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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Hi can anyone help/advise. I am trying to switch one of my Orange PAYG SIMs for a new SIM only contract. I have an old blackberry which I have passed on to my son and he is starting to use it more and topping up was costing too much.

 

The new SIM has arrived but it is an EE one - I was expecting an orange one but I understand there has been a takeover. I have had an absolute nightmare on the telephone today trying to sort this out.

 

The instructions indicate that you just put the SIM in, wait about 30 mins and then off you go. No joy. Having spoken to 5 different people at Orange (or EE - who knows?)today, they are all telling me different things and transferring me to other people to whom I then have to explain the whole thing all over again. AAAAAAARRGH!

 

The phone shows invalid SIM and I have now been informed that it will be 24 hours before the SIM activates, although someone else said it would be 48 hours - so who knows that either. However, I am also getting asked for the MEP unlock code which I assume is because the phone detects the change from Orange to EE - but I thought they were one and the same now?!!! More aaarrgh!

 

So, if and when the SIM finally activates (and suggestions on how long this will really take are welcome) will I also then need to make another call to EE/Orange to get the unlock code? I have been with Orange for ever and originally took the phone on contract from them a few years ago by ordering either online or over the phone.

 

I have never found Orange particularly helpful - trying to get through to the right department is nigh on impossible - but EE seem to be even worse.

 

Thank you for your help.

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Brilliant Contributor
Chester
Posts: 3,694
Registered: ‎22-01-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Yet to have this confirmed but I believe that some handsets locked to Orange will not accept an EE SIM.

 

It looks like Orange/EE need to give you the unlock code for the Blackberry.

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Brilliant Contributor
Chester
Posts: 3,694
Registered: ‎22-01-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Further to the above, why do you have an EE SIM for a Blackberry ?

 

Apart from the very latest Blackberry phones, none of them support 4G.

 

I also don't believe that EE support the Blackberry services needed for the device to work. The new Blackberries sold by EE don't need Blackberry Services.

 

Seems to me you should have been sold an Orange SIM only deal with Blackberry services included. The issue of the handset being locked would then disappear.

 

Sorry but I think you have been sold completely the wrong thing.

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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Thanks both.

 

I thought I was getting an Orange only SIM but what arrived was EE. Not sure whether to wait and see if it works or ring them back and order an Orange only SIM?

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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

... and this is for my 13 year old so not bothered about 4G ...

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Brilliant Contributor
Chester
Posts: 3,694
Registered: ‎22-01-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

[ Edited ]

I understand that you aren't bothered about the 4G but you are paying for it and will be unable to use it.

 

Far more importantly I don't think this is going to work with the Blackberry. If and when the handset is unlocked you will be able to make calls, send texts but the features specific to the Blackberry won't work.

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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

I am going to put the old sim in another old phone and wait and see what happens with this one for a few days. I had a long conversation with the sales advisor about it being a Blackberry and using BBM and BB internet and he told me the SIM he was sending me was one where the internet could only be accessed via a Blackberry - i.e. it wouldn't work in any other type of phone. It's only costing £8 per month for unlimited texts, BBM, unlimited BB internet and 300 minutes - cheap but not if it doesn't work!

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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Ok, 1 step forward, 2 steps back.

 

I decided to ring Orange and ask about the unlocking issue. I got through to probably the 6th or 7th person I have spoken today after taking pot luck on the number options as none of those offered fit my situation (come on Orange/EE - sort it out!).

 

This was another offshore call centre, the line was very faint and I had some difficulty in both hearing and understanding the lady but finally we establish that she is saying: "EE SIM won't work in Orange handset".

 

As my Blackberry is Orange branded I should not have been sent an EE SIM. What she was unable to tell me was whether they will be able to send me an Orange SIM that will work in the Blackberry on the same £8 per month deal - that's another department, surprise , surprise.

 

Also, I need to ring a special Customer Services number that is only available 9-5 pm Monday to Friday to cancel the SIM that they have wrongly sent me and RETURN (!) it or else I will be charged. "How can I be charged if it is not activated and not working"", I ask? Oh if it is not activated and not working  you will not be charged and you don't need to do anything", she says in the next breath.

I was getting just a little bit irritated by this point - having wasted probably 2 hours on this today with the prospect of more to come on Monday - so a manager cut in and repeated that I must ring and cancel it. I'm afraid I just hung up at this point. Words fail me.

 

Anyway, does anyone on here know if it is as simple as me asking for an Orange SIM on Monday? If I decided to take a SIM only contract from another Provider how do I go about getting the Blackberry unlocked from Orange and how much would that cost? Hang on though, if I get the Blackberry unlocked from Orange, surely the EE SIM would work?

 

I have a feeling I will ring on Monday and be told something else completely different. The customer offering in this organisation is shameful. For a communications organisation the obstacles they put in the way of communicating effectively with their customers are ridiculous.

 

I can feel a letter to Watchdog coming on over the week-end ... help?

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Expert Contributor
Step666
Posts: 358
Registered: ‎23-03-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking


Chester wrote:

Yet to have this confirmed but I believe that some handsets locked to Orange will not accept an EE SIM.



scottishlizzie wrote:
This was another offshore call centre, the line was very faint and I had some difficulty in both hearing and understanding the lady but finally we establish that she is saying: "EE SIM won't work in Orange handset".

Yep, from what I've been told, EE uses the same network locking code as T-Mobile, meaning that EE and T-Mobile locked handsets will all accept both EE and T-Mobile SIMs.

Orange however still use a different nerwork lock code.

 

Some handsets that EE sell now are 'dual locked', meaning they accept SIMs with both network locking codes, so EE, Orange and T-Mobile SIMs all work in them.

But older handsets definitely use separate codes and some new handsets still do too.

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Contributor
scottishlizzie
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎05-04-2013

Re: Orange PAYG to EE SIM contract - activation and unlocking

Well, after mulling it over I concluded that if I could get the handset unlocked to accept any SIM then it would accept the EE SIM. After another wasted hour tonight trying to get an unlock code out of 2 different offshore operatives from Orange I gave up and started researching on the net. After 1 unsuccessful attempt with a free unlock code I paid £3.99 to mobileunlocked.co.uk. WIthin 5 minutes I had a code that I entered more with trepidation than hope.

 

It worked and the handset is now unlocked and working with the EE SIM.

 

ORANGE/EE - you are a complete joke. Your customer service is abysmal. Your offshore operation should be closed down because the staff are unable to communicate properly with UK customers. I would happily pay more to avoid the grief I have had over the last few days. Having said that - the one UK operative I spoke to also gave me duff information, albeit more quickly and understandably than the offshore staff.

 

Can highly recommend mobileunlocked.co.uk.

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