Soviet Canuckistan

posts from the left coast

HOWTO: Mobile Data Access in Berlin, Germany

I'm in Berlin this week to attend this weekend's MozCamp EU; because I'm a dork I really really like having some sort of local data network access, in particular for using google maps on my unlocked Android phone. Having mobile data access has completely changed how I travel, I'm much more likely to just really explore a place than I would without access to google maps. So here's my process for getting cheap mobile data in Berlin:

  1. took the U6 -> S line trains to Alexanderplatz to get to the Alexa Mall (, see map below )
  2. went to Media Markt ( think German Best Buy ), bought a 10 euro SIM card
  3. back at the Tryp hotel where I'm staying, I registered online with to activate the sim. There is no English localization of the site and my German is terrible so I had a second window open to google translate to get through it.
  4. in order for the data plan to really start, I had to set my Android phone to 'data roaming' mode.

This will get you a flat rate of 500MB of data, plus relatively cheap text and calling! Sadly, you do need to jump online to register the sim, this is definitely less convenient than what I got last month in London, where they sell flat-rate data sims from vending machines at Heathrow.

Alexa / Media Markt:

View Larger Map