Safaricom’s Neon franchise presents the most affordable smartphones you could buy here in Kenya and for a good reason; Neon devices are sold locked to the Safaricom network. This is a more or less like buying a phone on contract in other countries such as the US where you could easily ask for an unlock code once its fully paid, the problem with Neon smartphones is that you wont have that option to request for an unlock code from Safaricom.
I’ve seen lots of Kenyans trying to figure out how to unlock the Safaricom Neon lineup such as the Neon Ray Neon Ray Pro and the latest sequel – Neon Kicka 5 and use other SIM cards from various networks such as Telkom and Airtel Kenya. While I don’t dispute its actually possible to unlock this phones with unlock codes from various vendors only; the trouble involved doesn’t cut-it, it’s far way more sensible to top up the amount and just buy an alternative from the likes of Xiaomi Redmi 7A which still offers value for your bang.
Reasons you shouldn’t buy the Safaricom Neon phones to unlock for other networks.
- Voiding Warranty
I understand the main motivation to opt-in for any of the Neon series is the price. They’re relatively low priced and come with a whole 1-year warranty. Whether you use the River-road technicians to alter the IMEI number or pay online vendors to have the unlock code, the Idea isn’t worth losing your warranty, unless of course you’re already out of warranty.
- Secondly, the cost involved is not worth it.
Say for example you bought any of the Neon phones such as the Safaricom Neon Kicka 5 for Ksh. 3,499 or the Neon Ray Pro for about Ksh. 6,500; you’ll probably have to spend about Ksh. 2,000 just to get the unlock code or a similar amount on the river-road guys. Also understand the process isn’t full-proof and my actually brick your device rendering it unusable. With all that trouble, wouldn’t it be easier to just get a Xiaomi Redmi 7A that can support different carriers and comes with a similar 1-year warranty? If you ask me, the answer is a definite YES.
- Presence of unlocked alternatives
If price is your main motivation, then you should probably have a look at other alternatives that cost just as less and are sold factory unlocked. I’ve already mentioned the Redmi 7A which has been further discounted thanks to Jumia’s birthday sale.
- Single SIM Support
Since the Neon brand is owned by Safaricom, you won’t get the goodness of Dual SIM support we’ve come to love on most android devices. For this reason, you can only expect to use a single SIM card at a time. unfortunately, this applies to even Safaricom, you can’t have to Safaricom SIM cards probably one for MPESA and the other one for general purposes on this device.
- Meager specifications
While the Neon lineup is technically categorized as smartphones, you won’t do as much on these devices. They come with limited amount of RAM – 512MB for the Kicka 5 and 1GB for the Neon Ray Pro that are not sufficient to run popular applications and Games.
I wish I saw this before buying this neon ray
Yaaah me too.
Comment:very disappointing to be locked in one network
yeah even If I knew I couldn’t
Thank u for this actually i was planning to buy one bt after this its a big noo
Neon Ray is just a f***ng s**t with safaricom consuming alot of data
I just bought my neon ray phone and rebooted the IMEI am now enjoying using a safaricom phone with Airtel …
How did do that mine is giving me heafache
How can I reboot the imei
Comment:How can I reboot the IMEI
How did you reboot IMEI pls
Neon phone is just frastrating I wish I new
Wow just got mine and I’m quite surprised idont Kno what to expect icant even Access unknown apps I’m about to have a regret of the year
After ulocking for Just 500 am realy enjoying it. Am not a dial sim guy….so sm good
Can u help me unlock mine please
I want to unlock mine,need help please
Even me I want unlock mine
Comment:I want to buy safaricom neon ray pro,please someone tell me it’s disadvantages before I buy
buy the phone is smart
someone to inbox on charges of unlocking neon kicker in Nairobi.
Yaaah me too.
I need to unlock my Neon Ray 2. Please help. Thank you.