I have an iPhone 6 (European model) and will be travelling to Japan soon, where networks have different connectivity requirements.

I checked the specs from Apple and couldn't conclude whether it supports W-CDMA.

Is there way to check in the phone itself which bands those it support?

Thanks in advance.

2 Answers 2


EU phones will all be GSM.
You cannot cross the divide between GSM & CDMA.

Read this for a long but simple explanation - http://uk.pcmag.com/cell-phone-service-providers-products/11593/news/cdma-vs-gsm-whats-the-difference
… though having read that twice & my head is still spinning - I'm still not actually sure if the fact that 3G = WCDMA means it will work….
I always used to have to have a different phone to use in Japan, but that was several technology generations ago.

https://xkcd.com/927/ ;-)

  • In fact this article is wrong. (I was the network planner for the first CDMA network in Australia, and also the first 3G network). Most current phones on sale on Europe (including iPhone) support the 3GPP signalling stack which is based on the GSM stack. 3G phones use a CDMA wireless interface, but also support GSM (TDMA) as a legacy. Many US networks use the 3GPP2 standard, which also has a CDMA wireless interface, but uses the IS41 signalling stack, and support IS41C/D as legacy. Probably the majority of US networks are 3GPP and compatible.
    – Milliways
    Jun 1, 2015 at 11:36
  • @Milliways - please feel free to either edit my answer or add your own. I find the whole thing so confusing & I'm sure we'd be glad of an answer with accurate rather than speculative information.
    – Tetsujin
    Jun 1, 2015 at 11:40
  • The other factor is the band used (there are at leas 5 in use with more ready for deployment). The US does not use the 900/1800 used elsewhere (allocated to military) and commonly uses 1900 (reserved in most parts of the world). Different network operators order different configurations from Apple (and others) to meet local regulations and networks. Most also order phones which are SIM-locked to their network. In general unlocked phones bought from Apple are more likely to work, but even here there are differences due to different countries regulations.
    – Milliways
    Jun 1, 2015 at 11:44
  • NOTE I am not trying to be critical - this is a complex issue, and NOT capable of a simple answer; I can't answer the OP's question. I have been retired for 12 years, and things may have changed, but I believe Japan uses IS41 stack. International standard phones may work, but only Apple and the network operators can answer, and Apple are not particularly transparent on these matters.
    – Milliways
    Jun 1, 2015 at 11:52
  • @Milliways - for sure; I didn't think you were being critical. This is so way over my head I'm glad of a more professional opinion.
    – Tetsujin
    Jun 1, 2015 at 11:53

All iPhones have a model number written on the back. Find your model number in the list on this page: http://www.techwalls.com/differences-between-iphone-6-6-plus-models/

The short answer is that if you bought it in Europe, it is very likely to be a GSM model, as hardly any European carriers use CDMA. There is a list of CDMA carriers around the world, here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_CDMA2000_networks


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