Carrier AT&T > Verizon and buy new iPhone. Which "version" (SIM free/Verizon/AT&T)?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by ribbon, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. ribbon macrumors member

    Mar 2, 2010
    I moved to the US from Europe a few months ago. I have an unlocked Phone 6s Plus that brought with me that would only work with AT&T and not Verizon. Now I'm going to buy a 7+ and I'm considering switching to Verizon (the LTE speed in New York is just awful), but I don't understand the differences of the models Apple sells: if I just go to an Apple Store and get a SIM free iPhone, does it mean that I can use it with AT&T, my SIM from my european carrier (Vodafone) and Verizon? If I get the Verizon model at the Apple Store, is it locked to that carrier, or is it compatible with AT&T?

    Thank you in advance.
  2. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    The SIM-Free iPhone 7/7+ is the same as the Verizon phone. I would just buy it as the SIM-Free model and then you'll have no hassles trying to use it with any carrier. The Verizon version is unlocked as well, but with the SIM-Free model, you'll get the tool to open the SIM tray. A very minor difference.
    The AT&T 6S Plus will work with Verizon without a problem. The SIM-Free versions of 6S/6S+ are the AT&T model. At one point, Verizon was difficult about activating a new line using a "non-whitelisted" iPhone, which is one that was sold as an AT&T phone, but if you activate the new line using any Verizon phone, even a super cheap dumbphone, you could move the SIM to the formerly AT&T iPhone and have no problems. This may be resolved by now but in any case, the limitation is not with your 6S+. You should enter the 6S+ IMEI into the Verizon site to see if it shows as compatible. If it doesn't, you may still have luck getting it activated at a Verizon store, or by calling.
  3. ribbon thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 2, 2010
    Thanks! I'll buy the SIM free then, since I assume it costs the same. As for the other thing, when I got to the US I took my 6s Plus to 2 different Verizon stores and in both of them they weren't able to make a Verizon SIM card work with my phone -- that's the reason I ended up going with AT&T.
  4. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    I missed that your 6S+ wasn't actually an AT&T model. Non-US phones may have different hardware and that could explain why it didn't work.
    If you're looking at the Verizon unlimited plan, it seems that they have a trade-in deal on 6S and 6S+, so you might check that out. I'm not sure if it would apply to a non-US model phone, though.

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3 February 13, 2017