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irishdragon85

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Post Fri Oct 14, 2011 6:31 pm

Japanese Phones

so i've been thinkin about getting me one of em direct from Japan when i can get the $800 up for one that is. :P but i've been reading a bunch of mixed things online some websites say that the Japanese phones won't run in the US because of diff frequencies while others say "hey as long as it's been unlocked it can" anybody know if this is true or not? i know that over here and in Canada and possibly Mexico and other places we use the CDMA format for cell phones and Japan uses the WCDMA format, but my concern is before i shell out the money for one would i be able to use it or would i just have an $800 conversation piece.
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ace

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Post Sat Oct 15, 2011 4:44 am

Re: Japanese Phones

I personally don't know whether jap phones support our network, but I do know you should definitely ask brent. He spent a good bit over there and would probably know more than most of us about the subject.
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brentbizzle

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Post Mon Oct 17, 2011 3:07 pm

Re: Japanese Phones

Well, there's two problems with getting a Japanese phone.

1. Half of them are on CDMA networks, which means you can't just pop in a SIM and go. They use a different registration method, and I haven't heard of people taking CDMA phones between networks. AU is one of these networks.

2. Of the GSM phones that do take SIMs, they're lock to Japanese carriers, and AFAIK, they don't unlock them. You MIGHT be able to find some unlocked, but I haven't heard of it. Softbank and DoCoMo are GSM networks.

The biggest issue is getting an unlocked GSM phone. And if you were to bring it here, you would only be able to run it fully on AT&T. AT&T and T-Mobile are the only GSM carriers, but T-Mobile uses a not standard frequency (700 Mhz) for their 3G network which means you'll only get 2G speeds if you went with T-Mobile.
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irishdragon85

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Post Mon Oct 17, 2011 3:51 pm

Re: Japanese Phones

i've found soem DoCoMo phones on Ebay that are supposedly unlocking via HyperSim. and i actually like those better but by saying that i'll have to use AT&T to use it means that i'd be out the money because AT&T doesn't work in my neck of the woods. (literally my house is surrounded by woods) the only one that works is verizon. so if i did get one i'd have to move out of the country into town. :P
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brentbizzle

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Post Mon Oct 17, 2011 4:44 pm

Re: Japanese Phones

I've honestly never tried to transfer a CDMA phone between networks before. Likewise, I've never heard of an unlocked CDMA phone. If you can find an unlocked one from AU (I think they're the only BIG CDMA provider) you can start asking Verizon about getting a CDMA phone from another carrier on the network. You would also want to make sure AU and Verizon operate on the same frequencies, and that you can change the APN settings on the phone to connect to Verizon's servers for data access.

I've got a couple phones from when I was there (one from 2005 and one from 2007). I loved my phones so much. They're pretty cool and it was fun to show them off to people. They're a bit lackluster now that they're a bit old, but I was rocking a 5 MP camera on my phone back in '07!

Now I've got my 4S, and Japanese phones have lost their appeal cause they just don't do much anymore.
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irishdragon85

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Post Mon Oct 17, 2011 6:03 pm

Re: Japanese Phones

i've always wanted one because i'm a HUGE otaku i even had plans to move to Japan with one of my exes. (of course that was before we broke up and i found out how hard it is to get a citizenship in some of the countries) i've always loved the look and style of the japanese phones heres the link to the Ebay page of the phones i've been looking at http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p5197.m570.l1313&_nkw=japanese+phones&_sacat=See-All-Categories do you think that any of these from the stores will work here in the US? if not then i'll just give up on owning one. :P
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brentbizzle

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Post Wed Oct 19, 2011 9:38 am

Re: Japanese Phones

Like I said, Softbank and DoCoMo phones, being GSM, can potentially work over here if they are in fact unlocked. But as far as getting them on the 4 major carriers, Verizon and Sprint are out as they are CDMA. T-Mobile you'll be restricted to 2G speeds because they use a different frequency for 3G than the rest of the world. AT&T is the only big carrier that you will be able to use the phone at it's full potential.

There might be some smaller/regional carriers that will work. You just need to make sure that they're a GSM carrier that uses the same frequencies as AT&T.

Just remembered, you probably won't be able to send email or SMS's from the phone. In Japan, no one uses the SMS system. In fact, you can only SMS to people on the same carrier and it's FREE... because no one uses it. On phones in Japan, you create an email address when you purchase a new phone (that's changeable) and you email other people. They're usually **@au.ne.jp, or **@docomo.jp, something like that. I don't think the phone can accept an email address that isn't like that, and because of the SMS issue in Japan, I don't think you can program it to SMS. Furthermore, since you aren't on the Japanese network, you won't be able to install the little apps they have for the phones, so you'll be stuck with a flashy phone that can only call and surf the net.
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irishdragon85

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Post Wed Oct 19, 2011 10:05 am

Re: Japanese Phones

ahh ok i won't fool with em then. thanks for the info.
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