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I got a new THL smartphone but now I need a SIM card, etc.

 
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chaz47



Joined: 11 Sep 2003

PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:35 pm    Post subject: I got a new THL smartphone but now I need a SIM card, etc. Reply with quote

I just got a new THL W-200. It seems like an awesome device. LG already told me that it is incompatible with their network. What are my options and how do I go about it? I just want minimal everything (talk/text/etc.) and if I could get a monthly contract that would be awesome.
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Jake_Kim



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 3:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your ThL W-200 is supposedly compatible with the 3G WCDMA 2.1GHz network of both SKT and Olleh KT. Any other frequency on your phone is basically useless in Korea.
Now that both networks discontinued new subscription of many 3G-based smartphone plans (yes they want to suck you dry with hefty 4G LTE (or -A) plans) your plan option will be greatly limited.
This is just a supposition, not a recommendation, but you might as well consider the most basic prepaid service for calls and texts, in combination with an additional fixed rate WiFi-only plan from KT. Underlying premise, though, is that most of your everyday life - home/work/place to hangout/etc. - falls well within Olleh KT's wifi coverage in an urban setting.
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chaz47



Joined: 11 Sep 2003

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jake_Kim wrote:
Your ThL W-200 is supposedly compatible with the 3G WCDMA 2.1GHz network of both SKT and Olleh KT. Any other frequency on your phone is basically useless in Korea.
Now that both networks discontinued new subscription of many 3G-based smartphone plans (yes they want to suck you dry with hefty 4G LTE (or -A) plans) your plan option will be greatly limited.
This is just a supposition, not a recommendation, but you might as well consider the most basic prepaid service for calls and texts, in combination with an additional fixed rate WiFi-only plan from KT. Underlying premise, though, is that most of your everyday life - home/work/place to hangout/etc. - falls well within Olleh KT's wifi coverage in an urban setting.


So (and this is probably highly stretching it), if I were to find a 2G sim card I could keep my current monthly pay as you go (PPS) service with LG for text and talk. Then get a 3G data plan sim card from KTF?
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Jake_Kim



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

chaz47 wrote:
So (and this is probably highly stretching it), if I were to find a 2G sim card I could keep my current monthly pay as you go (PPS) service with LG for text and talk. Then get a 3G data plan sim card from KTF?


NO.
Your ThL W-200 supports 2G GSM 850/900/1800/1900MHz, doesn't it?
2G networks of Korea use CDMA protocol of various frequencies by respective company, no GSM. They're absolutely not inter-operable.
It is your choice to keep your current PPS phone with LGU while using the W-200 as a Wifi-only device like an iPod. Regardless of your dual-SIM slots, however, you can't use 2G text and talk within Korea with W-200.
3G plans do come with a SIM card, be that may simple talk and text or a proper comprehensive smartphone plan. In contrast, the Wifi-only subscription with KT that I mentioned earlier doesn't require a SIM, but instead you register the MAC address of your device with the carrier and your device automatically taps into Olleh Wifi network whenever accessible.
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chaz47



Joined: 11 Sep 2003

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 11:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for all these noob questions. I greatly appreciate your help.

I've avoided getting a smartphone for quite some time. I had been using a WiFi tablet but it's gotten a bit slow nowadays and thought I might as well consolidate devices and upgrade at the same time. But, as a result of my reluctance to purchase before I know next to nothing now.

So, more noob questions:
1.) SK or KTF are my only options if I actually want to use it as a phone and not just a WiFi device?
2.) What would you expect the barest minimum expense to be with either of those two carriers?

Here are the thing's specs:
http://www.smartphonezero.com/thl-w200-specs/
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Jake_Kim



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

chaz47 wrote:
Sorry for all these noob questions. I greatly appreciate your help.

I've avoided getting a smartphone for quite some time. I had been using a WiFi tablet but it's gotten a bit slow nowadays and thought I might as well consolidate devices and upgrade at the same time. But, as a result of my reluctance to purchase before I know next to nothing now.

So, more noob questions:
1.) SK or KTF are my only options if I actually want to use it as a phone and not just a WiFi device?
2.) What would you expect the barest minimum expense to be with either of those two carriers?

Here are the thing's specs:
http://www.smartphonezero.com/thl-w200-specs/



Your choice is indeed between SKT and Olleh KT, given supported frequency of your W200. I can't tell you what your break-even would be with smartphone data usage between prepaid and regular fixed rate plans, but you can take a look at the rates table yourself and compare at http://www.ktexpatblog.com/?page_id=32 and http://www.ktexpatblog.com/?page_id=728 for KT.
SK Telecom doesn't provide much of information in English, other than that of the simplest prepaid schemes. Excluding 3G-data-only plans, you'd probably go with a comprehensive plan of monthly payment around KRW 39000, with an option of some 15000-ish Won extra data packets up to 1GB if you become a heavy smartphone data user.
There are literally tens of those plan combinations, with or without automatic cut-off of datastream once you hit the ceiling, then there are different data rates and brackets for each plan. I can't spell them all out here. http://www.tworld.co.kr is where SKT lays out all their options in Korean, just for the record.
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chaz47



Joined: 11 Sep 2003

PostPosted: Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I managed to get a SIM for it from OllehKT but they would only hook me up as PPS, $10 for 2 months... same as my LG PPS for my 2G slider. Why the heck they wouldn't give me a basic data plan I dunno. It was beyond my level of Korean to comprehend their response when I asked about it.

Might I be able to talk to an English-speaking Customer Service rep and get some basic data package action?
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Jake_Kim



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Tue Oct 29, 2013 2:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Did you not visit KT's 'Global Store'? You may see 'Olleh KT' banners every other block on the street, but it doesn't mean they're all equal branches under direct management of KT corporate HQ. Most of them are simple phone dealers, delegated to process only the most basic admin functions.
You should see a tab of Global Store locations from either of the links above. You might need to make a long trip, but I'd say it is more important to be thorough and straighten out any contractual issue than know only half of the deal you're signing. Or at least, if some regulatory issue prevents you from signing up for a monthly plan, you'd wanna know precisely why.
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