Original topic:

US S23 Ultra not fully functional in europe. (5G not working)

(Topic created: 3 weeks ago)
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larguello
Asteroid
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Galaxy S23

For the second time I bought a Samsung S2x Ultra & I had to return it.

I just received a S23 Ultra US model:  SM-S918U1.   It seams to be working but after having completed the installation (half a day lost)  I noticed that the data connection was LTE, No  5G available.   I tried every posible configuration, forcing, 5G.... no way.  with an European SIM (I read other forums , it may work with a US sim, but not with my dutch SIM).

3 years ago  it took me a few days to notice that my S20 Ultra was not conecting to 5G. At home I was using  WIFI. When I was in the street I got absolutely no DATA.   same

I don't understand why samsung does this "region lock"  The information on the web site where I bought my phones didn't  mentioned the exact  model. 

 

 

 

6 Replies
LongHiker
Legendary Samsung Care Ambassador
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Galaxy S23

@larguello Unfortunately you have landed in the user-to-user discussion area for Samsung US products. Therefore you probably won't find someone who has experience with your configuration. You might find more help by posting in the group for your geographical area. To find that site, visit https://www.samsung.com/us/common/visitlocationsite/ 

larguello
Asteroid
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Galaxy S23

thank you, it doesn't matter were it's posted, provided  it's found by other Samsung phone buyers.  

I found some information which seam not to be correct.  & some of the answer to not address / understand the problem.  I would expect that a phone that may be used  worldwide would be compatible with any SIM  & radio signal, which is not apparently the case.  

I have been working for Galileo & GPS at system level (not user level)  The GPS and Galileo signal are in the same bands but slightly different still the navigation receivers can understand  either GPS, Galileo, Glonass, Compas, .... signals.  

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KiwiBird97
Red Giant
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Galaxy S23
There are some corrections that we found during our testing. Your phone will work in other countries outside the Americas (at least in the EU and the Middle East), provided all the following are true.
• Your device is an unlocked variant (U1).
• Your primary carrier is NOT AT&T or Verizon.

Allow us to explain further.

UNLOCKED VARIANTS ONLY
• In newer versions of One UI, on locked variants, the Select Your Service Provider screen will only show your current carrier. We don't know whether it would work on any MVNOs related to that carrier before carrier unlocking.
• When we tried to initiate an eSIM transfer at a T-Mobile store (Transfer Through Service Provider), it would only allow us to transfer a SIM from the same carrier as the primary one. The unlocked variants have a wider variety of eSIM transfers (even travel SIMs from European carriers).

DON'T USE AT&T OR VERIZON AS YOUR PRIMARY CARRIER
When you use AT&T or Verizon as your primary carrier, your features become very limited. Not only are you ineligible for any beta releases (carrier-locked only), but your SIM options are restricted, too, even on factory unlocked devices sold in the US.
During our tests that we conducted last month, the following SIM restrictions were in place:
• When scanning QR codes, eSIMs that require a manual activation code entry will throw an error message instead of prompting for one.
• The Transfer Through Service Provider option will no longer be available. Your phone will only accept SIM cards from carriers and MVNOs within the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. Why? The primary carrier affects the CSC code that is set on your phone. Switching your primary carrier to the foreign one will have no effect (as there are only US CSCs on devices sold in the US/PR); you must have a valid SIM card from a US carrier that supports manual activation code entry and advanced eSIM transfer options.

SCENARIO 1
• Situation: You have two SIMs in your U1 phone: AT&T and T-Mobile. Your primary SIM is AT&T.
• Solution: Change your primary carrier to T-Mobile to change the CSC. After that, you can use foreign SIMs outside the US/CA/PR region.

SCENARIO 2
• Situation: You have two SIMs in your U1 phone: Verizon and CMCC (China Mobile). Your primary SIM is Verizon.
• Solution: Nothing can be done here. You thought changing your primary carrier to CMCC would cause a miracle, but it won't. There is no CSC code for Chinese carriers within the U1 firmware (CHN or CHC).

Changing your primary carrier will not affect any eSIMs (even foreign ones) that are loaded into the device. However, you may encounter issues with those SIMs depending on your primary carrier. For example, after we changed from AT&T to T-Mobile, our Ubigi eSIM remained intact.
LongHiker
Legendary Samsung Care Ambassador
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Galaxy S23

@KiwiBird97 It seems that your findings only apply if you are planning on using another SIM for travel.

My phone is an unlocked model and I use AT&T as my carrier. I enable international roaming for $10/day unlimited voice and data. I have had zero problems. 

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larguello
Asteroid
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Galaxy S23

thanks for your detailed answer, but I am not using any US provider. I am using a french eSIM and a Dutch physical SIM . 

 

There's no other solution that return the phone or work with it at 10% - 25% expected data rate .... 

 

I hope Samsung manage to get phones in the future that are having the same data rate performance worldwide instead of providing regional versions.  

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larguello
Asteroid
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Galaxy S23

My model is    exactly  SM-S918U  (not U1).  I bought it online to be use as my primary phone in Europe.  

There was not information about the model. As the delivery address was the Netherlands I assumed the phone to be delivered would be the  SM-S918B  (European model)  - as I found online.  

This time      ..... (in 2021 my S20-Ultra would not work at all, no data outside my home-wifi).  

I managed to install my Dutch T-mobile SIM and French eSIM,  They were both working on LTE & 5G.  BUT   i run several speedTests over 2 days & the data rate was in the best case 4 time slower with my old S20 that the brand new S23.  Sometimes my old S20 beat x 10 times the brand new S23 model. 

I just send back the SM-S918U   I am waiting for the replacement. 

This is just to inform the reader to be careful  if you buy a samsung phone online.  You should ask the vendor to send you a version corresponding to your country  (you can find the precise model, e.g.  SM-S918B - euro version or SM-S918U US version)  online.  

 

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