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Thread: Question about Tracfone Sim Activation Kit

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    Question Question about Tracfone Sim Activation Kit

    I have a Tracfone Bring Your Own Smartphone Sim Activation Kit that I bought a couple of years ago. Do you think this would still get Triple Minutes?


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    Quote Originally Posted by hrobey View Post
    I have a Tracfone Bring Your Own Smartphone Sim Activation Kit that I bought a couple of years ago. Do you think this would still get Triple Minutes?
    Probably. I have some from the great Family Dollar windfall from a few years ago, but have not needed to activate one for several years. They did activate and get triple after the new SIMs came out.

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    I have some of those sim kits left as well. I also have a TracFone iPhone se 2020 that I haven't activated yet with the Sim card it came with. I'm trying to get the most minutes out of my 60 minute tripled cards. As I understand it, if I activate the iPhone with the card it came with, then the 60 minute cards won't triple?

    Is there a way to do both? After my initial card 30 days is up, can I activate a byod card and stick it into the iPhone and have my minutes triple?

    I used to understand most of the TracFone madness. Now I get so confused about what is the optimal way to do things I just put it off and do nothing.



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    The T-Mobile network SIMs from those old kits have probably expired: T-Mobile sets a time limit on how long an unused SIM remains usable.

    cwshop: whether or not you'll get TMFL is really hard to predict: the iPhone, on a new line, probably won't. Sometimes Tracfone grandfathers TMFL on a line if the earlier phone had it, but this isn't certain. You probably can't use the Verizon SIM from that old kit on a branded Tracfone: they have a policy against allowing branded devices to use BYOP SIM cards. You usually get away with it with AT&T or T-Mobile BYOP SIMs, because Tracfone doesn't require telling them the IMEI for those networks.
    But, if you use a BYOP SIM card in a branded phone, you likely won't be able to get it unlocked by Tracfone, if that matters to you.
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    I activated an old 3X GSMA SIM as an "upgrade" to a 1200, 1200, 3GB eBay SIM in March and got the 3X benefit on a couple of topups since.
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    Does an iPhone bought from TracFone behave the same way as a TracFone branded phone? Somehow to me they seem different. I've put a byod Sim into my mom's iPhone se that was bought from TracFone a few years ago.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cwshop View Post
    Does an iPhone bought from TracFone behave the same way as a TracFone branded phone?
    I have no ideas, but am curious if it shows the Tracfone splash screen at boot up like all other TF-branded phones.

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    It does not. I have an iPhone XR and it does not show any TracFone branding on the package or on boot up. The same thing for a Cricket iPhone SE.

    I know my iPhone XR was activated with the bundled required $20 plan. When I applied 'basic' renewal plans to it, they did not triple (as expected).

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    Quote Originally Posted by pitflyer View Post
    It does not. I have an iPhone XR and it does not show any TracFone branding on the package or on boot up.
    Did it come with a TF SIM pre-installed, or included but not in the phone? I assume it didn't come with the usual "Red Card" which list the phone IMEI and the SIM paired with it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cwshop View Post
    Does an iPhone bought from TracFone behave the same way as a TracFone branded phone? Somehow to me they seem different. I've put a byod Sim into my mom's iPhone se that was bought from TracFone a few years ago.

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    The branded phones will work fine with a swapped in active BYOP SIM.

    The issue is activating a BYOP SIM in a branded phone, because TF already has a SIM assigned to the IMEI.

    That's done in TF's systems not the phone do should be the same with iPhone. Once you give the IMEI the system knows the preassigned SIM and won't let you enter another number.

    But in the past that was only an issue with online/automated activations. If you call/chat you should be able to give the BYOP SIM number (just tell them you don't have the other SIM)

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    Because of the way iPhones are, the SIM card is not installed in the phone or in the box (its' an Apple controlled box). Its attached to the outside, and its up to the user to insert it and activate.

    EDIT: I do think there was still a 'red card' that listed the IMEI and SIM number -- it just was outside of the phone box. Since TracFone does know the IMEI it sent you on the iPhone

    EDIT x2 -- I'm sure greenhandle is correct.. no red card. But is the same as if there was.
    Last edited by pitflyer; 07-19-2021 at 12:30 PM.

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    I can confirm there is no red card accompanying a Tracfone iPhone. (And that the SIM card arrives taped to the outside of the iPhone box).
    I'm assuming that the lack of a red card, and the fact that the SIM is not pre-installed, doesn't change anything about expectations regarding behavior within the Tracfone system, with the IMEI and the issued SIM. That's all handled inside Tracfone's database.

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    Quote Originally Posted by greenhandle View Post
    The T-Mobile network SIMs from those old kits have probably expired: T-Mobile sets a time limit on how long an unused SIM remains usable.

    cwshop: whether or not you'll get TMFL is really hard to predict: the iPhone, on a new line, probably won't. Sometimes Tracfone grandfathers TMFL on a line if the earlier phone had it, but this isn't certain. You probably can't use the Verizon SIM from that old kit on a branded Tracfone: they have a policy against allowing branded devices to use BYOP SIM cards. You usually get away with it with AT&T or T-Mobile BYOP SIMs, because Tracfone doesn't require telling them the IMEI for those networks.
    But, if you use a BYOP SIM card in a branded phone, you likely won't be able to get it unlocked by Tracfone, if that matters to you.
    The old 3x activation kits did not have T-Mobile SIMs. There may have been a brief period when they included T-Mo in 3x kits before they changed to 1x kits. True about T-Mo SIMs only being valid for a year. The others did not expire.

    The way it used to work was the 3x/1x was determined by which SIM version you activated the number with. The last one I did was something like three years ago. The only 3x SIM kits remaining are held by individuals, none for sale except maybe a few on eBay so we don't see much activity reported about them any more.

    I think at this point the only way to find out is to try it. You wouldn't lose anything if you had to switch to a 1x SIM.

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    I had a bunch of the 60 minute cards that came with the activation kits to the point where I was just throwing away the activation kits. I think I saved a few of them in case I needed to activate a new phone so I could try.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cwshop View Post
    I had a bunch of the 60 minute cards that came with the activation kits to the point where I was just throwing away the activation kits. I think I saved a few of them in case I needed to activate a new phone so I could try.
    I had 23 from the Family Dollar pricing mistake. What year was that? That got me ~six years of Tracfone service for $35. I applied the PINs for fear that they might expire and kept the SIMs. The rest of the packaging, instructions, obsolete Verizon NAC cards, etc. were discarded. I used a few of the SIMs to activate and transfer service.

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