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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all, new member here. I'm a technical person (do IT for work) but have stayed out of the cellphone and smartphone game for the last 6 years in self-imposed exile in protest at the oligopoly of Canada's carriers and the CRTC. Quebec's recent consumer protection law (which prevents carriers from charging any fees for contract cancellation beyond the discounts you got on the phone) have made me slightly more favourable. Even better, I just got an Australian HTC desire (Telstra) from a businessman friend who has the kind of expense account that allows him to do things like buy new phones when he is in Australia.

So I have a number of questions, the basic gist being how do I get this thing working here in Canada?

More specifically:

1) Can I just use a standard adapter or do I need a transformer as well (the charger has those weird Australian plugs)?

2) I assume I need to unlock it. Why do people pay for this? Is it not something that I can do myself?

3) I'm currently with Fido (with the Eco-Moto on a minimum plan). Do I want to stay with them? Are there better carriers for the model I have (bear in mind that I would like to take the entire senior management team of Telus out behind the wood shed and beat them for days)?

4) The box says it has Android 2.1 on it. I suspect I want to go to 2.2, but I have seen comments that people like the HTC front end. What kind of update do you recommend I do?

I'm sure I'll have many more questions. Any info or links would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance.
 

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I'd recommend buying a standard micro-USB charger. You can get them cheaply at most major electronics stores. I would not trust an adapter with a device that expensive.

You'll need to purchase an unlock code to unlock the phone. These are usually readily available on eBay.

Check the frequencies it supports. If it will support HSPA 850/1900 then you can choose any of the big three. Otherwise you'll be restricted to 2G service on Rogers/Fido/Chatr. Your carrier is a personal choice based on whose plans and coverage suits your needs.

If you want to update to Android 2.2 you'll need to either wait for Telsta to release an update if they haven't already, or root the device and install a customized ROM.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you, TorontoColin. That's particularly good advice on the USB charger.

Are there some FAQs or websites that go into detail on some of these things. I still don't understand why I need to buy an unlock code. Who furnishes these things?

How do I check the frequencies supported?
 

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1) You can charge with a standard micro USB cable connected to a computer, but that will be at only 1/2 the regular charger rate. Chargers should be readily available. Also, the charger for my Nexus One, like so many other chargers & adapters can work on 100 - 240V 50/60 Hz. Yours is likely similar and would only need an adapter to handle the different pins.

2) Can't help you there.

3) Can't help you there, other than make sure you choose a carrier that the phone can work with. For example, Rogers and Wind use different bands for 3G. However, many phones these days can handle all of the 4 GSM bands commonly used around the world.

4) The current version is 2.2.1. However, the latest available for your phone depends on the make and possibly carrier.
 

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How do I check the frequencies supported?
Check the manual and original carrier. The HTC site may also give you some info.
 

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From the HTC Australia site:

HSPA 850/2100
GSM 850/900/1800/1900

In other words, it will work on Bell/Telus/Rogers in 3G mode, but only on 850MHz. If you go into an area with just 1900MHz coverage, the phone will either revert back to GSM/EDGE (Fido/Rogers), or won't work at all (Bell/Telus).
 

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Rogers only offers 3G on 850 (AT&T in the US uses 1900). They offer 2G on 850/1900 because Rogers was 850 and Fido 1900, thus when they absorbed Fido they kept a mixture.

I'm not sure what Bell/Telus use for their HSPA network, however if you're happy with Fido for the moment then stick with them.
 

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^^^^
Rogers was already on 1900 before they bought Fido. I bought a Nokia (6060 IIRC), which was dual band, from Rogers around 1998. This was when Fido was still owned by Microcell and also before Telus bought Clearnet. I recall discussion on a local cell phone blog about how Rogers would use 1900 in high density areas, as well as for fill in. When 1900 became available, both existing carriers and newcomers got spectrum at 1900.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for your help everyone.

Again, is there anywhere I can just go and read up on frequencies and other info instead of asking you all a million questions? A nice faq or wiki or something?

It strikes me as interesting, a comparison between PCs and smartphones. I can go anywhere in the world with any OS/brand combination of PC and access a wired network with a simple plug-in and a wireless one with a simple password.

Yet with cellphones, it is just a giant clusterf*** of carriers, phones locked to carriers, frequencies, OSes, with manufacturer layers and then carrier layers on top. What a nightmare!

I just read a very interesting article arguing how all the real interesting chip development is going on in the mobile realm right now (as compared to the PC realm) because of the intense competition.

I guess the appeal of the mobile and people's disposable income supercedes the complications of the market and people are still buying.
 

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I got a Telstra HTC Desire that is supposed to work on 850/2100 MHz. I can safely say that the 3G/2G or even the slower connections work on Rogers in south western Ontario. I am unable to get an internet connection anywhere.
 
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