Verizon to Straight Talk?

Jellyfishpudding

Limp Gawd
Joined
Oct 12, 2006
Messages
242
My wife's Verizon contract does not end until April. Her phone bit the dust and I am looking to replace it. When her contract ends, however, the plan is to move to Straight Talk prepaid service.

If I get her a Samsung phone for Christmas, can she use it to finish out her contract and then switch to Straight Talk? If so, what parameters should I be looking for in a phone choice? Will I need an unlocked phone with a SIM card, or is the unlocking not needed?

Thank you!
 

paperwastage

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
1,131
All (recent) Verizon LTE phones are sim unlocked. You need to match up the GSM 2G/3G/LTE bands to ensure compatibility

Which Straight Talk service are you looking at? (ST resells from all four major providers below, some may have device restrictions)

T-mobile is most likely compatible (since Verizon and T-mobile both heavily use LTE band 4)

AT&T: quad band 2G/3G (850 & 1900), LTE bands 2, 4, 5, 17, 30 (main LTE = 17, then 2, 4, 5)
T-mobile: quad band 2G(850 & 1900)/pentaband 3G(850, 1700/2100 AWS, 1900), LTE bands 2, 4, 12 (main LTE = 4, then 2, then 12)
Sprint: not going to work
Verizon: may have device restrictions
 

Jellyfishpudding

Limp Gawd
Joined
Oct 12, 2006
Messages
242
I honestly don't know. I figured all a phone needed a SIM slot to add a Verizon card until it was time to replace it with Straight Talk's. Doesn't unlocked mean that a phone has been made ready for any service?
 

paperwastage

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
1,131
unlocked basically means it'll accept any sim card, and can connect to any network bands that the phone is designed/certified for

You'll be able to get 2G on any GSM provider. anything else (3G/LTE), you'll have to compare the phone bands and network bands manually to see if they match

As I said, Straighttalk resells service from all 4 major providers. WHich version were you looking at? (you could also go to the straighttalk site, enter your zipcode and see what ST recommends in your area)

http://www.straighttalkbyop.com/shop.php


An easy way out would be choosing a "global/national" phone that supports a lot of different bands. Examples would be the Nexus 6(if Verizon ever sells it), iPhone 6/6+ (these phones will work 100% on Verizon, AT&T and T-mobile)
 

Private_Ops

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jun 4, 2007
Messages
1,870
I was gonna make a thread but since this is here i'll ask (i'm not tryin to hijack).

I'm currently on verizon but my contract is up (iphone 4s). Where i recently bought a house i get pretty bad service (its needed, job is on call). The fiances phone is straighttalk that runs AT&T (iphone 5c) and gets great service.

I'm lookin at picking up a 5s, do i need an AT&T model for straightalk (i want it to use AT&Ts towers)?
 

paperwastage

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 12, 2009
Messages
1,131
I'm lookin at picking up a 5s, do i need an AT&T model for straightalk (i want it to use AT&Ts towers)?

You can use a Verizon 5s, locked AT&T 5s or an unlocked T-mobile 5s on StraightTalk(AT&T)

You CANNOT use a Sprint 5s (or any other Sprint phones except nexus 5/6) on a GSM carrier

generally, the Verizon 5S model is more expensive in the marketplace (Verizon is 100% unlocked and guaranteed to work on ATT/Tmobile/Verizon, while the att/tmobile versions will work on att/tmobile once unlocked but never on verizon)
 

Kongar

Gawd
Joined
Oct 25, 2004
Messages
730
So I'll jump in here since I just finished switching over to straight talk last night. The first thing to know is that you can type in the IMEI number of a phone on the straight talk website and it'll tell you if that phone is compatible with their network. So, not so helpful if you're buying a new phone, but good for moving older pre-existing phones over to their network. If you are buying a new phone, I'd honestly get it from straight talk themselves. They'll give you a bunch of BS because you "brought your own phone" to the network and they can't help you. Which is complete bullshit when it's the identical phone to the one they are selling :)

Which leads me to my next point - expect to have problems with straight talk. Once you get it all set up - it works equivalently to my former AT&T connection. But the activation process is painful - mostly due to their website sucking major balls and crapping out constantly in the middle of transactions (happens all the time). If you're unlucky like me - it'll crap out in the middle of the number port request, screw up the SIM, assign a new number, and cause you to have to get a new SIM shipped, call to get the sims swapped, bs bs bs. I read that there are even more problems with Verizon and other phones lacking a sim card. The customer service is seriously the worst I've ever seen with any company in a long time. That said - they eventually straighten out their end and things work great. The best way I've learned to deal with them is to 1) forget about doing any transactions on the website and 2) just use the live chat - they can do everything fairly quickly there.

You'll also find the service quirky. What do I mean by this? Well, for example my daughters phone shows a notification when she misses a call as well as when someone leaves her a voicemail. My and my wife's phone does not notify us when someone leaves a voicemail. Identical phones, bought at the same time, same plan, same everything. I wiped them all to factory conditions - issue still there. Called straight talk because it has to be something on their end - but they can't help me because I brought my own phone :rolleyes: I ended up giving up and using google voice to get a makeshift visual voicemail thing going, and that's working just fine for what I need. But it's hoops and crap you shouldn't have to do, nor do have to do when you're with a major carrier like AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, TMo, etc.

My advice is 1) ride out the rest of your contract till April and get your wife something else for christmas. 2) if you decide to go straight talk and buy a new phone - buy it from walmart so you at least have the option to return it if it doesn't behave the way you wanted. I don't know if they sell unlocked devices, but just be aware that bringing your own phone works, but it'll be painful.
 

DejaWiz

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 15, 2005
Messages
21,093
I could have transitioned my Sprint Galaxy S3 to Straight Talk a few months ago. I still would have been on the Sprint network, and that was just plain unacceptable since I've had nothing but problems with Sprint in my area.

Decided to buy an LG G3 D850 (AT&T model) outright and get a Straight Talk SIM for it. Works like a charm.
 

DejaWiz

Fully [H]
Joined
Apr 15, 2005
Messages
21,093
using google voice to get a makeshift visual voicemail thing going, and that's working just fine for what I need. But it's hoops and crap you shouldn't have to do, nor do have to do when you're with a major carrier like AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, TMo, etc.

Try YouMail from the Google Play Store. It's a visual voicemail app that works with Straight Talk.
 

Dr. Righteous

2[H]4U
Joined
Aug 1, 2007
Messages
3,163
We made this jump last year about this time.
Service over all is good with StraightTalk. But avoid the Samsung Centra phone they offer. It is JUNK!!!! I wouldn't have wasted my money on it if I knew what a turd it was.
You can use an unlocked Google Nexus 5 with Straightalk. That is the one I would want; just don't have the bread for a $350 phone. :(
 
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