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raywright1 (Offline)
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Default WIND & TIM @ Roma Termini - 18-05-2013, 22:09

I recently spent two days in Rome and purchased both a WIND and TIM card at Termini train station. I chose to get both as a learning experience, having used Vodafone once in the past. Here are my observations...

WIND has a store both on the main level and on the lower level. I used the lower level. TIM store was upstairs. The station also had a Vodafone and a "3" store.

TIM store has a touch screen to the left of the entrance door, which dispenses a customer queue number. You proceed to the counter when called.

Both requested passport; I provided both passport and codice fiscale (because I have one).

I described my request the same way in both places: "I want to use the internet and call the USA."

The package TIM gave me cost 13 euro, from which 3 euro paid for a data plan of 300MB per week, and 5 euro credit. Calls to USA were 20 euro cents.

The package WIND gave me cost 10 euro with 5 euro credit. Internet was unlimited but cost 2 euro per day if and when I chose to use it. Calls to USA were 20 euro cents.

TIM said the card would be activated before I left the store, and it was.
WIND said the card would take 1-3 hours, and since I was using TIM, I did not care when it activated. It was certainly activated by the next day when I wanted to use it.

Both stores spoke English adequately, but some of my questions were too complicated, so I got very abbreviated "yes/no" answers, such as
- I could not use the phone to change the opzioni / offerta
- the opzioni would auto-renew
- I could not use the android app to manage my account
- I could not change the language of SMS or voice menus
- I could not use the phone to check my usage
Both said that any unused credit would die after one year, and only a recharge would keep the credit. (This differs from other countries, where incurring a billable event will extend the life and credit of the SIM??) Can someone clarify and elaborate on this?

No harm done, it's hard to speak another language, and both stores were packed wall to wall with customers. I determined to register both SIMS on the respective websites to read more about what I had just purchased. Neither gave me the SIM card packaging - I probably could have read more about the starting options and features myself.

I registered both cards on the website. I discovered that the WIND android app can indeed manage the account (after website registration). I could not find a TIM android app.

I discovered that the TIM limit of 300MB can be surpassed within the week, but at a reduced rate of 32kbps, and that another 300MB can be purchased by SMS before the week expires. My best understanding of Italian leads me to believe that this will not auto-renew if I don't establish an internet connection from the phone, but if I do, it will cost 3 euro with a new week starting at the moment of connection, thereby constituting an "auto-renew". If no one on this forum clarifies this, I shall know in a few days if this auto-renews without establishing an internet connection, as I have left Italy. I also learned from the website that I get a free SMS after each call telling me the cost and my new credit limit. After all of these discoveries, I shamefully realized that I had received an SMS describing each of these options when I first activated the SIM, but did not pay attention to them.

I discovered that the WIND package they gave me was WIND 12. Don't know why this was the default package they gave me (maybe because I was staying too short to benefit from the all-inclusive plans), but at least I know what it is and that I can change it on the website. I don't see how this option can auto-renew if I don't use it, since it's a "per-day" rate when in use.

I did speed tests on both cards. The TIM data rate was a 60 kbps, the WIND data rate was 740 kbps, both painfully slow.

I would appreciate clarification regarding both stores saying that only a recharge will keep the SIM credit beyond one year.

Mobile Devices:
  1. Samsung SM-N10A (Galaxy Note 4)
    LTE700 (B17), LTE850 (B5), LTE1700/2100 (B4), LTE2600 (B7), LTE1900 (B2), LTE700 (B12)
    GSM850, GSM900, GSM1800, GSM1900, UMTS850 {B5}, UMTS900 {B8}, UMTS1900 {B2}, UMTS2100 {B1}
  2. Samsung SGH-i777 (Galaxy S II)
    GSM850, GSM900, GSM1800, GSM1900, UMTS850 {B5}, UMTS1900 {B2}, UMTS2100 {B1}

  1. US: ATT
  2. RO: VOD
  3. UK: VOD
  4. IT: WIND
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italy, rome, termini, tim, wind

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