We recently heard that the European version of the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 would only work with European SIM cards, which was quite a surprise when the details were revealed yesterday.
What this means is that if you travel abroad outside of Europe, for example to the US, you will not be able to use a US SIM card in the handset, instead you will have to use your existing SIM card and use roaming, which could end up being expensive.
Samsung has now released a statement, which you can see below, the statement is translated and was provided to AllAboutSamung, it doesn’t exactly clear things up on why this has been done.
Some current Samsung products are now provided with a local SIM card lock. This means that devices purchased in the European Union, with SIM cards of mobile operators from Germany and from the European Union and the European Economic Area (the “European region”) work as usual.
Users of these Samsung devices can continue to use these together with their SIM card of a mobile operator from the European region via roaming service to appropriate roaming charges to their wireless service provider around the world. If purchased in the European Union and not yet been put into use to be activated for the first time abroad, users can unlock their device for the region free from local Samsung service partners.
The regional SIM card lock only affects the following Samsung models that are produced from the end of July 2013, and provided with a corresponding sticker:
Samsung GALAXY S III, II, GALAXY Note, GALAXY S4, S4 GALAXY mini and the GALAXY Note 3
Devices that have been delivered by Samsung and are in camps or even at retail are not affected.
Specifically, there is a functionality of the devices with SIM cards of mobile operators from the following countries:
Countries of the European Economic Area (EEA): Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands , Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, UK, Switzerland, Croatia
– Non-EU/EEA: Albania, Andorra, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino, Serbia, Vatican City
Why Samsung have decided to do this is a bit of a mystery, and it seems the Note 3 is not the only device, the list includes other devices which have been sold from July onwards.