CELL PHONE Question

latitude19

Active member
May 29, 2011
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I have an Ifon 5 from a dinky little company called Cellcom in the US. Wondering how much it is to convert to DR use, and where is the cheapest reliable place to do that. I will be using data, mostly when I'm biking for route guidance, not voice calls. How much does data cost, and will it work when I'm out in the sticks biking?? What is the best company to use in terms of coverage?? Will be in DR for three weeks.

Is there a charge to convert my phone back for US usage?? thanks, tom
 

malko

Campesino !! :)
Jan 12, 2013
4,604
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I am sure others with more knowlege will chime in......

Not sure for I5, but any smartphone can be unblocked here, in any small dealer ( claro for example, where u can buy SIM cards ).
For very cheap, I imagine. I unblocked a swisscom samsung recently for less then 800 pesos ( unblocked, SIM + 150 pesos credit ). Maybe a bit less,cant remember.
Maybe more expensive for Iphone. Dont know.

Claro seems to have the most coverage in the dr. Daily internet, 100MB 24 h, 40 pesos. Easy to get.
They will explain that when u get ure SIM card ( 50 pesos I think ).

*111#2-1-2-1-1 and voil? one day internet !!!!! ( multiple days and more data are available through the same menu ).
 

malko

Campesino !! :)
Jan 12, 2013
4,604
222
63
I will be getting my iPhone 6 plus shortly (hopefully). Where in sosua or
Cabaret do you get the phones unlocked. Have seen the post a hundred times
But never read them before!!

Just ask around, ie locals, to be sure the guy has being doing it for sometime.
Just so he doesnt fry ure Iphone 6 !!!! ( or transform into an Iphone 4....:D ).
 

Mauricio

Gold
Nov 18, 2002
5,607
7
38
I will be getting my iPhone 6 plus shortly (hopefully). Where in sosua or
Cabaret do you get the phones unlocked. Have seen the post a hundred times
But never read them before!!

Are you getting a LOCKED iPhone 6? Why would you do that? Why didn't you better take a plan with Claro and an iPhone 6?
 

AlterEgo

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 9, 2009
20,150
1,526
113
South Coast
I will be getting my iPhone 6 plus shortly (hopefully). Where in sosua or
Cabaret do you get the phones unlocked. Have seen the post a hundred times
But never read them before!!

You may have some trouble, I hope I'm wrong. In the past, Claro couldn't unlock newer iPhones, I remember trying to get a 3G unlocked, and they couldn't do it "yet", even though the 4 was out already.
 

MikeFisher

The Fisherman/Weather Mod
Feb 28, 2006
13,295
1,461
113
Punta Cana/DR
www.mikefisher.fun
arent the phones already unlocked when you buy them in the states? i just ask, as i dont know and wonder about it.
that phones are locked when taking with a local plan i know only from ghere in the DR, when i buy a phone in germany without any plan they are lways unlocked and can be used with any SIM card here in DR. i just brought Nokia Windows Phones from my last trip, already been open tro the SIM of any provider here.
when you get the phone here from the local companies, then they are locked and connect only with the SIM of the specific provider.
new models can come out quiet costy to unblock, some you dont get unblocked at all. i had good and bad experiences with unlocking different new models here in DR over the years.
in the first place i would recommend to buy your new cellphone already unlocked in the USA/online from the US market.
great link, Barker, thanks for that one.

Mike
 

Mauricio

Gold
Nov 18, 2002
5,607
7
38
arent the phones already unlocked when you buy them in the states? i just ask, as i dont know and wonder about it.
that phones are locked when taking with a local plan i know only from ghere in the DR, when i buy a phone in germany without any plan they are lways unlocked and can be used with any SIM card here in DR. i just brought Nokia Windows Phones from my last trip, already been open tro the SIM of any provider here.
when you get the phone here from the local companies, then they are locked and connect only with the SIM of the specific provider.
new models can come out quiet costy to unblock, some you dont get unblocked at all. i had good and bad experiences with unlocking different new models here in DR over the years.
in the first place i would recommend to buy your new cellphone already unlocked in the USA/online from the US market.
great link, Barker, thanks for that one.

Mike
They are unlocked if you buy the unlocked usd650 and up version. They are locked if you buy the usd199 and up version with a plan from a provider.
 

Cdn_Gringo

Gold
Apr 29, 2014
7,998
715
113
They are unlocked if you buy the unlocked usd650 and up version. They are locked if you buy the usd199 and up version with a plan from a provider.

A better way of saying this might be:

Phones purchased from a cell provider at a discount in exchange for a fixed term of service from the same provider are almost always locked to that provider.

Phones purchased outright for full price from a cell service provider, may be locked to that provider. Make sure you ask and verify that such a device is in fact unlocked before paying for it. Many sales folks at these locations may not know for sure and we have all experienced instances where the sales information provided before the sale has been inaccurate.

Cell phones purchased from retailers who do not provide cell service almost always sell devices that are unlocked so that they can then be used with any service provider you choose. Again, one needs to specifically ask if the device is unlocked just to be sure, if the device description doesn't clearly state the device is unlocked. It is sometimes possible to purchase refurbished devices that may have at one time originated from a cell service provider and are not new from the factory intended to the open market.
 

SKY

Gold
Apr 11, 2004
10,142
487
83
Good post Gringo. When buying from say Amazon or Ebay look for a phone that says "International Unlocked ". Also get a GSM phone for the DR.
 

Mauricio

Gold
Nov 18, 2002
5,607
7
38
By the way: if you get a phone from abroad, either locked or unlocked, make sure you get a plan from Claro or Orange that does NOT include the phone. When I came back to live here with my own IPhone 3GS Claro tried to sell me an iPhone plan (now called Smart). I had to explain and insist that I didn't want to pay the same price as someone who is getting a phone with the plan. Finally they offered me the correct plan without phone, about 1000 pesos cheaper and no obligation to stay with them for 1.5 or 2 years.
 

latitude19

Active member
May 29, 2011
417
0
36
My Ifon 5 is cdma/gsm. Soooo, to unlock it is then easy and inexpensive?? Where is the best place to do this in Santiago?? Thanks
 

SKY

Gold
Apr 11, 2004
10,142
487
83
It is not even necessary to get any plan with an unlocked phone. It will work fine with a Sim card and using Wifi. For example if you have Wifi in your house you just use that. Of course the phone will work anywhere, but you can only access the Internet when Wifi is available. Just load the minutes on the phone when you need them.
 

ctrob

Silver
Nov 9, 2006
5,290
413
83
Good post Gringo. When buying from say Amazon or Ebay look for a phone that says "International Unlocked ". Also get a GSM phone for the DR.

I've got a couple of older Blackberry Curves, looking it up they seem to be cdma. So does not being gsm mean I can't use them with a dom sim card?