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Why do most new GSM phones have 1800 and not 900

Discussion in 'GENERAL Wireless Discussion' started by azcellphonejunkie, Mar 3, 2005.

  1. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    I have noticed that recently the new phones that come out on GSM and are tri band choose 1800 over 900 for the third band. I don't really understand this. I think that 900 is much more widespread throughout the world, and it would make more sense to have 900 in the phone than 1800. Can anyone comment on this?

    I know that if you get a quadband phone like mine, you have all the bands (850/900/1800/1900) but if I wanted to go with something cheaper, I would most likely get a 850/1800/1900 phone. It seems that the 900 band is only put in the eurpoean versions. I guess it is like having a european phone and having only 900/1800/1900. Just doesn't make sense to me.

    Anyone have any thoughts or answers? Anyone else notice this?
     
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  2. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    I am sure shoreguy and others more familiar with the international scene can help you better but here is my understanding:

    I think that 900 is an old frequency that is getting upgraded to the 1800, which may be why the triband phones chose 1800 over the 900. I have a printout from Cingular dated 10/5/04 of all the GSM frequencies of the world, surprisingly there is a large no. of countries that do have 1800. With just a quick scan of the 5 page printout I am tempted to say that atleast 75% of the countries have both and 10% that have 900 only.

    Here is the The Travel Insider that has some info that you may find interesting.

    HTH
     
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  3. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Very good article about the international cell phone world.

    It still doesn't really tell me a lot about why the manufacturers choose 1800 over 900. It is interesting that the countries around the world are looking to make the 1800 move, but in the meantime, I don't see why they would choose the 1800 band as the third choice. Maybe it's a money thing...
     
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  4. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    az, I am not quite sure what you mean by the third choice.
     
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  5. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Sorry to confuse. I meant that the tri-band phones that are out there all have at least 850 and 1900, and it seems that the third band is becoming 1800 now where as in the past it used to be 900. Third chocie meant that Nokia is choosing 1800 over 900 to put in thier phones for the international roaming band.
     
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  6. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Here is a quote from the above article:
    "Caution - Different definitions of 'Tri-band Phone'

    All tri-band phones obviously (?) support three different frequency bands. But they may differ in their choice of which three of the four bands they support.

    The two common variations are :

    900/1800/1900 - Excellent internationally and very good in the US

    850/1800/1900 - Excellent in the US but poor internationally"

    This is what I think of the situation too. So why is Nokia doing 1800 instead of 900!
     
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  7. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Sorry to threadjack, but here is an interesting piece of info. Of all the countries out there on 900 or 1800 or both bands, these are the only ones that don't have 900 but do have 1800:
    Costa Rica
    Trinidad & Tobago
    Uruguay

    These are the countries that have 900 but no 1800:
    Antigua & Barbuda
    Azerbaijan
    Bangladesh
    British Virgin Islands
    China-this is wrong, 1800 is working for my fiance there right now!
    Croatia
    Cuba
    Egypt
    El Salvador
    Fiji
    French Polynesia
    Greenland
    Iran
    Iraq
    Jamaica
    Jordan
    Kazakhstan
    Kenya
    Kyrgyzstan
    Lebanon
    Libya
    Madagascar
    Malawi
    Moldova
    Monaco
    Mongolia
    Morocco
    New Zealand
    Pakistan
    Saudi Arabia
    Senegal
    Seychelles
    Sierra Leone
    Tunisia
    United Arab Emirates


    Silly that they would not have 900 over 1800...
     
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  8. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Not many places that I plan to go in the near future. You know that some on your list, Barbuda, Antigua, Jamaica have 1900 or 850. British Virgin Islands too.

    The moto V180 has 850/900/1800, I believe. I would prefer a quad, but the US tri band really does cover a lot of territory when you think about it. I'm not sure of the reason, but it is not a new change that I know of: US tri band phone were not of the V180 type really ever.

    Where to you find that tri band phones are cheaper? I could have bought a quad from Cingular for less money than my 6230
     
  9. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    Probably a little unfair and inaccurate to say that 1900 is good in the US and 1800 is poor internationally. 1800 covers some whole countries, while I don't think any US Tmobile user would say 1900 covers that well in the US.

    But your point is a good one. Some day quads will be the rule of the day, and triband a thing of the past. Give it another year
     
  10. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    The list is from the website that Charlyee posted the link to. I'm guessing that it may be a bit outdated.

    From Phone Scoop, the V180 is GSM 800 / GSM 1800 / GSM 1900, but is carrier-dependent (can be dual-band, tri-band, or quad-band). I have never seen a dual or quad band one though. If you think about it, it wouldn't make sense to have a phone sold in the US without 1900. 1900 is so widespread...
     
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  11. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Coming from T-Mobile for 9 months, I made a cross country trip from Arizona to Minnesota and only had about 4-5 of the 30 hour trip with no service. I was very impressed! I roamed on AT&T, Epic Touch, a bunch of USA carriers, and Iowa Wireless. These were all 1900 carriers. It was about the same as Sprint, but Sprint has AMPS roaming partners so that helped.

    I have to agree with you though that with Cingular doing so well and expanding with 850 in certain areas, there will be a high demand for quads in the future, especially for people internationally.
     
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  12. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    True, and I will be the first in line for a quad Nokia :D
     
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  13. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    From the Cingular and Motorola web sites, the Cingular V180 is 850/900/1900

    Sorry for the typo in my first post I didn't mean that the V180 had 1800, but that it had the two US bands and the 900 international band.
     
  14. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    This is so annoying and frustrating. I wish that there weren't discrepencies in the different places of information. I am losing faith in some of the sites very quickly...
     
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  15. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    From the T-Mobile Website, the V180 is:
    International phone: Tri-band (1900, 1800, 900 MHz)

    Not suprising since T-Mobile blocks the 850 band on almost all the phones it sells. It was blocked on my V600 before I flashed and flexed it...
     
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  16. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    One can't believe everything they see on the web (or even forums like these). When in doubt, I go to the horse's mouth...nokia,motorola, etc web sites. I found this to be the most accurate and reliable.

    Anyhow, the V180 is an entry level phone and would be a good backup and give you that 900 band you want.
     
  17. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    I agree with that!!!!
     
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  18. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    The Motorola web site lists the V180 for all 3 carriers;

    Cingular: 850/900/1900
    Tmobile: 900/1800/1900
    ATT: 850/900/1800/1900
     
  19. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Phonescoop says the V180 can be dual, tri, or quad band depending on the carrier... :)

    V180/186 Actually it is a good phone for the price, I was looking at it to replace my V66, which is getting old.
     
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  20. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Actually it is more than a bit outdated compared to the list I got from my buddy at Cingular last October. My list does show 1800 coming to China and a few other countries from the other list. It also shows that some of the countries that have both, have areas that are one or the other only. I should go badger him again for an updated list, which ofcourse would again get obsolete in a couple months. :rolleyes:

    I feel that the reason the 3rd. frequency is 1800, is that is what the world is converting to, but ofcourse this is just my opinion.

    Sorry az, I did not see your phonescoop post on the V180 before I posted. Are you thinking about getting one?
     
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  21. viewfly

    viewfly Mobile RF Advisor
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    It would be a little surprising to me that 1800 is not in China. Maybe Bugwart can add comments here.

    With ~200 million GSM subscribers in China (close to the US entire population!), I would think having only one band, 900, would be insufficient. Adding 1800 would increase call capacity in these densely populated cities of China.


    The Cingular web site for international roaming is probably will give you a better idea where you can roam and on what freq. at the moment. Charlyee is right about that.

    But even this has errors. Note that Hong Kong is heavy into 1800
     
  22. Bugwart

    Bugwart Bronze Senior Member
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    Please do not hold your breath while waiting. NOK was in no particular hurry to bring out their first tri-band. Based on this, I would expect at least another year until they have a quad-band. For some odd reason, none of the European handset companies build a quad-band.
     
  23. Bugwart

    Bugwart Bronze Senior Member
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    China does have 1,800 MHz service (in addition to 900 MHz service), but only in the cities where they need the extra band-width.
     
  24. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    It very well could be that they are just looking to be ahead of the curve in getting people onto the 1800 band so when they are in these countries, it doesn't clog the 900 network anymore than it already is.

    I'm not looking to get a V180, it was just an example that viewfly and I were talking about...
     
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  25. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    China does have 1800, my fiance is on it right now on her 850/1800/1900 Nokia 3120.

    Funny thing is though that she was not able to use the phone in Hong Kong. They had no 1800 service there that her phone would pick up. When she was there last November, her T-Mobile 900/1900 Samsung e105 worked like a charm. Cingular may not have a roaming agreement in place yet...
     
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  26. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    Do you have any info on this? I wasn't able to find much of anything good on the China Mobile website.
     
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  27. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Now here is another discrepancy, according to Cingular they do have service via roaming partners in HK. Here is what they say:

    Orangehk, 900/1800, VG coverage throughout the 4 provinces, high quality throughout HK.

    HK Telecom CSL, 900/1800, spotty in Eastern Kowloon, New Territories, Western Lantau, VG in the 4 provinces.

    SmarTone, 900/1800, Some holes in Eastern Kowloon and New Territories, VG otherwise.

    Peoples, 1800, Good on the coast, bays, and inlets. Limited on the interior.

    Any chance we will ever find documentaion that is 100% accurate?
     
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  28. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    She's sleeping right now, but I may get a chance to talk with my fiance tonight. She is going back to Hong Kong tomorrow and then catching a flight to Japan for the next 4 days. I will ask her to try her phone again in Hong Kong. In a city that size, you would think Cingular would have roaming agreements!
     
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  29. azcellphonejunkie

    azcellphonejunkie The Cell Phone Junkie
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    If we can find some information on the 900/1800 thing that seems to be consistent and accurate, I will be very happy!
     
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  30. charlyee

    charlyee Ultimate Insanity
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    Hi Az, did you get a chance to find out anything more?
     
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