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Using Fairphone 2 in the USA

Has someone used Fairphone 2 in the USA? In what way will I be limited with its usage? If I understood it right I can use the cellular network and will be limited to 2G in terms of mobile?

It seems you have already done some research :thumbsup: but just to make sure: Have you already checked the information provided in this forum article? :slight_smile:

Definitely check the frequencies that each US carrier supports.
I’m using a Fairphone 1 in Canada right now and it was a risk when I first ordered it. I didn’t know it was going to work until I tested it with a Canadian carrier. I could only find one carrier that the phone would actually work on (Rogers) but its worked fine since! (with wifi, data, calls, texting). You guys obviously have way more options in the US so I’m sure you’ll find a carrier that the phone will work on.

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I have just been in the US (MA, NY, NH and LA) for three months using the second SIM slot for an prepaid AT&T card without any major problems. Coverage and speed was completely fine for me. But you have to make sure to add a specific access point (APN) in your cellular network settings for your carrier. That was done by the guy in the store I bought the card from.

My own experience with my FP2 in San Francisco (in Oct/Nov 2016) was very disappointing. I used an American prepaid SIM from simlystore.com and got only very poor data connectivity (2G). Even Whatsapp messages often were not transmitted. I contacted simlystore and they told me the following:

The Fairphone 2 was developed for the European market and does not support the necessary US frequency bands to enable more than GSM (2G/Edge) surfing:

source: https://www.inside-handy.de/handys/fairphone-fairphone-2

connectivity: GPRS / EDGE (2G) ok
Frequenzen 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz

UMTS / HSPA (3G) ok
UMTS / HSPA (3G) Frequenz 900, 1900, 2100 MHzUMTS / HSUPA (3G) upload (max)5,76 MBit/sUMTS / HSDPA (3G) download (max)42,2 MBit/s

LTE (4G) ok
Frequenzen 800, 1800, 2600 MHzFrequenz-Bänder 3, 7, 20LTE upload (max)50 MBit/sLTE download (max)150 MBit/s

In order to be able to get the UMTS and 4G surf speeds you would need to connect to at least 4 frequency bands for these protocols (that is 850 and 1900 MHz).

I spent a month in the US and I was pretty satisfied. I mean, their coverage outside of cities is terrible, even compared to rural areas in Europe, really!

The Fairphone LTE/4G bands are not compatible with those that are used in the US, so you will be limited to 2G and 3G.
I myself had a card from https://zipsim.us/ and it worked well (2G and 3G). I think they use the Telekom network but don’t quote me on it :slight_smile:

You might wanna take a look at this: https://fi.google.com/about/
It’s a project by Google where you get a SIM for $20/month and then you can use data for $10/GB in 135+ countries. Should be helpful for a trip around the world :slight_smile: But you’d probably need somebody with a US address to buy it for you.

A hint for the next time you travel: On this website you can check which carriers are compatible to which phones: http://willmyphonework.net/
Maybe this helps to find a suitable carrier :slight_smile:

I don’t think that 4G will work with any carrier in the US, but a couple do work with 3G.

Maybe it was an older post of mine you found. My personal experience matches the one you described: Phone great, Text buggy (multiples and long delay common), Internet at 2G. The internet problem was solved with a local SIM card. (Boston, Minneapolis, summer 2016)

I use a T-Mobile US SIM card, on a pre-pay plan costing $2 per day that it is in use. It works fine. I’m not techie, and don’t know whether it’s 3 or 4G, but it works well. Apparently I was lucky that I happened to have an account with a network that supports the FP2, though.

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