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Thread: using other GSM phones with straight talk wireless

  1. #1
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    Exclamation using other GSM phones with straight talk wireless

    I have been doing some research online about straight talk. partially because i enjoy tech and mainly cause i am looking for a new phone plan for a friend.
    I have found that there is very limited actual information on this whole subject, and alot of the questions on this forum have been answered with " it cant happen" " it doesnt work" and phrases like it, these dont help anyone.

    I am looking for help from people in the community that have knowledge and are willing to advance the project of freeing your straightalk plan from the antiquated devices they sell you.

    this is a quest for knowledge and i know that we can compile some real data.

    what I am looking for:

    1. Documentation of both of the GSM devices are conncecting to 3g or just edge.

    2. Picture of both sides of the SIM card that ST gives you in the box

    3. Pictures and documentation of what happens when you insert a ST sim into a AT&T and TMOBILE Device.

    4. Pictures and documentation of the screen when you insert a AT&T AND T-Mobile sim card

    5. and pictures of the inside backs of the GSM phones ST offers (IMEI numbers and such)


    I will be picking up the Samsung T401g when possible for testing.

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    I think the SIM comes pre-installed. I know it locks to one phone, so you can't switch it to a unlocked phone. Bummer....no android, symbian or iphones everyone

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    There has already been reports of ST sims FAILING to work in unlocked gsm phones. That is a fact. Whether an ST gsm phone can be unlocked and have outside sims work in it is another question that hasn't been answered either.

    http://www.howardforums.com/showthre...2#post13908572

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    Almost correct. It didn't fail to work...it failed to pick up a signal.

    I placed a locked ST SIM into several of my phones...unlocked GSM HTC Windows phones, specifically the HTC Dash and the HTC Tornado (Cingular 2125). The phones did not reject the SIM...they accepted it just fine, but they reported "searching" forever. They never picked up a signal. Native ATT service in this area never dips below 4 bars, and 5 bars at his house. The devices I used are both quad band phones, so it's not like it was searching for an 850MHz tower, or something.

    I then placed my ATT SIM into my friend's ST phone, and it asked for an unlock code...it rejected the SIM.

    Welcome, drdreww...it's nice to find someone of similar interest.

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    I'm all for freeing up phone selection, but I have to pose the question: Why would America Movil's restrictions on ST GSM phones be any less tight than on their other products, Net10 and TracFone, which no one has cracked (I mean, we just take it for granted that those are closed systems). Is it only because ST CDMA phones can be used elsewhere that anyone holds out hope for their GSM side?

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    lets stay on track.. i am less interested in written verification. what we are looking for is pictures of these things. i dont want people coming in here and just saying, "it doesnt work cause it cant or some crap like that."

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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckknight View Post
    Almost correct. It didn't fail to work...it failed to pick up a signal.

    I placed a locked ST SIM into several of my phones...unlocked GSM HTC Windows phones, specifically the HTC Dash and the HTC Tornado (Cingular 2125). The phones did not reject the SIM...they accepted it just fine, but they reported "searching" forever. They never picked up a signal. Native ATT service in this area never dips below 4 bars, and 5 bars at his house. The devices I used are both quad band phones, so it's not like it was searching for an 850MHz tower, or something.
    this is good info, did you go into setting menus and search for networks or try to select a different network operator?

    also what happened if you tried to place a call?

    were the at&t phones unlocked?

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    Let's stay on track. It either works and gets a signal and the sim works in another phone or it doesn't. Anything else is a distant second place consolation. Pictures or written anecdotes of situations where it works or doesn't is practically just as good as OP's rather anal and overly strict criteria of what they are looking for.
    If it has to be that exact, spend the money, buy the sims/phones on your own and test them out yourself.

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    Quote Originally Posted by drdreww View Post
    this is good info, did you go into setting menus and search for networks or try to select a different network operator?

    also what happened if you tried to place a call?

    were the at&t phones unlocked?
    My GSM phones were both unlocked older HTC models, the HTC Tornado (Cingular 2125) and HTC s620 (Tmobile Dash). Since it had no signal and was searching, I did not try to place a call.

    Also, it did not occur to me to try to force network recognition, but I suspect it would not have worked. While the SIM was recognized and accepted by the phones, it did not result in a functioning device.

    Quote Originally Posted by whacker
    I'm all for freeing up phone selection, but I have to pose the question: Why would America Movil's restrictions on ST GSM phones be any less tight than on their other products, Net10 and TracFone, which no one has cracked (I mean, we just take it for granted that those are closed systems). Is it only because ST CDMA phones can be used elsewhere that anyone holds out hope for their GSM side?
    CDMA phones can be easily hacked to work on "other" providers, given some basic knowledge and a little software. While the official answer is that they can't, they really can... The number of people using such a technique would be minimal, and would likely not impinge significantly on the network. Some of us just want a better or more capable phone...not to abuse privileges.

    Your position has remained consistent on this board, so let me ask you a question. Why would you so vehemently resist our investigations? It's our time, and our interest. So, why are you so vocally against our even investigating the possibility of opening up handset freedom to the relative few who would want such an option?

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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckknight View Post
    My GSM phones were both unlocked older HTC models, the HTC Tornado (Cingular 2125) and HTC s620 (Tmobile Dash). Since it had no signal and was searching, I did not try to place a call.

    Also, it did not occur to me to try to force network recognition, but I suspect it would not have worked. While the SIM was recognized and accepted by the phones, it did not result in a functioning device.



    CDMA phones can be easily hacked to work on "other" providers, given some basic knowledge and a little software. While the official answer is that they can't, they really can... The number of people using such a technique would be minimal, and would likely not impinge significantly on the network. Some of us just want a better or more capable phone...not to abuse privileges.

    Your position has remained consistent on this board, so let me ask you a question. Why would you so vehemently resist our investigations? It's our time, and our interest. So, why are you so vocally against our even investigating the possibility of opening up handset freedom to the relative few who would want such an option?
    thank you for that information @chuckknight.


    Let's stay on track. It either works and gets a signal and the sim works in another phone or it doesn't. Anything else is a distant second place consolation. Pictures or written anecdotes of situations where it works or doesn't is practically just as good as OP's rather anal and overly strict criteria of what they are looking for.
    If it has to be that exact, spend the money, buy the sims/phones on your own and test them out yourself.
    fonezfonz, i agree with chuck, why are you even bothering to comment on this thread if you are just going to be negative and type like an arogant fool? if you think that anything is impossible in the tech world you are mistaken. maybe you are just trolling, im not sure, but let us explore the option fo freedom and choice.

    when my area walmart has ST in stock and i can experiment myself I will, until then i will utilize the FORUM for its intended purpose, collecting and discussing data.

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    also if we could somehow see if a net10 t401G works with ST and viceversa. they are the only other carrier with that phone that i know of

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    Quote Originally Posted by drdreww View Post
    thank you for that information @chuckknight.
    You're welcome...glad to be of assistance.

    fonezfonz, i agree with chuck, why are you even bothering to comment on this thread if you are just going to be negative and type like an arogant fool? if you think that anything is impossible in the tech world you are mistaken. maybe you are just trolling, im not sure, but let us explore the option fo freedom and choice.

    when my area walmart has ST in stock and i can experiment myself I will, until then i will utilize the FORUM for its intended purpose, collecting and discussing data.
    Now now, let's keep it civil. He's just as entitled to his opinion as we are to ours. Ours just happens to be based on our knowledge of what is really possible. His may be as well...possible does not always mean practical.

    I remind everyone of the "impossible to crack" claims about the iPhone.

    In fact, be nice to fonefonz. He has been asking similar questions for a while...the thread to which he linked is a discussion between him, me, and a few others about whether a ST SIM would work in a non ST phone. I posted the first reported trial...and failure.

    Now, down to business. The reason we wish to crack this, is that on a GSM system the handset has nothing to do with the account or even the carrier. The SIM holds the account information, and to put it in traditional CDMA terms, the PRL and other programming information. Any unlocked handset, with the insertion of a SIM, becomes a fully programmed phone on that network, linked to that user's account.

    That means that unless Samsung, etc have all implemented a hardware solution, the locking is done at the software level. And software can be much more easily cracked.

    The fact that ST has decided to circumvent handset freedom is their choice. Those of us with knowledge of such systems have made another choice...to try to break that restriction. Apple tried the same crap, got jailbroken "unofficially," and more recently got sued...successfully!

    This forum bans discussion of illegal acts...the unlocking of a GSM handset and SIM, and the removal of software restrictions (jailbreaking) is not illegal. Historically it was in a gray area, but just a few weeks ago it was officially confirmed as legal by the US court system. For once they got a decision RIGHT!

    Jailbreaking and unlocking is not illegal. Let the discussions continue!
    Last edited by chuckknight; 08-03-2010 at 07:51 PM.

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    These devices may be of some assistance to anyone wishing to hack StraightTalk:

    SIM Unlock card
    http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.23988

    SIM card reader for PC
    http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.7891

    The first might be useful for circumventing the restrictions...the second might be useful for reprogramming them. Always wanted to try it, but never had the guts...or the equipment.

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    @chuckknight ok ok I will be nice now, his sarcasm ruffled my feathers a bit.

    I really want to get my hands on some ST equipment, but have no need for the service.
    from what you have described, and elsewhere on the web, it seems to be a IMEI lock perhaps?
    do you have a ST t401G or the LG one that u could send pictures of the back of the phone?
    i know that boost mobile is locked by esn.. BUT! they share their database with Sprint, and so therefore you can activate your sprint (non-exclusive) phones on their network.

    If this is a feature of ST/ATT also, maybe a newer phone imei would register with them, I believe that after a while imei numbers get removed from their database. this would be good news

    I would also like to know if you can activate ST with a used ST phone, and how you would go about getting a SIM. ( i might just call CS and see what they say)

    btw, I LOVE dealextreme and might just go ahead and pick up those sim tools for fun

    i should have taken the one i used to use at cingular when i worked there.. it ended its life in a box in the store room.

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    Chuckknight are you thinking that the sim might be the lock and not the imei, and that if we get a different sim it might work as it does with the AT&t gophone sims?

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