Verizon iPhone 4 problem: International Travel [complete country list included]

Now to a good portion of people considering buying a iPhone 4 on Verizon, this information probably won’t matter. But for many of these folks, international travel will be affected. Although Verizon claims that they have agreements with international carriers:

…customers can use iPhone for voice and text in over 40 countries with data service in over 20 countries. For service availability and rate information, visit International Roaming Rates and Coverage. When travelling outside of these 40 destinations, the Global Travel program is the perfect short-term solution for the occasional or infrequent global traveler who needs to stay in touch when travelling internationally.

The problem is in the CDMA technology that is used by Verizon. Although there are carriers outside of the U.S. that us CDMA, the vast majority of international networks, specifically in Europe, rely on GSM technology the kind of phone that uses a SIM card (Subscriber Identity Module). In this, both Apple and Verizon have made a big mistake, but I understand why. For Verizon to get an iPhone 4, it had to get agreements with CDMA international carriers [Verizon iPhone 4 FAQ]. If it had both technologies, CDMA and GSM, it would allow some new Verizon customers to purchase their iPhone 4 and unlock it to use the phone within the U.S. on let’s say T-Mobile or other regional carriers that use a SIM card for example, since T-Mobile GSM bands are the same pretty much around the world. Now both Apple (at least for now) and Verizon wouldn’t want that to happen quite yet.

And if you are hoping the Verizon iPhone will work on a 4G network, forget it. This is not a 4G iPhone at all. This is a standard 3G iPhone but version numero 4. Which in a way is sad. If it were the 4G iPhone, running on Verizon’s LTE network, a traveler would be able to go to say Russia and feel the need-for-speed on Russia’s very fast 4G network. But today Verizon admitted that their LTE network is not quite ready-for-prime-time for simultaneous voice and data.

According CDG.org, CDMA networks support over 270 million subscribers worldwide, while GSM.org tallies up their score at over 1 billion. As CDMA phones become R-UIM enabled and roaming contracts between networks improve, integration of the standards might eventually make differences all but transparent to the consumer. Please keep in mind that this by no way indicates that you will actually be able to Roam on any of these networks, you would have to check with Verizon to make sure they have agreements with these carriers [Verizon iPhone 4 FAQ]  and we have provided you with a list after the break. Read more of this post

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[Rumor] Samsung to announce Galaxy S 2 devices at MWC?

Despite the “rumor” classification, it’s a pretty safe bet to assume that Samsung will in fact be releasing the next iteration of it’s exceedingly popular Galaxy S line of smart phones at this year’s Mobile World Congress. The upgrade, according to the KoreaHerald, is expected to include the new SuperAMOLED Plus display, Google Android 2.3, and a dual-core SoC to top it all off . No word on whether this will be a dual-core version of Samsung’s sexy Hummingbird platform, or something altogether new. Hit the jump for some quotes directly from Shin Jong-kyun, alpha dog in the Samsung mobile division.

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[How-to] Revert Your Captivate To Stock with Odin3 “One-Click”!

So, you got yourself a shiny new AT&T Captivate.  Great, fantastic device; SuperAMOLED, Hummingbird, blah blah.  As any new Android user, you hop on the interwebs and get to Googling.  Slowly, over time, the inevitable happens; you stumble onto xda-developers.com.  You see the light.  Within hours, you’re on your third rom, the thirst for speed clouds your judgement.  Life is great, your device is flying, multitasking with gusto.  It’s at this point the tech Gods decide to rain on your parade, or, more precisely, your Captivate.  The speaker is dead, the rain markers are clear, time for insurance.  But wait!  You’re running CFW.  They’ll never replace a device that has so blatantly been modified.  In comes Odin3.  With just “one-click” (really a few more than that), you’ll have your Captivate SGS back to factory specifications with none the wiser (it’ll also help in ‘bricked’ devices).  Hit the link for directions and downloads!

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A Month With AT&T’s Samsung Captivate

Recently, I was given an opportunity to spend a good deal of time with AT&T’s flagship Android phone, the Samsung Captivate.  The Captivate is (Quite obviously) a member of the Galaxy S family, whose 4″ SuperAMOLED screens and 1GHz Hummingbird processors can be found on most of the worlds major carriers (See T-Mobile Vibrant, .Samsung Fascinate, Sprint Epic 4G, etc).  How does the Captivate hold up to my (often hyper)criticism?  Can I successfully remove the battery door without a heart attack?  Find out after the break!

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Nokia Plans To Cut 3% Of Employees

So the recession is over, is it CNN?  Nokia, the unequivocal leader in cell-phone manufacturing and sales the world over, has decided to cut 1,800 positions within the company in light of Q3 earnings reports, despite beating analyst views. According to Investors.com, CEO Stephen Elop was quoted as saying, “This is clearly a time of disruptive change”, no doubt in reference to the dramatic market footprint of Apple’s iPhone and the explosive rate of growth that is Google’s Android. Hit the jump to find out who (Probably you) will be looking for work soon.

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Leaked document reveals details on the MyTouch HD: 1Ghz dual processor, 3.8″ screen, and a front facing cam

Here is a device that may have slipped through the cracks if it weren’t for the awesome writers over at tmonews. The MyTouch HD was rumored to be coming for a while now, but an internal document shows off some of the specs of this device. Looks like this is certainly going to give the T-Mobile G2 a run for its money. The New MyTouch HD will be Read more of this post

T-Mobile G2 becomes official, gets some specs

T-Mobile’s very first real competitor to the iPhone came out in October of 2008. Just a few weeks before the would be 2 year anniversary of said phone (T-Mobile G1), T-Mobile is getting ready to release part 2 of its flagship device. The T-Mobile G2! It will be the first Android ‘super phone’ running stock Android with a full fledge side sliding QWERTY keyboard. We won’t lie folks, this phone looks amazing. The look of this device is just fantastic. So lets move to some of the gritty details… Read more of this post

Mystery Android world phone heading to Verizon?

One of the problems with Android here in the U.S. is carrier exclusivity and lack of an Android world phone that can jump freely between carriers. It looks as though Verizon may put that problem to rest. A recent FCC filing shows a dual-mode CDMA/GSM Android landscape sliding QWERTY keyboard phone. The Phone is made by HTC and this isn’t its first public sighting. Back in early August, ‘The Droid Guy‘ was saying that an Android world phone with a 4″ screen and a 1.2 Ghz Snapdragon processor will be coming to Verizon in Q1 of 2011. It looks like the phone he was talking about has shown its pretty black and red face. The keyboard on this phone looks very similar to that of the MyTouch 3G Slide. The screen being 4″ is new territory for HTC. Usually they have a 3.7″ or 4.3″. 4″ is sort of the sweet spot for me so I am pretty excited for something like this. Switching carriers and not being limited to GSM or CDMA will be a huge plus for a lot of people. Especially business users and international users that need to travel countries like China and the U.S. with CDMA carriers. We will be keeping an eye out for some official announcements on this one.

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Samsung’s Galaxy Tab revealed, on paper it bests the iPad in almost every way

Today is the launch of, well lets be honest, the iPad’s first real competitor. The Samsung Galaxy Tab was unveiled today in Berlin Germany and there is a lot to like about this device. In fact, there is so much to like about the device I went with the semi-controversial title stating that the Galaxy Tab is in fact better than the iPad. Well that is on paper at least. So what does this thing come with? Read on after the break for the full spec list… Read more of this post

Burning Man’s open source Cellular network lights up: OpenBTS

Burning Man image courtesy of tnkgrl

“We make GSM look like a wireless access point. We make it that simple,” describes one of the project’s three founders, Glenn Edens. A pretty harrowing statement considering the millions invested in networks by the big U.S. carriers.  The technology starts with the “they-said-it-couldn’t-be-done” open source software, OpenBTS. OpenBTS is built on Linux and distributed via the AGPLv3 license. When used with a software-defined radio such as the Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP), it presents a GSM air interface (“Um”) to any standard GSM cell phone, with no modification whatsoever required of the phone. It uses open source Asterisk VoIP software as the PBX to connect calls, though it can be used with other soft switches, too. The project in essence is a solar/wind powered, Linux/VoIP based cell phone network, that works with any GSM phone and costs pennies on the dollar to install and operate. And it’s being tested right now at Burning Man. The potential of OpenBTS is a clear winner. The system is only “as big as a shoebox,” Edens says, and requires a mere 50 watts of power “instead of a couple of thousand” so it is easily supported by solar or wind power, or batteries. It performs as well as any other GSM base station which has a maximum range of 35 kilometers and a typical range of 20 kilometers, depending on geography, antennae height, etc.

[via NetworkWorld and more information on the project here and here]

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