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Old Mar 15, 2013, 07:22 PM   #1
awesomest47
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Clarification on foreign iPhone on feature phone AT&T plan?

Nobody seems to know this answer to this anywhere online and I was just looking to confirm/clarify this. Rumor has it that if you purchase an unlocked iPhone from countries abroad (Rogers in Canada, Vodafone in the UK, etc.) that you could put it on AT&T and get a data plan for basic phones without them detecting and adding a smartphone data plan. Is this true? Can AT&T tell these IMEI numbers and the fact that they are iPhones. If so, how? Can anyone confirm this? Thank you!!
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 07:33 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by awesomest47 View Post
Nobody seems to know this answer to this anywhere online and I was just looking to confirm/clarify this. Rumor has it that if you purchase an unlocked iPhone from countries abroad (Rogers in Canada, Vodafone in the UK, etc.) that you could put it on AT&T and get a data plan for basic phones without them detecting and adding a smartphone data plan. Is this true? Can AT&T tell these IMEI numbers and the fact that they are iPhones. If so, how? Can anyone confirm this? Thank you!!
Yes they will eventually.
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 07:53 PM   #3
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Is there a DUMB data plan vs a SMART data plan?

Today, AT&T Pay&Go will take your BYOD (Bring Your Own Phone) iPhone, it just wants to charge you $15 month (minimum) + 1c/5kb and up from there.
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 07:57 PM   #4
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Yes AT&T does differentiate between smartphone and dumphone plans. Dumphone contract customers get $10 unlimited internet while smartphone people have a minimum package of $20 for a couple hundred megabytes. Also, GoPhone subscribers who are using dumphones get $50 unlimited everything (including data) while smartphone users would have to buy another data package.
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 08:05 PM   #5
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If you're here temporarily then just use Tmobile or one of the AT&T MVNOs like Net10 for data.
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 08:10 PM   #6
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Gophone for smart phone is $65 with 1gb of data.
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Old Mar 15, 2013, 11:59 PM   #7
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Nobody knows the answer to this online? Where are you looking? This has been the case for years. Use a smartphone with AT&T and the force you into a data plan. Some have gotten away with it for months. Others it pops on there before the end of the current billing cycle. It comes on as 3gb data for iPhone with no visual voicemail. Don't ask why they leave visual voicemail out, but it's free to add
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 12:10 AM   #8
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I heard that too but not 100% sure.
Give it a try and let us know how it went.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 01:01 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by lordofthereef View Post
Nobody knows the answer to this online? Where are you looking? This has been the case for years. Use a smartphone with AT&T and the force you into a data plan. Some have gotten away with it for months. Others it pops on there before the end of the current billing cycle. It comes on as 3gb data for iPhone with no visual voicemail. Don't ask why they leave visual voicemail out, but it's free to add
Some I international smartphones can use the dumb phone data plan. I used the European one x with a dumbphone data plan and it never showed up on my account.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 08:43 AM   #10
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I've done a bit more research and results vary- some claim that AT&T can't detect any international phone, others say they can only see the smartphones that are the kind they carry and some say they always know. I found a relatively cheap Rogers iPhone 3GS on eBay. It was going for so little because the buyer couldn't find a Rogers SIM card... (he's in the USA too) so I think I'm just going to go for it and see if AT&T finds out. Any suggestions? Thanks!
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 09:53 AM   #11
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Any suggestions?
Yeah, don't come here and complain when at&t finds out and adds a data plan to your account.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 11:37 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by 617aircav View Post
Some I international smartphones can use the dumb phone data plan. I used the European one x with a dumbphone data plan and it never showed up on my account.
How long were you using the phone? If AT&T is able to tell what phone you are using (which they should with the ONE X) I can almost guarantee it will eventually swap over.

FWIW I have read of a guy using a 3GS without a data plan at all on AT&T for something like nine months. I have no idea when AT&T's system does their "checks", only that they do.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 12:10 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by lordofthereef View Post
How long were you using the phone? If AT&T is able to tell what phone you are using (which they should with the ONE X) I can almost guarantee it will eventually swap over.

FWIW I have read of a guy using a 3GS without a data plan at all on AT&T for something like nine months. I have no idea when AT&T's system does their "checks", only that they do.
Att could not tell the phone I was using. It was not an att branded one x. I used it for 8 months, the sold it. When I put my SIM
In a BB torch I got a text from att the next day about my data plan.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 12:34 PM   #14
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I think much Ado...

If u are happy and able to use your smartphone with a dumb phone plan, go4rit (hey THEIR system let you!). When and if ATT complaints, u go oooops, and at that time either switch plan as per ATT demand or leave for another carrier. Simple.

There are tons of Pre-paid players appearing on the scene.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 01:01 PM   #15
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Att could not tell the phone I was using. It was not an att branded one x. I used it for 8 months, the sold it. When I put my SIM
In a BB torch I got a text from att the next day about my data plan.
Crazy. I used a GNEX (Euro Version) for a while and their systems were aware of what phone I was using even though they don't officially sell it. It can also tell when I plug my sim into my Wife's VZW iPhone 5!
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 02:00 PM   #16
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Well, this has been a confusing topic indeed. I just e-mailed my friend and he gave some information that makes sense for all of your situations:

Carriers always have ability to lookup devices. The IMEI is not a random set of numbers but includes a Type Allocation Code (TAC) that is assigned.

It just depends on whether they care to look it up or not.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 02:02 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by lordofthereef View Post
Crazy. I used a GNEX (Euro Version) for a while and their systems were aware of what phone I was using even though they don't officially sell it. It can also tell when I plug my sim into my Wife's VZW iPhone 5!
Heard about that too. At this point it's not worth doing. There more cheaper plans out there.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 02:14 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awesomest47 View Post
Well, this has been a confusing topic indeed. I just e-mailed my friend and he gave some information that makes sense for all of your situations:

Carriers always have ability to lookup devices. The IMEI is not a random set of numbers but includes a Type Allocation Code (TAC) that is assigned.

It just depends on whether they care to look it up or not.
I would imagine that to be the case. The MAC address also has essentially a brand section that tells what manufacturer made the device. I'm sure that you could also tell the type of device, but I digress...

'The Man' is not going to stand for a mere mortal human cheating it out of the money they extort from us. You will be found out. They WILL have our money.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 02:32 PM   #19
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I still don't understand though, if I have a prepaid plan, how they would still find me if I put in 000000000000000 for my IMEI. I used an ex-AT&T iPhone 4S on a 10 cents a minute gophone plan and nobody did anything (granted I never tried cellular data)
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 03:01 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awesomest47 View Post
I still don't understand though, if I have a prepaid plan, how they would still find me if I put in 000000000000000 for my IMEI. I used an ex-AT&T iPhone 4S on a 10 cents a minute gophone plan and nobody did anything (granted I never tried cellular data)
If you tried cellular data they will notice it...also just because you put in 00000000xxxxxxxxx imei number doesnt mean it stays that way....thats whats visible to you but when the SIM is inserted into a device the network automatically can detect/read the phones IMEI number, however the network doesnt store it so you never see it on your end when you log into the online account.

I bought a used iPhone 5 from someone locked to Fido...got a Fido monthly plan and cancelled 3 months later...got them to unlock it right before I cancelled. I never used the phones IMEI when I signed up for the Fido plan but rogers/Fido still knew what IMEI I was calling to get unlocked when I put in the request as they had it in their records of that phone being on my account.....
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 03:45 PM   #21
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I still don't understand though, if I have a prepaid plan, how they would still find me if I put in 000000000000000 for my IMEI. I used an ex-AT&T iPhone 4S on a 10 cents a minute gophone plan and nobody did anything (granted I never tried cellular data)
On go phone pay as you go plan you dont have to have data. If you use data it will take away your credits, and is costly. The $50 go phone plan will only get you calls and text on your iphone, no data.
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Old Mar 16, 2013, 04:02 PM   #22
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I can confirm that the carriers can see the imei and type of phone for any device you put on their networks. It only takes their systems around 24 hours to detect what device your sim card is in. AT&T is the only one I'm aware of that will actually do anything about it though.

The only way you can get away with using a go phone SIM card without them forcing you into a data plan is if you don't attempt to use cellular data. My mom used an iPhone 4 for almost year without problems because she doesn't use data.
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