Holy GSM, help me find the cheapest cellphone for use in Europe!
December 1, 2008 3:25 PM   Subscribe

Should I get the Motofone F3 or the Motorola V190 for my travels to Europe?

I want a cheap (~50 USD) cellphone for my 3-week trip to Europe later this year. Reviews tell me that the Motofone and V190 are good phones, but some folks claim that they're locked. Why would people think this? If any of you own either the V190 or F3, what do you think? Would you guys recommend a different phone? I'd like something that supports all the GSM frequencies and can accept sim cards ("unlocked").

Thanks, and sorry to add to the growing pile of cellphone questions.
posted by theiconoclast31 to Technology (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The F3 is locked.
posted by Manhasset at 3:40 PM on December 1, 2008

Best answer: I took a phone that was either a Motorola V190 or quite similar to Italy, got an Italian SIM card, and had no trouble at all. Search on Ebay for unlocked Quad band.
posted by theora55 at 3:40 PM on December 1, 2008

Best answer: Oh, and the f3 is not quad band / does not support all gsm frequencies. (ie, the model they sell in north america is different from the one in europe).
posted by Manhasset at 3:42 PM on December 1, 2008

Best answer: The F3 you linked to isn't quadband, it is North American dual band. There's a European variant, but it might be hard to buy on this side of the Atlantic.

Unlocked phones sold by Amazon (not by one of their associates, but Amazon itself) will be unlocked. You need to watch out for buying some of them from ebay or craigslist (or an Amazon associate) that bills their phone as unlocked when it really is locked.

I happen to hate moto phones but for something just to use for a few weeks while traveling, the v190 should do the job.
posted by birdherder at 3:42 PM on December 1, 2008

The had F3's in the UK at Tesco's supercheap. Not sure if you can buy prepaid if you're not UK-ian however.
posted by thilmony at 7:21 PM on December 1, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks everyone. I went on eBay and purchased a used V190 for about 30 bucks. Marked as resolved... for now.
posted by theiconoclast31 at 8:29 PM on December 1, 2008

When I bought a F3 in a UK shop it came unlocked.

However I found it very difficult to use due to the low screen resolution so I hate them and recommend staying away.
posted by curious_yellow at 5:48 AM on December 2, 2008

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