6. I have a problem sourcing a GSM SIM card - they are all 3G and LTE now
This is probably a misunderstanding. Many mobile operators have started promoting high band traffic 3G/LTE SIM-cards. But this is just a characteristic of their marketing. In fact most of these cards also support voice and messaging through the GSM mobile network. All you need to ask your operator is whether this card supports SMS and voice over 2G (GSM) network. In the US both T-Mobile and AT&T still retain compatibility for texting and voice over a GSM (2G) network either on their own network or through partners. You can check their coverage map on their websites. One good solution is to use a so-called roaming SIM-card. You will find different companies who sell these international SIM-cards that work over GSM mobile network in many countries. One of them is Truphone
. Read more about prepaid cards on this webpage
7. I want to switch my heating system in a house located in France from my house located in Belgium. Do I need a GSM French telephone card to put in the ISocket which is in France?
You may use either a French or a Belgian card. iSocket can work on roaming. It's up to you to select the cheaper solution. E.g. if you manage the device mainly from Belgium it might be cheaper to put a Belgian card into the iSocket installed in France, because an SMS from Belgium to the Belgian number could be cheaper than from Belgium to France. You must remember that iSocket will send a confirmation for the executed command. In the above case it will send from the French to the Belgian number. Remember you can always disable confirmation and that will save the credit on your card.
8. How can I activate a big size SIM card and disable the PIN code on it if I only have a smartphone with micro SIM?
If your operator requires activation of the SIM card or sells cards with an enabled PIN code you first have to activate the card with your phone and/or disable PIN code, again using your phone (read more
). This might be a challenge if your iSocket model has the standard size big card and your phone only accepts micro SIM. In that case we could only recommend that you visit one of your operator’s stores and ask them to activate the card and/or disable PIN usage. Alternatively, you may borrow a phone that accepts standard size SIM cards. You only need to do this once, to activate your card or/and disable the PIN code.
9. I have a weak network signal in my area, how can I improve this?
There are not many options if the connection is weak. The only option is to try to change the location of the unit inside the object (boat, house) and its position in relation to the floor - vertical, horizontal, perpendicular. Note, when you change location/position the unit might not pick up the network immediately. The maximum power that the mobile module gives is when it starts operating - i.e. at the moment when you power on the device. So the best way to check a new place for the unit is to switch the power off and power it on again and wait to see if it is able to log onto the network. Then send the command “STATUS” and compare the signal report in the new location/position of the unit.
10. Can I be notified if the SIM has been removed from the device?
Unfortunately, the device cannot work without a SIM card, which is why you won't be informed if the SIM is removed. But if you call the device you will hear a message from the operator that the person you are calling is not available. This can be treated as an indication that the SIM has been removed (of course it could also be due to a fault in the mobile network).
11. Which operator should I use for the best price, or free of charge, SMS?
There are usually no operators that offer SMS’s free of charge, but there are those who do not charge a monthly fee for prepaid cards. The most important way to save is to check that airtime (credit) does not expire. E.g. if you buy a SIM card for 30 EUR and a message costs 10 cents you can use it for 300 messages. Perhaps this is enough amount of messages for you for the whole year. But if the airtime expired after 1 month, then it is not a very good deal. Airtime for some prepaid cards does not expire if you send at least one message every 3 months. Try to google "prepaid for GSM alarm systems United States of America"
or "GSM SIM cards for alarms United States of America"
in your own language. Let us know
if you find any interesting prepaid solutions.