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45

This may be due to the long Time To First Fix. Indeed, I recently learned that recent smartphones use mechanisms called "Assisted GPS" in order to get a location based on GPS reception. The idea is that if you use your GPS in an area you haven't been before, the GPS would take some time to find and interpret the signal, mostly because of the slow download ...


36

My personal experience has been that it's best to get a SIM card for each country I travel in. Local providers almost always have the best deals, and buying SIM cards is relatively inexpensive. Especially in Asian countries (where I have more travel experience) you can easily pick up SIM cards at shopping kiosks almost anywhere, and the rates are really ...


31

Vince covers the likely explanation, but unfortunately there are several more sinister possibilities as well. Long story short, China's legislation on GPS is both really vague and in part secret: by some readings of the law all use of GPS devices is technically prohibited, and not a few cameras and other GPS-enabled devices go so far as to disable GPS ...


27

I arrived at the kit below by adding gear only as needed. I started with just an iPhone and laptop and only added to that when it was literally impossible to get reliable internet at my accommodations with the gear I already had. I have trial-and-errored through a bunch of other gear that turned out to be unhelpful or not worth the bulk (e.g. higher ...


25

Not that phone. Virgin, in the USA, uses Sprint's network. Sprint uses the CDMA standard. Europe uses a different standard, GSM. The only US phones which can work in Europe are: GSM phones from AT&T and/or T-Mobile, the two GSM providers in the US, as long as the phone supports the same bands as the country you're going to (most phones in the last ...


23

Yes, there's an app exactly for what you're looking for, and it's called Glympse. You can choose to share your location, set a timer on how long that location will be shared, and send the details (it's just a link) to any of your contacts via text message, Twitter, email, a bunch of other messaging apps etc. What I like about this is that you can limit ...


20

Things to consider: data roaming is very expensive you're charged for incoming calls in roaming you're charged local cost + roaming surcharge for outgoing If you have a sim-free second phone, your best option is to buy local sim. Pay-as-you-go (called pre-paid here) are very popular and inexpensive in Poland. You can get them as low as 5PLN ($1.60 ...


19

Right, with a bit of research, I've put the following together. Modern Japanese mobile phones (携帯電話 keitai denwa or just keitai) tend to operate on unique cellular standards not always compatible with the rest of the world. For instance, most Japanese 2G mobile phones operate on the Personal Digital Cellular (PDC) standard, which was developed and is used ...


19

In Germany, you can use Aldi talk. If you buy a credit for 30 EUR the SIM-card will be active for 24 months. Another plus point is that you can use the SIM-card in the whole EU and it will not be very expensive - incoming calls are free, the outgoing call rate is the same as in Germany.


18

Yes, this will work, although you'll need an adapter plug to be able to plug your charger into a European socket. Actually, you don't really need your charger as any regular USB port will do. So if you have your laptop with you, you only need your laptop charger (for which you will also need an adapter plug). A universal travel adapter is something which ...


16

Well, turns out this is really easy - I just entered a store and asked for a monthly plan which includes unlimited data, and the clerk was happy to offer me a choice between a couple of available plans, without any requirement except a credit card (no need for zip code or credit check or American credit card / address). The store was T-Mobile, but I think ...


15

It depends on what countries you are travelling to. If the country uses GSM, in most cases the best plan is to make sure you have an unlocked GSM phone, and purchase a pay-as-you-go SIM card in the country you are going to. If you Google for "International SIM" you will see that there are tons of websites selling pay-as-you-go SIMs, and in many countries, ...


15

I was a flight attendant before and I had this problem. I just kept losing them. Then I came up with an idea--An empty cigarette pack. Just put the sim cards inside the plastic that covers the pack and its tight enough to hold it. But then I saw a good thing that really helped me a lot. Its a sim card holder that can hold up to 4 sim cards, Its exactly the ...


14

AT&T has PayAsYouGo SIM cards, you can buy them in the real AT&T stores. You just come in and ask the clerk to sell you one. It costs $20 (as far as I remember). Then there's a $20/200MB (not sure about exact numbers) data plan for this card which is pretty expensive if you really plan to use the internet extensively. T-Mobile also has prepaid SIM ...


14

This wiki is a very good source of info: http://www.prepaid-wiki.de/ Many companies offer prepaid SIM cards. blau.de is a good option. I use a NettoKom SIM card, which is a re-branded blau card that is sold for 5€ in Netto grocery stores; other discount grocery stores (Lidl, ALDI, etc) have their own offerings. A one-month data plan will cost 10-15€. I ...


13

For cellphone networks, there are two major standards: GSM and CDMA (Japan being one of the major exceptions if I remember correctly). CDMA only found wide acceptance in the US (licensing issues, primarily; major networks running on this being Verizon and Sprint. You should check with your operator (if it runs a CDMA network) but there's a good chance the ...


13

A possible option is a global sim card, like those from GoSim. They work in nearly every country. Another sneakier method, depending on what you need the data for and how fast it needs to be, is a 3G Kindle. It has free data to download books on Amazon's Whispernet in almost every country in the world, and has a basic experimental web browser on it. With ...


13

If she's there for a year, it might be worth getting a contract, as that may well be cheaper overall. As she already has the phone, she'd want a "SIM Only" deal, if she can get it. A carrier store on/near campus ought to be used to international students, so should be able to help if possible. (I've had a sales guy in a small AT&T shop look at me like I ...


13

My name is Olivier, from FrenchConnection. The thing we usually do is deliver in advance in the hotel or camping where you will be staying overnight. As mentioned by someone earlier, we can still organize a collection in Paris gare du nord (it does not appear anymore on the website, but if you ask politely, we will of course do it). Also a very useful ...


13

Yes, Google Latitude! Ok, last year they merged it with google+, so now it's just under locations in that app, but it allows you to share your GPS location with other contacts or friends, on a pinpoint or city-wide location. It used to look like this: source But now, while still similar, is in Google+, and you can activate it as per the following ...


12

Updated As of May 2014, it works in both directions now! As this edit demonstrates, from somewhere under the channel :) Yes, you can! But currently until very recently, it was only in one direction... As detailed in this IET article from July 2012, Eurotunnel (who own the tunnel) have fitted leaky feeder aerials, base stations and repeaters to both ...


12

Sort of. Every one sort of has roaming though, or per meg data charges. It's still got to be based somewhere. The closest I've heard of is Go Sim which has a 'Europe Sim' for this use case. Includes: a Europe SIM Card with $10 airtime We've got the SIM for you! Our all-in-one replug sim will work in any unlocked mobile device (including ...


11

Apple sells a "World Travel Adapter Kit" http://store.apple.com/us/product/MB974ZM/B with a number of different charging options. It includes the USB-iPhone cable, an iPhone/iPad power adapter (semi-useless but I guess it's always good having a spare at home), and a number of swappable plugs for various countries. The advantage of this option is that ...


11

My own best way to avoid data roaming fees when travelling is simply NOT to bring a cell phone abroad. Making a phone call is easy from anywhere without a cell phone and internet connections are provided in many places in cybercafés. Moreover, this is one object that you won't get stolen if it stays at home.


11

Although this has been phrased as somewhat of a shopping-related question I'm going to answer the issue of short trips in multiple countries and having an easy way to stay connected to each other. I'm not going to cover calling abroad/home as you've already got that sorted, so I'll concentrate on calling locally (between the two of you and other locals) ...


11

@alx9r wrote a fantastically detailed post here, but I think it may be overkill. I'm on the road for most of the year and need to be connected 24/7 for work. For the most part you can get away with: An mini-router (I use an Airport Express). Flakey hotel wifi can be remedied by using a LAN cable to your mobile router, providing a personal wifi spot, ...


11

Cell phones run on two different types of networks: GSM and CDMA. These network types themselves are subdivided into various bands (e.g. GSM 850 MHz). Most recent phones will support a wide range of bands within one network type. GSM is predominant in most countries except the US, which uses both. To verify that your current phone will work in another ...


11

German ICEs have some coaches that are considered to be "quiet zones" and some coaches are "talking zone". There are symbols on the walls that tell you what zone you are in. The symbols can be seen here: http://www.bahn.de/p/view/service/zug/handy_u_ruhebereiche.shtml So technically having a telecon is allowed in the "talking zones". For fairness, it is ...


10

I guess you might be in the UK based on the networks you listed? For within Europe, Vodafone are currently pretty good. Vodafone Passport means it's a single charge to answer/make a call, the rest is at the UK rate. If you're on a £40+/month plan, they'll give you 25mb/day/country of data for free, and 10 free texts a day When I go outside of Europe, I ...


10

While fairly slow to use, the Kindle 3G web browser works well enough for email and some browsing, and the 3G SIM is contract free and works throughout most of the World. Bar the cost of purchase it makes it free to use the internet for a lot of travelling.



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