OK guys, challenging question here... INTL usage

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by themich, Nov 1, 2012.

  1. themich macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2012
    #1
    Hi guys,

    I'm based in Europe and looking to buy two iPhones when going to the U.S., which will be soon. The phones will only be used in Europe. One will be an old 4G for my brother, I'm looking for a 4S or 5.

    But, all possible options get extremely confusing, so I thought I'd ask you more knowledgeable folks for some well needed help.

    So here I go:

    1) What options do I have for buying an iPhone 4?
    We basically use pre-paid SIM phones (GSM network) in our country. Which 4G phones/editions would work?

    a) CDMA (Verizon/Sprint) is out of the question, even if they are unlocked/flashed/..., right? Is factory unlocked the only possible option? What about AT&T?

    2) Same question, but for iPhone 4S and iPhone 5
    I read somewhere, but the source was dubious, that it will be IMPOSSIBLE to use a (/any) US iPhone on a EU sim-card GSM. Can you confirm this?
    Please note that I don't care if it's jailbroken/unlocked/factory unlocked/unusable in the U.S./....
    I don't care for any of that, as long as I can use it in Europe with pre-paid SIM cards (excluding T-mobile and O2).

    Can't be hard, can it?

    Thanks a million guys.
     
  2. zman2100 macrumors regular

    zman2100

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    Location:
    Florida
    #2
    Buying an iPhone 4 from an official source (Apple store, AT&T, etc) will be difficult unless you are fine with an 8GB device as that is all they offer anymore. Buying off contract Your better bet would be to look at options from a reseller or to check out Craigslist in your area to find a used iPhone 4. If you meet up with someone through Craigslist, you'll have the opportunity to take a look at the device and verify that everything works immediately as opposed to buying a used device online.

    If you were to buy a phone from an official source, you'd have to pay an off-contract price, which I believe would place it at $450 more than the on-contract upgrade price.

    I believe that is incorrect, but if you buy the AT&T version the iPhone 5 will not work on European LTE letworks (voice and 3G data will still work). The iPhone 4S should certainly not have a problem working on most European networks but I would definitely do a little more research into the matter before making a purchase. If you buy an on contract phone and then pay the early termination fee (it's $325 on AT&T) then you can probably make out better than getting an unlocked off contract device. You can always unlock it later via more unofficial methods (eBay unlockers get the job done for less than $30).
     

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