Which product is best for you?
UNREAL Mobile has grown quite a bit since we first launched our service. In the beginning, you were able to purchase one of our Sprint CDMA phones or bring your own, through the BYOP process.
Now, you have the option to buy a phone from us, BYOP your own, or purchase one of our SIM cards.
So, which one will work for your situation? Keep reading to find out!
There are two types of cell phone technology, CDMA and GSM.
The main difference between CDMA and GSM is where your information is stored. With CDMA devices, your information is stored on the device. This means, your phone number, contact list, and other important details are attached to your Android or iOS phone.
If you decide to switch phones -- for example, if you are using the iPhone 6 but you want to upgrade to the iPhone 7 -- you’ll have to get rid of your iPhone 6 and acquire the iPhone 7. Then you must reach out to your carrier (in this case UNREAL Mobile) and ask us to transfer your service from the old phone, to the new one.
Brand new phones
Your phone must have been activated with Sprint at some point, (but is now, no longer being used with Sprint).
Consider the following scenario:
You visit a Sprint store and sign up for service. You select one of their phones and a calling plan you’re comfortable with. After some time, perhaps after your two-year contract has expired, you decide to switch to the UNREAL Mobile service.
You would be eligible for our BYOP process.
Here’s another scenario:
You go online and purchase a Sprint phone, from a website like eBay or Amazon.com. This phone is brand new and has never been activated with Sprint before. After you receive the phone in the mail, you decide you’d like to use it with UNREAL Mobile.
Unfortunately, you would not be eligible for the BYOP process.
If you are not sure if your device is eligible or not, simply try activating it by entering the MEID number on our website, unrealmobile.com/byop. It doesn't cost anything to enter your phone's MEID number and check it's eligibility. As always, if your CDMA device is ineligible for activation, you can always purchase one of our phones from unrealmobile.com/shop.
When it comes to GSM phones, your important details (like your phone number, contact list and more) are stored on a SIM card. If you decide to switch phones -- for example, if you are using the iPhone 6, but want to switch to a newer model -- all you have to do is take the SIM card out of the old phone and put it into the new one. There is no need to reach out to your carrier (UNREAL Mobile) when you make this change.
You may need to complete the setup steps on your new phone, once again.
My CDMA phone has a SIM card in it, why is that?
Now that you understand the difference between CDMA and GSM, you may be confused to see a SIM card inside of your CDMA device.
Please understand, the SIM cards that are in CDMA devices, do not work the same way a SIM card inside of a GSM phone works.
In a CDMA phone, the SIM card’s only purpose is to provide the CDMA phone access to the LTE network. LTE SIM cards allow CDMA phones to run on the faster, more reliable LTE network — without them, your CDMA phone may only have access to slower, 3G Speeds.
Unlike with GSM technology, the SIM card in a CDMA phone does not hold your phone number, contact list, or any other important details.
If you activate a device through our BYOP process, you may need a SIM card for your CDMA device, in order to have access to the LTE network. Click here to learn which SIM Card your phone needs, and how to get one.
Locked vs UNLOCKED
The terms locked and unlocked refer to the obligation you have to another cell phone carrier. If a phone is locked, it can only be used with one carrier.
If it is unlocked, it can be used with any carrier that supports the phone’s technology.
Some carriers have subsidiaries. This means some larger carriers have other, smaller carriers that are allowed to use it’s network towers. These subsidiaries are called MVNOs.
Sprint has a few MVNOs that you may be familiar with: Straight Talk, Boost Mobile, Ting and even UNREAL Mobile.
When it comes to our BYOP activation, we support phones that are CDMA and locked to the Sprint network. This means the phone is only compatible with the Sprint network, or one of Sprint’s MVNOs.
So, do I need to BYOP or do I need to buy a SIM card?
If you have a Sprint phone, that is locked (can only be used on Sprint) you will need to go through our BYOP process. Click here.
Please note: your CDMA Sprint phone may need a SIM card to work properly, click here to find out what kind of SIM Card you need for your Sprint phone, and how to get one. Remember, the purpose of a SIM card in a CDMA phone is to provide the CDMA phone access to the LTE network.
If you have a GSM phone, that is unlocked, you cannot go through the BYOP process and must instead purchase an LTE SIM card. Click here.