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Cell Phone Question for Canadians!


Guiness
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We need to get a new cell phone - moving up from the old flip phone!  Went to Telcel and spoke to them - they tell me that they are not sure if the Samsung Galaxy 7 will work in Canada.   The only one they can guarantee to work is the i phone.   We are looking at getting the 199 pesos deal and realize we can use it to call within Canada and the USA.  

Question is.......................does anyone have a cell phone (purchased here from Telcel) that in fact does work when they are visiting in Canada.

Thanks for the info.

Guiness

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40 minutes ago, Guiness said:

We need to get a new cell phone - moving up from the old flip phone!  Went to Telcel and spoke to them - they tell me that they are not sure if the Samsung Galaxy 7 will work in Canada.   The only one they can guarantee to work is the i phone.   We are looking at getting the 199 pesos deal and realize we can use it to call within Canada and the USA.  

Question is.......................does anyone have a cell phone (purchased here from Telcel) that in fact does work when they are visiting in Canada.

Thanks for the info.

Guiness

Sent you a message.

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I don't have a phone from Telcel.. I did have a Samsung Galaxy S4 which I purchased in Canada  I made sure I purchased an UNLOCKED phone so that when I went back to Mexico I could put my Telcel SIM card in and the phone works on the Telcel network. When I go back to Canada I just take the Telcel SIM out and put my  Bell SIM card in and it now works on the Bell network.  Usually when you purchase a phone from a carrier you get a cheaper price but the phone is locked to that carrier so you can't change carriers. So if you want to use the Galaxy in Mexico and Canada you will have to make sure you purchase an UNLOCKED phone.   Having said all that it is possible to get phones unlocked,  it would not be my first choice but it can be done.

Also the phone needs to be GSM comparable which I believe the Galaxy phone is.

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The "major" Canadian, US and Mexican 3G and 4G networks are all using the same GSM protocols, frequencies and hardware so the newer phones are generally all compatible on most of the main networks.  There are a few exceptions with some of the smaller networks that are available in urban areas though.  Where you might also run into problems with phone hardware is in some rural areas where you can only access a 2G connection and you have an older phone (pre-2010) then you need to know whether you phone is either GSM (Rogers, AT&T, T-Mobile) or CDMA (Bell, Verizon).  The answer you seek to your original question depends on the phone you buy and whether you are trying to use a Telcel SIM card (with a Mexican phone#) to make and receive calls in Canada while visiting or if you are intending to swap the SIM card in and out with a SIM card from one of the Canadian carriers (Bell, Rogers, Telus, etc.) so you have a Canadian phone# and billing there. 

If you want to make and receive calls on your Telcel phone while in Canada, you are going to have to have a Telcel plan that supports "roaming" on one of the Canadian networks.  This you will need to discuss with the Telcel folks but I know the "Amigo" plan phones won't work.  I have an older unlocked Rogers Blackberry with a Telcel SIM in it and I am unable to "roam" with it while in Canada. 

From what I understand (but I don't know for sure), the newer generation iPhones such as the 5 & 6 series that use the new IOS do not require "unlocking" to allow you to use a SIM card from any carrier you select.

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From what I understand (but I don't know for sure), the newer generation iPhones such as the 5 & 6 series that use the new IOS do not require "unlocking" to allow you to use a SIM card from any carrier you select.

If you purchase a phone from Telcel, Bell Canada, Rogers, ATT&T, Verizion or just about any other carrier the phone will be LOCKED to that carrier, i It doesn't matter if it's an iPhone or an android phone it will still be locked, it's there way of making sure can't just  change phone company's when you feel like it.   

It you want  a phone that you can change carriers on  you can get them from Best Buy or    Staples, Walmart Canada have a limited selection, Or any independent phone store. 

The best place I have found to get unlocked phone is a store that sells refurbished electronics. In Canada Factory Direct. I have just purchased a refurbished iPhone 5 with a one year       warranty for $220. Which I use on the Bell network, when I return to Ajijic in a couple of weeks I will just put my Telcel SIM card in and I'm good to go..

 

 

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My unlocked iPhone 6 purchased at the TelCel office at Laguna Mall works in Mexico and in Canada.   I went to the TelCel store referred to in El Saltos' post and Ana signed me up for the Amigo 100 plan which is good for 25 days.  I paid her $200 pesos which covered me for 2 periods of 25 days each.  Ana sent me a message (or it might have been TelCel) at the end of the first 25 days and I followed the prompts to get the second 25 days coverage.   I was in Canada for approximately one month but wanted to make sure I had coverage for the full time I was there.   When I returned to Mexico, I just let the Amigo 100 plan expire.   It was for unlimited calls in Canada (and the U.S. I think, but didn't require that).   It worked most of the time but occasionally I could hear the person that I called but they couldn't hear me.   I just redialed the number and the call went through.   Prior to that I had signed up with Rogers and bought a new chip and the monthly charge was $40 CDN plus a connection fee.  Of course, I much prefer the Amiga100 plan.

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I put an app called My Data Manager on my Android phone to tell me how much data is being used every day, what is left, and so on, as well as indicate when time is up for renewal. I was also given a number to call to check my balance by the TelCel office (*135#). Interestingly, the TelCel app called Consumo, which is supposed to do the same thing, is pretty much useless (it tells me I don't have a plan).

But I think in order to cancel your data plan and get back on strictly calls/regalos, you have to go in to the office and do a cancel request... expiring doesn't do it; next time you put in funds, you are back on your data package.

Calls coming in from the States right now on the same TelCel data plan (phone owner is visiting up north) are generally very poor quality.

I think if you use your cell phone frequently, one of these data plans is much better than putting $100-$200p on your phone, because except for your "amigos", on a regular schedule your calls cost a lot per minute, but on a plan your calls are unlimited for the time period you select... along with a block of Internet data, and unlimited What'sApp, FaceBook and Twitter.

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I believe that the OP is asking if they have the Samsung cellphone with the 199 peso per month plan that allows calling in Mexico, US & Canada if they can use it on a trip to Canada with the Telcel plan. They are wanting to be able to make calls using the TelCel plan while in Canada. They are NOT wanting to change the SIM card out. When I am in the US I can make calls within the US as well as to Mexico & Canada. Only problem is that my friends and family in the US have to call my Mexican number to call me. That is taken care of by using What's App or Facebook messenger to send a message to call them. 

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There are several plans, just to be clear, start at $20p. With TelCel, there is no $199 plan; maybe there is with AT&T. Bottom line is: no SIM switching necessary. You can call from Canada and the U.S. to Mexico, and vice versa, and as you say within those countries. But calling from outside Mexico has to be dialed as a long-distance country-code call, even if you are calling your friend down the street from within Texas or Ontario.

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1 hour ago, ComputerGuy said:

There are several plans, just to be clear, start at $20p. With TelCel, there is no $199 plan; maybe there is with AT&T. Bottom line is: no SIM switching necessary. You can call from Canada and the U.S. to Mexico, and vice versa, and as you say within those countries. But calling from outside Mexico has to be dialed as a long-distance country-code call, even if you are calling your friend down the street from within Texas or Ontario.

Actually ComputerGuy, there is a $199 plan...

Telcel Max Unlimited 1000

Unlimitedminutes included
UnlimitedSMS included
1000 MBInternet
1000 MBWhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter
$ 199.00 / month
 
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Okay, I stand corrected. That does reflect their day-to-day changes in plans. Here's the plan sheet I picked up two weeks ago at the local office at the big mall. Clearly no $199 on this one. But if you are a regular data user, it is a much better plan than any shown listed here. Now, why would they not want me to see that? The second column in this image is the amount of data. At $200, you get 700MB; on this $199 plan being discussed, the data is 1000MB. That's quite a difference. I wonder if that plan is simply grandfathered.

TelCel-plan.jpg

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The Amigo plans that Telcel offers seem to be very confusing and less cost effective than the regular rental plans they now offer. Remember that before the AT&T/IUSACELL deal and the introduction of Sin Limite and Sin Frontera, the Amigo pay by the minute worked well for most people.

Fast forward to today when all plans offer unlimited minutes and messages in Mexico, US and Canada, The old pay(a lot) per minute Amigo plans seems to be an arcane carryover at best.

Right now at Telcel the only difference between their regular rental plans is the amount of cell data you use. At $199 you get 1gb, $299 for 2gb, $399 for 3gb and so on. It's hard to consume even 1gb unless you are never near wifi and/or stream a lot of music or videos. It's pretty cheap compared to plans in the US.

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2 minutes ago, John Shrall said:

Right now at Telcel the only difference between their regular rental plans is the amount of cell data you use. At $199 you get 1gb, $299 for 2gb, $399 for 3gb and so on. It's hard to consume even 1gb unless you are never near wifi and/or stream a lot of music or videos. It's pretty cheap compared to plans in the US.

My Internet was off the other day, so I tethered to my new cell data plan. In 45 minutes, without doing any photos, videos, or any other sizeable file manipulation in email or on webpages, I used 75MB of the data. I know real estate agents, advertisers and others who constantly access the Web for images in both directions. Imagine the data they must use in a week. It boggles my mind to think of those who use a data plan to listen to music in their car or at the gym.

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The other thing that can destroy your data is the option to automatically upload any photo or video you take to the cloud. Apple and Google have that option turned on by default. If you use the camera a lot this feature can be costly. Connect the phone to a computer and download photos of buy one of those little devices that can offload photos without a computer.

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  • 1 year later...

I am back in Canada and still have an active 100 peso telcel plan and am able to phone people in Canada but cannot phone Mexico.  If I purchase the 200 peso plan would I be able to phone Mexico and the USA with this 200 peso plan?   I have already setup my plan on in the internet.

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On 8/24/2016 at 10:10 AM, Guiness said:

We need to get a new cell phone - moving up from the old flip phone!  Went to Telcel and spoke to them - they tell me that they are not sure if the Samsung Galaxy 7 will work in Canada.   The only one they can guarantee to work is the i phone.   We are looking at getting the 199 pesos deal and realize we can use it to call within Canada and the USA.  

Question is.......................does anyone have a cell phone (purchased here from Telcel) that in fact does work when they are visiting in Canada.

Thanks for the info.

Guiness

The thing is both ATT Mexico and Telcel use GSM phones on 850, 900, 1700 and 2100 mghz. In the USA T-mobile, & ATT . In Canada it is Rodgers, Bell and Telus. The best approach is to buy a GSM phone on Ebay that is un-locked to any carrier. The Carrier is the absolutely most expensive place to buy a cell phone of un-locked variety. ATT Mexico offers unlimited plans with free Canada and USA roaming, though remember you still have to call LD in USA or Canada to dial the Mexican cell number. Samsung S5 is a fine phone that you can buy a battery most anywhere and replace it your self without sending it back. Also water resistant.

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