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Strange numbers / letters in Display

Discussion in 'Northeastern US Wireless Forum' started by waltinvt, Apr 12, 2006.

  1. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    Location:
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    My Phone:
    Nokia 6201
    Wireless Provider(s):
    Cingular
    Pardon my ignorance but I can't find the answer to this. I have 3 phones on Family Talk account. A week or so ago all 3 phones started showing a strange combination of numbers / letters / symbols in the main (and small) display. Although all 3 phones are Nokia, they're not all the same model. I think these are replacing where it used to say Cingular. I don't have the phone right in front of me at the moment, so can't say exactly what they are. The phones all seem to work ok but I'm worried that this is some sort of error message that I'm supposed to deal with before the phones all self destruct or something:)
     
  2. Andy

    Andy Diamond Senior Member
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    Does it say something like USA-410 or something like that???

    Cingular may have accidentally replaced the Cingular alphatag with the network code or someting???

    This will not be a problem as long as you are not experiencing difficulties placing calls, it's probably just an alphatag issue on Cingular's end. Let us know what the message says when you have the phones with you, then we'd be able to help you out more.

    ~Andy

    P.S. Don't worry- your phones won't self distruct.
     
  3. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    Location:
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    OK, it sort of says: 0H30nnAo= but I don't have the font characters to match exactly.

    The "0" prior to H & after 3 are both zeros. Both little "n"s have a tilde over them. The "A" & little "o" both have what looks like quotes over them. The last symbol is not really an equal sign but actually like an equal sign that's stretched vertically and then another, slightly shorter horzontal line placed between them.

    This code is exactly the same on my 3 phones but my mother-in-law, who lives just across the Connecticut River in NH and just recently signed up with Cingular doesn't have these symbols.

    Thanks for your help Andy.
     
  4. bobolito

    bobolito Diamond Senior Member
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    Don't worry about it. I don't think that means anything. Probably a corrupted Alphatag. Just call Cingular and ask them to send the latest downloads to your phone over the air. Maybe that will fix it. If not, you might need to go to a store and have them change your SIM card. They'll do that for free.
     
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  5. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    Location:
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    My Phone:
    Nokia 6201
    Wireless Provider(s):
    Cingular
    Well, turns out it was something. To make a long story short, I've had Cingular here in Vermont since last October and been realy happy with the phones and service. Trouble is, they don't have coverage in my area and since the first of the year they've started to inforce their 50% rules, so since we're always "off network" (which is what those numbers turned into once I reset the sim card), they won't continue our coverage.

    They were real nice about it and will pick up any associated costs we run into to change carriers but I'm still stuck with the hassle of changing 3 phones over now.

    Apparently Unicel is the best route for this area (05033) and supposedly they will use our current phones.
     
  6. EdwardP

    EdwardP Bronze Senior Member
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    I get excellent roaming coverage on Unicel from Exit 15 on I-89 in New Hampshire, all the way up 89 into Vermont and right to the Canadian border.

    I'm sure it isn't easy for any carrier to provide a signal up in the mountains. :)
     
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  7. Fire14

    Fire14 Easy,Cheap & Sleazy
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    Wow, another area that Cingular is enforcing this 50% rule hard, at least they are being good about covering your charges to migrate over to another carrier.
    Only if your phones are unlocked can you use your current phones or you could unlock them then get some cheap or free phones from Unicel, then pop your SIM's into the older Cingular phones to help keep initial cost's down, if not sell them on Ebay.
     
  8. Andy

    Andy Diamond Senior Member
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    Doesn't USCC also cover the area? I think you may also want to look into them as they are somewhat competitive also and in some areas tri-mode coverage with AMPS backup may be better.
     
  9. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    I don't even know what USCC is but I guess Unicel is probably our best / only choice for this area. We had them for years and never had any real problems other than thinking we were stuck with the analog "bag" phones.

    We didn't think we had any choice. Then one of our nearby relatives got GSM service with Cingular and told us about it. The difference was like night and day, so since we had no current contract obligation with Unicel, we also switched to Cingular last October. Of course when I called Unicel to cancel, they told me all about their great GSM service. I said I'd wished they had told us earlier but it was too late now as I was contracted with Cingular.

    Anyway, now I have to switch. Cingular has told us they will waive all termination fees and cover the new activation fees with whoever we sign up with. The guy also said that when we get ready to switch services, he will give us the "unlock" codes so we can switch sim cards. That way we can keep our 3 current phones with the new service. I assume that would be better than getting new phones with whatever Unicel package we get but any advice would be appreciated.
     
  10. dmarkson

    dmarkson New England Wireless Guru
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    In northern VT Unicel provides the best boonies coverage. USC is not really a player in northern VT with their partial PCS system. Verizon works in your area, but you would need to check with friends and neighbors to see how well it works in the places you will be the most.

    Unicel has some great plans when they first released GSM, but their plans are now coming more in line with everyone else. Last I knew you did not have to sign a contract if you are not taking any phones.

    The Unicel National plans are no longer that great. Make sure you understand what your features are and where they are valid (most features are only good on-Unicel-network).

    If you plan to be off-Unicel-network on a regular basis, you might check with your neighbors, and see how well Verizon works in your area. Verizon national plans are better and M2M & nights/weekend minutes work while roaming (other than some isolated cases out west).
     
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  11. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    Location:
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    Wireless Provider(s):
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    I'd consider Verizon as they are also my land-line carrier but would I be risking the same situation I ran into with Cingular in that they might decide to enforce some kind of out of network rule? Also, as I understand it, Verizon doesn't use sim cards, so we couldn't use our existing Nokia phones.
     
  12. Fire14

    Fire14 Easy,Cheap & Sleazy
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    That is correct, you can not use your exsisting phones if you go with Verizon or USCC, if your coverage has been fine on Cingular while they were/are roaming on Unicel then you should stick with what's been working for you.
     
  13. dmarkson

    dmarkson New England Wireless Guru
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    You don't want to be roaming more than 50% on any carrier, everyone may be cracking down on that.

    It looks like Unicel has changed plans, so be sure whether N&W minutes are valid when off-network. It looks like they ARE included according to the latest brochure.
     
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  14. Andy

    Andy Diamond Senior Member
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    Verizon doesn't really have a roaming rule right now. If you are going to be roaming a lot though, GSM may be a better option since ALL GSM features apply across networks and even while roaming. Every carrier has trial periods, so if Unicel doesn't give you the features for the money you are willing to spend you can try someone else for 15 days and return the phone if it doesn't work out.
     
  15. waltinvt

    waltinvt New Member

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    Location:
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    My Phone:
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    We're now on Unicel with 2 of our phones are up here in Central Vermont but the 3rd is with my step daughter in MA. and she probably will use her's more than we do. Will her usuage in MA be considered off network?
     
  16. dmarkson

    dmarkson New England Wireless Guru
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    My Phone:
    9530, v3xx
    Wireless Provider(s):
    VZW, AT&T, TMO, USC, BOOST, VIRG, PP
    Yes, MA is off-Unicel-network (except for Franklin County).
     
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