mobile phones in Iraq

soon be deploying to iraq and am unsure as to weather its worth taking a mobile phone, has anyone out there taken their mobile? if so what uk service provider did you use and what were your bills like? did the service provider do a deal etc
Bailey said:
Just got back.

My UK mobile got no signal in Al Amara, Basrah Palace or the airport. Authough it worked fine in Qatar.

There must be some sort of mobile technology that works our there as Staff Officers had mobiles on issue.
The MOD issued mobiles are... different.

I wouldnt be suprised if access to "air time" is getting more restricted the amount of civilian buisness that is going on now (transponders can only support so many handsets at once).

Your UK mobile as long as international roaming is enabled should work.

But it is not cheap, if your OP is for 6 months I would recommend getting a mobile from Kuwait on MTC net. This will reduce your "incoming text" bill. As for calls you have to wiegh your callers paying an international bill or you paying for their call to you.

As for current coverage can anyone update on tour give a quick heads up?


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Don't bother bringing it unless you're going to be based outside Iraq. The Atheer network in Iraq blocks all other networks and doesn't have reciprical arrangement with any British network (which is why your phone works in Qatar but not Iraq).

The staff officers' phones all run on said Atheer network. It is possible to get a pay-as-you-go phone out here from the market but I have never heard about one of these having international dialling.

The majority of the landline mil systems will allow you to connect into the Paradigm system for about 16p/min.

Moderator- hope I haven't said too much, if so do edit...


I agree with CC, leave it behind we had a few sad teddy bears after the bills came through, enough opportunity to get on the phone 24/7 cheap enough and it's paid for up front, also the net is free and depending on location there are enough terminals 24/7 too.

Any further please PM me
UK mobiles won't work in Iraq proper as I believe the network there is CDMA technology and not GSM.
Paradigm phone is the little thing that you stand in a portacabin with, punching in your scratched off number, whilst listening to men having phone sex with their wives when you are trying to check if your house has burnt down and whether Junior Snail is still alive, or has her mother killed her for taking a shower in her boyfriend's house.

I took my mob and it wasn't too scary but text prices went up whilst I was there (god have I been back nearly a year) so check with Swindlepoint before you go.

It is, however, good to have if you need to get in touch with anyone - by text. Don't use it for calls over there. Use Paradigm (You have 13 minutes remaining).
Ord_Sgt said:
UK mobiles won't work in Iraq proper as I believe the network there is CDMA technology and not GSM.
Please do all try and keep up.

It is over a year ago that I reported that your american masters were ensuring that US companies like Lucent were geting all the telecomms infrastructure work over here. How else do you expect all those GIs and contractors up here to ring home?

Of course the CPA spent all of 10 seconds conducting a detailed analysis of the repective interoperability of both CDMA and GSM. How better to ensure that our new Iraq integrates with its neighbours?

Dont worry, if these invasions of terror sponsoring states continue, there will be plenty more places you can soon use your CDMA phone.
Was driving along and came across a veh in a ditch with 4 blokes standing around, being a nice chap I pulled them out. Extremly pleased to find out they were not only eternally gratefull but Paradigm engineers, feigned modesty when various cards were thrust into my sweaty mit, and waved them off with happy heart. Turned to disgust when I realised I held a handful of business cards for the "Atlanta" office, and not one that was any use. Still hate the Basta**'s to this day, would rather have BT (honestly).
Since getting out of the forces i work now as a communications engineer, and have been offered multiple contracts, Iraq included to rebuild there mobile phone infrastrucutre, Lucent is one of the main american companies employing people to go over and Yes they do work on CDMA (all 2 G phone systems, i.e not the 3G video phone) and not the GSm that the Uk and most of the civilised world uses.
At present the phone system in Iraq is in pieces, as the main node's in the network were another thing targeted by the allies to disrupt communications also helps to create more jobs.
At this present moment there are loads of contract workers over there trying there best to repair it, but unfortunatly there is a main problem of getting the equipment to the guys to do this.( logistics again!!) Hence only certain parts of the network are back up and running.
from speaking to some of my colleagues they forsee full country coverage by 2006.
So it all depends where you are getting posted to in the country as to if you can get coverage.
I would if i were you make sure your phone is at least a dual band handset, and make sure your phone is unlocked from your home network, see the link at the end for a program on how to do this, and buy a pay as you go sim card ( most countrys do this and they cost £10) as this will stop heartache when your phone bill comes through.


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