Seeking USA & Canada Coverage Advice

Discussion in 'International Providers' started by eric_canada, Aug 31, 2005.

  1. eric_canada

    eric_canada New Member

    Hi Everyone.

    I want to buy a Treo 650 for data/email/voice use in the USA and Canada. Can anyone suggest a wireless company who provides decent coverage in the USA and Canada without crazy roaming fees?

    Many, many thanks!
  2. Geo

    Geo New Member

    USA Canada Coverage

    HI Eric,
    I know that Telus in Canada has just added the Treo 650 to its sysytem. That maybe good, cause if the 700 is due out soon, then the price may drop even more.
    Either way you are going to get roaming charges, that is just the nature of the beast in cel phone billing. I guess it will be just a matter of searching for the best rates. When I shopped for a basic 'pay as you go service' I visited a major retailer in T.O. that had several cel phone services for sale, but the staff was not too keen nor knowledgable on the product. I found that calling the company directly to speak with a customer service person was the best bet for real and honest answers. besides, most of those numbers are toll free, so it won't hurt your wallet with roaming charges.
  3. Geo

    Geo New Member

    Hi Eric, A quick update to the international use of your and )Hopefully) my Treo. I am thinking of planning a trip to Italy and wanted to stay connected.
    Considering all the roaming fees and such, I found by chance a website from which you can purchase internation SIM cards. They can be had for each specific country, for example a TIM card for Italy. The rates are by far cheaper! It is like only 12-15 cents a minute to make calls in Italy, and if you have to call home to USA/Canada you pay only about 60 cents a minute for the call. That is alot cheaper than having to pay usual fee plus a roaming charg, which probably works on 1 minute inervals. It is a Prepaid service, so no contract, no monthly bill AND the number is good for a year. By the way, ALL incoming calls are free. Yes even if they originate from accross the pond! On top of that, say you are in Italy and want to see a bit of the Alps and by accident cross the boarder in to Switzerland....the card roams. A prepaid service, that has good rates, where the number lasts a year, all incoming calls are free, and it roams. I think the Europeans have something on us. Fair cell prices!

    Also, there is a Global SIM card. The rates are higher, and the number is only good for 9 months, but it works in 100 different countries.
    Gotta look into this more.
  4. ricko

    ricko New Member

    Prepaid minutes that work with email, web, as well as phone?

    If I buy a Treo 650, can i find a provider that will let me prepay for minutes (as I do now with Verizon Kyocera Smartphone), and will those minutes work for the web and email functions?
  5. maceyr

    maceyr New Member

    One thing to note about the Telus Treo 650. Telus is a CDMA carrier and unlike GSM, can not be unlocked in such as way as you can with a GSM phone, where you can unlock the SIM lock on the phone and get another SIM card from any GSM carrier in the world and use it. CDMA doesn't have SIM cards and as far as I know, no CDMA carrier in North America will allow you to use a foreign carrier CDMA phone (eg. Canada CDMA phone on a US carrier) on their network. So you will have to resort to paying for the hefty roaming charges charged by your home carrier.

    So, I'd suggest getting a GSM Treo 650 phone instead of a CDMA phone and get it unlocked so that you can then easily purchase a SIM card and use it anywhere in the world.

    I was recently visiting HK and bought my never locked GSM Treo 650 phone there and was able to buy a prepaid SIM card with minutes bundled in it so that I could use it right away. I'm not sure if other places in the world offer that but I'm sure that some places will offer something similar. In Canada, I think you have to get the SIM card and then get a prepaid phone card in order to use it. There are two main carriers Rogers and Fido (actually Fido is now really Rogers since they bought them out).

    As for prepaid, I doubt that you can access the web via GPRS, although for Rogers in Canada, I think you can. I know that with Smartone in HK that that feature was disabled.

    I'd suggest checking out the local GSM carriers for the country where you will be visiting for more info.
  6. wingcutter

    wingcutter New Member

    Exactly... I just left Telus to go to Rogers. If you own a telus phone don't plan on ever using it if you leave telus. Rogers on the other hand uses the standard SIM Card technology. Also, Rogers now has the 680... much smaller and nicer IMO.
  7. plunker

    plunker New Member

    That is kind of stange. I agree with the sim technology if you are traveling but not being able to use your cdma phone does not seem right.

    I went to england and checked with sprint about using my sprint service overseas. They stated (at the time) I could not use their service but I could activate over there as long as it was a dual or tri mode phone and use it in England.

    My first Motorala flip phone had a contract in Dallas and I added a local number in my area. It would not work on both at the same time but I could switch back and forth.
  8. maceyr

    maceyr New Member

    I'm not saying that you CAN'T use your CDMA phone overseas. What I'm saying is that if you are planning on travelling overseas, some countries may not support CDMA technology as they may only operate on GSM. So, in those places, you will not be able to use your CDMA phone, even if you are willing to pay for the roaming charges.

    I'm not sure if you are able to set up your CDMA phone with the local overseas CDMA carrier to have a local cellular phone number similar to having something like this for a GSM phone via a local SIM card. That depends on the local overseas CDMA carrier and whether they allow you to get a local number and pay the local rate. I would think *not* since you are a foreigner and they know you are only using it temporarily. Of course, I may be wrong since I don't use a CDMA phone and don't have the answer.

    But, if the local area supports CDMA, and your CDMA carrier allows you to place calls, then of course, you can. But, at whatever roaming rate your carrier charges.

    Again, if you are able to have dual or tri-mode on your phone and they allow you to set up a local number, then, that's great!

    That's what I mean.

    With GSM, I simply remove my home SIM card. Buy a local SIM card with prepaid minutes and use it and only pay the local rate, rather than pay whatever my home carrier charges to place and receive calls with my home cellular number.

    Didn't mean to confuse you.
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2007