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Thread: AT&T Phones Activation

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    AT&T Phones Activation

    Recently I started to see following wording in various sites related to AT&T / AT&T MVNOs: "We will not activate non-VoLTE phone" (or something similar but the idea is clear).

    Question: what kind of activation are we talking about? Let's say, I have old non-VoLTE AT&T phone and I insert new AT&T SIM Card. Does it mean that I will not be able to use it without special process called "activation"? But is is not CDMA, it is GSM (not exactly GSM, but UMTS/LTE).

    What will happen if I insert new AT&T/AT&T MVNO SIM card into unlocked Samsung Galaxy S4 (no VoLTE obviously)? Does it mean that I will not be able to make phone calls using 3G? What if I do not need phone calls at all (data only)?

    So, what's idea behind "activation" in case of AT&T?

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    It simply means that you cannot activate service with an Analog/2G/3G phone (older cellular technologies). Activating a phone means they are pairing a phone # with a billing account (prepaid/MVNO or postpaid). Customers who have older technology devices can still use them until those older networks are shut down. Bottom line, if you bring your own phone, make certain to confirm compatibility with At&t.

    For instance, At&t has already shut down Analog and 2G networks but 3G are still available for a limited timeframe for prior customers with compatible devices only.
    Just another day in paradise.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serial Port View Post
    It simply means that you cannot activate service with an Analog/2G/3G phone (older cellular technologies). Activating a phone means they are pairing a phone # with a billing account (prepaid/MVNO or postpaid). Customers who have older technology devices can still use them until those older networks are shut down. Bottom line, if you bring your own phone, make certain to confirm compatibility with At&t.

    For instance, At&t has already shut down Analog and 2G networks but 3G are still available for a limited timeframe for prior customers with compatible devices only.
    No, it is not the case! Activating in GSM world means pairing account with SIM Card (SIM Card means phone number). There are very few exceptions:

    - Tracfone branded GSM phones where IMEI "married" to SIM Card (and account)
    - MetroPCS (their billing system still requires IMEI because they came from CDMA World)

    But no other GSM-UMTS-LTE operator requires IMEI to be inserted manually into database. Of course, if the phone does not have corresponding bands (for example, old 2G phone), it does not work but not because phone/sim not activated. It does not work because it uses different bands/technology.

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    If you feel you are the expert, why did you bother to ask a question here ? I worked as a CS rep for At&t for almost 9 years and have switched carriers previously. I am well aware of the process.

    I won't argue with you, I only tried to help. Best wishes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RFK View Post
    No, it is not the case! Activating in GSM world means pairing account with SIM Card (SIM Card means phone number). There are very few exceptions:

    - Tracfone branded GSM phones where IMEI "married" to SIM Card (and account)
    - MetroPCS (their billing system still requires IMEI because they came from CDMA World)

    But no other GSM-UMTS-LTE operator requires IMEI to be inserted manually into database. Of course, if the phone does not have corresponding bands (for example, old 2G phone), it does not work but not because phone/sim not activated. It does not work because it uses different bands/technology.
    For many years, AT&T has required users to enter an IMEI when activating a new SIM on a new account online. In my experience, once the SIM is activated it will work in any phone that's compatible with the AT&T network.
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