Can I purchase SIM free

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by peckerhead, Sep 27, 2015.

  1. peckerhead macrumors member

    peckerhead

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    #1
    I am not a US resident, but I was looking to purchase an iPhone 6S in the US for use in my country. Can I go into an Apple retail store in the US and pay in full for an unlocked A1688 model without a contract for a US network carrier (SIM free).

    I see they offer a SIM free option for the iPhone 6 but can't see such an option for the iPhone 6S. But I read that they were unlocked, and surely if you pay for it in full, there shouldn't be the need for a carrier contract should there?
     
  2. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #2
    You can purchase a full priced T-Mobile version from the apple website or pay full price device only for any model in the Apple retail store and it will be unlocked. Go to the Apple Store and ask for a T-Mobile, Verizon or AT&T version full price device only. Connect it to iTunes and it will confirm the unlock status.
     
  3. rigormortis macrumors 68000

    rigormortis

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #3
    its my guess that the tmobile unlocked will be the "sim free" version this year. last year you had to wait 90 days before the sim free came out. i think the only difference between today's iPhone and the iPhone you get in 90 days is some serial # list of "compatible network phones" that verizon and sprint keep.

    last year it was gsm+cdma unlocked with verizon not liking the serial # and sprint not accepting the phone because of the spark channels, then the sim free one came out, verizon and sprint liked the serial #. this one had the spark channels.

    last month verizon said we don't care anymore and we will treat any iPhone 6 or 6+ as a compatible verizon device

    this year there is just one gsm+cdma model type, and that one has spark. so if sprint doesn't like the meid , then they are jerks. the other model is a AT&T only model with no cdma , i doubt that one will be the sim free version
     
  4. peckerhead thread starter macrumors member

    peckerhead

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    #4
    Sounds good. I take it that they'll sell it to me without having to sign up for a T-Mobile service plan?
     
  5. Chatter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2013
    Location:
    Uphill from Downtown
    #5
    Yes. If you go to a store, you can buy any of the 3 models full price WITHOUT service contracts. Now, you will find someone on here who will claim otherwise :rolleyes: but just ignore them. Your bigger challenge will be finding stock!
     
  6. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #6
    There's already reports from buyers that the AT&T model supports CDMA (when used with an already activated Verizon SIM).
     
  7. sunking101, Sep 27, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2015

    sunking101 macrumors 603

    sunking101

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    Sep 19, 2013
  8. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #8
    The AT&T model is listed as supporting CDMA in Apple's spec page.
     
  9. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #9
    Good to know. Initial specs didn't show CDMA support for the AT&T model.
     
  10. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #10
    Yeah, Apple revised the page very soon after it was first published.
     
  11. Appl3FTW macrumors 601

    Appl3FTW

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2012
    #11
    Besides the physical SIM card, how Can i verify that my full price att is unlocked from Apple? I don't have any other sim right now to test.
     
  12. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #12
    The AT&T version supports CDMA. I've tried it with an active Verizon SIM. However, for whatever reason, Verizon stores still seem reluctant to "activate" non-Verizon iPhone 6s. My IMEI shows up as "incompatible" on Verizon's website lookup, and my parents could not get the Verizon store to give them a SIM card for a T-Mobile iPhone 6S. They wound up exchanging it for a Verizon iPhone 6S.
     
  13. sodaftl macrumors member

    sodaftl

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale, FL
    #13
    You can buy an AT&T 64GB iPhone 6s at "full price", which will cost you $749. When you activate it using iTunes, you will be told that your iPhone 6s was activated and unlocked with 1-2 minutes.
     
  14. RabidMacFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #14
    If you do a full restore of the iPhone with iTunes, when it first turns on iTunes will activate the phone and tell you whether it is locked or not. Here's a screenshot from my AT&T iPhone 6s purchased in full at an Apple store.

    [​IMG]

    I got a SIM card from T-Mobile for $0.99 with the promo code SIM99.
     
  15. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #15
    If you want to confirm your unlock do a firmware restore in iTunes. With the iPhone still connected run through the initial setup steps on the iPhone. You will see the congratulations you are unlocked message iTunes.
     
  16. Appl3FTW macrumors 601

    Appl3FTW

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    Nov 15, 2012
    #16
    How?
     
  17. peckerhead thread starter macrumors member

    peckerhead

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2009
    #17
    Thanks. It will be at least another 4 to 5 weeks before I am looking to make this purchase, so hopefully availability will be a bit better by that point.

    According to Apple, the AT&T model is not suitable for use in the UK. Unless I misunderstand, it is the other model that I require.
     
  18. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2006
    Location:
    Somewhere
    #18
    The AT&T one has an extra LTE band that isn't present in the other model and is only needed for use in some areas of AT&T's network. Having or not having that band won't affect you in the UK either way.

    Stock will probably still be low so go with whichever carrier they have in stock at the time.
     
  19. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #19
    You can use the AT&T model in the UK. It works on every band that the Verizon/Sprint/T-Mobile version does. Just get whatever is in stock "device only" from Apple and you'll be fine. For the most part, except for the Rose Gold, the stores have plenty of stock for all 4 carriers.
     
  20. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #20
    Connect it to iTunes and click restore to factory default.
     
  21. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #21
    It's worth pointing out you don't actually need to restore the iPhone in iTunes. It is unlocked out of the box as long as you paid full price from Apple or used the Apple Upgrade Program.
     
  22. rigormortis macrumors 68000

    rigormortis

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #22
    its not supposed to as far as i know because the AT&T model has chinese cdma
    do the reports say that they went through the AT&T unlocking process?
    do the reports say they tried to make telephone calls using CDMA?
    do the reports say it works just like an iPad cellular?
    do the reports say that it works if you turn VoLTE on?
     
  23. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #23
    1) No. I bought my phone through the Apple Upgrade Program. I had to provide my AT&T account information, but I could just as easily have bought it "device only" without the Apple Upgrade Program.

    2) Yes. It works. It supports the US bands of CDMA. I turned off LTE and was able to make a call.

    3) I'm not sure what you mean by iPad cellular. It works like a regular iPhone.

    4) Yes, VoLTE works with a Verizon SIM in an AT&T iPhone 6S.
     
  24. chrfr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    #24
    Again, the AT&T model has full CDMA support:
    http://www.apple.com/iphone-6s/specs/
     
  25. Shadowbech macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
    #25
    I reserved and purchased the AT&T 6S Plus Yesterday device only and when I plugged into iTunes, I got a message telling me that my phone is unlocked. I tested with the Verizon sim on my iPad and it works.
     

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