DellandATTI keep hearing rumors about a AT&T 3G compatible Venue Pro coming out soon.  After I recently discovered you could delve deeper into the Venue Pro’s Diagnostic Menu, I learned of a hidden feature to fix radio bands.  Dell allows you to choose from 4 GSM bands(850, 900, 1800, and 190) and 5 WCDMA bands(850, 900, 1700, 1900, and 2000).  For those of you don’t know what these numbers mean, AT&T’s 3G network runs on 850mhz and 1900mhz.  Since we see options to fix these bands, it could mean that the radio supports it.  It could be the case that Dell simply added compatibility with AT&T’s network should they decide to sell such phones in the future but not give these Venue Pros the necessary hardware to utilize these settings. For now, I cannot test if the 850mhz WCDMA band works because T-Mobile does not support it and the Venue Pro is SIM locked to T-Mobile.  But if the Venue Pro does support the 850 band, Dell should start selling it unlocked and market it as a pentaband phone.

[Update:] Thanks to Benjamin Ries’ comment we have discovered and verified that the Venue Pro does not have pentaband support. The option exists in the Engineering Menu, but the hardware is not there to support it. Changing the settings allows you to disable select bands but if you allow for a band that is not supported by the hardware, nothing changes.  With

15 COMMENTS

  1. If you call TMobile and tell them you are going on vacation to Europe they’ll give you an unlock code over the phone. Tell them it’s a few countries and you’re not sure exactly where you’ll be, etc but you plan on getting local SIMs along the way.
    Then just drop in a friends AT&T SIM :)

  2. Not sure (ha ha) about pentaband (haven’t tried it), but I’m pretty sure the Dell Venue Pro works on TMobile’s 4G network (even though it displays 3G). I have one, and I can get ~ 6 megabit download speeds.

  3. @DavidK: I thought you had to wait 6mo before they would unlock it for you…apparently not, I sent in my unlock request. They said it will take up to 24hrs. Will update after I get it unlocked.

    @notsure: What city are you in? I want download speeds like that!!! Im not sure if it has HSDPA+ support but regular HSDPA can theoretically go up to 7Mbps.

  4. A whole xda-developers subforum of Venue Pro users has been trying to get the unlock code from T-mobile ever since December. T-mobile claims not to have the codes. Many of us are waiting to check back again after 90 days from activation, but the AT&T experience last year with the Dell Streak does not seem promising.

    The makers of the Rebel SIM card in the UK claim to be close to discovering a forced unlock method within the week.

  5. @Benjamin Ries: That’s too bad…I didn’t expect them to have codes since most reps I talked with don’t even know what a Venue Pro is…they’re like “Dell what?” David got my hopes up…thanks David! hahaha

  6. The problem appears to be that Dell sells the phones directly but won’t provide unlock codes; T-mobile doesn’t sell the Venue Pro so they claim to have never been given an unlock code. Both companies will eventually point you to each other.

    It seems like they might change their tune in March, but personally I decided to return my Venue Pro to Dell for a refund and wait to see what happens.

  7. oh and by the way, I just had a chance test this pentaband theory with a friend in Toronto, Canada. Here are the carriers in the city and their frequencies:

    Rogers 2G: 850/1900; 3G 850/1900
    Bell 3G only: 850/1900
    Telus 3G only: 850/1900
    Wind 3G only: AWS
    Mobilicity 3G only: AWS

    By default, when you tap “select networks” to roam with the Venue Pro, it shows you Rogers (2G), Wind and Mobilicity.

    We went into the EM app, Protocol, and attempted to turn on all the frequencies… this produced no change. Bell and Telus networks did not appear.

    However, when we unchecked the WCDMA 1700 band, the phone only showed Rogers available… Wind and Mobilicity disappeared.

    So based on this very preliminary test, the function appears to be able to selectively turn off existing bands, but not enable new ones.

    That said, we did not try the “Reset all” button – my friend was not quite brave enough to try that with his phone.

  8. @Benjamin Ries: Great find! Forgot you can scan in the Cellular section. I just tried it out myself. With default setting I see both AT&T and T-Mobile, but if I disable all the GSM bands I see only T-Mobile. Guess no pentaband support after all. But this at least means Dell is considering an AT&T compatible version of the Venue Pro.

  9. I just wanna chime my two cents in. I recently got an unlocked refurbished Dell Venue Pro from Dell.com direct. And after setting up the EM and unlocking the band, did a bit of testing on my Mobilicity SIM here in the US on both T-mobile and At&t. I am surprised to say I was able to unlock every band, that is to say I got 3G on AT&T when registered, and H+ (HSDPA 3G) on T-mobile’s network when registered. Before you bash this comment, I thoroughly tested this by going into the Protocol setting “Fix in Bands” section and selecting certain frequencies, and noticed that by doing so I could alter between Edge on both T-mobile and AT&T as well as 3G for both networks. I do believe there is no hardware such limitation since I just checked that I can control WCDMA IV 1700 Mhz, and WCDMA II 1900 MHz and GSM bands.

  10. Hello, so canadian geek.. can u provide guidelines to do that? i am trying to make it run on a ATT compatible provider (telcel) with no succes, i have made rd changes, protocol changes etc, BR

  11. Hey Ejbt. My dell venue pro came unlocked directly from Dell. It was a prior T-mobile AWS intended phone, but was unlocked. With my Canadian sim I got onto At&t 3g with no issues as well as T-mobiles HSDPA. Are you sure you are properly selecting the Fix in Bands for 1900 Mhz for AT&T. Make sure you deslect the remainder, and keep just 2 GSM bands. If you leave all checked it might not work.

Comments are closed.