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OT: buying a used/new cellphone and the unlock/compatibility nightmare

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  • #16
    Originally posted by Black Forest View Post
    Our daughter has an iphone 5s. It started having issues charging. She went online and found out that the charging port is famous for failing on that model. I wanted to buy her a new phone. She said there were lots of how to's on how to replace the port. I basically told her I didn't want to mess with going inside her phone and trying to replace the jack. I told her to order a new phone and use my account to pay for it. What does she do.....she ordered the part as a kit with all the tools to do the work for 14Euros. This morning she is in my office at my conference table with her laptop, phone, my magnifying lens light and lots of papers spread out over the table. She made drawings where each screw went and placed each screw she took out on the drawing. Some of these screws are not 2mm long and less than 1mm in diameter. There were a bunch of them as in over ten that had to come out. She had the phone in pieces. She watched videos of the procedure and read texts while she was doing the surgery. This 15 year old girl had her phone put back together and working in short order. I sat there and watched. She even had the knowledge to ask me if I had a magnetic screwdriver that would fit these screws, which I did actually. I was impressed to say the least.
    Thumbs up!
    Iphone 4 and 5S are NIGHTMARE level of mechanical design.
    Location: Helsinki, Finland, Europe

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    • #17
      Originally posted by alanganes View Post
      That's awesome. Don't you love it when your kid ignores what you tell them and then goes on to show you that they were "right" all along? In a good way, of course.
      It wasn't like that at all Alan. She wasn't trying to prove anything. She just thought it was worth a shot and she maybe could save me 700 or so Euros. We have raised her to appreciate what she has and not take things for granted. She understood why I didn't want to mess with it as when she was barely into the surgery she found out it wasn't going to be so easy and it was pretty cramped quarters working on the phone. But she had the phone open and she was going to see it through no matter what.
      Location: The Black Forest in Germany

      How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Black Forest View Post
        It wasn't like that at all Alan. She wasn't trying to prove anything. She just thought it was worth a shot and she maybe could save me 700 or so Euros. We have raised her to appreciate what she has and not take things for granted. She understood why I didn't want to mess with it as when she was barely into the surgery she found out it wasn't going to be so easy and it was pretty cramped quarters working on the phone. But she had the phone open and she was going to see it through no matter what.
        What you say here is exactly how I understood your original description, I guess I did not express myself very well. And having seen other stuff you have posted describing your daughter, I would not expect her to be trying to do something for the sake of being troublesome, etc. Not at all. Apologies if it came across that way.
        My kids have done similar things with me many times, when I got it in my head that something was just too much bother or not practical, but they go ahead and show me otherwise. It makes you proud and humbles you just a bit all at the same time.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by goose View Post
          Then why are you posting about your problems?
          To keep other people from falling into the same pitfall as I did, of course! - MM

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          • #20
            Just a note to the wise:- The unlock code belongs to that particular phone and is set by the original manufacturer and independant of the carrier that is used. Don't bother going back to the original carrier, especially if you don't have an active SIM from them in the phone. Go to an independant firm or phone shop and in most cases they should be able to get your unlock code between a minute and a few hours.
            Location- Rugby, Warwickshire. UK

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            • #21
              I guess I got lucky--I bought a Factory Unlocked Phone that turned out to be originally a Verizon phone. I don't have much of the crapware on there that Verizon would have installed, but even so there's software I can't uninstall. It still was an adventure to get the phone activated, I stopped in at The Digital Store and they didn't have the right SIM. Verizon sent me one, still wrong. Called and they figured it out eventually. Went to an official Verizon Store and got the phone activated.

              RIP Windows Phone, killed off because Microsoft didn't understand you. You could have changed the world, but were misunderstood and under marketed.

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              • #22
                You can buy a brand new unlocked phone for $150 to $350. For a good mid range phone. Motorola uses almost vanilla Android.

                https://www.motorola.com/us/carrier-compatibility

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by goose View Post
                  Why do people do this ? That is; buy an old phone and then jump through hoops, do handstands and all sorts of hacking voodoo just to save a few bucks?

                  There’s a place to save money and a place not to.
                  I certainly agree. Two months ago, I bought an LG Android from Verizon. I kept my old T-Mobile Cell phone number. The phone was $168, brand new. I pay my monthly usage and they charge me $7.00 a month for the phone. I get a $7.00 per month credit and, after two years, the phone is free. I can leave at any time if I pay the remaining balance and keep the phone. I plan on staying, however.

                  It's been updated twice since I received the phone and it works great. It also has a replaceable battery unlike many other phones. It's keeper for me.

                  I can't imagine buying a used phone for close to the same price.

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                  • #24
                    Oh Oh! My super wonderful daughter bats her eyes at me this morning at breakfast and asks when we are going shopping. I ask what do you mean. She promptly replies whereas she saved me 700 euros on her phone that we should head out to the tack store!
                    Location: The Black Forest in Germany

                    How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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                    • #25
                      You know the old saying "A penny saved is a penny you can spend on something else you really really want."

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                      • #26
                        Bwaa haa haa! Just roll with it and pity her boyfriends/husband to be. They'll owe you some drinks in a decade or so...
                        Location- Rugby, Warwickshire. UK

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                        • #27
                          When my Crackberry gave up the ghost I upgraded to an iPhone 5s which I purchased re-manned from Straight Talk for $79 + $12 for three years of warranty.It took literally 5 minutes of online chat with ST to buy the phone,with the right Sim card for my area and service.

                          The only complaint I had was they didn't bother to tell me a signature was required at delivery which was a hassle.Other than that,no issues.
                          I just need one more tool,just one!

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                          • #28
                            I changed from ATT to sprint on my iPhone 6, used ATT's site to unlock it, went to Sprint and they activated it and it worked. Apple just makes one phone for all carriers since the 6 so there is nothing to worry about software wise. Though I might be moving to Verizon next, I am not happy with sprint coverage.

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by macona View Post
                              I changed from ATT to sprint on my iPhone 6, used ATT's site to unlock it, went to Sprint and they activated it and it worked. Apple just makes one phone for all carriers since the 6 so there is nothing to worry about software wise. Though I might be moving to Verizon next, I am not happy with sprint coverage.
                              AT&T and Verizon use a different radio technology. Verizon uses CDMA I think, and I don't remember what AT&T uses. It might be worth taking a few minutes and double checking that your phone does indeed have both radios.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by Puckdropper View Post
                                AT&T and Verizon use a different radio technology. Verizon uses CDMA I think, and I don't remember what AT&T uses. It might be worth taking a few minutes and double checking that your phone does indeed have both radios.
                                Verizon still has CDMA support, but that is only legacy support now. They want everyone to use LTE, which everyone else also uses.

                                Of course, now the issue is which bands of LTE does a given phone support, as different providers use different bands.

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