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Whar are downsides of buying an unlocked cellphone

1. I switch providers to Verizon or T-Mobile that allow use of an unblocked phone.
2. I buy an unblocked phone, i.e., something currently in use in the Pacific Rim or Europe with great features.
3. What are downsides?
If it breaks, I know I will probably have to buy a new phone. Will it work as well here in the U.S? Will it sync with my Outlook if it is a Windows cell phone? Is it worth it? I am thinking of the A1200/Ming by Motorola.

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