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Thread: Scanned activation of phone purchased at retail store?

  1. #1
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    Question Scanned activation of phone purchased at retail store?

    I have a question regarding phone activation. Did a search but didn't see this asked. When I've purchased phones at retail before i.e. Target, Walmart, etc , they were always scanned at the register and the receipt shows the phone has been activated so then all one needs do is add an airtime card or transfer minutes on-line.

    I recently went to buy a new model at KMart and they just scanned the UPC code and not the "activation" code on the bottom. I asked and clerk said they always did it that way. I had her ask another and the other clerk said they scanned the UPC and the bottom code but then neither could get that to work and noone was around who knew how it was supposed to work. I didn't want the hassle dealing with TF Customer service so did not purchase.

    My question is how do the phones get activated if not scanned at the register. Can scanning the UPC code somehow activate it? Clerk said I would do it by adding phone minutes but there's always been more to it than that before.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrourke View Post
    I have a question regarding phone activation. Did a search but didn't see this asked. When I've purchased phones at retail before i.e. Target, Walmart, etc , they were always scanned at the register and the receipt shows the phone has been activated so then all one needs do is add an airtime card or transfer minutes on-line.

    I recently went to buy a new model at KMart and they just scanned the UPC code and not the "activation" code on the bottom. I asked and clerk said they always did it that way. I had her ask another and the other clerk said they scanned the UPC and the bottom code but then neither could get that to work and noone was around who knew how it was supposed to work. I didn't want the hassle dealing with TF Customer service so did not purchase.

    My question is how do the phones get activated if not scanned at the register. Can scanning the UPC code somehow activate it? Clerk said I would do it by adding phone minutes but there's always been more to it than that before.
    Scanning the phone at the register sends the information to Tracfone's system, and then the phone can be activated, either on line or by calling CS.
    Until it is scanned into their system, it cannot be activated, period! That way, if someone steals a phone from a store, there is no way they can activate it. (also, the same principle applies to Tracfone cards)

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    You do NOT have to add minutes to activate a Tracfone. When you activate a phone it automatically receives 20 minutes of use (20 if done online, 10 if done by phone) and 60 days of service/activation. You only have to add a card when those minutes or days are running out.

    Consider this: You buy a phone and it isn`t scanned properly. You don`t activate it right away. Maybe something better comes along and you put off activating the first phone. Much later you go to activate the first phone and you get an error reply of some sort. Now you have to show you purchased the first phone or get it scanned properly (after all this time has passed). This isn`t a problem when you purchasee from tracfone directly.

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    I'm almost certain I've bought prepaid phones without them scanning the activation bar code. It was my understanding some stores have them "pre activated" which is why they keep it out of customers' reach or locked up on the shelf. I'm wondering if it was Sears where they didn't scan the activation barcode.. Hmm.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IsLand_BoY View Post
    I'm almost certain I've bought prepaid phones without them scanning the activation bar code. It was my understanding some stores have them "pre activated" which is why they keep it out of customers' reach or locked up on the shelf. I'm wondering if it was Sears where they didn't scan the activation barcode.. Hmm.
    True....but just to clarify (I hope).....
    Although it is true that some are 'pre-scanned' they are not 'pre-activated'. Two different things. As mentioned by others here they are scanned at point of sale so that tracfone will allow them to be activated. They are not already activated. Normally if you see them locked up at a store then they are 'pre-scanned' and ready for activation. Family Dollar is one retailer that comes to mind.

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