• Mar

    Internet Service in Mexico: Part 3, telcel (Update)


    Overall, my favorite Internet service is the one available from telcel, which is a major carrier in Mexico. Some say it’s a monopoly, but I’m not sure of that. Anyway, I digress.


    The best modem I’ve found, that is available here is the ZTE MF626, which is a 3G device. Laura bought one and it looks exactly the same as the modem I bought last year.


    It contains a chip which needs to be programmed by telcel before you can use it. Once complete, you can add time to the chip each month. Doing so can be a bit of a challenge.

    Here’s how it works:


    First off, you need to buy a cell phone card. In our case we want monthly service, so we have to buy a $500 peso card.


    Open the packet, turn the card over and use a coin to scrape away that gray stuff and reveal your pin number.


    Next, you need a cell phone that allows you to remove the chip, which must be the same size as the modem chip. As luck would have it, my cell phone is a Samsung SGH-j706 and the chip size matched the modem chip.


    You need to remove the chip from the phone and put it aside. Then you take the chip from the modem, turn it around 180 degrees from the modem, then install it in the cell phone.

    Switch on the cell phone. When it powers up, press *333 and press send. When the instructions in Spanish come up, press 2 on the phone, then enter in the pin number. When you get the instructions that you now have new pesos in your balance, hang up.

    Now you’re ready for the next step. Go to messaging and in the message area, type in BAT30 (this is the code for 30 days of service). As for the number to sent it to, enter 5050 then click on send. When you receive a message back, your chip is ready to use.

    Take it out, turn it around once again and transfer it back to the modem. Your modem is now ready for use. Also, return your other chip to the cell phone.

    That’s it. You’re done. In the near future, I intend to make a video that shows you how this works.

    If you have an iPhone, you can make use of a tecnique called “tethering,” where you turn your phone into a modem. I tried it but was unable to make it work. I thinkg I need to chat with someone at telcel about it, though it’s another option to the telcel card.


5 responses to “Internet Service in Mexico: Part 3, telcel (Update)” RSS icon

  • You’re lucky, Nathan. I bought a cellphone in Oaxaca for use in Oaxaca. Nothing the shop clerk could do could get the chip registered such that the phone worked. Had to leave Oaxaca. In Cuernvaca I visited a telcel shop to get the chip registered, with no success. And I had a 500 peso chip, too. At the airport in Mexico City, I was told that the chip was a Oaxaca chip and for the phone to work in Tampico, it would have to be a Tamaulipas chip.

    I remember the conversation – Si compro un tarjetito telefonico Tamaulipas, funcionara para llamar a Sinaloa? O Oaxaca? O Chiapas?

    No problem, the telephone guy said. As it turned out we couldn’t get the chip registered in Tamaulipas either.

    In Hermosillo, I gave up and used the Rogers phone sparingly.

    Mandame un correo electronico! Hablaremos desde los ultimos 32 anos desde escuela secundaria!

  • Hola Jim,

    Yo quiero a hablar contigo, pero no tengo tu correo electronico. No registrarse en el mensaje en mi blog.

    Buscar para mi en Skype.


  • Pero el correo electronico se encuentra en los datas de registrimiento, pero te llamare de pronto.


  • This just seems way too complicated. So, once you get this card and pay $50. more or less, THEN you only get so many minutes??????????????

  • You get one month’s worth of minutes. And no, it’s not $50. You’re forgetting about the exchange rate. It’s more like $40. And yes, it’s complicated, but that’s the way it is, but bear in mind, this only applies is you want to use the service for pay as you go. At least you’re learning about it up front which will save you time from finding out the hard way.

    Another solution is to get on a plan if you intend to stay here for a long time, but you need at least three references, a sample bill and (I think) a bank statement as well.

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