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Prepaid SIM for UK, Treo 600

Prepaid SIM for UK, Treo 600

Old Feb 24, 05, 12:15 pm
  #1  
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Prepaid SIM for UK, Treo 600

I'll be in London and suburbs for a few days next month and would like to get advice on whether its better to get some sort of international plan added to my AT&T/Treo 600 or get a prepaid SIM while in the UK. Any ideas on the rates calling US and getting calls from US while in UK?

Thanks in advance
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Old Feb 24, 05, 1:37 pm
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http://www.prepaidgsm.net/en/uk.html
Most people find Virgin a good choice. You can buy them at the airport. In addition to low charges for outgoing, the big advantage of a local SIM is that incoming is free (charging for airtime on incoming is a peculiarity of the US market).
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Old Feb 24, 05, 1:51 pm
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If you end up using Virgin, make sure your phone is compatible first. Either the store will have a sample SIM to pop in.. or you dial some local number which tells you... after that, it's a piece of cake - buy the chip for 10 GBP, receive 5 GBP credit. Rates are reasonable - IIRC, it was 30p/min to US or somewhere near there. Text msgs were cheap and incoming calls were free. Topping up is easy and convenient.

Last edited by izzik; Feb 25, 05 at 7:52 am
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Old Feb 24, 05, 9:15 pm
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I don't think Virgin sims and AT&T are compatible. I have a Vodaphone Sim and an O2 sim that both work.
I have a Vodaphone one I can lend you. Are you sure your Treo is unlocked?
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Old Feb 24, 05, 11:10 pm
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As long as your phone's unlocked it should work - as for US rate; I believe its 25p/minute on virgin; 20 p/min for within the UK.
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Old Feb 25, 05, 7:52 am
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Mistake - Voicemail retrieval within the UK is free.

Here's a page with the rates:
http://www.virginmobile.com/mobile/s...ff/tariff.html
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Old Feb 25, 05, 7:15 pm
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I think Virgin is 850 and AT&T is not compatible
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Old Feb 25, 05, 8:34 pm
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Lots of disinformation in the posts above. If you click the link I gave, you'll see: Virgin is a GSM 1800 network (it's an overlay on T-Mobile), calls to the US are 20p/min, domestic calls range between 5p (landlines and Virgin after the first 5 minutes use a day), 15p (landlines and Virgin for the first 5 minutes a day), and 35p (non-Virgin mobiles) per min. Voicemail is free.
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Old Feb 25, 05, 8:51 pm
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If you have a Treo 600, and it's unlocked, you have all 4 bands: 850/900/1800/1900. Of course, only 900/1800 matter in Europe.

I tend to prefer Vodafone because they have a good network -- but be warned, only their 900Mhz is great (again, not a factor for a Treo 600). On 1800 only I'd go with T-Mobile or O2, with Orange a distant third.

So if Virgin rides on T-Mobile's network, then that's good.

Steve
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Old Feb 25, 05, 9:20 pm
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Originally Posted by someotherguy
Lots of disinformation in the posts above. If you click the link I gave, you'll see: Virgin is a GSM 1800 network (it's an overlay on T-Mobile), calls to the US are 20p/min, domestic calls range between 5p (landlines and Virgin after the first 5 minutes use a day), 15p (landlines and Virgin for the first 5 minutes a day), and 35p (non-Virgin mobiles) per min. Voicemail is free.
On my Seimens S46 (unlocked) the Virgin Sim card will not work. I am pretty sure this is a tri band phone but correct me if I am wrong.
Just found this.

Basic specs for Siemens S46

Technology-- GSM / D-AMPS
Band / mode-- GSM 900/1900 / D-AMPS 800/1900

Last edited by BDLORD; Feb 25, 05 at 9:24 pm
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Old Feb 26, 05, 7:05 am
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Basic specs for Siemens S46

Technology-- GSM / D-AMPS
Band / mode-- GSM 900/1900 / D-AMPS 800/1900

This answers the question about why this phone won't work. Virgin is a 1800 band network and the specs above do not list this band as one of those on the phone.

it is also worth noting that while European networks do not charge for incoming calls (other than roaming) it does cost people somewhat more to call you.
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Old Feb 26, 05, 11:13 am
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Originally Posted by sllevin

I tend to prefer Vodafone because they have a good network -- but be warned, only their 900Mhz is great (again, not a factor for a Treo 600). On 1800 only I'd go with T-Mobile or O2, with Orange a distant third.
In the UK, O2 was originally a 900 MHz core network but now has 1800 MHz capacity in certain areas. The same is true for Vodafone. T-Mobile and Orange are 1800 MHz networks. Orange's 1800 MHz coverage is far better than O2's.
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Old Feb 27, 05, 6:43 am
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Note: At the Virgin Store, yesterday, they are running a promotion that gives you a full 10 of credit if you bring your own phone.

Also, note that if you want to use WAP or other data services over T-Mobile, you'll have to manually set up your phone when you swap SIMs. It's a moderately difficult process, but I have my Cingular SE T638 working fine with Virgin now, as long as I change the profile. I've never tried GPRS, though, as I have a T-Mobile HotSpot account and tend to use that with my Powerbook.

In general, Virgin has the best plans for the intermittant travel person. If you were here long term and every month (like, say, me), I'd consider 3, which is a 3G network. They're practically giving away phones. I just haven't made the switch yet.

Timothy
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Old Mar 1, 05, 4:20 am
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Originally Posted by GodOSpoons
In general, Virgin has the best plans for the intermittant travel person. Timothy
Agreed. And the Virgin prepaid works in a Treo 600. And it roams in Australia.
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Old Mar 1, 05, 6:12 am
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Originally Posted by sggolf
I'll be in London and suburbs for a few days next month and would like to get advice on whether its better to get some sort of international plan added to my AT&T/Treo 600 or get a prepaid SIM while in the UK
One thing that no-one has touched on, and will significantly impact your choice, is whether you're intending to use any of the data features of your phone.

At 5 per megabyte, you'll get murdered on Virgin, for example.
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