FAQs

The F1 phone was created to simplify our customers’ mobile experience and help them eliminate the digital clutter that smartphones so often add to our lives. Part of that mission is to make sure you have all the information you need about our product. We’ve listed some of the most common inquiries we receive down below. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at support@sunbeamwireless.com.

The Sunbeam F1 phone

Can I use the Sunbeam F1 with my current carrier?

Sure! The Sunbeam F1 is unlocked, which means that it will work with any compatible carrier. (Not all carriers are compatible. See below to make sure your carrier is). For example, many users purchase the phone from us but use it with their existing Verizon plan. Which is a great choice, as the Sunbeam F1 works well on the Verizon network.

Which carriers does the Sunbeam F1 work with?

USA

Verizon – The F1 works really well on Verizon. The antenna was finely tuned with Verizon’s network in mind, so the signal/reception is really good and tends to be as good as, or better than, most other flip phones. The F1 also works with Verizon’s Visual Voicemail system, which syncs your voicemail to your phone in a nice list format that is very fast to review. If you have an active Verizon SIM card, just pop it into the Sunbeam F1 and you are ready to go! If you’re just now moving to Verizon, or need a new phone line, you will need to work with Verizon to port-in or set up the new line, but there’s no technical problem as the F1 is certified for the Verizon network.

AT&T – The F1 works well on AT&T. The F1 supports the main AT&T bands. Please note that the F1 does not sync with the AT&T Visual Voicemail server, at least not yet.

T-Mobile – The F1 works well on T-Mobile. It’s missing T-Mobile’s B71, so it’s not a perfect match. However, depending on your area, you might get along with the F1 just fine on T-Mobile, as there are plenty of other T-Mobile bands that the F1 supports.

Bluegrass Wireless – The F1 works on Bluegrass, but you have to request them to enable “VoLTE” on the line.

Cricket – The F1 currently does not work well with Cricket, but should in a few weeks.

AT&T MVNOs (eg. Consumer Cellular or H2O) – The F1 works well on these, you just need to select their APN in the APN settings list for MMS and Data to work.

Verizon MVNOs (eg. RedPocket or TracFone) – The F1 works well with these, no configuration needed on the phone.

Appalachian Wireless – The F1 currently does not work on Appalachian Wireless.

Sprint – The F1 does not support any of the Sprint bands and will not work with Sprint at all. Sorry!

US Cellular – At this time the F1 does not work with US Cellular.

Canada

Koodoo – The F1 works well on Koodoo.

Bell – The F1 works well on Bell.

Rogers – The F1 works well on Rogers.

Fido – The F1 works well on Fido.

Virgin – The F1 works well on Virgin.

Telus – The F1 works well on Telus.

How long does the battery last?

The answer is that it depends on the carrier, the signal strength, and the usage. Quite frankly, our 1,400mah battery is none too large for a 4G phone. (The 4G signal requires more processing than the older 2G/3G phones did, even for sitting idle on the network). Most users can easily make it through one day without a problem. However, we have some users that spend many hours per day on the phone, and the battery simply is not sufficient in that case. (We’ve also seen some cases where the network itself would cause the F1 to continually re-register, which quickly depletes the battery too). So if you spend 4 to 6 hours per day talking on your phone, you will need to recharge it mid-day.

Is the Sunbeam F1 VoLTE capable?

Yes, they are fully VoLTE capable. On Verizon, they are on VoLTE all the time. On T-Mobile or AT&T, it’s up to the carrier. Sometimes the carrier will choose to route the call over 3G, and other times they will choose to use VoLTE.

Is the Sunbeam F1 a "rugged" phone?

No, this is not a military spec phone and it’s not ruggedized. The body is smooth plastic and slides relatively easily in and out of the pocket.

Is the Sunbeam F1 waterproof?

No it is not.

So if it's not rugged or waterproof, is it poor quality?

No. Just because it’s lighter doesn’t mean it’s poor quality. For example, a common problem with less expensive flip phones is many times the electrical contacts for the keypad buttons are not sealed against dust. And while they work well when new, after 6 months or so the buttons don’t respond properly. The electrical contacts on the Sunbeam F1 keypad buttons are fully sealed, so they should work just as well in a couple of years as they do on day one.

The hinge seems to flex a little. Is this normal?

Yes, this is normal. There is a rubber bumper that compresses, giving the feeling of flexing/bending, but this is a design feature.

Do you have the phones in stock?

Yes. We typically ship via UPS Ground from Missouri so it’s usually a 1 day to 3 day transit, depending on your location. You can choose UPS Next Day Air or 2nd Day Air if you need a faster delivery.

What are the advantages of a flip phone, other than the obvious?

Good question. There are advantages. One of them is that you can quickly dial a number by flipping the phone open and matching a number stored in Contacts. For example, if I want to call my friend David, I can flip open my phone, press “3”, “2”, “8” (corresponding with “DAV” in David) and this will match present a listing of all the Davids in my Contacts. I scroll down to the correct one and press the green CALL button. (Or press the “Message” button if I want to send a text message). The whole process can be completed in only a few seconds and quickly becomes the preferred method of contacting people, after trying it for a time or two. 

Oh. And there’s something very satisfying about ending a call by flipping the phone closed… 

Does the Sunbeam F1 track me or have spyware on it?

No. We are very conscientious about data privacy. Our phones are a little bit more pricey than some, but we do not collect, share, or sell customer data. Our business model is to pay for the services we use and not use any free services. (Which tend to be the ones that track users). The service provider is outside of our control, however, and would have the tools to track a customer if they wished. But that should not be a problem if you’re using a reputable carrier. Here are the parties that could potentially track you.

  1. Sunbeam. We are opposed this and have intentionally set up our business model to avoid free services. We control the software running on the phone and we do not have any “bloatware” or other unnecessary software installed. We do have an “Update” tool that pings our server to check for an update on a time schedule. (And if an update is available, it will notify you of this). We also have a “Bug Report” tool that can be used, if desired, to report a bug to us. But neither of these functions are used to spy on or track users.
  2. The carrier. The carrier would in theory be able to use tower triangulation to locate a user. However, this should not be a problem if reputable carriers are used. No customer information from our software is given to the carrier.
  3. Our Navigation feature. (On the Orchid model). We’ve built the Navigation function ourselves using the HERE Technologies software development kit. But the connections to HERE are very limited and no customer details are available to them. In fact, if you download the map data in advance (from within Navigation, preferably over WiFi to reduce cellular data), or purchase the SD card from us that has the map data preinstalled on it, you do not need any network connections to navigate. In other words, you can use it completely offline. There is a “Search” function (to find nearby businesses or other POI) that does need a network connection to be used, if you want to use that. This data connection is with HERE Technologies.
  4. Our Weather feature. (On the Orchid model). The data source for our Weather function is The Weather Company, by IBM. Again, this is a paid service and IBM is not provided any customer information.
  5. Our Voice-to-Text Input feature. (On the Orchid and Daisy models). This function is powered by Microsoft. The way the process works is that an audio clip is recorded and then Microsoft analyzes it and converts it to text. (They are shockingly good at it, by the way). They could in theory keep record of those audio clips, but they’re a very reputable company and they are not provided with any associated customer information, so it’s unlikely that the information would be very useful to them.

I'm moving from an iPhone to the Sunbeam F1. What do I need to do?

About the only thing you need to do is turn off iMessages on your iPhone. (With iMessages still enabled, if someone is sending you a text message from an iPhone to your new Sunbeam phone, their iPhone will likely try to send it via iMessages, which will not be received on the Sunbeam phone. Turning off iMessages on the iPhone before placing the SIM card into the Sunbeam phone will fix this).

What network does the Sunbeam plan run on?

Our Sunbeam plan runs on “America’s largest network”.

Will the Sunbeam plan save me money?

It depends on how much you use it, especially how many minutes of voice calling you use per month. We typically find that if someone uses 2,000 or 3,000 minutes per month of voice calling, or less, our Sunbeam plan can save them money. However, if the usage is higher than this, you will most likely be better off with an unlimited plan from a different provider.

If I try the Sunbeam plan, can I keep my number?

Yes, of course. It’s a requirement that service providers allow their users to switch companies while keeping their number. (The technical term for this is “porting” the number from one company to another). All cellular service providers are familiar with porting and can help port your number into their plan.

Is there a contract?

No. We believe that if you’re not happy with our service that you should be allowed to switch to another carrier. (This puts the onus on us to do what we can to provide you with good service).

My Sunbeam phone does not receive incoming text messages.

If you just switched your SIM card from an iPhone, you will need to turn off iMessages.

If you’ve just enabled your phone on the Verizon network, and it hasn’t received incoming text messages since, you will need to contact Verizon and have them enable “CDMA-less” on your phone line. (This is a very unlikely scenario, as Verizon is really good at configuring their system. But it has been seen on rare occasions in the past).

The Weather and Voice-to-Text input do not work.

Both of these functions need cellular data to function. (Unless on WiFi). There are typically three things that might cause this to not work.

  1. The cellular plan does not include “data”, or it has reached a limit set by the plan.
  2. An AT&T or T-Mobile based reseller’s SIM card is being used, but the APN is not set correctly in the phone. (Verizon-based plans do not need this, but others need to be manually set correctly under APN Settings).
  3. The data was accidentally turned off on the phone. (To enable, go to Settings > Connectivity > Mobile Data > Enable Mobile Data).

Visual Voicemail isn't working.

Visual Voicemail is provided by your cellular service provider. Contact them and ask them to enable Visual Voicemail on your line. (The Sunbeam F1 works with the Verizon and T-Mobile VVM system, but not with AT&T).

My battery drains way too fast.

We’ve investigated some complaints and have determined that when this happens the root cause is not the battery and is not the phone hardware, but is caused by excessive network activity. (Re-registering on the network, possibly due to switching towers when in a location almost equidistant between two towers). We’re looking into the possibility of compensating/adjusting/fixing this in software, but we’re not sure how feasible this is yet.

Didn't find what you're looking for?

If you weren’t able to find a solution to your problem here, feel free to reach out to us at support@sunbeamwireless.com.