I'm moving to America (San F) with my unlocked iPhone 5 which is the best network?

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by razzchicken, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. razzchicken macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2013
    #1
    Hello,

    Was wondering if anyone could help, im moving to San Francisco and im taking with me my unlocked A1429 GSM & CMDA iPhone 5. Which is the best network, in terms of both price and quality. If it matters in relation to the networks, i aslo will need unlimited data (and not fair usage, real unlimited like I enjoy currently). Hope ive provided enough information.

    Thanks in advance!

    Chris
     
  2. iDuel macrumors 6502a

    iDuel

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Greece/USA
    #2
    First, you won't be able to use any CDMA networks (Verizon/Sprint) with your current iPhone 5, as the carriers do not allow "outside" phones on their networks. If you want Verizon or Sprint, you'll need to buy a phone from them.

    On the other hand, AT&T, T-Mobile, and the pre-paid carriers will work with your iPhone 5. You'll need to verify which bands your phone supports so that you'll have an idea if your iPhone will have the ability to catch an LTE/4G signal.

    I personally recommend AT&T if you are looking for solid data/voice/text service, but the downside is that you will not have unlimited data.

    If unlimited data is very important, you can try T-Mobile as they have very reasonable prices and offer real unlimited 4G/3G. The downside is that T-Mobile's 3G and 4G/LTE networks are not as expansive as AT&T's, so you'll be forced to use EDGE unless you are in an area with their refarmed 3G.

    Alternatively, you can use StraightTalk (prepaid) which offers unlimited data (soft cap at 2.5GB)

    If you have any other questions, let me know!:)
     
  3. razzchicken thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2013
    #3
    Thanks very much for the information. Unlimited data is a must unfortunately, so T-Mobile seems like the best bet, but im worried about EDGE, do you mean that all data outside their LTE coverage is delivered by EDGE? Im going to be living in San F and Ive checked and T-Mobile does have coverage there so would probably be ok for most of the time.

    And lastly, you mention the soft cap when talking about StraightTalk, is that a complete cut off or throttling at 2.5GB? (because that would last me about 2 days)

    Thanks again for your help.
     
  4. iDuel macrumors 6502a

    iDuel

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Greece/USA
    #4
    T-Mobile, in areas that they haven't yet upgraded, uses a 3G band not compatible with iPhone 5s purchased before April of 2013. I'm not sure if T-Mobile has upgraded their network in San Francisco yet. That is something you may want to clear up with them. Generally, if the area has LTE coverage, then it should be assumed that T-Mobile upgraded their network to work with all iPhone 5s.

    StraightTalk's soft cap at 2.5GB is throttling, and there is a chance that they will kick you off of their network if you use an excessive amount of data. How much data they deem excessive remains unknown. It is also worth it to mention that StraightTalk uses T-Mobile's network anyway. They previously used Verizon and AT&T.

    If you have any other questions, let me know!:)
     
  5. razzchicken thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2013
    #5
    Brilliant thank you again for all this help. T-Mobile definitely seems to be the one to go for. One last question, do you think my iPhone 5 should work fine on T-Mobile's 3G since it was replaced under warranty 2 weeks ago?
     
  6. iDuel macrumors 6502a

    iDuel

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Location:
    Greece/USA
    #6
    Since you mentioned that you would be moving to San Francisco, you should be able to get 3G regardless due to T-mobile refraining their network over there. You may run into some EDGE areas outside of the the city if you don't have the iPhone 5 with support for the AWS band t-mobile uses. I couldn't really tell you for sure whether the replacement you got was the new one or not, as Apple has a large supply of refurb units.
     

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