which iphone5 will work in the UK from the states

Essa86

macrumors member
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
58
0
my bro is in the states and he wants to get an iphone5. will it work in the UK? what would be the best choice ? for a free contract iphone?
 

bandofbrothers

macrumors 601
Oct 14, 2007
4,780
328
Uk
Only the gsm has the SIM card slot.

Stay clear of CDMA versions.

----------

I'm not sure they are available in the states unlocked yet, only on contract.

I have read that it can be done but is rare as their networks seem to flatly refuse to sell the iPhone 5 full retail cost.
 

d123

macrumors 68020
Oct 19, 2009
2,037
454
Earth
Only the gsm has the SIM card slot.

Stay clear of CDMA versions.

----------


.
Not true with the i5.

In fact, the Verizon CDMA model is probably a better choice with regard to LTE frequencies for use in Europe. Also has the advantage of being sold unlocked.

http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/

Frequencies in the 3 models

GSM model A1428:
UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz);
GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz);
LTE (Bands 4 and 17)

CDMA model A1429:
CDMA EV-DO Rev. A and Rev. B (800, 1900, 2100 MHz);
UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz);
GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz);
LTE (Bands 1, 3, 5, 13, 25)

GSM model A1429:
UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1900, 2100 MHz);
GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz);
LTE (Bands 1, 3, 5)
 
Last edited:

Mercenary

macrumors 65816
Sep 17, 2012
1,152
544
None of the USA models will support LTE when it arrives in the uk later this month. You need model A1429 which supports LTE band 3.

I know your probably trying to score a cheaper phone but you will be left behind once LTE takes off and your phone won't support it.
 

Daveoc64

macrumors 601
Jan 16, 2008
4,062
68
Bristol, UK
my bro is in the states and he wants to get an iphone5. will it work in the UK? what would be the best choice ? for a free contract iphone?
There's very little benefit to buying an iPhone in the US with the intention of taking it to the UK (permanently).

If the phone will primarily be used in the USA (i.e. by someone that lives there) and you only want to use it in the UK occasionally (for short trips), every iPhone except the iPhone 4 sold by CDMA carriers (like Verizon and Sprint) will work fine for that purpose. The original iPhone will only work with 4/5 of the carriers here (the 5th is 3G only) and the iPhone 4 or later adds support for an additional 3G frequency that 2/5 of the carriers use.

As noted above, only the iPhone 5 model being sold by CDMA carriers (again, Verizon, Sprint etc.) will be compatible with the LTE frequency being used in the UK - albeit with the caveat that only two networks will offer LTE on that frequency. The other carriers will (eventually) offer LTE on frequencies that no current iPhone model is compatible with.

Even though this is true, I imagine that it will be impossible for someone who isn't a US Resident to get an iPhone 5 from a CDMA carrier as they won't simply sell you the phone - you'll need to either have or take out some form of contract.
 
Last edited:

tymaster50

macrumors 68030
Oct 3, 2012
2,783
7
New Jersey
Only the gsm has the SIM card slot.

Stay clear of CDMA versions.

----------




I have read that it can be done but is rare as their networks seem to flatly refuse to sell the iPhone 5 full retail cost.
false, My vzw has a sim card slot and I believe there is a sim card in there, I think it's needed for LTE.
 

ThatsMeRight

macrumors 68020
Sep 12, 2009
2,257
124
my bro is in the states and he wants to get an iphone5. will it work in the UK? what would be the best choice ? for a free contract iphone?
All models would work. Model A1428 (GSM), Model A1429 (CDMA) and Model A1429 (yep, 29, GSM).

The last A1429 model is sold in Europe. It supports the standard GSM frequencies + LTE (850, 1800, 2100 MHz).

The first A1429 (CDMA, Verizon/Sprint version) model supports CDMA + the standard GSM frequencies + LTE (700c, 850, 1800, 1900, 2100).

So DO NOT get an AT&T version (Model A1428). Else you'll won't be able to use LTE networks (in the future). Get the A1429 (Verizon/Sprint) version.

The A1429 Verizon/Sprint version is the most complete version and supports most frequencies. It supports all the frequencies that's found in the European iPhone 5 + more LTE networks + CDMA.
 

SLC Flyfishing

Suspended
Nov 19, 2007
1,486
1,717
Portland, OR
None of the USA models will support LTE when it arrives in the uk later this month. You need model A1429 which supports LTE band 3.

I know your probably trying to score a cheaper phone but you will be left behind once LTE takes off and your phone won't support it.

Both Verizon and Sprint iPhone5's are model A1429, with the Verizon one being sold unlocked.

OP tell your brother to get a Verizon iPhone 5 and it will work with LTE for EE mobile in the UK.

----------

Even though this is true, I imagine that it will be impossible for someone who isn't a US Resident to get an iPhone 5 from a CDMA carrier as they won't simply sell you the phone - you'll need to either have or take out some form of contract.
Buy straight from an Apple store, or buy on ebay or craigslist. There's tons of them out there.

Just make sure it's the Verizon model. Even though the Sprint is technically the same model as Verizon, only the Verizon one comes factory unlocked.
 

Mr.C

macrumors 601
Apr 3, 2011
4,500
603
London, UK.
Also bear in mind that none of the US iPhones will work on the new UK 4G networks.
Where did you get that from. Both the Sprint and Verizon phones support the same 4G/LTE frequencies that will be used by Everything Everywhere here in the UK. Your advice is contradicting what pretty much everyone else has said in this thread.
 

d123

macrumors 68020
Oct 19, 2009
2,037
454
Earth
Also bear in mind that none of the US iPhones will work on the new UK 4G networks.
Did you read my post and see the link?

The Verizon model has the same GSM and LTE frequencies as the UK model.

An unlocked Verizon iPhone 5 will do everything a UK model will.

----------

They are probably going by the advice provided by Apple...

http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/
The advice by Apple that shows the LTE bands for the Verizon model as

1 (2100 MHz)
3 (1800 MHz)
5 (850 MHz)
13 (700c MHz)
25 (1900 MHz)
The same 1800MHz that EE will launch this month and 3 will launch next year?
 

PVisitors

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2011
522
2
Confused as to how the OP will be able to buy the Verizon version without taking out a contract, even if it were possible to do as a tourist.
 

Daveoc64

macrumors 601
Jan 16, 2008
4,062
68
Bristol, UK
Buy straight from an Apple store, or buy on ebay or craigslist. There's tons of them out there.

Just make sure it's the Verizon model. Even though the Sprint is technically the same model as Verizon, only the Verizon one comes factory unlocked.
... but as above, you can't buy the CDMA model without having a Verizon/Sprint/Whatever contract, so that's not an option.
 

Daveoc64

macrumors 601
Jan 16, 2008
4,062
68
Bristol, UK
You can pay full retail at Apple can't you? Or do you have to be a Verizon customer to do it? If that's the case then I wasn't aware.
Verizon and Sprint (as well as all of the CDMA networks as far as I remember) will only allow phones to be used on their network if they were purchased specifically for use on that network. As such, it makes no sense for Apple to just sell someone that model of phone at full price, as they'll never be able to use it!
 

bcaslis

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2008
2,167
200
Verizon and Sprint (as well as all of the CDMA networks as far as I remember) will only allow phones to be used on their network if they were purchased specifically for use on that network. As such, it makes no sense for Apple to just sell someone that model of phone at full price, as they'll never be able to use it!
Not true. Read the above. Verizon phones are unlocked and support CDMA, 3G GSM bands, and some LTE bands. This is not a CDMA only phone.
 

Daveoc64

macrumors 601
Jan 16, 2008
4,062
68
Bristol, UK
Not true. Read the above. Verizon phones are unlocked and support CDMA, 3G GSM bands, and some LTE bands. This is not a CDMA only phone.
What's not true?

Nobody is disputing what you've just written.

The policy of CDMA carriers in the United States is to not allow customers to "bring their own" device with them.

As such, it makes absolutely no sense for someone to go into an Apple Store and request the model of iPhone designed for CDMA networks without a contract, no matter if it is unlocked. Once purchased, none of the CDMA networks will touch it - so why would Apple even offer it as an option?
 

dchao

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2008
522
0
Verizon store might sell iPhone 5 off contract. If not, try Radio Shack or Best Buy.

It also depends on your luck, if the store only have a few left, they might prefer to sell their stocks to an on-contract customer (more kick back from the carrier). Then it is up to the discretion of the manage to sell it to you.
 

bcaslis

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2008
2,167
200
What's not true?

Nobody is disputing what you've just written.

The policy of CDMA carriers in the United States is to not allow customers to "bring their own" device with them.

As such, it makes absolutely no sense for someone to go into an Apple Store and request the model of iPhone designed for CDMA networks without a contract, no matter if it is unlocked. Once purchased, none of the CDMA networks will touch it - so why would Apple even offer it as an option?
I don't know what you are going on about. First if you buy a Verizon iPhone 5 at full price or subsidized of course they will allow you connect to their network if you get a contract with them. Second, the OP said their relative was in the US and wanted to buy a phone and wanted to make sure it would work OK in the UK. The Verizon iPhone 5 is the best one for these requirement.
 

Daveoc64

macrumors 601
Jan 16, 2008
4,062
68
Bristol, UK
I don't know what you are going on about. First if you buy a Verizon iPhone 5 at full price or subsidized of course they will allow you connect to their network if you get a contract with them.
But they won't be getting a contract. They've stated that clearly.

When you activate an iPhone on a GSM network, it will never be usable on a CDMA network. As such, it makes no sense for Apple to sell someone an iPhone 5 for a CDMA network unless that person puts it onto their CDMA account when they buy it - even if that's by paying full price for the phone.

If you go to the Apple Store and say that you want an iPhone, but you want the CDMA model with no service attached to it then they'll probably explain all this to you and refuse the sale. Apple.com hints at this.

Second, the OP said their relative was in the US and wanted to buy a phone and wanted to make sure it would work OK in the UK. The Verizon iPhone 5 is the best one for these requirement.
They don't state whether the relative is a US Resident or is only visiting for a short period, so it makes it harder to give advice.
 

bcaslis

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2008
2,167
200
...
When you activate an iPhone on a GSM network, it will never be usable on a CDMA network. As such, it makes no sense for Apple to sell someone an iPhone 5 for a CDMA network unless that person puts it onto their CDMA account when they buy it.
...
I would have to see some proof of that. There are people here who have taken a iPhone 5 and activated it on AT&T and T-Mobile. Even if Verizon "doesn't let you", you could buy one, cancel the contract and pay the ETF. You would still have an unlocked iPhone 5 at the same cost as buying it full price. Someone could easily do this.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.