What's better - 'Unlocked' or 'Simfree' Android Ph

Discussion in 'Android' started by CannonFoddr, Mar 16, 2011.

  1. CannonFoddr
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    Member CannonFoddr Regular GBATemp Lurker

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    OK - I'm VERY tempted into upgrading my old Nokia 5800 to a new Android phone (especially now that Nokia has merged with Microsoft) - & I'm looking towards the 'Desire HD' as it ticks most of the boxes (only the HTC SatNav licencing is a 'down point' & possibly the battery life)

    Now because I'm on PAYG I have to actually BUY the phone (no upgrade options for me [​IMG] ) so naturally I want to get one for as little as possible

    Now it seems 'Sim-Free' are usually more expensive than 'unlocked' (look @ ebay & you see some going for ~£330 'unlocked' but ~£370 for 'sim free' - I only buy 'new' & use 'buy it now' options, I very rarely actually bid for anything)

    Now I know 'unlocked' means it WAS locked to a particular network, but modified to allow SIM's from other networks to be used - but I've also read that (because of the ease of altering the Android EOS) many companies modify the EOS to include specific network Apps &/or Logos etc - effectively altering the default HTC EOS

    Now I don't want a phone that has Apps on it for a company that I don't use which I can't uninstall, nor would I like Logos plastered all over it (a switchon/bootup logo isn't too bad I guess) - but I don't want to 'root' it in case things go wrong (>£300 is a lot of money for me)

    So, what I'd like to know is has anyone brought a 'unlocked' (Not SimFree) Desire HD
    - Have they had any problems with it ?
    - Has the HTC EOS actually been modified with Network specific Apps (or is it just logos added) ?
    - Have they needed to 'root' it & perhaps even (re)installed the Default HTC EOS & if so how easy was it ?
    - Will I need to root it to remove the logos, & if so how easy is it to do ?


    I know it's a lot of questions but is it worth getting an Unlocked HTC Desire HD ?? or should I pay that little bit more & get a 'genuine' Simfree ??

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    You're overthinking it.

    A SIM-free phone will be locked to one specific carrier, so you'd have to make sure to check that your current phone/SIM uses that carrier or you'll be stuck.

    An unlocked phone is still a SIM-free phone, but it is not locked to any carrier. When you put your SIM card in, it will work. You will still see those logos for your carrier and crap like that. To stop them popping up at all, you need to install a custom ROM (which means rooting it first).

    Personally I don't care about the apps that comes with the phone. Most of them won't affect anything until I start using them, which I never will (e.g. Facebook and Twitter apps). I just download my own apps and everything runs perfectly. If you REALLY wanted to uninstall them, there are ways (and some say it's necessary to improve battery life, although 2-4 days battery life for me is fine), most of which involve rooting first then running appropriate apps.

    As long as you're on official software, you can't escape HTC and your phone carrier tempering with the software before releasing any given Android update (e.g. 2.2.3). HTC implement HTC Sense, and phone carriers keep their latest ringtones and shortcut apps updated. That's about it.
     
  3. CannonFoddr
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    Member CannonFoddr Regular GBATemp Lurker

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    ???? Sim-free locked to a carrier ???? - do you mean that 'Carriers' are the same thing as 'Operators' such as 'Orange', 'T-mobile', 'O2' etc. meaning that a 'SIM-Free' phone may be locked to Orange.. and you can't use a SIM from O2 (or whatever) ???

    If so - then what you're saying is totally wrong.... A SIM-free phone means you can use use ANY SIM card from ANY 'carrier'/'operator' in the phone
    (Carphonewarehouse sells 'SIM-Free' phones where you can put any SIM into them for whichever network you want to use)

    UNLOCKED phones have restrictions removed that were imposed by 'carriers'/'networks' to prevent the phone being used with another SIM from a different 'carrier/'network' or even to prevent you using that phone in a different country

    IIRC there (use to be) 3-4 'Locks' on a mobile phone - & depending on how many of these 'locks' have been removed depends on how restricted the phone was.
    I think the locks were for things like country the phone could be used in, network code and something else (can't remember what exactly)

    If, what you mean, is that 'Carriers' are something totally different to 'Network operators' - then I appologise
     
  4. Synchromatic

    Member Synchromatic GBAtemp Regular

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    Operator=Carrier=Provider

    I'm not familiar with UK operators, but if it was locked to a specific operator before, there may be operator-specific apps pre-installed on the device or a operator-specific splash image. However, the Desire HD is easily rootable, and a stock HTC sense rom can be installed.

    Assuming that simfree also means unbranded, the simfree phone will likely have no modifications to it other than what HTC has done.
     
  5. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    Actually you're right, carriers is another term for network operators (I'm used to answering related questions for Americans).

    And I was unaware that SIM-free handsets from retailers like CarphoneWarehouse were not restricted to certain network operators. The last time I checked (a few years ago), they WERE locked and there were some devices you could only get on specific networks (e.g. iPhone was locked to 3, and only much later did it get allowed to be sold for other networks - at the time, getting an iPhone on T-Mobile was an impossibility).

    I've never heard of phones becoming restricted when you remove "locks", so I don't know what to think about it. I've always stuck with T-Mobile anyway and never felt any desire to switch (T-Mo has always been the most popular between family and friends).
     
  6. CannonFoddr
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    Member CannonFoddr Regular GBATemp Lurker

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    I think you mis-read that bit - I said 'UNLOCKED phones have restrictions removed' [​IMG] [​IMG]

    And surprizingly - I was nearly right about the multiple 'locks'
     
  7. Dter ic

    Member Dter ic ~

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    have look at this to simi-root your phone and
    have the ability to install clockwork recovery and a custom rom like cyanogen
     

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