I'm sure this has been discussed. Please direct me if I'm in the wrong forum.
I need a smartphone that will work stateside AND in the PRC. I could easily buy one in mainland China except I need an English interface, instructions, and online help if needed. I thought I just needed an unlocked quadband GSM phone but the company I did business with before - Consumer Cellular, which rents AT&T's network) told me none of their phones will work outside the US. (I was eyeing their only smartphone, the Motorola Bravo - and yes, I need to keep costs down state-side. "CC" is good for "post-paid" service [save for their use of ATT!])
I had hoped to buy a phone here and just buy a new SIM card from China Mobile when I reached there.
Does this mean that I should ONLY look at phones that are labeled "unlocked, international"? Any advice would be mondo appreciated!
Hu He (Despite the name, I'm "illiterate" over there!)
Motorola Photon 4G at Sprint works in America and globally, however I have heard [but not confirmed] that data may be prohibitively expensive when using networks outside America. How it is possible for data (by Sprint) to be expensive when you are using a phone on a different network than Sprint is beyond me...
China Mobile has GSM 900 but their 3G network uses a totally different technology unavailable on any phones you can buy in North America. That GSM band should be available on any AT&T or T-Mobile phone.
China Unicom also has GSM 900 but their 3G network uses UMTS 2100 which is a band found on many North American phones for roaming compatibility. For example the LG Phoenix/Thrive from AT&T has UMTS 850/1900/2100 so once unlocked it should give you 3G speeds on China Unicom. Subject to state censorship of course
You may alter the language into English on Chinese phones. There should be some setting ups such as "language setup". Since you say you are totally illiterate, so you may ask some local people in China to help you.
This won't be a complicated case!