TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Is Verizon Wireless Sabotaging Older Cell Phones?

Re: Is Verizon Wireless Sabotaging Older Cell Phones?

Steve Sobol (
Tue, 30 Aug 2005 18:37:54 -0700

Joseph wrote:

> On Mon, 29 Aug 2005 23:42:00 -0400, Shalom Septimus
> <> wrote:

>> Hypothesis 2, the more paranoid one: Some people have been suggesting
>> that Verizon have been deliberately breaking these phones. The reason
>> given is that they aren't E911 compliant, and if they were still
>> functional, Verizon would have to *give* you another one in order to
>> be in compliance with the minimum 85% that the FCC wants. Now that
>> it's "broken", they can *sell* you another one, or lock you in to a
>> new 2-year contract. (Note that this doesn't necessarily contradict
>> the first theory.)

> You may have some validity in wondering about the second.

OTOH, the Nokia CDMA phones traditionally had issues. My GTE Wireless
2180 (activated 1996, CDMA 800MHz and AMPS 800MHz) was a solid
performer, but many of the 5180, 5185 and 6185 models just sucked.

Verizon (and Sprint, the other big US CDMA carrier) stopped selling Nokia
for a while.

Nokia finally wised up and started licensing Qualcomm's CDMA chipset
instead of trying to do their own, and as a result, their products
have returned to Sprint and VZW stores over the past few years.

> It's not the first time a cellular company has used underhanded
> practices to force people to buy new equipment and not re-emburse them
> for doing so.

> Cingular has done that with their acquired AT&T Wireless subscribers
> in many cases.

I'd not be surprised if VZW did intentionally do *something* to the
phone, but I'm not sure how they would have done it, except perhaps by
pushing a bum PRL to the phone. The phones in question can't do
over-the-air firmware updates.

Steve Sobol, Professional Geek 888-480-4638 PGP: 0xE3AE35ED
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