1. 12stars's Avatar
    This is a stupid question that I probably already know the answer to but will ask anyway. Despite being one unlocked and the other locked tied to a specific provider, are there any differences in the internals, specifically the antennas? I’m quick to say no but having my first unlocked phone S21 on Verizon, I am having nothing but problems having the phone stay connected to the network.

    I’ve attempted multiple network setting refreshes, 3 different SIM cards, updating any and all software/apps that can be, wiping the cache, wiping the phone, using network extender, nothing makes a difference. Both Verizon and Samsung have pretty much washed their hands of it. So my only option left is to send it to Samsung for repair, if there’s any, besides throwing it in the trash and getting something else.
    03-04-2021 04:52 PM
  2. Johnson21x's Avatar
    This is a stupid question that I probably already know the answer to but will ask anyway. Despite being one unlocked and the other locked tied to a specific provider, are there any differences in the internals, specifically the antennas? I’m quick to say no but having my first unlocked phone S21 on Verizon, I am having nothing but problems having the phone stay connected to the network.

    I’ve attempted multiple network setting refreshes, 3 different SIM cards, updating any and all software/apps that can be, wiping the cache, wiping the phone, using network extender, nothing makes a difference. Both Verizon and Samsung have pretty much washed their hands of it. So my only option left is to send it to Samsung for repair, if there’s any, besides throwing it in the trash and getting something else.
    Im sorry to hear about the problems your having. It seem like you have done an extensive job of trying to fix your signal issues, everything i would do too. There is nothing specifically different on the antenna.

    But did you try to return the phone and get another one?

    I said this in a different thread but to me, personally and from family and friends i know that have we've had issues with the unlocked vs locked models. The unlocked models seem to have less signal then the locked models. Again this is from my own personal experience and I know not everyone has those issues but we did.
    03-05-2021 10:54 AM
  3. 12stars's Avatar
    Thanks, it’s been frustrating. After arguing with Samsung for a few days, they’ve issued an authorization for the phone to be returned and once received will be refunded. Not sure what I want to do at this point, get a replacement, try a different brand altogether, or just stay with the S7.
    03-05-2021 09:10 PM
  4. mustang7757's Avatar
    Thanks, it’s been frustrating. After arguing with Samsung for a few days, they’ve issued an authorization for the phone to be returned and once received will be refunded. Not sure what I want to do at this point, get a replacement, try a different brand altogether, or just stay with the S7.
    Return it and get the carrier version, I would say flash the unlocked version firmware to Carrier version but that's up to you .
    03-05-2021 09:26 PM
  5. VidJunky's Avatar
    A similar question came up in the S20 threads when Verizon started rolling out 5G. As it turns out, at least on the S20, there was a hardware difference between the branded device and the unlocked device. The branded devices had antenna for the both the 5G mw and broadband signal and the unlocked version only had the broadband antenna. This would only come into play if you were subscribed to Verizon's 5G plan for the mw signal, the faster of the two.

    I have an unlocked S21 Ultra on Verizon and so far haven't had any noticeable issues so hopefully a new device would fix your problem, if you decide to come back.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    03-05-2021 10:53 PM
  6. bhatech's Avatar
    A similar question came up in the S20 threads when Verizon started rolling out 5G. As it turns out, at least on the S20, there was a hardware difference between the branded device and the unlocked device. The branded devices had antenna for the both the 5G mw and broadband signal and the unlocked version only had the broadband antenna. This would only come into play if you were subscribed to Verizon's 5G plan for the mw signal, the faster of the two.

    I have an unlocked S21 Ultra on Verizon and so far haven't had any noticeable issues so hopefully a new device would fix your problem, if you decide to come back.
    Last year the smallest S20 was a special case with mm wave band. In fact the smallest S20 Verizon version wasn't even available at launch and it came out after a month or two as a special Verizon model.

    Generally the US unlocked model and carrier models all have the same hardware. This year no different all carrier models and US unlocked have the same hardware across all S21 models.

    Last year was a one off for the entry level S20 and because of challenges in fitting mm wave in a smaller phone. It's no longer the case now.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    03-06-2021 02:02 AM
  7. VidJunky's Avatar
    IDK about the regular S20. This was an S20+ discussion where it was being reported that only the carrier version had the me but either way I'm not paying extra so it didn't matter to me then and still doesn't. Honestly as long as I get a reliable signal I'm good.
    J Dubbs likes this.
    03-06-2021 03:06 AM
  8. bhatech's Avatar
    IDK about the regular S20. This was an S20+ discussion where it was being reported that only the carrier version had the me but either way I'm not paying extra so it didn't matter to me then and still doesn't. Honestly as long as I get a reliable signal I'm good.
    As mentioned S20+ and S20 Ultra carrier/US Unlocked models were same hardware. Only the S20 base model was different and this was covered a lot when S20 was released. It was never reported nor correct that S20+ had different hardware. Below is one of the many articles which explains the lack of mmwave on standard S20 at launch and separate Verizon specific version to be available later.

    https://www.theverge.com/2020/2/11/2...riers-coverage
    03-06-2021 04:03 AM
  9. 12stars's Avatar
    I’ve read over on AndroidPolice that the unlocked S21 series is compatible with all 5G networks in the US, as well 4G and others; so there wouldn’t be any differences in the hardware compared to provider specific phones. After stopping by Best Buy and checking out the selection of all available phones, the S21 appeals to me the most and I’m comfortable with Sammy’s UI. I’m convinced there must have been something wrong with the phone so I’m going to order another one and see what happens, a base S21 5G with 256gb. Thanks to all and for the opportunity to vent, it’s quite cathartic.
    bhatech likes this.
    03-06-2021 07:38 PM
  10. Jesus Delgadillo's Avatar
    I have the S21U US Unlocked and have no network issues with Verizon except their lack of 5g coverage and bouncing back and forth between LTE/5G/UW but that happened even with my locked S20U. Get it exchanged and hopefully that was the issue.
    03-09-2021 10:34 AM

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