Originally Posted by MUFC17JW
I have an aunt who is visiting me in America for a month. She will be going back in few weeks and she is interested in purchasing a note 3 in America since it's cheaper. Question is.. is it possible to use US based phones work in korea? Which carrier Note 3 would work the best?
In theory, the phone should "work", as long as you can get it unlocked from the carrier. They should all have quad-band GSM, so you should be able to get data too. LTE is a different matter though. South Korea providers use bands 1, 3, 5, and 8. Both the AT&T and T-Mobile Note 3s support band 5, but that's the only one, and the Sprint and Verizon ones don't support any of those bands. SK Telecom and LG U+ use band 5, but SK Telecom also uses band 3 and LG U+ uses band 1, so your aunt might not get full LTE coverage if they use those other bands to fill gaps or something - but I really can't guess.
How much does a Note 3 cost in South Korea (USD equivalent)? Because you can get a "international" Note 3 32GB (N9005) from eBay or Amazon for $550-560. It supports LTE on bands 1, 3, 5, 8, and 20. So while she's in the US, she could pick up a pre-paid SIM from T-Mobile or AT&T (not Sprint or Verizon) or one of their MVNOs
and use it in her new phone. She won't get LTE, but she will get 3G. If you're in a city, I'd recommend going with a T-Mobile MVNO (MetroPCS, for example), since they have a very strong 3G/HSPA+ network. But more importantly, it'll work on all the bands in South Korea, regardless of carrier.
Relax, go nutz!