Getting the Unlocked iPhone 5 from AT&T

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by NttDocomo, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. NttDocomo macrumors member

    Jul 8, 2010
    Hi everyone, on the Apple Store site, it doesn't provide the option to purchase an unlocked iPhone, so I went with calling AT&T and they said they can sell the phone with non-commitment price but the phone will still be locked. Once I received the phone I will have to submit the form for unlocking the iPhone 5 since I bought it with non-commitment price.

    Does this sound right? I really don't want to buy the phone with non-commitment price and ended up get stuck with a locked phone as I do frequently travel out of states.

    Any idea on how to get an unlocked iPhone 5, am I doing it right or there are alternative ways to get one?

    Thanks in advance for any comment and help. Have fund with your new iPhone :)
  2. cbutters macrumors member

    Jul 27, 2012
    I did exactly this... I want to use an iPhone5 on T-mobile, so I ordered a no-commitment phone from the ATT preorder, with the most basic plan possible. Once I receive the phone, I will put in a request for an unlock, and I will have to pay one month of service on ATT before cancelling....

    I am fine with paying the first month, because I have to wait for T-mobile to get nano-sims until mid-october anyways...

    Other alternatives are walking into the Apple store on or after launch day (assuming stock is available) if you buy an ATT full priced phone from the apple store without referencing an account, you should be able to walk away from the store with a completely unlocked phone.
  3. NttDocomo thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 8, 2010
    Good point cbutters, I think getting the phone from the Apple store with non-commitment pricing is the only way to get an unlocked phone.

    Buying it from AT&T with non-commitment is kind of risky as I could not imagine AT&T keep separate stocks of unlocked phone.

    But I think AT&T may also help unlocked the phone if it's purchased with non-commitment just that no one guarantees it so it's kind of risky...

    Anyhow I still ordered the phone with non-commitment pricing just to see how they goes, anyone in the same situation please feel free to PM or respond here to let us know what's your experience. Thanks.
  4. Ishimaru macrumors 6502a

    Jun 18, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Non-commitment pricing doesn't mean it's unlocked. It just means that you don't have a contract with AT&T and no subsidy to get it. They won't release unlocked phones until October or so, much like last year.
  5. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    You can request an unlock from AT&T here. It usually takes a few days.

    Yes, it's a little risky since you'll be out of the country, but you can resubmit the form any time since it's online.

    It remains to be seen whether Apple stores will sell the no-commitment phones unlocked from Day 1 like they did last year. Apparently the person at the checkout counter can enter them into a database locking them to AT&T, which would necessitate filing an online unlock request, as well.

    Note that in Canada, they are selling the unlocked ones only online, so they appear to be changing things up a bit.
  6. Roessnakhan macrumors 68040


    Sep 16, 2007
    When I got my iPhone 4S (from the Apple Store, not AT&T) last year at no-commitment pricing it was unlocked when I plugged it in to activate. Don't know if that was just a fluke or intended. It was a few days after the release of the 4S, before they started offering the factory unlocked phones some months later.
  7. Ishimaru macrumors 6502a

    Jun 18, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Could be, they've just touted non-commitment ones as locked. Probably to keep you from unlocking.

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