What’s a CID on my HTC phone and why does it matter?

This I tend to see a “bit”.

A CID (carrier ID) is a bit simplified a bit of information that tells you for what country/region/carrier/network your phone is made/intended for. And where it gets updates from.

Sometimes a certain CID tells you what model ID the phone got as well, since the CID is for an American carrier: which tends to a model ID of their own (AT&T, Sprint, etc). And: those American carrier phones are “special” when it comes to OTA (Over The Air) updates, since they are limited to (often) their own network and/or country. Which means that if you imported an AT&T phone to India, you might never get any updates OTA but have to download it from HTC USA (only for certain carrier phones, Verizon phones are a NO go).

So, how do I get my CID?

That part is actually pretty simple, just install Simple CID Getter and it will tell you. Easy, huh?

Simple CID Getter
Developer: Andreas Korb
Price: Free
  • Simple CID Getter Screenshot
  • Simple CID Getter Screenshot

A few common American Carrier CID’s

  • AT&T CWS__001
  • Sprint:  SPCS_001
  • T-Mobile US: t-mob010
  • Verizon: VZW__001

Those phones from those carries above should be avoided if you’re in Europe/Africa/Asia/etc. You will NOT get updates OTA and hardware will differ from a European/Asian/etc phone.

For a regular unbranded/unlocked HTC phone (the CID tends to start with HTC__), updates tends to go out by region. Exception is American Developer/Unlocked versions that uses a BS_US001 CID.

For European network branded phones (O2, EE, etc), updates will always/often be a little later than the regular unlocked version since that network needs to add their bits to the update first.

And, in some countries (Africa, Asia, etc) it’s in some parts common with phones imported from various places on the globe. So, you can sit next to a friend that just got the new Lollipop 5.0.1 update on his One M8 (since it’s a CID intended for South East Asia) while your phone doesn’t find any updates since you’ve got the UK variant (HTC__001) where the update haven’t gotten live yet.

It’s not that hard if you just check around a bit.