Librem 5 carrier compatibility thread



Can you (in time before shipping starts) make sure that you guys provide us with details on which carriers approved modems you offer to choose from?
As you see all over the forum here, ppl have a hard time finding certifications for BroadMobi modem. For many of us in US, Gemalto doesn’t cover all LTE bands and Chinese modem looks like a great alternative. But, if not certified by Verizon for VoLTE , we won’t be able make a call on the phone.


Yes, we will work on this.

But why do you think that if Verizon would switch to VoLTE only calling? AFAIK VoLTE is an option at most carriers and many even do not support this yet.



Ack, sorry for advising with an assumption like that. I should have chosen my words more carefully. Thank you for clarifying!


This might be related.
Important bit I think some people are worried about is that if the baseband is not certified for Verizon 4G and VoLTE then you won’t even be able to activate the device on their network at all. Thats one of the big reasons I was interested in the Quectel EM06, in the specifications they at least make it clear that certification for Verizon along with other major US carriers was in progress. The check mark for certifications on the broadmobi site doesn’t seem very specific.


Verizon doesn’t have a GSM fallback for voice calls - Only cdma, which is getting completely shut down in December this year.
I know that based on the experience with them , using different unlocked devices. And in many cases where the phone had CDMA , if I had a poor coverage, calls wouldn’t go through, even though I had 4 bars on LTE and perfect internet connection.


So should pressure be put on Purism to get certified on Verizon’s network which may include allowing Verizon to control certain aspects of the software on the phone and absolutely will increase the cost to everyone to distribute that cost? Or should pressure be put on Verizon to support all capable devices and not have a costly and intrusive certification process?


The US needs a law like that…


Personally I’d rather it not be a law but rather people chose what they used in a more reasonable way… It may not be feasible at this point to resolve without a law, but I do think that should be near the last resort


US has the most corrupt government in developed world. Basically, corporations write the laws, here. Bribery is legalized - lobbying, campaign contributions, etc.


I don’t see we have the power to make Verizon or Sprint to certify Purism. It would need a lot of customers in their network to complaint and threat leaving them to create that kind of pressure. We have power on Purism. “I am sorry” is not good enough. Purism said: “Yes, you will be able to make regular unencrypted phone calls to any phone number.” in their FAQ promoting sales. I still think they need to clarify that (making clear they’re talking maybe to Europe) since it is obvious they have no control on the communication chain in USA and to make it worse, according to what Nicole is saying, they “have no plans to get additional carrier approval.” Our solution to the matter is to go from carrier to carrier to see if we can make the phone work.
Purism needs to tell us where to go as Tatatirci is requesting. As soon as possible. If I don’t see this problem solved soon I’m pulling out this project. It makes no sense to me to go on the street trying to find where to make my phone work. This was supposed to be resolved way before yesterday. I don’t understand how can they promise me I will be able to make regular phone calls from my phone if at the same time they couldn’t make the proper arrangements so I can get the phone approved with a given carrier? T-Mobile is very open? How open? Is Nicole saying we can go to T-Mobile for sure or is a place to try? We need to know where to go ASAP. The other thing about this: I hate T-Mobile for good reasons and if I have to go there to be able to use my L5 where is the freedom we’re talking about?
I’ll be waiting for a better answer to this problem from Purism. I hope we’ll get it soon and before shipping.


Everybody will hate at least one carrier.

This phone is about freedom. It doesn’t make any sense for Purism to shove millions into corporations that restrict your freedom by requiring an approval process for every device type.

I’m pretty certain most carriers will work and you will know soon enough. Don’t expect shipment in August.


I appreciate your faith, Caliga, but I am not a believer.
I also understand your point about not bringing customers to business who’d take advantage of them, but this is USA, not Europe. Over there there’re laws in countries where carriers have to serve the customer when they bring their own device. Here they need to see if you qualify to get sheared. They have control.
Now… Sprint and the others may approve my L5 since I am probably the only customer in my area and they would prefer to keep me as a good customer and loose the collateral profit from selling the data they collect from me. To know if that’s the case with Sprint and everybody else I have to have the phone in my hands (IMEI). If they decide not to let L5 participate do I go to ebay to sell my phone? Do I send it back to Purism for a refund? Is there any information about what should I do in this scenario in Faith is not my strength.


Not for the same reasons.
Some are hated for terrible customers service, some for the pricing and some for the poor coverage.
Verizon CS and coverage have no match.

And no, I doubt that it would cost that much to make sure the phone works on their network or that they require to manipulate with phone’s software.
Plenty of unlocked phones which are not on “certified devices” list work just fine and have VoLTE - after asking CS to update IMEI in the account. Only things they don’t do is WiFi calling, for which you need a patch. So, it’s mostly about modem’s compatibility in cases where the phone is not “blacklisted” for whatever reason.
installing hardware like baseband modem without making sure it passed certification with major carriers is a bad business move.


You would think that a modem variant for the American market would work with Amercian carriers. Is it just the modem that needs to be approved or does the device it’s attached to need to be approved as well?

The goal of my original post was to help people decide which modem to choose by showing which will have the best coverage. Any requests or suggestions on which regions I should add. I’m not sure what the biggest markets for the Librem 5 would be.


It should be both. Modem would determine if you can be connected in the first place and how , then the device,.to see if they will allow special features to use on the network.
This is just my “educated” guessing of course, based on my experiences w 2 major carriers and basic reading
My concern is even bigger for some carriers, once @nicole.faerber stated that there are no plans to certify devices. Why? Sony XZ1 compact had the same Qualcomm’s chipset (w modem) (covering 95% of all US LTE bands )as it’s counterparts from other OEMs and it never got to activate VoLTE on ATT, with all tricks tried. Similar situation with other devices as well.
On the other hand , there were numerous unlocked phones not on any list able to use that important feature.

The biggest market should be US. 700 is a lot of money and for US customers they offer 12 mos to pay off at no interest. And I assume that ppl US haels a higher % of ppl interested in protecting privacy at this price.


To my knowledge Purism is rather generous when you want to send it back.
But instead, I’d rather consider a different carrier.

But my main point was that you have at least 30 more days for Purism to release additional information. They delayed making the final specs public so they could test & add three or four additional modems. They deserve praise for this and some patience to finalize the additional information.
Nothing will be sent to you before you select your modem and you don’t need to select one unless you have sufficient info.
So relax. If they don’t list tested US carriers before asking for your modern choice, you can still write an email and ask whether they tested your carrier.
Seriously, dudes, cool down.
A few days ago the aussies thought they have been forgotten, but even for those 5 people :wink: the awesome Purism folks took the time to test an additional modem.


That isn’t an option for all of us.


There is no doubt , that purism is doing all in it’s power to make it work for all customers and indeed deserve the praise.
Still, the reason why many are not as calm is that some are were caught off guard (who already paid) and some who are interested to buy don’t have the clarity this late in the process.


And all 5 of us very much appreciate it. :wink:


If the phone works with ATT, will it work with ATT MVNO’s? Specifically Tracfone?