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Old April 6 2011, 05:43 PM   #1
B.J.
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Smartphone without SIM card?

Can you use a smartphone without a SIM card? I'm a bit new the smartphone world, just got an Android powered one a couple of weeks ago. When I'm finally ready to move on to a new phone (hopefully not for quite a while), it would seem a waste of a perfectly good Wi-Fi enabled pocket computer if it was unusable just because it wasn't hooked into a phone network. So, any help?
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Old April 6 2011, 08:01 PM   #2
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

Hmmm, interesting question. Logically, you would think the wi-fi part should still work, unless not having a simcard in the phone disables it for some reason.

Sidenote - I have read that modern cellphones can still call 911 without a simcard, though I have never tested this. (for obvious reasons)
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Old April 6 2011, 08:08 PM   #3
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

Yes, most Android phones that I'm aware of will work perfectly fine without a SIM card. Though they can get a little temporarily confused if you reboot without a wifi network nearby.
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Old April 6 2011, 08:52 PM   #4
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Hmmm, interesting question. Logically, you would think the wi-fi part should still work, unless not having a simcard in the phone disables it for some reason.

Sidenote - I have read that modern cellphones can still call 911 without a simcard, though I have never tested this. (for obvious reasons)
I can tell you from personal experience that modern cellphones can dial 911 with no SIM card.

My niece (five years old) swiped my old (not used, sitting on a shelf) Motoral RAZR v3xx and took it home after staying with us for the weekend. A few days later the cops gave us a call saying that someone has been calling 911 and hanging up from a cell phone registered to me. At the time we had no idea the phone was gone, but I got a suspicion, so I called my brother and he interrogated his daughter and sure enough, she'd brought my old phone to school and she and some friends were playing silly with it.
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Old April 10 2011, 03:10 AM   #5
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

I'm also going to chime in with a yes. On Windows Mobile, all functions (except the phone) operate with Wi-Fi.

However, I have found that without a Blackberry-specific data plan, Blackberry phones are useless, even with Wi-Fi. Many internet-enabled apps dont work with Wi-Fi alone.
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Old April 10 2011, 10:16 PM   #6
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

sojourner wrote: View Post
Sidenote - I have read that modern cellphones can still call 911 without a simcard, though I have never tested this. (for obvious reasons)
A cellphone is legally required to be able to call 911 (or 112 if you're in Europe) regardless of if it has a SIM, has an inactive SIM, doesn't use a SIM (non-active CDMA phone), is roaming in an area where your carrier has no agreement (those places where your phone shows it has signal, but still displays "No Calls" or "Emergency Only"), or the phone is password locked by the owner.

Android is kinda amusing when you call 911 (someone stole some merchandise from where I worked, and the town I lived in handled all calls requiring a dispatch to go through their 911 center) a big red cross pops up on screen.
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Old April 18 2011, 01:43 AM   #7
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Re: Smartphone without SIM card?

STR wrote: View Post
A cellphone is legally required to be able to call 911 (or 112 if you're in Europe)
Don't forget 0118 999 881 999 119 7253.

I'm about to switch phones and was considering rooting the old one and giving it to one of my kids to use around the house with the wi-fi. I'll just have to be careful they don't dial 911.
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