Here are some replacement phone FAQs to help you learn more about them:
What are replacement phones?
Replacement phones are a new device available from a US carrier for their subscribers. Typically, these phones are sold without a plan and are just considered a temporary device. These phones are an ideal option for those who have broken or lost their old phone. Also, those who are already looking at getting a new phone but are still ineligible for a contract renewal or upgrade may opt for a replacement phone instead.
Are replacement phones the same with unlocked phones?
Since replacement phones are offered by a wireless carrier, it means that they are ‘locked’ to that specific carrier’s network, plans and features. Meanwhile, an unlocked phone can be used with any GSM carrier network from any of the providers throughout the world. Compared to replacement phones, unlocked phones have a more flexible use for international travelers since they can still use the phone by simply inserting a local carrier’s prepaid SIM card into the device.
Which US carrier network can replacement phones be used with?
Replacement phones have been configured to work specifically with one carrier’s network. For this reason, it is best that you look for a replacement phone provided by your current carrier so you can continue using the services they offer with your phone plan. One way you can do this is to look for a replacement phone that displays the name of your current carrier. This will help you be able to continue using your existing plan with your replacement phone.
Do replacement phones need a new contract?
Unlike your old phone, a replacement phone does not require a new contract; especially if you still have an active contract with your carrier.
How soon can a replacement phone be used?
If you are using a T-Mobile device, you simply need to remove your SIM card from your old phone and insert it into the replacement phone. However, if you lost your phone, you will need to purchase a new SIM card from your carrier (around $10). On the other hand, if you are using Sprint or Verizon Wireless, you simply need to call your carrier and let them know that you would like to switch to a different device. They will be the one to transfer your current phone number to the new phone (usually within a couple of minutes). After that, you’re ready to start using your replacement phone.
Can replacement phones be used outside the US?
While T-Mobile devices may be used outside the country, it is still best to get in touch with your carrier so that you can make sure that your account will be fully set up for use while you’re abroad. On the other hand, there are only specific ‘global’ devices from Sprint and Verizon Wireless that may be used in most countries. Under these carriers, you may need to purchase an unlocked GSM phone and a local carrier prepaid card when you travel.
Find out more about replacement phones offered by specific carriers with our comparison tool.