Pinephone on Verizon
#1
Putting all in a thread what has taken me like a week to gather from various other threads, lots of frustrating trial and error, and stupid mistakes on my part.

In my opinion, the OG Pinephone is not daily-driver ready unless you're ready to have all your friends laugh at you like you just drove up in a clown car. So please don't buy one just because you could get Verizon MMS on it. But that's my opinion, I'll save that for the end. First, the facts as I've seen them.

  1. I had a micro-sim put in it at my local Verizon store (it was a Verizon reseller, not a Verizon-owned store, because it's closer and I'm lazy). I did not tell them it was a pinephone; I just made up some story that I got it from a friend. They probably wondered if it was stolen. They put the sim card in and the bars showed up at the top after a minute. Point being, you can get a micro-sim put in at the store. (I'm on Verizon proper, not a MVNO/reseller/whatever they're called.)
  2. The MMS settings for Verizon are very wonky, because they're different depending on what you want to do.
    For MMS: 
  •      In Chats (chatty), select "Preferences", then "SMS and MMS Settings"
  •           MMSC is http://mms.vtext.com/servlets/mms
  •           APN is vzwapp (note that every other reference will tell you vzwinternet - that doesn't work for MMS on Pinephone)
  •      In Chats (chatty), select "Preferences" then "Purple Settings"
  •           "Enable purple accounts" is on (I think this is needed, can't even be sure anymore)
  •      Under regular Settings, select "Mobile Network"
  •           Make sure that Mobile Data is on; Data Roaming might be needed too
  •      Under "Advanced", choose "Access Point Names"
  •           Choose the one that has vzwapp (note this matches the APN that you set in Chats)
  • You can use https://interpage.net/cgi-bin/freepage to send yourself up to 5 test MMS messages in a week.

          For regular mobile internet: go to Settings, "Mobile Network", "Advanced", and choose the one that has "vzwinternet".

Once you're done surfing, if you want to send/receive an MMS, you have to go back and switch to the "vzwapp" APN in your mobile network settings. Yes, that's insane. That's why I spent a week convinced that I was doing it wrong. Maybe I am, but there are others out there too. If this is laughably dumb and you know a better way, please help me not be wrong on the internet by replying and I'll correct this. I'll even be eternally grateful.

Now for the opinion: everything "works", but it doesn't really WORK for daily driver usage. (I am not saying any of this to badmouth anything, just to clarify that it's not a phone for the masses, or even the early adopters.)
  • Yes for $200 it's a sweet POC, and a huge tip of the cap to all who have been involved. I actually bought this over a year ago and put it away for a while. The progress has been amazing.
  • Remember, this is a reference implementation for developers to work on, with intentionally inexpensive components to get it out in the wild. The people that can do something with it have done a lot. It still has components that are relatively ancient.
  • The phone works but you sound like you're in a fish tank. I used the speaker phone once, and my colleague on the other end immediately said "holy crap, what is that noise?" The alarm in his voice was palpable. Headset is the only hands free option, and even then you still sound like you're in a fish tank.
  • The camera is potato quality. It works, but you will never actually take a photo and show it to anyone unless you're an expert in tweaking digital settings for photos, and you want to spend hours doing so.
  • Browsing ranges from impressive, to super aggravating. Switching between apps is slow and wonky. The processor gets overwhelmed with various tasks, or switching tasks. I've found it fairly common to have to restart, just while browsing with a few apps open.
  • You have to use flatpak to get a bunch of apps, or privacyshark, or Waydroid, or do without.
  • There's lots of other stuff like that.

Again, I am not down on the OG Pinephone. I just wanted to write down my MMS experiences on Verizon for anyone on Verizon with a pinephone, and also tell people who don't have one, this is probably not the daily driver you're looking for. I have no experience with Pinephone Pro or Librem 5.
  Reply
#2
(10-08-2023, 10:10 PM)chachi Wrote: Putting all in a thread what has taken me like a week to gather from various other threads, lots of frustrating trial and error, and stupid mistakes on my part.

In my opinion, the OG Pinephone is not daily-driver ready unless you're ready to have all your friends laugh at you like you just drove up in a clown car. So please don't buy one just because you could get Verizon MMS on it. But that's my opinion, I'll save that for the end. First, the facts as I've seen them.

  1. I had a micro-sim put in it at my local Verizon store (it was a Verizon reseller, not a Verizon-owned store, because it's closer and I'm lazy). I did not tell them it was a pinephone; I just made up some story that I got it from a friend. They probably wondered if it was stolen. They put the sim card in and the bars showed up at the top after a minute. Point being, you can get a micro-sim put in at the store. (I'm on Verizon proper, not a MVNO/reseller/whatever they're called.)
  2. The MMS settings for Verizon are very wonky, because they're different depending on what you want to do.
    For MMS: 
  •      In Chats (chatty), select "Preferences", then "SMS and MMS Settings"
  •           MMSC is http://mms.vtext.com/servlets/mms
  •           APN is vzwapp (note that every other reference will tell you vzwinternet - that doesn't work for MMS on Pinephone)
  •      In Chats (chatty), select "Preferences" then "Purple Settings"
  •           "Enable purple accounts" is on (I think this is needed, can't even be sure anymore)
  •      Under regular Settings, select "Mobile Network"
  •           Make sure that Mobile Data is on; Data Roaming might be needed too
  •      Under "Advanced", choose "Access Point Names"
  •           Choose the one that has vzwapp (note this matches the APN that you set in Chats)
  •     You can use https://interpage.net/cgi-bin/freepage to send yourself up to 5 test MMS messages in a week.

          For regular mobile internet: go to Settings, "Mobile Network", "Advanced", and choose the one that has "vzwinternet".

Once you're done surfing, if you want to send/receive an MMS, you have to go back and switch to the "vzwapp" APN in your mobile network settings. Yes, that's insane. That's why I spent a week convinced that I was doing it wrong. Maybe I am, but there are others out there too. If this is laughably dumb and you know a better way, please help me not be wrong on the internet by replying and I'll correct this. I'll even be eternally grateful.

Now for the opinion: everything "works", but it doesn't really WORK for daily driver usage. (I am not saying any of this to badmouth anything, just to clarify that it's not a phone for the masses, or even the early adopters.)
  • Yes for $200 it's a sweet POC, and a huge tip of the cap to all who have been involved. I actually bought this over a year ago and put it away for a while. The progress has been amazing.
  • Remember, this is a reference implementation for developers to work on, with intentionally inexpensive components to get it out in the wild. The people that can do something with it have done a lot. It still has components that are relatively ancient.
  • The phone works but you sound like you're in a fish tank. I used the speaker phone once, and my colleague on the other end immediately said "holy crap, what is that noise?" The alarm in his voice was palpable. Headset is the only hands free option, and even then you still sound like you're in a fish tank.
  • The camera is potato quality. It works, but you will never actually take a photo and show it to anyone unless you're an expert in tweaking digital settings for photos, and you want to spend hours doing so.
  • Browsing ranges from impressive, to super aggravating. Switching between apps is slow and wonky. The processor gets overwhelmed with various tasks, or switching tasks. I've found it fairly common to have to restart, just while browsing with a few apps open.
  • You have to use flatpak to get a bunch of apps, or privacyshark, or Waydroid, or do without.
  • There's lots of other stuff like that.

Again, I am not down on the OG Pinephone. I just wanted to write down my MMS experiences on Verizon for anyone on Verizon with a pinephone, and also tell people who don't have one, this is probably not the daily driver you're looking for. I have no experience with Pinephone Pro or Librem 5.

i have heard that verizon is the worst for banning unsupported devices on the network. did you do some special catches to allow your device, like calling customer service and giving imei number?

americans seem to use mms somewhat, for me mms is not crucial and has some annoying issues anyway. mms is partially problematic on other devices as well. one being, it is low quality.


(10-08-2023, 10:10 PM)chachi Wrote: In my opinion, the OG Pinephone is not daily-driver ready unless you're ready to have all your friends laugh at you like you just drove up in a clown car. So please don't buy one just because you could get Verizon MMS on it. But that's my opinion, I'll save that for the end. First, the facts as I've seen them.

laughable, this is what i wonder heavily. do they have google account or apple id in their pocket!? can somone have a device without google account ot apple id!? even though pinephone is what it is, they don't get the last laugh in the end.
  Reply
#3
(10-08-2023, 10:10 PM)chachi Wrote: Once you're done surfing, if you want to send/receive an MMS, you have to go back and switch to the "vzwapp" APN in your mobile network settings. Yes, that's insane. That's why I spent a week convinced that I was doing it wrong. Maybe I am, but there are others out there too. If this is laughably dumb and you know a better way, please help me not be wrong on the internet by replying and I'll correct this. I'll even be eternally grateful.

Would the script mentioned in https://gitlab.com/kop316/mmsd/-/issues/5 help?
  Reply
#4
(10-09-2023, 10:42 AM)traut Wrote:
(10-08-2023, 10:10 PM)chachi Wrote: Once you're done surfing, if you want to send/receive an MMS, you have to go back and switch to the "vzwapp" APN in your mobile network settings. Yes, that's insane. That's why I spent a week convinced that I was doing it wrong. Maybe I am, but there are others out there too. If this is laughably dumb and you know a better way, please help me not be wrong on the internet by replying and I'll correct this. I'll even be eternally grateful.

Would the script mentioned in https://gitlab.com/kop316/mmsd/-/issues/5 help?

I need to update that script when I have time. That one works but I have now more simple and more rationally functional script.

But yes it should work if you follow those steps precise.
  Reply


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