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kuba.g (Offline)
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Default 02-06-2011, 17:03

You can't purchase it online from Fonic.de without a German bank account.


Mobile internet sim cards:
INT: abroadband, NL: Simyo, *bliep, BE: Colruyt Mobile, MEDIONmobile, LUX: Orange, PL: mBank Mobile,
DE: Congstar, MEDIONmobile, IE: Vodafone, CH: OK Mobil, SwissCom, SE: Telia, ES: MásMovil,
GR: Cosmote, IT: TIM, RO: Vodafone, RS: mt:s, BY: Privet, UA: Kievstar, MD: Moldcell

Feel free to consult me about sim cards in the Benelux and Poland.
   
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Kritiker (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2011, 20:40

I am still trying to decide between O2 and E-Plus discount vendors (Fonic and Solomo Pro, respectively (I also still can't quite let go of Ortel, despite their poor customer service)).

In test Der größte Mobilfunk-Netztest Deutschlands - CHIP Handy Welt the authors write:

Dass die Technik, die das Unternehmen für Sprachtelefonie einsetzt, tatsächlich ausgereift ist, belegen unsere Messergebnisse: E-Plus schneidet im Voice-Bereich bis auf wenige Zehntelpunkte genau so gut ab, wie die beiden großen Netzbetreiber Telekom und Vodafone. [E-Plus, for voice, is only a few tenths of a point behind the two large networks, Telekom and Vodafone]

The subsequent charts, for voice (Sprache) only, show little overall difference in point scores among the nets (T: 80.5, V: 80.0, E: 79.7, O: 77.8), with O2 having the better rating for establishing calls (Rufaufbau) but E-Plus losing fewer calls (Abgebrochene Anrufe).

Test http://www.p3-group.com/communicatio...glish_2010.pdf doesn't show E-Plus in quite as good a light, but not significantly worse than O2 either.

I am thinking that this and the better roaming rates and purchase & top-up options for the E-Plus net might, after all, make it a better choice for my needs (voice & SMS, no data). What do you think? Have I missed something?

Edit: Hmm, I just reread Inquisitor's sticky thread about Solomo and am left wondering. I have also reread Inquisitor's comments in this thread about the unreliability issues and the tests I mentioned above don't deal with things like that. Spending a little more for peace of mind is certainly worth it, so perhaps I should go Fonic after all. Back and forth, back and forth.

My phone, incidentally, is an unlocked quad-band Motorola V551 which I have, in the past (2007), successfully (but with a few lost calls and an occasional inability to establish calls) used on E-Plus, at least in Germany.

Is shipping within Germany, the EU (where offered), typically included in the on-line SIM cost or is it additional? I don't recall seeing this mentioned. Of course, I might just have missed it.

Last edited by Kritiker; 04-06-2011 at 21:19..
   
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Kritiker (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2011, 21:28

Quote:
Originally Posted by dg7feq View Post
I have eplus based SIM cards for private use for several years and i have never experienced any dropped calls. The voice quality is very good.
For data o2 might be the better solution, but as my phone only supports GPRS there is no difference for me either..
dg7feq, which E-Plus cards do you use, have you used, and can you speak to the roaming call-back problems and unreliability that inquisitor mentions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by inquisitor View Post

@dg7feq
I don't know where you or your company have been using the eplus network, but three of my friends recently switched operators because they had continuing enormous problems with ... voice calls with eplus. Two of them live in Stuttgart and one in Hamburg - they reported not being able ... to receive or place calls while their phones were registered on the 3G-network almost every day during the rush hours.
When I was an eplus customer from 2006-2008 the 3G network in my home town was so congested, that with a probability of 80% incoming phone calls would not reach me, although I had very good signal strength.
Problems may lessen if you switch your phone in 2G-only mode, but all in all their network still is a pain.
Quote:
Originally Posted by inquisitor View Post
Solomo surely have cheap roaming rates especially for outgoing calls through their callback service. However their callback service is unreliable and some phones (e.g. some Samsung phones) even don't support it at all, since it is a tweaked STK/USSD-solution which seems not to be complying fully with standards.
Further there are dozens of reports on the solomo customer forum of solomo SIMs not even registering on foreign networks.
You should know that solomo is based on a MVNO called vistream and vistream is a real MVNO running some essential core network infrastructure by their own while they basicly only use the cell towers of eplus. However vistream have a lot of problems with their infrastructure - e.g. a lot of users experience no calls and SMS coming in while there's an active data session.
This combination of the messy, overloaded eplus network plus the buggy vistream infrastructure results in an inferior product, which I just cannot recommend. You may end up spending way more money if solomo once again does not work.
Perhaps some E-Plus provider (although it doesn't seem likely, does it?) other than solomo is the answer? Or, inquisitor, are they all afflicted?

I'll reread everything again to see what else I missed. Every time I reread this, and inquisitor's sticky, thread I seem to find something else that I missed. Thanks to all.

Last edited by Kritiker; 04-06-2011 at 21:44..
   
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kuba.g (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2011, 21:56

I don't think that E-Plus grants some kind of priority in traffic to one of their operators.
If they would, they would probably do it for their own customers (E-Plus prepaid card), but E-Plus doesn't provide a prepaid service of their own any more so it's all highly unlikely.


Mobile internet sim cards:
INT: abroadband, NL: Simyo, *bliep, BE: Colruyt Mobile, MEDIONmobile, LUX: Orange, PL: mBank Mobile,
DE: Congstar, MEDIONmobile, IE: Vodafone, CH: OK Mobil, SwissCom, SE: Telia, ES: MásMovil,
GR: Cosmote, IT: TIM, RO: Vodafone, RS: mt:s, BY: Privet, UA: Kievstar, MD: Moldcell

Feel free to consult me about sim cards in the Benelux and Poland.
   
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Kritiker (Offline)
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Default 04-06-2011, 22:08

Quote:
Originally Posted by kuba.g View Post
I don't think that E-Plus grants some kind of priority in traffic to one of their operators.
If they would, they would probably do it for their own customers (E-Plus prepaid card), but E-Plus doesn't provide a prepaid service of their own any more so it's all highly unlikely.
I was actually wondering about
Quote:
Originally Posted by inquisitor View Post
... You should know that solomo is based on a MVNO called vistream and vistream is a real MVNO running some essential core network infrastructure by their own while they basicly only use the cell towers of eplus. However vistream have a lot of problems with their infrastructure - e.g. a lot of users experience no calls and SMS coming in while there's an active data session.
This combination of the messy, overloaded eplus network plus the buggy vistream infrastructure results in an inferior product, which I just cannot recommend. You may end up spending way more money if solomo once again does not work.
and whether other discount carriers using the E-Plus network do it differently. For example, Ortel and Blau, other E-plus discount operators, are not listed as a vistream partners at vistream's web site. In the prepaidgsm.net DB also they are listed as non-vistream MVNOs.

Aside: Is the Rufaufbautaste [literally build-the-call key] just the button we push to start a call, to answer a call and to go off-hook? Sorry to ask such a basic question.

Last edited by Kritiker; 04-06-2011 at 22:17..
   
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inquisitor (Offline)
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Default 07-06-2011, 13:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by astro View Post
The page you mention I've already looked at in detail, and it does NOT answer my question:
This addresses activation, not online SIM purchase. Hence, my question.
Sorry. You are right of course. Online orders with Fonic require a German bank account.

Regarding your decission between O2 and eplus you might also consider that from July, 1st roaming fees will decline once again due to EU-regulation. Then no German operator may charge outgoing calls with the EU with more than € 0.42/min and incoming ones not with more than € 0.13/min. However this does not apply for calls from other European countries to Canada.

Quote:
Is shipping within Germany, the EU (where offered), typically included in the on-line SIM cost or is it additional? I don't recall seeing this mentioned. Of course, I might just have missed it.
Yes, it is.

Quote:
Perhaps some E-Plus provider (although it doesn't seem likely, does it?) other than solomo is the answer? Or, inquisitor, are they all afflicted?
Other eplus providers at least don't suffer from the problems resulting from the vistream infrastructure, but afaik there's no other prepaid tariff on the eplus network with international or roaming tariffs that would be lower than Fonic's.
Note that Blauworld and Ortel charge a call-setup fee of € 0.15 per call, which doesn't exist with Fonic.

Quote:
Aside: Is the Rufaufbautaste [literally build-the-call key] just the button we push to start a call, to answer a call and to go off-hook?
Yes, the "Rufaufbautaste" is the usually green key, that initiates a call. In the English-speaking world it's sometimes called the "send" key (and once this key was even labeled "SEND").


terminals: Samsung: Galaxy S5 DuoS (G900FD); BLU: Win HD LTE; Nokia: 1200; Asus: Fonepad 7 ME372CG; Huawei data: E3372, Vodafone R201, K3765, E1762;
postpaid: O2 on Business XL; prepaid: DE: Aldi Talk, Lidl; UK: 3; BG: MTel, vivacom; RU: MTS; RS: MTS; UAE: du Tourist SIM; INT'L: toggle mobile
VoIP: sipgate.de (German DID); sipgate.co.uk (British DID); ukddi.com (British DID); sipcall.ch (Swiss DID); megafon.bg (Bulgarian DID); InterVoip.com
   
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Kritiker (Offline)
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Default 07-06-2011, 17:05

I have been looking at the roaming rates for more of the discount carriers and can find nothing that beats the Fonic direct rates or the solomo pro call back rates.

Since, in the end, it is the ability to make and receive calls and SMSes effectively, and without a lot of bother, that matters, that leaves only Fonic, as you have suggested. I may supplement with a cheap Dutch SIM for the time we'll spend in the Netherlands and just roam in Austria, Switzerland and France, since our time there will be relatively short.

Thank you all for your help. It is greatly appreciated.
   
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theotherbob (Offline)
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Default 24-06-2011, 16:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by inquisitor View Post
Regarding your decission between O2 and eplus you might also consider that from July, 1st roaming fees will decline once again due to EU-regulation. Then no German operator may charge outgoing calls with the EU with more than € 0.42/min and incoming ones not with more than € 0.13/min. However this does not apply for calls from other European countries to Canada.

Does this new regulation affect data roaming? I had read that the EU capped data roaming at €0.49/MB, but FONIC's web site reports €0.50/100kB! This is my biggest concern about a provider for my upcoming trip, ~14 days in DE and 8 in NE, BE, and FR.
   
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inquisitor (Offline)
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Default 24-06-2011, 20:30

No, data is not affected yet. Currently there are only two EU rules applying for data: One affects only operators, who may not charge more than € 0.50/MB each other (however consumer tariffs may still be higher) and the other says that consumers must be cut off from data usage after reaching € 50 (+VAT)/month (see Roaming: The roaming regulation | Europa - Information Society), but it does not rule the actual price.
There are plans to introduce a price cap of € 0.90/MB from 2012, which shall be reduced to € 0.50/MB until 2014, but these are still in an early stage of legislation.


terminals: Samsung: Galaxy S5 DuoS (G900FD); BLU: Win HD LTE; Nokia: 1200; Asus: Fonepad 7 ME372CG; Huawei data: E3372, Vodafone R201, K3765, E1762;
postpaid: O2 on Business XL; prepaid: DE: Aldi Talk, Lidl; UK: 3; BG: MTel, vivacom; RU: MTS; RS: MTS; UAE: du Tourist SIM; INT'L: toggle mobile
VoIP: sipgate.de (German DID); sipgate.co.uk (British DID); ukddi.com (British DID); sipcall.ch (Swiss DID); megafon.bg (Bulgarian DID); InterVoip.com

Last edited by inquisitor; 24-06-2011 at 20:39..
   
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george (Offline)
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Default 09-09-2011, 16:56

Hi, Kritiker!

Don't complicate your life, dude! Buy online MyTravelPhone SIM card and you will be happy! It works in 190 countries, free incoming calls in 117 countries, outgoing calls in most European countries - $0.49 and even more, you can use GPRS and get FREE 5 MB! I have experienced myself. This card is working good and you will be always in touch with family, friends and co-workers! I have replenished my account balance with Master Card online from my personal account at mytravelphone dot net.
   
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