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CSL Broadband SIM chip is not Broadband at all

September 11, 2008 – 10:47 am

For many short time visitors to Hong Kong the cheap SIM chips of various mobile carriers are the best solution available. These SIM chips don’t need any registration, just buy one and insert into Your mobile phone, there You go. Looking at their flashy offers these seem to be a bargain. Let’s see what CSL has in their shelves:

CSL Hong Kong prepaid SIM chip package

Broadband… just what I need. I can surf the web with this SIM chip, right? Somehow it didn’t work. So I asked myself: How can I go online in Hong Kong using my mobile phone. I went back to the shop and asked. I was told I have to make some settings which are not really explained in the package. Here is what You have to do:

  1. Call the service hotline 179179
  2. Go through the service hotline menu until they ask You if You want GPRS broadband service.
  3. Confirm that You want broadband

After You have done that You have to wait until Your SIM chip’s data service is activated. It’s normally less than 24 hours. At the moment of writing this, using broadband with a prepaid CSL SIM chip costs You $HK 5 per month basic fee + data transfer charges which are not listed on the product. Should be cheap. Once this is fine You have to do some settings on Your phone. Depending on Your phone You only have to make some settings.

However, if You make these settings You won’t have the real internet. You will only be able to get some old-fashioned, outdated WAP-internet. That’s the part they don’t mention on the package and even the staff in the CSL shops often don’t know about this kind of limitation. Don’t trust them. Anyways, if You decide for a CSL prepaid SIM chip, here are the WAP settings

Setting Value
Connection name CSL prepaid GPRS
Data bearer Packet data
Access Point Name (APN) cslp1
User Name and Password Not needed, leave blank
Network type IPv4
Phone IP address Automatic
DNS Address Automatic
Proxy Server Address
Proxy Port Number 8080

If You want real internet using CSL then You have to buy one of their contracts which start around $HK 50 a month. Luckily there is an alternative. Give Vodafone Hong Kong a try. Their prepaid does support real internet, yet they also block something. Voice over IP programs don’t work with CSL prepaid or Vodafone prepaid. The APN (Access Point Name) for Vodafone prepaid is “internet”, no username or password required.

Those of You who are curious about the Visa issue, no news, still the unfriendly pre Olympic rules are in place. Maybe we can see something after the Paraolympics. maybe October 1st.

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  1. 4 Responses to “CSL Broadband SIM chip is not Broadband at all”

  2. CSL Prepaid does work as regular broadband with normal sites. Use “CSLP2″ as the APN once you’ve activated the Mobile Broadband service (it will only work after you’ve gotten an SMS that says it has been activated). CSLP1 is for the basic WAP service and has the limitations you describe.

    And yes the literature is useless on this and I had to figure it out myself through trial and error.

    By kalleboo on Sep 13, 2009

  3. That proxy server was the bain of my life.

    None of the connections worked until I deleted the proxy server settings.

    FYI I purchased the 5 day broadband service for the CSL Power Prepaid simcard, on a Nokia E72. I am using the CSLP2 APN.

    By Fai on Dec 11, 2009

  4. Hello Fai,

    I guess things have changed since I had been to Hong Kong last time. So thanx for your input on the current CSL APN settings.

    By Hendrik on Dec 11, 2009

  5. Thanks for the post. But irrespective of what I do wrt the above, change the CSLP1 to clsp2 or remove the proxy etc, it still doesnt work on a Nokia 5800. It worked slightly better on a Peoples SIM but using internet is frustrating for prepaid here. My gps too doesnt work well without internet so im lost:( And 1 day pass is 50 HKD on a CSL!!!

    By Jaj on Oct 13, 2010

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