Hi, welcome to Pay as you go sim with data Wiki! Thanks for your edit to the China page.
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about CTExcel Edit
Thanks for your segment about CTExcel. Can you please specify, if they use 4G/LTE or only 3G. On their website they mention 4G only in Chinese. At another site 3G to 4G they mention a £2 surcharge to "upgrade" from 3G to 4G. Do they mean this once or per month? As this is a rather unusual policy, can you please add a few words about 3G or 4G/LTE availability on CTExcel.
Thanks again for the article. I'll just do some formats and add their logo.
about the new table and ChinaEdit
Thanks for your edits.
I'm a bit sceptical of the new list of registration schemes that have been proposed:
Here is my reply to Hybridace101
BTW. You were a lot of help in updating the China chapter some years ago.
It's now very outdated and we should update it again. E.g. there are now many more ways to top-up a local SIM for instance.
Can you take a look on this chapter. I'm not so good in reading Mandarin and this page is still very popular.
Thanks for your point of view.
I've gotten your message about updating the China page. I'm working on it now, though it might be slow going; the fact that rate plans can vary from province to province, and the fact that some carriers (China Unicom) have a variety of resellers with rates different from the official carrier page, and the fact that the carrier site itself seems to not want to show any rate plans but the ones the carrier wants to push the most (basically, that there are some lesser-promoted rate plans that you can only find out by going to the store and reading their information booklets) is also a complicating factor. I will do my best, and hope that others can also help wherever they can.
Thanks for helping to keep the wiki going as well, I noticed the currency symbol edit war and can only imagine how hard that has been on you.
thanks for keeping this Wiki updated. I recently had a lot of work to do with other projects. So I couldn't spend so much time here. I appreciate all of your edits. China is a very tricky one indeed. But we have many readers of our China page. In fact, it's one of the most popular outside Europe. So I think you are doing a great job with your edits on China.
Some suggestions: Prices vary pretty much between regions and provinces. So we might only state them of Bejing and may be Shanghai. Some questions for me remain. May be you have an answer for it:
- With the scrabbing of all inter-provincial roaming fees, it's now possible to buy a data pack in one province and use it in another without surcharges, as I have understood. So it's quite possible to buy it in a cheap province and use it in another? Is the pricing similar to Russia where the capital is the most expensive and the more remote you go the cheaper it gets. Or is it like in Indonesia where the central parts are the least expensive, and the more you go on outlying islands, the more you pay? May be you can add a bit about this pricing in general.
- We have warned users in the past about China Mobile's weird and incompatible 3G and some of its 4G bands as well recommending China Unicom as more compatible. Is this still valid? CM has now added Band3 (1800 MHz) LTE to its portfolio which is a very widely used band in Europe and Asia. So can a foreign user get along with CM better these days?
- I've found on the internet some other suggestions about how to top up your SIM. We should state more explicit that usual "Western" credit cards like Mastercard and Visa don't usually work .Union Pay is not so widely used outside China. But there other ways through mobile apps and Badoo and some more to top up using Visa- and Mastercards. May be we should add some of these options.
BTW. I'm sorry to have deleted a part of your Japanese edit. I was a bit upset with user Airbaltic### who spams his overpriced AirBalticSIM all over. I think in the rare case of China we can make an exception and name some roaming cards, but it's totally nonsense in Japan. I will tell him in a personal message about this red line. We had similar problems with other interntl. SIM card providers like Transatel who wanted to have their card mentioned in every country. In Japan data SIM cards are very easy to get, voice can be a problem. But there are workarounds like WhatsApp call a.s.o.
I'm confident to find more time to update this wiki in autumn. I will revise the EU section, but I am waiting what happens with the UK. Then, Russia will have a major update and the USA as well. In Europe we should carefully look what happens when providers are not legally bound anymore to obey EU regulations in the UK as well as on the continent. And you are right: we should slowly phase in 5G to the wiki, even if there a still very few 5G phones available.
I hope to hear some of your suggestions too....
Thanks for your reply.
about China: You are doing a great job and be sure that a lot of people do benefit from this article. China is one of the most read chapters on this wiki with around 1,500 hits per week and a lot of people seem to be interested - and it's not an easy one. Your help is much appreciated.
You might add a part of your reponse to me to the article. You may add the segment about regional pricing in the regional organization chapter and the comment about FDD-LTE band 3 on China Mobile to the frequency part.
I also appreciate the WeChat way to topup. i've heard about it and it seems quite easy. You might add a link like this https://www.echinacities.com/expat-life/How-to-Use-WeChat-to-Painlessly-Top-Up-Your-Phone which is a bit more graphic as you have to assume that the average reader here doesn't understand Mandarin. I've also heard that there is a way through Badoo and may be Alipay. But WeChat is an essential app people will surely have as soon as they have Chinese friends.
So go ahead with your great work. I think the article is not too big for the importance of the country. We have much longer articles about much less interesting countries....
about Italy: This is the most fascinating country in Europe marketwise right now. It's a battleground for the providers and everybody is losing money. When you come to Italy, you will see it's a bit tricky to get a SIM card. All of these offers are prepaid, but only few of them are what we call "real prepaid", most of them are hybrid or "false" prepaid. Here, you need to link your SIM to a bank account or a credit card (for auto-pay.) This is not recommended, nor possible in many instances. Because providers accept only local or SEPA bank accounts and mostly decline credit cards from out of the country. They used to decline even EU-issued credit cards which is against EU regulation. So I might take off again these offers which are not available as real prepaid as foreigners don't have a chance to get them.
On the other hand Italy is still the most competitive place in Europe with many offers for instance for porting your number from a different operator or bonus programmes, some unwanted calls, 3rd party add-on services etc. SIM cards are not easy as you will see and some smaller operator change their plans and portfolio every month. I will do some updates for the "virtual providers" soon.
about in-flight offers: this is a bit tricky too. First, we'd need to have a base or refererence article of the systems or providers which are employed by the airlines like gogo, onAir, row44, FlyNet etc. Unfortunately, I haven't found a list of Airlines and who offers which provider ikn detail. It's an interesting option to collect inflight offers, but it doesn't make sense when there is no reference users can have to decide whether it's an option for them. So I suggest to add offers like those of DIGI in Malaysia at the operator like usual roaming option for terrestrial operators. If we can find more than just a few inflight internet offers spanning most airlines, we should work on a base article first like for instance on satellite telephony too. I've thought of adding an article about satellite telephony
EDIT: I've just read all of the China article and added a segment about HK roaming SIM cards for China. We now have a problem with these cards as they are currently spread over three different articles. We should at least have the referrals to the other two on the China site.
- We have China Unicom HK and China Mobile HK on the China page
- We have HK MNOs Three, csl and Smarttone with their offers on the HK page
- We have AirSIM and other roaming SIM providers in our All countries page
This is not so optimal, but I don't see a good way to collect all HK-based options for China on one page. Or we create a sub-article with all HK-based options, but this would mean that some information will be extracted from the main article to be found only on the sub-page. What's your opinion about it?