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Thread: phone upgrade: AT&T vs Verizon, Tracfone

  1. #1
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    phone upgrade: AT&T vs Verizon, Tracfone

    Hi,

    I'm trying to upgrade an older Tracfone and I have several questions, with your forbearance. I'm replacing my LG600g with an AT&T SIM because the battery is dying and I need something better for texting. Tracfone puts me in a T Mobile market, but the coverage is terrible, so I got AT&T instead by using a different zip.
    I ordered an LG530g with an AT&T SIM and haven't activated it yet. I charged it up and turned it on, but the signal strength is maybe half what I get with the old phone. I decided to return it and called for an RA#, which they said they couldn't provide because the phone hadn't been activated. They told me to use the SIM # instead.
    So, I have a bunch of questions:

    Is it possible that the signal strength would improve if the phone were activated?
    Should I trust the return instructions without the RA#, or should I activate the phone in order to get the RA?
    If I use a zip code that would get me a Verizon phone would it work even though it's a CMDA instead of a GSM phone? Verizon's coverage rocks my area! 98367

    Thank-you so much for any help you can offer!

    Alison

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    The signal bars will not be meaningful until the phone is activated. This is my understanding.

    You can use whichever model phone you want, as long as you know that you will have coverage. Tracfone steers you to certain carriers for their business advantage, not for your business advantage. But, TF does not have unlimited privileges with the carriers. There are just so many new numbers that TF is allowed per market, so you might have to follow TF's guidance if you need a new number. And sometimes they won't let you bring an existing number into a market. This is all controlled by the carriers. But these problems are rare in larger markets where carriers are trying to steal customers.

    There is a trick to seeing particular Tracfones. When you put in your zip code, look at the url bar. T-Mobile will have market=GSM5. AT&T will have market=GSM4. Verizon will have market=CO. Try COGSM4 for a combination. You can change this to the other and see different phones. Just make sure to hit enter to refresh the page. It doesn't matter which page you order from, it is irrelevant to the shipping address. A mismatch doesn't matter, because people buy phones for other people.

    Zip code matters when you are activating the phone with a new number, so that a number local to that zip can be assigned. It doesn't have to be your home zip, either. You might have a reason for wanting a different one. As long as there is coverage.

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    The signal strength meter is not accurate before you activate, but it seems to remain accurate after the phone is deactivated.

    Be aware that normal CS does not have the training to give an accurate answer every time. The more complicated the problem the lower chance of them being correct.

    Ordering a phone not offered by them in your area could let them off the hook if it does not work. You need to make sure CDMA works very well in your area. But there are a very few other reasons that it may not work that are impossible to know ahead of time. But, we hardly hear from someone where it did not work.

    Here is a well known seller and his two CDMA (Verizon) offerings and bundles. He has a good return policy:
    http://stores.ebay.com/shopcelldeals..._sid=161278661

    The LG505C has the slid out qwerty keyboard.

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    alisonlcat,

    How does AT&T coverage look for your area?

    If you activate the phone and it does not work well, get an RMA number and send it back.

    I would also check the Verizon coverage map for your area.
    Cheers!

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    The new phone is probably on 3G which would have different reception than your old 2G phone. It will fall back to 2G if need be. You should technically have better coverage since you would now have access to 2G and 3G.

    I highly recommend the Samsung S425g if you'd like to get into texting. The keyboard is great.

    Sent from my Galaxy Express
    Castrol EDGE 5W-30 is my drug of choice.

    Primary: Galaxy Note 3 and LG F6: 5 lines, 1x $15 5GB data, 2x $5 Android web, 1x $2.99 T-Zones, corp discount + $10/mo loyalty discount = $93/mo tax inclusive
    Secondary: iPhone 4 & Optimus Dynamic II: TracFone (Verizon); Galaxy Epic: RingPlus (Sprint)
    Tablet: iPad Mini Retina w/ T-Mobile 4G LTE

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    Thank-you all for your input!
    I think I'm going to activate the LG530g and see how the signal strength is then, especially given the newer 3G technology and the RA# issue.
    As far as CDMA coverage, I know lots of people with service through Verizon and they get excellent coverage. Would that indicate that the tracfone would get good coverage also? The maps indicate decent coverage for AT&T and rocking good coverage for Verizon.

    I've read that if I buy a phone from someone other than Tracfone they will balk at honoring the triple minutes deal. Does anyone have any experience with that?

    Thanks!

    Alison

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    Quote Originally Posted by alisonlcat View Post
    Thank-you all for your input!
    I think I'm going to activate the LG530g and see how the signal strength is then, especially given the newer 3G technology and the RA# issue.
    As far as CDMA coverage, I know lots of people with service through Verizon and they get excellent coverage. Would that indicate that the tracfone would get good coverage also? The maps indicate decent coverage for AT&T and rocking good coverage for Verizon.
    You will get fine Verizon coverage with Tracfone. Tracfone is not discriminated against, as far as I know.

    I've read that if I buy a phone from someone other than Tracfone they will balk at honoring the triple minutes deal. Does anyone have any experience with that?
    Nonsense. The triple minutes is locked to the phone's serial number. It isn't going anywhere. Just buy your phone from a reputable dealer so that it is scanned properly at the register. The scan preps the phone for activation. Some dealers receive phones that were already scanned at the TF warehouse, so you won't see anything. Like when you get a phone directly from TF.

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    Nonsense. The triple minutes is locked to the phone's serial number. It isn't going anywhere. Just buy your phone from a reputable dealer so that it is scanned properly at the register. The scan preps the phone for activation. Some dealers receive phones that were already scanned at the TF warehouse, so you won't see anything. Like when you get a phone directly from TF.[/QUOTE]

    I was thinking of the e-bay dealer that was recommended, or Amazon. So there wouldn't be any check out.

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    Alison,
    Yes, Tracfone CDMA phone coverage should be solid in your area then.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alisonlcat View Post
    I was thinking of the e-bay dealer that was recommended, or Amazon. So there wouldn't be any check out.
    Shopcelldeals gets their stuff directly from Tracfone ready to go. Then they sell it via eBay, Amazon, and shopcelldeals.com.

    They have pretty much the best deals out there.

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    I would also check HSN.com and QVC.com before buying ...... I've bought my past few phones at either of those sites because they included car charger and cover and had best price (phones were on special sale).

    Quote Originally Posted by Lisme View Post
    Shopcelldeals gets their stuff directly from Tracfone ready to go. Then they sell it via eBay, Amazon, and shopcelldeals.com.

    They have pretty much the best deals out there.

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    This may be the best deal currently available if you like this type GSM/AT&T service phone:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Brand-New-Sa...3ecb1b&afsrc=1

    15 Month expiration and 600 (+bonus code) minutes.
    3G/WiFi/TMFL
    http://tracfone.deviceanywhere.com/t...e=en_US&search

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tracfancier View Post
    This may be the best deal currently available if you like this type GSM/AT&T service phone:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Brand-New-Sa...3ecb1b&afsrc=1

    .....
    I own one and love it. Just be aware that this phone has pocket/purse dialing issues and you must use a belt holster or hard case to prevent self-dialing.

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