Forgot to mention before posting this question read "The Noob guide to Tracfone/Net10/Straight Talk/America Movil" and searched this forum using Keyword(s): SIM, reject. While there were a number of SIM reject postings, they were with phones from other networks. I did not find a posting of SIM reject using a Tracfone, Net10, Straight Talk or Safelink phone.
Then decided to Google also using "SIM Reject" and found "usually suggests that the network is locked on that particular cellphone" at ...answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20090203124615AAYKCid
Since both of these phones use the Tracfone network I would think this should not be a problem.
Am especially interested if others have successfully transferred Mini-SIM cards to other cell phones on the same network.
There is no Tracfone network. They buy minutes wholesale from the big guys and then resell them. You use the tower appropriate to your handset. GSM handset = AT&T or T-Mobile. CDMA handset = Verizon. This is the general idea. Tracfone is allowed a certain pool of phone numbers and traffic load. Roaming is excellent and better than if you get the big guys prepaid.
In general, the big guys allow sim swapping because the sim is what identifies you more than the handset. But with Tracfone, the handset identifies you more than the sim. So the sim is just an ingredient of a particular phone.
That's just how they do it. They prefer to lock. You just can't swap the sims. Even a brand new phone has a locked sim. If you don't like sims, you can always get a CDMA handset.
Safelink has their own extra details, but the underlying bit is the same.
You don't have to do extensive research before asking a question here.
I have switched phones with Safelink but it is not a pretty thing to do. When you call the Safelink customer service it might happen over the phone but if they make a mistake (happened to me a couple of times) they disable the current phone/sim while they send you a new sim to insert into the new phone. Before you call them write down the number of minutes you have and the expiration date/days. Usually they will move the minutes to the new phone but I have had problems with that as well. I moved from a very cheap LG phone provided by Safelink to a Tracfone LG500 which is a decent phone. Had to this a couple of times when the LG500 screen got broke. Safelink said they would replace the LG500 but when I got the phone it was the same very cheap LG model phone I swapped from before.
"I have switched phones with Safelink but it is not a pretty thing to do. When you call the Safelink customer service it might happen over the phone but if they make a mistake (happened to me a couple of times) they disable the current phone/sim while they send you a new sim to insert into the new phone."
Thanks for the tip! Am wondering if going to the higher CS Tel #s Lisme provided would help. My friend mentioned that when he called the standard CS # someone overseas handled the call so wonder if the higher CS #s are in USA?
My friend still wonders what cell phones can be used with Safelink but will start new post.
In Europe, they buy a sim with a certain value already in it. Then they put the sim in an unlocked phone. I think you can put in a pin number to secure the sim. Anyway, you can move the sim around because it operates independently.
There is also a peculiarity about who pays for the call. It's either the caller or the called, I forget which.
They use different GSM frequencies than we do, so you have to have the right phone.
Safelink can be registered onto any Tracfone handset. If you want more minutes, you can apply a Tracfone card. You will automatically get the Safelink ratio of minutes, because you get more Safelink minutes for a given cost. It's basically a discounted Tracfone. If you want a better handset than the free one, that's your business.
CDMA is just another way of handling traffic. So Verizon specializes in CDMA, and AT&T/T-Mo specialize in GSM. CDMA was originally going to use sims, but they went ahead without them. Now, they're using them in some smartphones.
Anyway, the carriers are on different frequencies like different radio stations. Some frequencies carry better through walls, obstructions, distance, etc. Verizon tends to have better indoor reception and also carries a signal for a longer distance. That's why in rural areas you see CDMA, because the towers can be farther apart instead of having to put some in between where nobody lives. If your friend travels to rural areas or has reception problems indoors, he can try a CDMA Tracfone. It will run on Verizon. The tradeoff is that the voice quality is a little rough because of the way Verizon squeezes the traffic together.
There is a little bit of programming you have to do with a CDMA phone to compensate for the info that a sim would have provided automatically. But CS will walk you through it.