iPhone 5 IMEI not in carrier's database

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
So I just bought an iPhone 5 from a friend and tried to activate it. He bought it from someone else and that someone used at&t. He then restored the phone and tried to activate it with a at&t sim(I think he used the same person's sim) but it didnt activate. I bought it from him for cheap($150) and that it was gonna be easy to unlock (unlock fusion and such). I haven't tried to unlock it yet, and I tried to activate it with the at&t sim. Gave me thesame message "This iPhone is not currently setup to work with carrier you're attempting to use. Please insert another SIM card from a supported carrier or request that this iPhone be unlocked". I then looked at the imei number and it starts with 99. I assumed that it's a sprint iPhone since verizon iPhones are already unlocked. I wanted to make sure so I chatted with a sprint support person and gave him the imei but he told me that the iPhone doesn't show up in their database, thus it's not a sprint iPhone. I then called verizon and at&t and they both told me the same thing. the iPhone is not in their databases. I finally called apple and asked if they can identify what carrier the iPhone is and one person told me it doesn't show what carrier. Then he told me since the phone has AppleCare+, he will direct me to someone who will help me unlock the iPhone. The next person was very rude and didn't let me tell her my situation. She said that apple doesn't unlock phones and that only carriers do. She asked what carrier I want to use it on and I told her Tmobile. She said go to Tmobile and they will unlock it. I just got back from there and they told me they don't unlock the iPhone and probably didn't understand my story.
I would like some help guys I really don't know what to do. Thanks.
 
Last edited:

MrMacMack

macrumors 6502a
Oct 24, 2012
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If you have AppleCare+ on the phone then the purchase may have been worth it. Once you do the above then you'll know who the carrier is and where to go from there.
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
The iPhone is on the activation screen so I can't access this info. I could hsve done that myself without asking ...
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
UPDATE: I called apple yesterday for 35 minutes! It turned out that the iPhone in apple's database is sprint :(. Even though sprint told me that the phone is not in their database. The apple supervisor told me there's nothing he can do and I have to talk with sprint.
Now I was thinking that since the phone has applecare+, i coupd somehow get a replacement and then set it up to whatever carrier i want. @applejuice can you confirm if this is possible? I already have a thread regarding that http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1585766
 

Applejuiced

macrumors Westmere
Apr 16, 2008
40,672
6,404
At the iPhone hacks section.
UPDATE: I called apple yesterday for 35 minutes! It turned out that the iPhone in apple's database is sprint :(. Even though sprint told me that the phone is not in their database. The apple supervisor told me there's nothing he can do and I have to talk with sprint.
Now I was thinking that since the phone has applecare+, i coupd somehow get a replacement and then set it up to whatever carrier i want. @applejuice can you confirm if this is possible? I already have a thread regarding that http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1585766
Even if you have applecare plus you will just get a replacement that's locked to Sprint.
Sorry, not much you can do besides after that sell it to a sprint user.
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
Even if you have applecare plus you will just get a replacement that's locked to Sprint.
Sorry, not much you can do besides after that sell it to a sprint user.
Did you check the other thread?
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
It's not that I dont believe you, I was just wondering if you get to choose as I read in many cases.
 

Applejuiced

macrumors Westmere
Apr 16, 2008
40,672
6,404
At the iPhone hacks section.
I thought that the carriers are the ones who choose?
The carriers choose what?
The phone you have is a sprint locked iphone.
Apples policy is when they give you a replacement you get the same model iphone, color, storage capacity and carrier lock status.
How hard is it to understand after 20 questions?
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
How hard is it to answer my question? I asked if so then why does it let you choose a carrier according to some people! You answered by that it doesnt matter. If it doesnt matter then why do they give you thr option to do so!
Anyways if you are annoyed to give a simple answer then say you don't know. Thanks anyways.
 

dictoresno

macrumors 601
Apr 30, 2012
4,205
468
NJ
How hard is it to answer my question? I asked if so then why does it let you choose a carrier according to some people! You answered by that it doesnt matter. If it doesnt matter then why do they give you thr option to do so!
Anyways if you are annoyed to give a simple answer then say you don't know. Thanks anyways.
the genius may have to select the carrier the previous phone was locked to. you can ask them on the spot if they would be willing to lock it to verizon so the sim card tray is unlocked. but i dont know if they will. as you have been told already, go and ask them. we cant answer these things for you.
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
the genius may have to select the carrier the previous phone was locked to. you can ask them on the spot if they would be willing to lock it to verizon so the sim card tray is unlocked. but i dont know if they will. as you have been told already, go and ask them. we cant answer these things for you.
Thanks and sorry if I seemed demanding. I'll try to use the mail in option that they send me a replacement and I send them back the phone maybe it would work.

----------

Do yall know how to do it online though?
 

dictoresno

macrumors 601
Apr 30, 2012
4,205
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NJ
if you do it online, you will be getting another sprint phone. if you go in person, you can plead your case.
 
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MrMacMack

macrumors 6502a
Oct 24, 2012
838
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UPDATE: I called apple yesterday for 35 minutes! It turned out that the iPhone in apple's database is sprint :(. Even though sprint told me that the phone is not in their database. The apple supervisor told me there's nothing he can do and I have to talk with sprint.
Now I was thinking that since the phone has applecare+, i coupd somehow get a replacement and then set it up to whatever carrier i want. @applejuice can you confirm if this is possible? I already have a thread regarding that http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1585766
Now that you know it's Sprint, did you call Sprint to have them unlock it? If so, what happened?
 

MrMacMack

macrumors 6502a
Oct 24, 2012
838
0
being that he isnt even a sprint customer, they probably wont unlock it for him.
Worth calling at least to confirm what their policies are. If the phone was under a contract and that contract was paid off then I don't see any reason why the phone couldn't be unlocked.
 

dictoresno

macrumors 601
Apr 30, 2012
4,205
468
NJ
Worth calling at least to confirm what their policies are. If the phone was under a contract and that contract was paid off then I don't see any reason why the phone couldn't be unlocked.
usually because the person requesting the unlock needs to be a customer of theirs in good standing. sure its worth a shot, but i believe all carriers want the request to come from their customers, not one of another carrier.
 

Applejuiced

macrumors Westmere
Apr 16, 2008
40,672
6,404
At the iPhone hacks section.
usually because the person requesting the unlock needs to be a customer of theirs in good standing. sure its worth a shot, but i believe all carriers want the request to come from their customers, not one of another carrier.
Well said.
Has to be a current customer in good standing and even then if they do unlock it then it will work outside the US with any GSM carrier.
Still will not be able to use it inside the US with any other carrier besides Sprint.
That's the way Sprint locks their iphone and its pretty sneaky making the phone useless domestically.
 

Abdu

macrumors member
Original poster
Aug 18, 2012
41
0
As I said I called apple and they said its a sprint phone. And then I called sprint and they said the phone does not exist in their database. Apple said there's nothing they can do. Any help on what I should do?