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View Full Version : I have a Verizon bluetooth phone working with my BMW


Dmitri
02-09-2004, 09:28 AM
Verizon does not make its own bluetooth phones, but it seems that there is a solution for those who want to use a bluetooth kit in their BMW's and keep Verizon as their cellphone provider. Here is what you can do:
1. Buy a Sprint PCS t608 phone.
2. Unlock it.
3. Change some settings on the phone and register it with your existing Verizon number.
4. Install the bluetooth kit in your car, pair up the phone and enjoy hands-free talking.

I completed the installation this weekend (many thanks to David Zeckhausen for installing the BMW bluetooth kit in my car). I did not go to the BMW dealership yet to code the system but I already can make and receive the calls. I am not sure what exactly the dealership coding is for. Supposedly, it improves sound quality and resolves some issues. I also did not have much time to play with the new setup. It remains to be seen whether the car recognizes the phone at all times, how the phone book transfer works, what happens when you enter or leave the car while on the phone and so on.

Here is the link on how to switch the phone from Sprint PCS to Verizon:
http://www******phonehacks.com/viewtopic.php?t=16318

The whole process has some pitfalls. First, Web browsing and sending text messages does not work (apparently, receiving text messages works fine). Also, if something does not work then you are on your own.
Second, SprintPCS does not sell this phone over the Web or in retail branches. You can still order it from Sprint if you call their toll-free number. It's a new model and I don't know whether they discontinued it or just don't want to sell it in local stores. The price is $199.99 and does not require a plan, but you need to be (or become) a Sprint customer in order to buy. You can also find the phone on eBay but it normally costs more.
Third, you might have hard time unlocking the phone. All CDMA phones have a six-digit password called MSL which is different for each phone. As explained in the link above, you need this number to access hidden phone settings. Sprint has a database of MSLs for each phone and keeps it secret. There may be several reasons for that. The main reason is that Sprint does not like when people buy their phones and go to a different provider. $199.99 is a promotional price that may very well be below what Sprint is paying to Sony/Ericsson for this phone. Up until recently several people could get the code for you for a small fee, but it seems that Sprint closed this loophole. There are still ways to get the code. I can provide more details if anyone is interested.

gfeiner
02-10-2004, 09:02 AM
The T608 is very problematic. Check out the forums at http://www.sprintpcsinfo.com . Specifically in regards to using with the BMW bluetooth system, it will loose the phonebook information and you can't get the phone to re-transfer the phonebook info. The only time the phonebook info will transfer is during the initial pairing. Also, people are reporting that the phone doesn't always transfer the calls to the bluetooth system. All these problems, combined with the fact that Sony-Ericsson no longer makes the phone, make it very risky purchase.

Dmitri
02-10-2004, 03:35 PM
Thanks for the info. I did not have any issues with the phone transferring the calls to the car yet. If I notice any problems then I'll post them here. I did not try the phonebook transfer yet. It is a nuisance if the synchronization does not work, but not a killer. I already entered a dozen frequently dialed numbers in the voice control system directory. It is more convenient than the phone book since you can call the number by speaking the name.
What's much more annoying is the lack of convenient ways to dial tones after the call is connected (extensions, voicemail menus e.t.c.). I make a lot of such calls. I can always grab my phone and press the numbers even though the call is going through the car, but I wish there was a hands free way. This is the BMW kit issue, not the phone's.

I read all the posts I could find on the BMW bluetooth kit and different phones, and t608 did not seem to raise many more complaints than any other phone. I hope that it will serve me well until Verizon comes up with its own bluetooth phone. Two hundred dollars is not such a big investment, after all.

Here is another website about the t608:
http://www.t608.com/
and Verizon wireless in general:
http://www.howardforums.com/forumdisplay.php?s=&forumid=51