Where At&t would show it said 'movistar'....

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by danedane5, Sep 5, 2008.

  1. danedane5 macrumors member


    Jun 5, 2008
    Here is a screenshot of my phone when I was in San Diego hanging out walking around, and then my signal fell dove off, and it said movistar. And I dont see what it could be seeing as how I haven't unlocked or done anything with it.. Hasnt dont it since...Any clues? Really curious as to how this happened..

    P.S sorry for the bad word haha

    Attached Files:

  2. Surely Guest


    Oct 27, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
  3. maxxscholten macrumors regular

    Feb 28, 2008
    Doesn't ATT and other cell phone companies sometimes "buy" some signals from other companies where they don't have towers? So that if you're with ATT and you go to a place where ATT isn't will to put up towers, they "buy" the signals from other cell companies that have put up the towers there and you just use their towers?

    I could be COMPLETELY wrong, so someone correct me if I am wrong.

    But, this happening in San Diego? Sounds kind of weird, that's a city where there should be an abundance of ATT towers.
  4. Van Wildonher macrumors 6502a

    Apr 29, 2008
    Movistar is a Spanish company I believe. That makes it even weirder.
  5. WildCowboy Administrator/Editor


    Staff Member

    Jan 20, 2005
    How close were you to the border? Movistar provides cell service in Mexico, so it seems like you might have been connected to one of their towers. Which means international data rates.
  6. danedane5 thread starter macrumors member


    Jun 5, 2008

    A mexican company, eh? Well San Diego strays close to the border, but im too tired to research this haha, but really this was weird haha.
  7. adster macrumors regular

    Aug 7, 2008
    While driving on I-10 in south Texas last week My AT&T changed to MOVIL. I instantly got a text message from AttFreeMsg that said international voice and data rates apply.

    So, like others have said, your phone can hop networks that have roaming contracts.
  8. danedane5 thread starter macrumors member


    Jun 5, 2008

    I was at Seaport Village by my hotel at the Hyatt? hmmmm better not have charged me international for anything i did there...
  9. bassproguy07 macrumors 6502a


    Aug 13, 2008
    Katy, TX
    I-10 isn't in south texas my friend south texas is like brownsville, harlengen. I haven't noticed this issue on I-10, weird!
  10. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    I've picked up signals from Mexico in San Diego as well (although, with Verizon, or formally, AirTouch). If I recall correctly, I was in Point Loma, which isn't far Seaport Village.

    Although, that was quite some time ago.
  11. adster macrumors regular

    Aug 7, 2008
    Yeah, my bad. Not south Texas, but moreso extreme east Texas, near El Paso. Sorry, I just finished a drive from Florida to LA in I-10 and Texas was a huge blur, but you're right!
  12. Polo5 macrumors regular

    May 2, 2008
    I live REALLY close to the border and one time i was driving when all of the sudden "at&t" changed to "mexico" it was really briefly then it went to "no service" and then back to "at&t" with only one bar...

    I found that really strange as I would have expected to change to something like a mexican cell phone carrier or something, but it just said that "mexico"

    Just to confirm "telcel" and "movistar" are indeed some of the major cellphone carriers in that country...
  13. skwoytek macrumors 6502a

    Feb 15, 2005
    Had this happen while on 94 in San Diego. I was making a call that HAD to be made, but I couldn't get AT&T, only Movistar on the iPhone. I made the call anyway.

    Turns out I paid a couple bucks extra to make that call as I was "roaming from Mexico."
  14. ivan123 macrumors member


    Sep 22, 2007
    New Zealand
    Somehow I don't think ill be having any problems like this:)

    Attached Files:

  15. danedane5 thread starter macrumors member


    Jun 5, 2008

    That pisses me off. I live in AZ and they charge roaming like its someplace really far and hard to service..its like just a few miles from US. I know its a different company but I love to complain about everything. And im complaining about MExico not AZ ha
  16. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    Go into your settings and make sure that international data roaming is turned off. This won't stop you from roaming for voice and SMS, but data is where they really get you, so at least you'll be shielded from the really big expenses. Especially since the iPhone is a data hog compared to other phones.

    I wonder if the Mexican carriers are back to their old tricks. I remember in the mid 90s when cellular was still analog, I lived in a border region and it was common for cell phone users to get slammed HARD with roaming charges from Mexico even though they were well within the US. Turned out the cell companies in Mexico had built a line of towers along the border and basically BLASTED their signal across the border into the US. Supposedly this was to "better serve Mexican customers visiting the US," but it was clearly a way to try and grab roaming revenue that wasn't really legit.

    What was then GTE (later became Verizon), and Cellular One (later became Alltel in that area) started doing the same to the Mexican side, but the Mexican companies complained mightily to the FCC about it. Eventually there was some agreement hashed out that limited the amount of signal spillage from both sides, and most of the problems went away.
  17. iPhelim, Sep 7, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2013
  18. rablat macrumors 6502a


    Oct 8, 2007
    Classified NSA intel
    Wow, you either need some sleep or a compass, El Paso would be WEST texas.
  19. bigtar macrumors member

    May 5, 2008
    You were picking up the Mexican network. Happens in certain places around town, Pt. Loma being one of them. Campo is another.
  20. saturnino3 macrumors member

    Apr 24, 2005
    Oakland, CA
    You were roaming on the Movistar's Mexican network. There are towers from both Telefonica's Movistar and America Movil's Telcel literally next to the US-Mexico border.

    Although Downtown San Diego is relatively far away from Mexico via the freeway, it it not that far geographically from Tijuana.

    If you go further south (West Chula Vista, Imperial Beach, San Ysidro, Otay) and ask your iPhone to look for any available networks, you can find Telcel, Movistar, AT&T, and T-Mobile.

    You can alo use your iPhone without roaming in certain parts of Tijuana.

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