1. tolya's Avatar
    I am planing to do some traveling (europe and asia) and would like to have a phone with email access. i was planning to by an unlocked blackberry off of ebay and use it with local SIMs. Can some one elucidate this newbie as to feasibility of this? will blackberry (GSM, unlocked) work with local SIMs and provide email access? Anything else i need to know?
    Thanks in advance!
    09-23-09 09:43 AM
  2. afropoika's Avatar
    Hi and welcome to CrackBerry!

    You might want to look into some other options than BlackBerry... You need to have a BlackBerry data plan, because without one all you will get is a phone (calling / SMS). In other words no e-mail or web browsing. Although there are some ways to get around these, they are not perfect and you'll still need some 3rd party application to utilize e-mail with a generic data plan.

    The problem with eBay sellers is that most will not tell you if the BlackBerry PIN is registered on a carrier's network. If it is, no matter if you unlock the BlackBerry, you still can not subscribe to a BlackBerry data plan. Always remember that for full functionality a BlackBerry data plan is required, NOT a generic data plan. I say this many times to make sure you understand the difference; some people just don't understand the difference between regular data and BlackBerry data.

    While you're at it you might want to plan your trip carefully. Even with an unlocked BlackBerry I am quite sure you won't get a SIM card for every country you visit, so check the roaming rates with your current carrier and preferably get a prepaid SIM card. Data overseas can cost a lot and I mean A LOT. Also, not every country supports BlackBerry (in Europe for example Finland and quite some countries in Asia have no carriers with BlackBerry support), therefore you may want to triple check whether or not you can and if it is wise to subscribe to a BlackBerry data plan.

    Lastly, do not buy any BlackBerry if you are going to buy one. Study well what you are going to buy and be careful as always when buying from eBay.

    Just my 0.02€
    09-23-09 10:02 AM
  3. tolya's Avatar
    Thanks for a quick and informative answer!
    I guess i have to reconsider my plans. what phone would you recomend that would allow me calling and email?
    Thanks again!
    09-23-09 10:16 AM
  4. Radius's Avatar
    An unlocked BlackBerry will work for you I think. I go to China (and will again this November) and you can still do internet with local SIM cards.

    Get the China Mobile ones, they automagically allow internet access It's WAP for the most part but it does work. However it's not cheap, use it to quickly check your web mail and get out of there.

    And there's no BIS either, other Asian countries are different.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    09-23-09 10:28 AM
  5. afropoika's Avatar
    I could recommend anything... pretty much any phone out there is capable of doing what you want to do. Nokia, iPhone, WinMo, Palm... just go to a store and have a look at all the phones there, see what you like the best and if it is in the range of your budget... buy it, problem solved.
    09-23-09 10:33 AM
  6. happyattorney's Avatar
    I've been searching for hours for the best way to communicate with U.S. while visiting China next month - and I think I'm finally on the right track because you folks seem to know!

    If I unlock my T-Mo BB 8900 Curve, then buy a SIM card when I arrive in China, will I be able to place and receive calls to/from the U.S.? Without paying the $2.99/min. T-Mo roaming charges? Any idea how much this would cost? (T-Mo says it will unlock for free).

    I'd love to be able to use email, but can live without it. Would PIN messages work? SMS messages?

    THANKS for any help you can give - I'm getting desparate as I leave on Oct. 6!
    09-25-09 05:13 PM
  7. FF22's Avatar
    I believe if you get a CHINA sim card, that calls would be INTERNATIONAL both to/from the phone. Your US (guessing) callers would be dialing a China phone number. You would be using a China phone number to dial out to the US.

    If you keep your current sim card, I believe your US callers would only be calling your local US number. But, yes, you will be paying some kind of HIGH roaming rate.

    But maybe T-mob has a Global plan like Verizon. Not that it was dirt cheap but calls were $0.99/minute in/out and and Data was UNlimited. This for a net of about $40/month over my normal BIS plan - they drop your Bis plan and the new Global plan is $70/month - pro rated. You are gone 2 weeks, you pay 2 weeks BIS and two weeks Global. So check with Tmob and see what they offer.

    Have fun
    09-25-09 05:30 PM
  8. Radius's Avatar
    Go Wi-Fi with the phone and it's going to be cheaper in the end.

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    09-25-09 06:11 PM
  9. happyattorney's Avatar

    I'm not familiar with using WiFi for phone - unless I'm doing it without knowing. (I have WiFi at home and use my BB as my only phone, so maybe it's connecting thru WiFi?). Anyway, if you would be kind enough to explain the basics to me I would greatly appreciate it. How does one set it up?

    09-25-09 06:21 PM
  10. njbianco's Avatar
    If your using your phone for traveling id get the tour witch is a world phone. I guess the new batches of the tours on sprint are coming unlocked and if not theyll unlock it for you no questions asked, so you would be able to buy a pay as you go phone in whatever country your in and use its sim card in the phone as long its on a gsm network.
    09-25-09 10:14 PM
  11. ace587's Avatar
    get an unlocked tmobile BB, like an 8120 (pocketable and u wont be scared to take it into shady areas). check your emails via wifi.
    09-25-09 10:22 PM
  12. ace587's Avatar
    Also keep a tmobile to go sim to use over UMA. They won't roam but they'll work in BBs in UMA mode

    Posted from my CrackBerry at wapforums.crackberry.com
    09-26-09 12:24 AM