have been able to make worth as a hotspot is a Moto X4 (Android, and Fi-specific). My iPhone and iPad won't do it - the option just never becomes active.
Michael Ad is offline  
Old Apr 11, 19, 11:45 am
  #980  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: bay area, ca
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Posts: 3,203
Originally Posted by Yoshi212 View Post
Fi uses T-Mobileís US domestic network and their international roaming partners to provide the global service. Itís 10am here and service is still not restored. Just spoke with a rather inept rep at Fi. Had trouble with my Pixel 3 XL connecting to WiFi for a few hours also. Was no problem for my iPad but now at least I have WiFi on my phone to download offline maps.
Update: Service is back.

Interesting in that when I had tmo I could use wifi calling in Thailand but can't with Fi - I guess this is a limitation with a "non fi" phone rather than a limitation of their partners then?
estnet is offline  
Old Apr 11, 19, 11:47 am
  #981  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: bay area, ca
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Originally Posted by abk View Post
yes, twice on Tuesday and once Wednesday morning as they told me things would be fixed Wednesday am. Wednesday afternoon I received a follow up email at 3:03 central time saying things were fixed and they were. I will say that this am my phone worked fine in wifi but didn't outside of it and that is why I called again. This is my second travel phone and I am glad it is not my main one.
I didn't mean that my phone worked on wifi (which of course it did) but that I was able to turn pause off while on wifi but not if I was not connected to wifi (I'm not sure if that is normal - since I've never done it before and was in Japan)
How were u able to reach customer service while paused?
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:29 pm
  #982  
abk
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
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Originally Posted by estnet View Post
I didn't mean that my phone worked on wifi (which of course it did) but that I was able to turn pause off while on wifi but not if I was not connected to wifi (I'm not sure if that is normal - since I've never done it before and was in Japan)
How were u able to reach customer service while paused?
sorry, I misunderstood your question. When I first resumed service I did it on my laptop from my house. I then went to use the phone outside of wifi and when I dialed it told me there was a problem with my account and sent me directly to customer service. Later when I was back in wifi I could make calls over the internet but when I turned wifi off and tried I went directly to customer service. Sometime mid afternoon yesterday everything started working fine on both my phone and my data sim in my ipad.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 1:53 pm
  #983  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Belgium
Posts: 701
Originally Posted by Michael Ad View Post
We've definitely had many different experiences with international use of regular and data-only SIMs and tethering, especially with iOS devices.

My understanding was that no iOS device can tether with either type of SIM, but that many Android devices, and more likely Fi-specific devices should be able to tether with either.

But I'd love some clarity on all of this.

The only device I have been able to make worth as a hotspot is a Moto X4 (Android, and Fi-specific). My iPhone and iPad won't do it - the option just never becomes active.
I had no problem tethering outside the US with either of the crappy beater Android phones (Nokia 3.1 and a Moto G5, neither of which are Fi-specific) that I've had in my kitchen drawer to lend to guests. I used my 'real' SIM but the data SIM should be the same assuming yours actually works overseas unlike mine.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 2:24 pm
  #984  
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 370
Originally Posted by der_saeufer View Post
I had no problem tethering outside the US with either of the crappy beater Android phones (Nokia 3.1 and a Moto G5, neither of which are Fi-specific) that I've had in my kitchen drawer to lend to guests. I used my 'real' SIM but the data SIM should be the same assuming yours actually works overseas unlike mine.
https://support.google.com/fi/answer/6330195?hl=en

  • Tethering: Tethering from a device with a data-only SIM isnít supported.
But I agree that people have reported that it works, so who knows.
Michael Ad is offline  
Old Apr 11, 19, 2:44 pm
  #985  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: New York, NY
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Posts: 6,548
Not being supported is not the same as not possible when it comes to Fi.

People have been using iPhone, with some limits, for years even though IOS only recently become supported, still with some limits.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 5:44 pm
  #986  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: bay area, ca
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Originally Posted by abk View Post
sorry, I misunderstood your question. When I first resumed service I did it on my laptop from my house. I then went to use the phone outside of wifi and when I dialed it told me there was a problem with my account and sent me directly to customer service. Later when I was back in wifi I could make calls over the internet but when I turned wifi off and tried I went directly to customer service. Sometime mid afternoon yesterday everything started working fine on both my phone and my data sim in my ipad.
Thanks - were u in the US? I wouldn't have had any way to contact cs or correspond with Fi from Japan unless I had a wifi connection -hence my question. When I tried to resume service I just got either nothing or an error message (can't remember), but when I connected to the airport wifi I resumed without problem - I think this was during the time people were reporting outages.
Is it usual to be able to resume outside the country without having a wifi connection?
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Old Apr 11, 19, 6:25 pm
  #987  
abk
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
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Posts: 2,857
Originally Posted by estnet View Post
Thanks - were u in the US? I wouldn't have had any way to contact cs or correspond with Fi from Japan unless I had a wifi connection -hence my question. When I tried to resume service I just got either nothing or an error message (can't remember), but when I connected to the airport wifi I resumed without problem - I think this was during the time people were reporting outages.
Is it usual to be able to resume outside the country without having a wifi connection?
I was in the us. If you go to the fi website and go to support you can request a call or chat.
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Old Apr 11, 19, 11:02 pm
  #988  
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: bay area, ca
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Posts: 3,203
Originally Posted by abk View Post
I was in the us. If you go to the fi website and go to support you can request a call or chat.
Thanks - that only works if you have wifi if the phone isn't working Good to know since I don't always have wifi 24/7 when out of the country
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Old Apr 12, 19, 6:50 am
  #989  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Belgium
Posts: 701
Originally Posted by Yoshi212 View Post
Not being supported is not the same as not possible when it comes to Fi.

People have been using iPhone, with some limits, for years even though IOS only recently become supported, still with some limits.
Exactly. "Is not supported" means "we make no effort to stop you, and it may or may not work, but don't bother calling us if it doesn't."

My data SIM works fine in the US, and I have definitely used it for tethering with no trouble.
Yoshi212 likes this.
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Old Apr 12, 19, 2:26 pm
  #990  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Cleveland, OH
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Posts: 1,645
Welp, after a brief stint with T-Mobile, I'm back on Google FI with my iPhone. This time officially "supported."
T-Mobile sending me threatening text messages when I dared to use the Global Plus roaming I paid $50 a month for on top of my $70 bill was the final straw.

PS. I can confirm that the Data Only sim allows tethering overseas. Works fine in my iPad Pro as hotspot. That said, in the iPhone my primary voice/data sim (when I last tried) tethering doesn't work internationally. Anyway, glad to be back.
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