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Will my cellphone work in the Philippines?

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A short time back, Philip called me and asked if his cellular phone would work in the Philippines.

He told me that his network carrier in the United States is AT&T, and wondered if the phone would work in the Philippines.

49 Ways to Make a Living in the Philippines

Now, I am unsure. Does Philip meanย will the phone itself work? In other words, can he put a local (Globe, Smart, etc) SIM in the phone and use it locally? Or, does he mean can he use the phone still on AT&T and can he roam on Philippine Networks? Well, it is hard to know exactly which of those he was asking, so I answered both questions in my video.

These days almost everybody has and uses a Celular Phone (well, except for Steve, he wrote a while back saying that he does not use a Cellphone!) This is a question I hear a lot from those who will be traveling to the Philippines, so it is good that Philip called in with this question, because I am sure a lot of people are wondering.

For my monologue this week, I have a surprise. Some information that many people will not be expecting. Listen in and find out what this is all about.

Can I use my Cellphone?

I hope this helps answer a question that a lot of people are always wondering about.

Do You Have a Question?

If you want to send a question for inclusion in a future Podcast, just use the app below, click on the button below, where it says โ€œStart Recordingโ€.

Questions submitted by email will no longer be answered, you must submit through the voice message above.

Thanks again for watching, everybody!

Posted in

Bob Martin

Bob Martin is the Publisher & Editor in Chief of the Live in the Philippines Web Magazine. Bob is an Internet Entrepreneur. Bob is an American who lived in Mindanao from 2000 until 2019. Bob has now relocated back to the USA.

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SteveB
SteveB
4 years ago

My recommendation is to get a Motorola G4 unlocked phone – cost in the US approx $180; Cost in the Philippines, about P11,000. The phone will work virtually anywhere in the world. I’ve yet to hear about a SIM card that won’t work with this phone.

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  SteveB

I have never been a Motorola fan, but hey, if it works, why not? ๐Ÿ™‚

Thanks for sharing your experience, Steve.

SteveB
SteveB
4 years ago
Reply to  Bob Martin

A few years ago Lenovo purchased Motorola, so it’s really a Lenovo phone but keeps the Motorola brand. I have two – they are great and I’ve never had a problem. I am also partial to LG phones. My G2 is also a great phone, although it’s about 4 years old now.

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  SteveB

I used to be a Samsung guy, but about a year ago I switched to Huawei and I’ll never go back. Huawei is great.

Steve
Steve
4 years ago

As for using a philippines simm in a cell phone, the only ones you can be sure will work without being unlocked are at&t ones, the others might or might not. Any carrier in the us or Canada will have a daily fee for your ‘home’ plan to work in the philippines. For us it runs 8 to 10 bucks a day. Worth it? Not to me, but up to the user. I leave my cell with a friend and he forwards it to my philip pines number once I havery one. Costs me less that way. If you are… Read more »

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  Steve

On most phones now, doing an unlock doesn’t require parts, it is usually entering a code into the keypad, so the chance of Chinese parts on most phones now.

Truth is, though.. most phones are made completely of Chinese parts. Even the ever praised iPhone is made in China.

Mark kuivenhoven
Mark kuivenhoven
4 years ago

I have verizon I can receive and send regular phone calls in the Philippines
As long as I have Wi-Fi conection for free

Bob Martin
4 years ago

With a WiFi connection, anybody can do phone calls for free using one of a number of services. Thanks for sharing that.

Kuivenhoven
Kuivenhoven
4 years ago
Reply to  Bob Martin

Here’s what happened
I turned off my 4g in Philippines because of cost
Then my phone was ringing anyway form my Verizon phone # text because I was on Wi-Fi this is a new feature

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  Kuivenhoven

Ah, so it’s Verizon phone call over WiFi. Sorry, your first post did not make the clear (at least to me). ๐Ÿ™‚

John Miele
John Miele
4 years ago

Bob: With the amount of roaming that I do, I am pretty familiar with this topic. Pretty much any smart phone nowadays can operate on either GSM or CDMA. Back when I was based in the USA and roaming in the Philippines, that was not necessarily the case (Back then, a major benefit of Blackberry was that it could operate in either location). I tried doing the multiple SIM thing, and it was a mess, since I go to so many different countries. I currently spend between P30K and P40K per month with Globe. What kills you on the roaming,… Read more »

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  John Miele

John – Of all of the people that I know, you travel the most, so I trust what you say on this topic. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Tim Curtiss
4 years ago

GSM

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

Not sure I understand what your comment means. Yes, I cover GSM vs CDMA in the video.

Wally Barr
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

CDMA is the old cellular technology it’s still used by Verizon in the US and parts of Spain and the Philippines. You know you have a CDMA phone whtn it doesn’t use a SIM card. CDMA doesn’t do data transfers and calls at the sane time. Data transfer is slower. You csn also buy phones that use CDMA and GSM at the sane time. AT&T works great in the Philippines but it can get expensive in roaming areas unless you turn it off. it’s just cheaper to buy a SIM card at the airport

Scott Michaelis
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

when I first got here to central Mindanao 7 years ago I could buy a sim card fo 40p that I could call the USA for a mere 2p a minute. now I cant seem to find one? uncertain why.

Bruce Cinader
4 years ago

Here is the site that will answer that question better than any one.
https://willmyphonework.net/

Doobie Doles
4 years ago

When I arrived, I had my phone permanently unlocked by a specialist friend of mine so that I could use it with any of the services. Most phones from the US are locked from the provider. Mine was with T-Mobile and when I asked for the code to do so they told me no. My wife got it taken care of for 200php. ๐Ÿ™‚

Tim Curtiss
4 years ago

GSM

Bob Martin
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

Not sure I understand what your comment means. Yes, I cover GSM vs CDMA in the video.

Wally Barr
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

CDMA is the old cellular technology it’s still used by Verizon in the US and parts of Spain and the Philippines. You know you have a CDMA phone whtn it doesn’t use a SIM card. CDMA doesn’t do data transfers and calls at the sane time. Data transfer is slower. You csn also buy phones that use CDMA and GSM at the sane time. AT&T works great in the Philippines but it can get expensive in roaming areas unless you turn it off. it’s just cheaper to buy a SIM card at the airport

Scott Michaelis
4 years ago
Reply to  Tim Curtiss

when I first got here to central Mindanao 7 years ago I could buy a sim card fo 40p that I could call the USA for a mere 2p a minute. now I cant seem to find one? uncertain why.

Bruce Cinader
4 years ago

Here is the site that will answer that question better than any one.
https://willmyphonework.net/

Doobie Doles
4 years ago

When I arrived, I had my phone permanently unlocked by a specialist friend of mine so that I could use it with any of the services. Most phones from the US are locked from the provider. Mine was with T-Mobile and when I asked for the code to do so they told me no. My wife got it taken care of for 200php. ๐Ÿ™‚

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