TECHNICAL questions RE: Blackberries & Unlocked Phones

jalencastro

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Dec 15, 2004
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I've searched the threads on here but my question is very specific.
I also know a lot of people simply recommend getting unlocked quad band phones to use in DR for worry free service but here is my dilemma.
I have a sprint BB 8830 World Edition Phone
It is unlocked and i know for sure it is dual band GSM 900/1800 Mhz.
However I took it to a few cell phone kiosks and even the big Claro shop in el Conde and all tried SIM cards to the phone with no avail. Tech support came back and told me that the Claro and Orange networks in DR run on higher frequencies now 1900Mhz and that my phone would not work on the island.
Does anyone know if this is in fact true for DR?
If so I figure I should start looking on ebay for unlocked quad band phones to avoid further issues, but they cost more than the phones sold at these kiosks or shops.
And my last issue is since I am not dominican, nor have a cedula [just my US Passport] I have been turned down/away from being able to purchase phones or SIM cards. Is there a way around this or am I out of luck? thanks :ermm:
 

DR_Guy

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Feb 17, 2010
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ATT unlocked my blackberry and it works fine with both Claro and Orange. As far as a cedula goes, just ask any friend to go with you and they will accept their cedula. Hope this helps
 
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Anastacio

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This is strange, I remember I was only allowed one phone from Orange in Sosua, but using the Orange shop in Santo Domingo I have purchased 2 for myself and one for my lady, all on my passport.
I am not aware why this would be the case but it is obviously something that is overlooked by some and not by others.
As far as the technical details of a phone go, I can not help you, but I see absolutely no reason why any shop should not sell you at least one prepay phone.
Good luck!
 

jalencastro

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i dont know the specifics of your unlocked BB, Dr Guy, but i was shocked to hear that the island as a whole changed their GSM frequency to 1900 Mhz and that is why my phone wouldnt work. It recognized the SIM cards in it but had no service at all...
as to your other suggestion, I hope my friends will trust me with using their cedulas for me to get my phone. Not everybody can trust someone using their identity for opening up cellular usage...i'll give it a shot though :)
 

Adrian Bye

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i have a blackberry bold i bought on ebay a few weeks ago unlocked and it works fine on orange, both as a phone, and with the bbchat network.
 

jalencastro

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thanks Anastacio, i dont know what the big deal was with the need to have a Dominican cedula, but i was turned away on three ocassions because of it? I guess it could be hit or miss depending on where I go? I will keep trying though and see if I have better luck. I should just call Claro or Orange tech support but somehow dont think I will get lucky and get the answer i am looking for....friggin GSM networks....sheesh
 

Berzin

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Nov 17, 2004
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Jalen-I purchased a relatively inexpensive unlocked quad band phone for potential use in the DR but have only used it here.

I'll check the manual to see if it will work for you, but I'm sure it will be no problem.

It's not cutting-edge technology but it does the job while on vacation.

You're welcome to use it if you need it. Don't waste time with all that drama about cedulas and buying a phone in the DR when you've got us DR1'ers here to lend you a helping hand.
 

Santiagoguy

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I also have a BB 8830 world edition. It "DOES" work here, but you cant use it with a chip, you have to take it to a Claro store ( a smaller one) and have them unlock it and activate it for $400 pesos. I did this about a month ago in Santiago
 

Adrian Bye

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your issue is that you bought a sprint phone. you can't use sprint or verizon phones here

just at&t or tmobile that accept SIM cards and are GSM.
 

La Profe_1

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Oct 15, 2003
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I have a Verizon phone which is, and has been, activated in the DR for years. It is CDMA and works perfectly.
 
Jan 29, 2010
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I've searched the threads on here but my question is very specific.
I also know a lot of people simply recommend getting unlocked quad band phones to use in DR for worry free service but here is my dilemma.
I have a sprint BB 8830 World Edition Phone
It is unlocked and i know for sure it is dual band GSM 900/1800 Mhz.
However I took it to a few cell phone kiosks and even the big Claro shop in el Conde and all tried SIM cards to the phone with no avail. Tech support came back and told me that the Claro and Orange networks in DR run on higher frequencies now 1900Mhz and that my phone would not work on the island.
Does anyone know if this is in fact true for DR?
If so I figure I should start looking on ebay for unlocked quad band phones to avoid further issues, but they cost more than the phones sold at these kiosks or shops.
And my last issue is since I am not dominican, nor have a cedula [just my US Passport] I have been turned down/away from being able to purchase phones or SIM cards. Is there a way around this or am I out of luck? thanks :ermm:

Go on your network settings:
It ll offer you the following options
Home-only/Automatic/Gsm
Select Gsm then Reboot the phone
Place the claro or Orange sim in the phone
Wait 5 minutes for phone to turn back on.
Voice and text should work Fine, Data might be different>
Always make sure you select Gsm and not automatic

Good luck!!!
 
I've searched the threads on here but my question is very specific.
I also know a lot of people simply recommend getting unlocked quad band phones to use in DR for worry free service but here is my dilemma.
I have a sprint BB 8830 World Edition Phone
It is unlocked and i know for sure it is dual band GSM 900/1800 Mhz.
However I took it to a few cell phone kiosks and even the big Claro shop in el Conde and all tried SIM cards to the phone with no avail. Tech support came back and told me that the Claro and Orange networks in DR run on higher frequencies now 1900Mhz and that my phone would not work on the island.
Does anyone know if this is in fact true for DR?
If so I figure I should start looking on ebay for unlocked quad band phones to avoid further issues, but they cost more than the phones sold at these kiosks or shops.
And my last issue is since I am not dominican, nor have a cedula [just my US Passport] I have been turned down/away from being able to purchase phones or SIM cards. Is there a way around this or am I out of luck? thanks :ermm:


I had an 8830 blackberry with verizon last year and used it both in DR and in the USA. I went to the claro store in Puerto Plata and had to talk to several technicians till I found one who was competent. He was able to program my phone to work with claro in DR and still work in the usa. I was given a code to program into the phone when I landed in DR and I reprogrammed it when I landed in the USA. It wasnt easy finding the right tech but it can be done, Good luck.

PS I was also able to do this because I have a monthly plan with claro not paying with cards, so I dont know if that makes a difference.
 

corsair74

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Jul 3, 2006
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I'm confused.

Since when do you need a cedula to simply buy a SIM card? This must be a recent development. And I mean very recent, as I was in Santo Domingo last month and bought a SIM card for my unlocked GSM phone. The only thing they asked for was my passport.

I've been buying SIM cards this way for the last 3 years.

Vince.
 

jalencastro

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Dec 15, 2004
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Sweet

Jalen-I purchased a relatively inexpensive unlocked quad band phone for potential use in the DR but have only used it here.

I'll check the manual to see if it will work for you, but I'm sure it will be no problem.

It's not cutting-edge technology but it does the job while on vacation.

You're welcome to use it if you need it. Don't waste time with all that drama about cedulas and buying a phone in the DR when you've got us DR1'ers here to lend you a helping hand.

Hey Berzin! long time no see! Hope all is well with you my friend!
and thanks for offering the use of your phone. I will gladly take you up on that offer as it will save me a headache and i can hold on to the SIM for my next trip over. Now hopefully I can find me someone on the island who will sell me a SIM card no questions asked! sheesh....:tired:
 

jalencastro

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Dec 15, 2004
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CDMA works in DR

your issue is that you bought a sprint phone. you can't use sprint or verizon phones here

just at&t or tmobile that accept SIM cards and are GSM.

Both CDMA and GSM phones work in DR my friend. I have used both types on the same networks Claro/Centennial. I prefer the SIM cards since there is much better coverage on the GSM network throughout the island. I think I am just going to find me an unlocked quadband and avoid the headaches. :cheeky:
 

Adrian Bye

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Jul 7, 2002
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I'm confused.

Since when do you need a cedula to simply buy a SIM card? This must be a recent development. And I mean very recent, as I was in Santo Domingo last month and bought a SIM card for my unlocked GSM phone. The only thing they asked for was my passport.

I've been buying SIM cards this way for the last 3 years.

Vince.

yeah this thread seems a lot more complicated than it needs to be. i've bought maybe 5 phones off ebay in the last 8 years to use in the DR, and i've never had a problem, including palm, iphones and blackberry. i just always buy unlocked att/tmobile phones.

prepaid sims are pretty trivial to pick up too.

i know claro used to support CDMA, and maybe they still do to some degree, but they're focused on GSM now, so as long as you have GSM phones everything is easy.

updated: i used to use Codetel with a CDMA phone i activated from the US. i switched to orange maybe 5 years ago precisely because it was GSM and would let me use different chips when travelling, thus avoiding all these problems.
 

jalencastro

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Done this a million times

Go on your network settings:
It ll offer you the following options
Home-only/Automatic/Gsm
Select Gsm then Reboot the phone
Place the claro or Orange sim in the phone
Wait 5 minutes for phone to turn back on.
Voice and text should work Fine, Data might be different>
Always make sure you select Gsm and not automatic

Good luck!!!

I know how the BBs work in and out, however i wasnt sure if the DR networks needed anything fancier or slight programming done to phones to get them to work. The BB starts up fine and the networks show up [Claro or Orange] but cannot get service to work. After numerous attempts at numerous kiosks and Claro/Orange shops the techs couldnt figure it out and on three separate occasions told me that my phone runs on a lower frequency than their GSM networks allow [1800Mhz vs. the 'standard' 1900Mhz]. As suggested in here by other 8830 users they could activate the CDMA portion of the phone to work but I didnt want to do that since this is my everyday phone back in the states. I will just settle for an unlocked quadband and take my chances with that...what a headache :ermm:
 

jalencastro

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Dec 15, 2004
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Maybe i jave bad luck

I'm confused.

Since when do you need a cedula to simply buy a SIM card? This must be a recent development. And I mean very recent, as I was in Santo Domingo last month and bought a SIM card for my unlocked GSM phone. The only thing they asked for was my passport.

I've been buying SIM cards this way for the last 3 years.

Vince.

Firstly, thank you to EVERYONE for their answers/suggestions/recommendations. After all the back and forth I think I can just give up on the 8830.
Badpiece, perhaps you are the ONLY person I know that has an 8830 working on the island using a SIM card? You must have found a true technical expert that somehow got it to work...I give up LOL
As for getting a SIM card, maybe I have NO LUCK because everywhere I go they look at me weird or am i a threat? But have always been asked for a cedula and I tell everyone all I have is a US Passport and I am told this is not acceptable...Should I be more aggressive? LOL, in any case I'll figure it out...it's always convenient to have a phone when I go on vacation so I will figure something out.
Thanks again to everyone, wish me luck! :cheeky:
 

DipreSantana

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Nov 29, 2009
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Ok, my father bought my brother a Storm, had the same issue, it's simple.

It's not set up for the networks here, has happened to all the phones brought from the US for my family, go to wireless settings, and mobile networks, select network operators, and find the one for your sim card, like Claro, click, and it should connect.