UK iPhone SIM in another phone?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Sin, Nov 14, 2007.

  1. Sin macrumors regular

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    Jun 25, 2007
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    #1
    If I caved in against my better judgement, and bought myself a shiny new iPhone, then can the SIM be used in another (unlocked) phone? As far as my limited knowledge of mobile stuff goes, that's generally OK with other phones/SIMs, but I'd better check about the iPhone SIM specifically before I spend any cash...

    The reason I'd want to do that, in case anyone is wondering, is that I do a bit of travelling and I know the iPhone just plain won't work in some countries I go to (such as Japan, for example) whereas my current 3G phone will.

    Actually that's a point - would the lack of 3G in the iPhone mean that the SIM/O2 won't allow use of a 3G network when used in another phone? Anyone actually tried this out?

    Most of my issues with the iPhone kind of disappear if I have the option of keeping my current phone as a backup when travelling.
     
  2. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

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    Sep 5, 2005
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    Bath, United Kingdom
    #2
    Yes, you can use the sim in other phones…

    Just curious why you think the iPhone won't work in Japan?
     
  3. Sin thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    As far as I know, Japanese phone networks don't use GSM/GPRS technology at all. If you want to use a non-Japanese phone in Japan, it needs to support UMTS.

    And while I'm fairly uninformed about the whole thing, I thought Edge was a variant on GPRS and also therefore not supported in Japan.

    I've also heard anecdotal reports from people taking their iPhones to Japan under the impression that they'll work, and finding that they wouldn't.
     
  4. arkitect macrumors 601

    arkitect

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    #4
    Well, it is a Quadband phone, so the actual "phone" might work. Not sure about the "data" side of it…
    There is always WiFi though. :)

    Edit:
    After some searching I see I am wrong and alas, the iPhone is a no-go for Japan…
     
  5. Sin thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 25, 2007
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    #5
    Surely being quadband has nothing to do with it working on a completely different type of network, only that it can find a GSM/GPRS network running on a different carrier frequency?

    My old mobile won't work at all in Japan despite being quadband, whereas my non-quadband 3G phone is happy. Same SIM, same contract - it's the 3G that is needed.

    I'm pretty sure that unless there's secret 3G stuff in the iPhone, it's not going to work in Japan, *other* than on Wifi.

    Do a google for "iphone japan roaming" and the first link I see is someone complaining that it didn't work.

    Anyone here know for sure about using the SIM in a 3G phone specifically? (as opposed to just using it for GSM/GPRS/EDGE?)

    Edit: Ah, you've seen that too now.... fair enough!
     
  6. Sin thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 25, 2007
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    #6
    I just thought I'd post a quick update with the information I've been given so far (someone else might be in the boat as me...):

    Apple Store:

    Said that I couldn't even remove the SIM without prising the back off the phone, and that this would invalidate my warranty. Expressed doubt that I was likely to visit Japan at all, but if I really was intending doing so, I should wait until February as there was some kind of "update" that might "fix things".

    O2:

    Said that the phone supports 3G and will work fine, provided I email O2 with all my details (name, DOB, inside-leg measurement) to enable the service, and turn on international data roaming on the phone.


    So stop the presses - the phone is already 3G, and will be magically updated in February (presumably to 4G, or maybe even 5G!).

    <sigh>

    As much as I like their products, it would be nice to get a straight answer on which I can base a decision to spend money. It's not like I'm asking about unlocking the damn thing, I actually want to pay for the contract fair and square...
     
  7. PieMan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2007
    #7
    Japan uses 3G on UMTS2100 only. The iPhone supports GSM on 850/900/1800/1900. The iphone won't work in Japan.

    You can remove the SIM card by pushing a paperclip into the little button at the top which is the SIM card tray and then put the SIM into another phone. But in the o2 t&c it says this is against their policy, but I think they only complain if you use lots of free data.
     
  8. CD3660 macrumors 68040

    CD3660

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    Jun 6, 2007
    Location:
    Cheshire, United Kingdom.
    #8
    O2 never cease to amaze me with their extensive knowledge of the iPhone and all of it's workings! Perhaps they'll learn in time.
     
  9. Sin thread starter macrumors regular

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    Jun 25, 2007
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    #9
    Yeah, the only question is whether or not the SIM will allow access to a 3G network like Japan uses, or only a 2G one...

    I was probably asking a bit too much for O2/Apple to tell me that, even if they knew.

    No-one here tried the SIM in a 3G phone to see what it says?
     
  10. emotion macrumors 68040

    emotion

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    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    #10
    Look in the manual, there is a sim tool for getting the sim out. I'm sre a pper clip would do the same job?
     

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