1. Android Central Question's Avatar
    Going to Italy in a couple weeks. I called Cellcom to ask if my Galaxy S6 was locked? They said no. I told them I was going to Italy and want to buy in Italy a sim card for local phone calls and GPS. They told me that my phone was CDMA compatible and other phone are GSM (whatever that means?) and they are not sure my phone will work with a Italy purchased sim card.

    I am a geologist and woodworker and have no idea what they are talking about. But can anyone answer whether my phone will work.

    Thank-you very much.
    03-08-2019 10:38 AM
  2. Rukbat's Avatar
    They were correct. The US, Australia and some of Latin America has some carriers that use a technology that's not compatible with the rest of the world - CDMA (it has to do with the way the radio signal is encoded). The rest of the world - Asia, Europe and the other carriers in the US, Australia and Latin America, use GSM. And the two aren't compatible. (The only carriers in the US that use CDMA are Sprint and Verizon - Cellcom uses Verizon. AT&T and TMobile are the GSM carriers in the US - they also have companies like Cellcom [called MVNOs - Mobile Virtual Network Operators] that use their networks but charge less and give you less.)

    So your best bet is to find a cheap working GSM phone and use that in Italy. (You can try things like LetGo or OfferUp - for an unlocked phone. [It has to be unlocked for a SIM from another carrier to work in it.] Also, make sure to arrange the exchange at the carrier, so you can ask them to check whether the phone is blacklisted [a little scam - sell the phone, report it stolen, get a new one for the insurance]. And have the owner remove their password or PIN and their Google account. Then do a factory reset, so you're starting clean.)
    03-08-2019 02:10 PM

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