iPhone 5s unlock on AT&T

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by gaanee, Aug 19, 2014.

  1. gaanee macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    #1
    I am looking to unlock my 5s for international travel, it's on 2 year contract with At&t. I tried sending unlock request which did not work because of the contract.
    I read in one of the threads here that one can temporarily put friend's SIM card, restore the phone and then ask unlock from friend's account who is not in contract. Has anyone experience with this? and also my friend has iphone 4 which I think uses micro SIM. Is it possible to put her SIM card into my 5s and activate it on her account for requesting unlock?
    We already tried requesting unlock from her account with my IMIE, but it says the phone is active on another account.
     
  2. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #2
    your best bet is to call ATT and explain what is going on. They have, in the past, waived the contract requirement and unlocked phones for good long term customers.
     
  3. gaanee thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    #3
    I had already talked to At&t rep and was told that they will unlock after the contract is over or paying ETF, which is also not a good option since it does not reduce monthly payments and I would like to continue with At&t after coming back. So that's why looking for other options for unlocking.
    Why do they tie up unlocking with contract. Unlocking doesn't waive you from making monthly payments, so they are not going to lose money, on the other hand, they might lose the customer during the renewal.
     
  4. nostresshere macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    #4
    Maybe paying the ETF will be worth it.

    Do you have multiple lines on your account?

    The data sharing plans discount for paid off phones.
     
  5. rsmith83 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2009
    #5
    I just had a thread about this last week, and I hate to tell you, but they made no exception for me. The ETF is $325, minus $10 for each month you've been on contract. So for me it was 10 months, making the ETF $225. I opted to pay it.

    To do this, you have to call AT&T customer service, tell the rep you want to pay the ETF and unlock the phone but keep your line of service open, and they will manually open a case for you, take a credit card over the phone for the ETF, and email you once the process is complete. You then backup and restore your iPhone through iTunes, and once restored you'll get the message that the phone is unlocked.

    If you go to a corporate store in person and request the same service, they'll tell you it cannot be done because their only means of collecting an ETF is by simultaneously canceling your line of service. I obviously didn't want to do this because I plan to continue using the number, but the store claimed it was the only way to pay the ETF. When I called AT&T customer service they confirmed that it was something that had to be requested over the phone because the case has to be opened manually with their backend support.

    You can also buy a cheap, used iPhone that's already unlocked, but since I wanted to take my phone with all my contacts/data/etc. I opted to just pay the $225 and be done with it.
     
  6. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #6
    Or pay for an imei unlock for it without chasing AT&T.
     
  7. gaanee thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    #7
    Which are reliable unlock sites and how much do they charge?
    As I mentioned above, if I put my friend's SIM card and restore then does my 5s now gets activated on her account and can she then request unlock using 5S IMIE and her phone number?
     
  8. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #8
    No, even if your put obamas sim inside AT&T will not unlock it unless the contract it's tied into is up.
    You can purchase an imei unlock for it for around $30-40 I think.
    Look on eBay or swiftunlocks and chronic unlocks are popular also I heard.
     
  9. gaanee thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    #9
    So, is the unlock tied with the IMIE and not the phone number requesting it? Also, just for my info.. I see people selling their phones within contract, so how does that work? Does contract locked phone work with a different SIM on the same network?
     
  10. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #10
    The IMEI unlock sold by gray marker vendors is not done officially by the carrier but by others who have access to enter imei's into the AT&T/Apple iphone database.
    So its going around the official carrier and paying a 3rd party middle man to do the dirty work;)
    About people selling contract locked iphones Im not sure. They might be blacklisted from the carrier if the contract is not fulfilled or the ETF not paid in full. You'd have to ask them for more details.
     
  11. iOz macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2014
    #11
    Swiftunlocks is a perfect solution. Choose the AT&T guaranteed 100% success $45.
    Just used them ordered on a Sunday afternoon and the iPhone 5S was unlocked on Tuesday morning. After Labor Day. So it was incredibly fast and relatively cheap. Link below is the one you want.

    https://www.swiftunlocks.com/unlock/premium-at-t-iphone-5s-or-5c-guaranteed-method-100-success
     
  12. iluvbeer99 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    #12

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