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New Contributor
pgrillo
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎02-01-2013
My Device: Bold 9900

Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

I recently made my visit international trip with my new Bold 9900.  When I arrived in the Netherlands from France my phone was not able to connect to any available network, 2G or 3G.  Although the phone saw all of the networks it only displayed SOS.   I spent 2 hours with my carrier's tech support but were unable to find any problems.  I tried it both with data roaming enabled and disabled and I tried the battery pull; nothing had any results. 

 

I then traveled to the US and the phone worked perfectly, switching between ATT and T-Mobile as needed and between 2G and 3G.

 

On my way back to France I had a layover again in the Netherlands and had the same problem as before.

 

Has anyone seen anything similar?

Hall of Famer II
sdgardne
Posts: 49,084
Registered: ‎11-28-2008
My Device: Z30, Z10 & Q10 (10.3.1.2072), Playbook (2.1.0.1526)

Re: Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

Hi and Welcome to the Community!

Indeed I have! Well, not exact...my problem was even worse (IMHO). I made two international trips where I could acquire no roaming services whatsoever. To make matters worse, I then learned that the situation can only be resolved while the device is "on" it's home network...so, configuration for proper international roaming must be done before you leave your home network, but cannot be truly tested until you have left your home network, at which time nothing to change it can be done until you return to your home network. A tricky situation indeed! For me, after that "failed" 2nd trip, we escalated strongly through our carrier and finally found someone who was able to properly configure my international roaming services, and my 3rd (and subsequent) trip was fully functional.

Quite often, your home carrier must specifically provision countries/carriers into your service plan before you leave. From your description, it sounds like they properly configured you for USA networks, but not for the Netherlands. Either that, or the frequency capabilities of your 9900 simply were not compatible with any carrier in The Netherlands.

Good luck!

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New Contributor
pgrillo
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎02-01-2013
My Device: Bold 9900

Re: Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

Thanks for the feedback.  I'll add a bit more to my story and look forward to seeing your reply.

 

I have had my subscription with my carrier, SFR, since 2006 and with an "ordinary" phone, both basic and smart but always Nokia, I have never had a problem roaming anywhere in the world.  The week before this trip I changed my phone from a Nokia E72 to the Bold 9900, all I did was take the SIM card out of the Nokia and put it into the Blackberry, and worked with my carrier to have the phone configured correctly for voice and data services. 

 

During my 4 hour layover in Schipol airport, I walked throughout the airport and on one or two occasions the phone was able to lock onto a carrier's signal; however I never received a message that the phone was registered on the network.   Fortunately I had my old Nokia with me and when I put the SIM card back into it it worked immediately as normal.

 

Both phones are European phones so there shouldn't be any issue with the frequencies.  My home network is in France and the frequencies are the same throughout Europe.

 

Thank you

 

Patrick

Hall of Famer II
sdgardne
Posts: 49,084
Registered: ‎11-28-2008
My Device: Z30, Z10 & Q10 (10.3.1.2072), Playbook (2.1.0.1526)

Re: Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

Hmmm...yes, that additional information indeed may be interesting, especially:


pgrillo wrote:

 

During my 4 hour layover in Schipol airport, I walked throughout the airport and on one or two occasions the phone was able to lock onto a carrier's signal; however I never received a message that the phone was registered on the network


Did you do nothing else? No reboot of the device? No manually searching for a carrier network to roam on? No attempting to change the network type (e.g., 2G vs 3G)? Were voice services able to function? As I recall, I had to reboot my device twice each time after arrival in order to obtain proper and full roaming. Further, in China, I believe that I had to force it to use China Unicom rather than China Mobile in order to function best (I don't recall if I had any difficulties in The Netherlands). And, of course, you need to get it running on a carrier network that fully supports BlackBerry...if it locks onto a carrier that does not support BlackBerry, you will be lucky to even get voice services.

 

I can't think of any other pointers to offer...we are reverse engineering this after the fact. I think that you also should work with your home carrier about the issue and get them to perhaps dig deeper to ensure that what you are attempting would be possible. Maybe they have some pointers concerning this issue that I've not yet thought of.

 

Good luck!


Occam's Razor nearly always applies when troubleshooting technology issues!
If anyone has been helpful to you, please show your appreciation by clicking the button inside of their post. Please click here and read, along with the threads to which it links, for helpful information to guide you as you proceed. I always recommend that you treat your BlackBerry like any other computing device, including using a regular backup schedule...click here for an article with instructions.
Join our BBM Channels
BSCF General Channel
PIN: C0001B7B4   Display/Scan Bar Code
Knowledge Base Updates
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New Contributor
pgrillo
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎02-01-2013
My Device: Bold 9900

Re: Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

I did all of those things multiple times in addition to spending two hours on the phone via Skype with my carrier's tech support.

 

I'll just have to wait for my next international trip.  As for the network not being equipped for BB, that is very unlikely in Western Europe and there were lots of other people, Europeans and non-Europeans using their BBs in the airport lounge so I don't think that it was anything to do with any of the Dutch networks.

 

But thanks for your feedback and as they say, the mystery continues.

Hall of Famer II
sdgardne
Posts: 49,084
Registered: ‎11-28-2008
My Device: Z30, Z10 & Q10 (10.3.1.2072), Playbook (2.1.0.1526)

Re: Problems with roaming, phone will not connect to a network

My point about the carrier has to do with the specific carrier...not all carriers are full BB supporting carriers (though, admittedly, I don't know the carriers available in The Netherlands well enough to be definitive on this point). You didn't say, so I can only assume that you had no way to know which of the Dutch carriers those other folks were using. If, for example, your BB was grabbing onto a carrier that did not support BB and all of those other folks were on a different carrier, then that could fully explain your circumstances. Further, often international roaming capabilities are carrier specific -- your home carrier will arrange for your service to roam internationally on specific carriers in each region you request...if your BB did not select that carrier, then services may not work.

 

But, again, we're trying to reverse engineer...which is pretty challenging.

 

Good luck!


Occam's Razor nearly always applies when troubleshooting technology issues!
If anyone has been helpful to you, please show your appreciation by clicking the button inside of their post. Please click here and read, along with the threads to which it links, for helpful information to guide you as you proceed. I always recommend that you treat your BlackBerry like any other computing device, including using a regular backup schedule...click here for an article with instructions.
Join our BBM Channels
BSCF General Channel
PIN: C0001B7B4   Display/Scan Bar Code
Knowledge Base Updates
PIN: C0005A9AA   Display/Scan Bar Code