Smartphone questions

Hello all - I’m moving to a property without an internet connection and I would be grateful for advice about the best way to go regarding getting internet connectivity via a smartphone. I’m currently in the UK and I don’t have a smartphone here (just a standard mobile). I would like to hit the ground running when I arrive in France, so I’m wondering if it would be best to get a smartphone here in the UK and then get a French SIM once I’m in France, or should I wait and buy a phone with a contract in France? What are my best options so that I can use the phone to give my Linux laptop internet connectivity while I wait for a physical internet connection to be installed? I’m probably going to be needing unlimited data.


Are you going to be a resident here or is it a holiday home.

We are aiming at becoming resident.

I should add that we’ll be staying at a temporary address while we wait to complete the purchase of our permanent home.
Thanks Colin

Will you still have an address/property in the UK.

No - the UK property is being sold.

An unlocked smartphone from the UK will accept a French SIM if you prefer to buy before you travel.
There are plenty of options in France for sim only abonnements and there a few threads on here to aid your research.

Thanks Graham. I’ll have another search - using the term ‘abonnements’ this time. I’m afraid I haven’t kept up with smartphone technology as a fixed internet connection has always served me well.

There’s a good thread here which mainly explores home internet options using 4G but there are some references to data only SIMs for use with non tied routers
Review Home Internet - 4G Box from Bouygues Telecom. It’ll take a bit of time reading through but look for posts particularly from @John_Scully


Just by way of further explanation… my smart phone is a One Plus which I inherited from my son when he upgraded his in the UK and my wife has a Samsung Galaxy A50 which she purchased from Leclerc in France. Neither are tied to a contract. We both use Bouygues SIMs for phone and data (no contract) and Bouygues for 4G internet access.

Latest project (when I get around to it) is to see if I can use two 4G routers into one of these boxes and have just one household LAN.

Good luck with that John.
I got a TP-Link Archer similar to the one you have to try out but failed miserably to get it going here. Later found out that there may be issues with Linux Ubuntu and the TP-Link so it was best to leave matters as they are with the Huawei B528 router supplied by Bouygues which, for the moment, seems to have recognised that I was quite content to have a cuckoo in the nest so has been behaving impeccably with good speeds since :grin:

1 Like

@SteveRussell I prefer Querty to Azerty so I always upgrade my mobile when I am in the UK.
Maybe something you might want to consider?

@Fran24 You can do this whilst in France, no need to go to UK… assuming Samsung but most Android smart pones will follow a similar route:
Settings > General Management > Language and Input > Language = English (United Kingdom) > Keyboard > On screen keyboard > Default Keyboard >Samsung Keyboard and set to English (UK)


I hadn’t considered that properly. I think I’d probably like both as qwerty is a pain for writing in French, and vice versa (not that I’m particularly good at writing in French and tend to rely on Google Translate).

I am aware of this on laptops, but must look into the mobile option :clap:
All the while my family is in the UK I will go back, I have cut it down to once a year, encouraging them to visit France :grin:

1 Like

Generally, if you press and hold a key on the on-screen keyboard, it will offer you alternatives so for example press and hold lower case e and you will be offered é è and other accents for you to select :wink:

1 Like

I’ve read through the thread - and now I’m looking for the paracetamol! I imagine that early in the last century people were going through a similar process wondering if they could get an electricity supply to their property.

1 Like

Well, hopefully it gives you a clearer starting point other than « how long is a piece of string » so now gives you more focus on questions to be addressed :wink:

Yes - I’m not ungrateful for the help and advice btw - just in case I sounded off there. I made the fatal error of assuming that it would be simple to get an internet connection more-or-less everywhere. But France is a big country!

I suggest an upgrade to Naproxen for this step - mobile signal coverage can vary alarming from provider to provider. For example, Bougues’ online ‘checker’ predicted I’d be able to receive 80Mb 4g at my place. I ordered a €10 sim to try it out and there was no reception at all in or within the vicinity of the house.

Once you know where you’ll be staying, buy cheap sims from several providers to see which one works for you.

And good luck :grin:

1 Like