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Thread: Purchasing a used straight talk cell phone - straight talk won't activate?

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    Purchasing a used straight talk cell phone - straight talk won't activate?

    On Ebay there are many many used straight talk cell phones for sale.

    I thought it would be easy to just purchase a good one there, and then activate it with straight talk.

    But when I go to activate it and enter in the phone's serial number the straight talk website says there is already a straight talk account associated with that serial number/cell-phone. Well yeah, obviously since it's a used straight talk cell phone there probably was an old account associated with that phone. So I tried calling straight talk customer support and explained that yes it's a used phone, buying it off of ebay, I have the serial number, how do I activate it now for myself? They said if I told them the ORIGINAL zip code that the old account was activated under they'd make a new account for me. But I don't know that info!!

    Not sure if I'm missing something...if this is true, then how are other people who are buying used straight talk cell phones off of ebay activating those phones? Many of the sellers on ebay don't seem to know or care to tell you what the "original" zip code was that the first-account holder had.

    Are used straight-talk cell phones worthless in regards to using them ever again for straight talk? Seems once you use it once, you can never create another account with straight talk for that phone unless you have all the original account info (username, password, or original zip code).

    Am I missing something?

  2. #2
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    you can't get the orig zip code from the person who sold it to you?
    Moto Atrix HD: (fantastic reception) Younggun's HoloBlur X, and stock rooted JB
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    tmo (Huawei U8651T) (good reception) Prism, CWM recov v4, CM 7.2 stable rom for U8650 Sonic

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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisM77 View Post
    you can't get the orig zip code from the person who sold it to you?
    It's an ebay seller who sells the phone in working condition but without warranties and as-is and doesn't seem to know or care what the original zip code was.

    If you go to ebay, there seem to be some sellers who sell lots and lots of used cell phones, probably wholesaling them from somewhere somehow, I have no idea.

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    as is or not, I would open a case.

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    eBay generally sides with the buyer if seller didn't make it absolutely clear you were buying a bad ESN/MEID/IMEI phone.

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    the problem is when people stop using a phone and do not remove the phone in their ST website account interface. all they need to do is click remove phone. then go sell it and not mix the sim cards up.

    i guess there is a new ebay presale question now? ST is treating it like a stolen phone.


  7. #7
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    I gave my old phone to my daughter. She had a hell of a time getting it switched over to hersel. They wanted to know the zip code, what school I went to, and my dads middle name before they'd activate. (I was at work and couldn't call them).

    Don't buy a used ST phone anymore unless you know for sure where it's coming from....

  8. #8
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    You might try looking at the phone's menu for an existing phone number. Then Google the area code and prefix to see if you can figure out the zip code associated with that number. I'd try that before returning a phone that I was otherwise happy with.

    Sent from my HTC Inspire on Straight Talk using HowardForums
    My Phone Can Amortize, Can Yours?

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    Quote Originally Posted by alphamale-b View Post
    the problem is when people stop using a phone and do not remove the phone in their ST website account interface. all they need to do is click remove phone. then go sell it and not mix the sim cards up.

    i guess there is a new ebay presale question now? ST is treating it like a stolen phone.
    This is exactly right. I am currently using a borrowed phone from a friend (his backup) after losing mine in an amusement park. When I first tried to activate it, I got the same message. All he had to do was log into his account and click remove. I was then able to add it to my account and port to the phone was done in 10-20 minutes. All it takes is a click, but if they didn't do that, you may be screwed. Looking by area code is a start, but there can be 20 zip codes in one area code. Good luck, and let us know how you make out.

    Edit: and if it is unusable, I believe eBay will provide you with some remedy.

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    I just sold two yesterday on eBay, both removed from my account before, so I'm sure hoping the buyers will have no problem activating them. I don't see why they should.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoanMN View Post
    I just sold two yesterday on eBay, both removed from my account before, so I'm sure hoping the buyers will have no problem activating them. I don't see why they should.
    Ditto, I sold my old Sprint ST phone on eBay, after first porting over to BYOD, removing the old phone from my ST account, and then calling CS to make sure the old phone can be reactivated.

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