John asked: “I had a question about unlocked phones. They are becoming more available than they used to be. But I’m having a hard time figuring out which phone I’d need to buy for my service. unless they say the company, like “Unlocked Verizon phone” or “Unlocked AT&T phone” It’s hard to tell. I have Sprint and I found a G935FD GSM Unlocked phone. Is that gonna work with Sprint? What do we need to look for when we’re looking for unlocked phones for whatever service we want to use?”
First things first, the G935FD is the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge submodel for South East Asia. It should work on Sprint’s LTE bands, but it will not work with Sprints 2G and 3G bands.
So, will it work on Sprint? Well, it’s compatible with their high speed network, but if you need the fallback older network, this phone won’t work. Skip it, phones fall back to older networks all the time to take advantage of old tower to increase their coverage zone.
You asked what you need to check to know if a phone will work, and it’s pretty complex if you do it manually. Each carrier uses specific LTE bands, and some use the GSM standard, and some use CDMA. Luckily, there is a website that does the work of figuring everything out for you.
Rather than doing everything manually, go to WillMyPhoneWork.net, select your phone brand, model, and submodel (in this case, Samsung, S7 Edge, and S935FD respectively), and the network you plan to use it on, and it will tell you whether or not the phone is compatible with the network.
If you plan to travel, GSM is king worldwide, but CDMA is used in some countries outside the US too. You’re on a CDMA-centric carrier, so keep an eye on that. Luckily, LTE is the future for both GSM and CDMA, but for now the older networks still matter, and matter a lot if you roam on lower priced carriers.