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Thread: cdma vs. gsm tracfone/net10 phones

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    Question cdma vs. gsm tracfone/net10 phones

    i'm so glad to have found this forum!

    I am pretty much confused as to whether I should choose a cdma or a gsm phone. can anyone shine some light on this for me?

    I currently live in an area where Verizon's service is excellent--does that mean I should be looking at one type of phone over another?

    I'm still deciding between tracfone and net 10--I know they're the same company...is there much of a difference?

    Thank you so much!

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    Net10 is 100% GSM. In the United States, CDMA comes in better in rural areas and pretty much covers the entire country. Plus you're getting better voice quality. TracFone sells both CDMA and GSM phones, and the minutes cost the same regardless. Basically, GSM phones have SIM cards and CDMA phones do not. I recommend a CDMA phone if Verizon is good where you're at. GSM phones will roam on AT&T and T-Mobile.

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    The one thing I can't agree with is the statement that CDMA is better is rural areas and here is why. We live in the back woods of WV and have had several cell phones and the best signal and clarity is from GSA phones by a wide margin!
    I also believe that it depends on what towers are in the area more than if the the phone is CDMA or GSM. It seems that if you have a majority of Verizon in your area that you would indeed be better off with a CDMA Phone.
    If you go to Tracfone web site and select buy phone and then type in your zip code it will show you the phones they have that will work best in your area. Mike

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike-in-WV
    If you go to Tracfone web site and select buy phone and then type in your zip code it will show you the phones they have that will work best in your area. Mike
    I think Tracfone prefers to activate phones on GSM. Probably because they get better rates from AT&T and perhaps T-Mobile. If you punch in a CDMA only zip code on Trac web site you'll see a paltry number of phones to choose from whereas the GSM phone selection is much better.
    Verizon is strong where I live. Yet CDMA phones do not show when I punch in my zip code.
    Because of the excellent service my wife has gotten over many years with her postpaid Verizon phone I wanted a CDMA Tracfone activated here on VZW. That is not to say I was not satisfied with my former GSM Tracfone....I was. I just feel better with VZW knowing it has been nearly flawless over these several years my wife has had it.



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    Quote Originally Posted by 25jive1
    I think Tracfone prefers to activate phones on GSM. Probably because they get better rates from AT&T and perhaps T-Mobile. If you punch in a CDMA only zip code on Trac web site you'll see a paltry number of phones to choose from whereas the GSM phone selection is much better.
    Verizon is strong where I live. Yet CDMA phones do not show when I punch in my zip code.
    Because of the excellent service my wife has gotten over many years with her postpaid Verizon phone I wanted a CDMA Tracfone activated here on VZW. That is not to say I was not satisfied with my former GSM Tracfone....I was. I just feel better with VZW knowing it has been nearly flawless over these several years my wife has had it.

    It's funny how that works and I sure agree about Tracfones selections. My wife has and always has had a C-139 GSM phone and she will not give it up but I really don't like them. I have tried several CDMA phones up on this mountain and no signal at all. My wife can make and receive calls from in the house and gets full bars in the driveway. Her phone has worked flawlessly no matter where she goes here in WV, Oh and Florida and all states between.
    My daughter has a Version phone and lives in Akron and it works great up there but when she comes to visit us she has no signal at my house and loses it a few places on I-77 and I-79.

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    Quote Originally Posted by coolkid620
    Net10 is 100% GSM.
    Not true. While Net10 (like Tracfone) is overwhelmingly GSM, they do offer two CDMA handsets: the LG 200c and the Kyocera K126c. Both are readily available at Wal-Mart stores in CDMA only zip codes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by njvegan15
    i'm so glad to have found this forum!

    I am pretty much confused as to whether I should choose a cdma or a gsm phone. can anyone shine some light on this for me?

    I currently live in an area where Verizon's service is excellent--does that mean I should be looking at one type of phone over another?

    I'm still deciding between tracfone and net 10--I know they're the same company...is there much of a difference?

    Thank you so much!
    Tracfone and Net10 prefer to sell GSM phones where GSM service is available, so you'd need to use a CDMA only zip code to order a CDMA phone from either Tracfone or Net10 or drive to a CDMA only area to purchase a phone.

    The difference between Tracfone and Net10 is that Net10 airtime rates are always 10c per minute and Tracfone airtime rates are variable and based upon the denomination of the card that you purchase. Tracfone requires a $20 airtime purchase every 90 days while Net10 requires a $30 airtime purchase every 60 days.

    There are ways to get around this (on both) and get lower per minute rates and spend less per year, but you do have to put some time and effort into doing so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by njvegan15
    i'm so glad to have found this forum!

    I am pretty much confused as to whether I should choose a cdma or a gsm phone. can anyone shine some light on this for me?

    I currently live in an area where Verizon's service is excellent--does that mean I should be looking at one type of phone over another?

    I'm still deciding between tracfone and net 10--I know they're the same company...is there much of a difference?

    Thank you so much!
    As you can see by now this cell phone info can be very confusing and to ad to the dilemma it seems like these cell phone tower companies are always making deals and that can really be confusing as to what tower will work best with which phone.
    One thing that helps is to find and talk to people in your area and see what phone works best for them and for Tracfones or Go Phones or Net 10 check with them also to see what phone they suggest to work best for you and the area where you live. Once in a while you will luck out and find someone on these sites who lives in your area and knows just what you need. It never hurts to post your zip code and the town and state where you are. Good luck, Mike

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    CDMA is no longer single rate with Tracfone

    I just bought a Nokia 2126i CDMA phone on Tracfone and upon activation was told that I pay 2 units for roaming & long distance and only 1 unit for my home service.

    The technician said that only the GSM phones are single rate for everything or 1 unit.

    Now I had chosen this 2126i phone over the 2126 because I was told that it was a single rate phone but apparently it is not.

    So here is my question. The CDMA phone will give me better reception than a GSM around the country as I travel alot because of the networks that technology draws from (Verizon, Alltel, etc.) right or wrong?

    Will there then be a trade off between reception and cost?

    If not then I am dumping this phone and getting a GSM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mulepadre
    I just bought a Nokia 2126i CDMA phone on Tracfone and upon activation was told that I pay 2 units for roaming & long distance and only 1 unit for my home service.

    The technician said that only the GSM phones are single rate for everything or 1 unit.

    Now I had chosen this 2126i phone over the 2126 because I was told that it was a single rate phone but apparently it is not.

    So here is my question. The CDMA phone will give me better reception than a GSM around the country as I travel alot because of the networks that technology draws from (Verizon, Alltel, etc.) right or wrong?

    Will there then be a trade off between reception and cost?

    If not then I am dumping this phone and getting a GSM.

    What "technician" told you that? All Tracfones offered recently are single rate including the 2126i. Have you tested the phone to see if one or two units are deducted when roaming?
    Take the battery out of the phone, you'll see the model number under the battery. If it says "2126i" you're home free. (the 2126 (no i) is not a single rate phone)
    My wife has had a Verizon post paid account of a few years. I've always been impressed with the coverage she gets on that phone. YMMV but I prefer a CDMA Tracfone.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mulepadre
    I just bought a Nokia 2126i CDMA phone on Tracfone and upon activation was told that I pay 2 units for roaming & long distance and only 1 unit for my home service.

    The technician said that only the GSM phones are single rate for everything or 1 unit.

    Now I had chosen this 2126i phone over the 2126 because I was told that it was a single rate phone but apparently it is not.
    If you go to code entry and enter *#04 it will show "RM-L" as "1" if you have a 2126i. That means you will get charged 1 unit per minute on calls to your home area when roaming. Then go to parameter 05. That shows what you are charged per minute for long distance calls from your homearea (H-LD=) and long distance calls while roaming (RM-LD=). Again you would see "1" after each if it is a 2126i.

    Believe NONE of what you hear from a tracfone tech/csr.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tracnet
    Believe NONE of what you hear from a tracfone tech/csr.
    I wholeheartedly echo that sentiment. Always check with HoFo members or the Yahoo Tracfone_Users group first. Between the two, we have years of experience with and knowledge about Tracfone. NEVER rely on Tracfone CSRs for reliable information!!!

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    You guys are right!

    I am relieved. You guys are right and my phone is working excellent as a single rate phone!!!

    Well needless to say I kept telling the techy they he had to be wrong and the techy event went to his super twice to verify. Kind of nutty...

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mulepadre
    I am relieved. You guys are right and my phone is working excellent as a single rate phone!!!

    Well needless to say I kept telling the techy they he had to be wrong and the techy event went to his super twice to verify. Kind of nutty...
    Not only will parameters 4 and 5 show you that it is Single Rate, but it says so on the packaging itself.

    Trust us, not Tracfone!

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