Just bought a "device only" AT&T iPhone from the apple store. Unlocked?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by spaceballl, Sep 21, 2013.

  1. spaceballl macrumors 68030

    spaceballl

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #1
    Hi there! Question... I'm currently an AT&T customer. I just purchased a "device only" AT&T from the apple store at full price. Last year when I did that, it was unlocked... The employee told me that this phone would be locked to AT&T, but I'm a bit confused as I paid the full "device only" price. I travel internationally a fair bit and I also may switch to t-mobile at some point so unlocked is important to me... It is still sealed in the box so I can take it back if I made a bad purchase. Thanks!!!
     
  2. Col Ronson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #2
    the specialists dont know it, or theyre lying. But take the phone home, hook it up to your computer, and restore it on itunes (blank restore, not restore from another backup) and you'll get the congrats its unlocked message.

    I did it with my AT&T 5S i bought yesterday.
     
  3. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #3
    It's unlocked. Remove it from the box and connect it to iTunes. You will see the unlock message.
     
  4. spaceballl thread starter macrumors 68030

    spaceballl

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    Nov 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #4
    Great. That's what I figured..... Can anyone else confirm? I'll respond to this thread in about 45 minutes with my results!
     
  5. pugnut macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 1, 2007
    #5
     
  6. mrbrown macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2004
    Location:
    Ozark, Missouri
    #6

    Even if it is not, since you bought it on at no commitment pricing, AT&T will unlock it according to their iPhone unlock policy.
     
  7. TriHFH macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2007
    #7
    The other users are correct. It's unlocked. I did it yesterday. It won't be unlocked immediately -- you have to go into iTunes and "Restore iPhone" to factory settings.
     
  8. spaceballl thread starter macrumors 68030

    spaceballl

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #8
    Thanks, everyone. I wish the reps were a bit more educated on this. I think by "AT&T" they just mean has an AT&T SIM card in there. I didn't even need to restore it... As soon as I plugged it in, it congratulated me on having an unlocked iPhone. Now back to pondering the switch to T-Mobile for worse service w/ better pricing.....
     
  9. KKSigs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2010
    #9
    I can confirm that a device only 5s will be unlocked
     
  10. okwhatev macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2005
    #10
    I think it's absolutely terrible that the Apple Store isn't clear on this. There was a poor girl who was sent to get an iPhone for her boss and this Apple Store employee literally yelled at her saying "WE DO NOT SELL IPHONES WITHOUT A 2 YEAR CONTRACT AND NEVER HAVE". Not only is that a blatant lie, but it's a pathetic lie. I'm not sure what crazy agenda the Apple Store employee had in mind by telling a customer this, but the girl burst into tears since she had been waiting 10 hours in line. I assured her that if you buy a device-only AT&T phone it would be unlocked, but it killed me that there was an uncertainty that was made worse by the arrogance and unknown factor that basically no one in the Apple Store could confirm or deny. This is what makes people absolutely crazy. They should have clear and defined rules to these things. We're talking about devices that cost hundreds upon hundreds of dollars.... just short of $1000 for the 64GB models. We should be ASSURED they can be used on any GSM carrier without trouble if they in fact can be.
     
  11. adityokusumo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #11
    Hi All, im currently at US for business trip. I want to buy iphone 5S to be used in my home country, Indonesia. Yesterday I went to apple store here in kansas city but they said the unlocked version is not released yet. Now I read this, how I supposed to ask the guy at apple store if I could pay full price and get device only iphone 5S. Are all apple store employee familiar with device-only terms?
     
  12. Akack macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2011
    Location:
    USA
    #12
    Do NOT say you want to buy an UNLOCKED 5S since the employees are trained to say that unlocked 5S are not avail for sale.

    Just make sure the 5S GSM model A1533 that you can buy in the USA is compatible with the carriers in Indonesia.

    To make life easier only buy direct from an Apple Store:

    -go to Apple
    -say you want to buy a "device only at full price"
    -you can choose either ATT, TMobile, Verizon (do NOT get the Sprint version)

    -all 3 carriers mentioned if purchased from Apple at full price will be unlocked but not advertised that way
     
  13. adityokusumo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #13
    Hey thanks for the answer. I check the spec of A1533 in gsmarena and verify the 2G and 3G band is compatible with freq. Band in Indonesia.. other than that, anything else that I should check?

    I will give it a try this evening, after I get it I should connect it to iTunes then do restore to factory setting to get it unlocked, is that right? Anybody seen tutorial for those step?
     
  14. Akack macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2011
    Location:
    USA
    #14
    All I did was connect the 5S using the included SIM card into iTunes and saw the "unlock" message right away. If you don't see it then you can do the factory reset via iTunes.
     
  15. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #15
    Just FYI, $2 to swiftunlocks.com will unlock an AT&T 5s. That's the "wait a few hours" price, add more $$ for faster turnaround.

    I unlocked my contract upgrade AT&T 5s a week after buying it so I could check out T-Mobile service.
     
  16. Satnam1989 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2011
    Location:
    Illinois
    #16
    I think now the reps should be educated regarding the Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile iPhone 5C/5S's as they support a high number of 3G(4G) + LTE bands. However I think just scrolling through these threads and the amount of reassurance people need, Apple probably prohibits its employees from assuring people anything except the carrier they are purchasing the phone for.

    When one buys a iPhone 5C/5S for full price from Apple Store or any other retailer (exception of Sprint), the iPhone is Factory Unlocked (Note Verizon 5C/5S come Factory Unlocked not due to being paid full price but bc of the FCC ruling thankfully when they sold Verizon the 700MHz LTE network)
     
  17. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #17
    There is no need to connect it to iTunes if they sell it to you device-only at the Apple Store. Just plug in any SIM card and turn it on. Connect to a wi-fi network and it will activate. That's what I did when I bought a Verizon iPhone 5s device-only and inserted my AT&T SIM card.
     
  18. adityokusumo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #18
    I checked at http://iphone-check.herokuapp.com/?zip=66212&color=silver&provider=att and it said apple store at Omaha have AT&T 16GB silver iPhone 5S. I couldn't book it online so i will drive there on Saturday and hope they still have it and i'll able to purchase it 'device-only' at full price. I hope Apple won't change the policy and start to prohibit people buying 'device-only' iphone.

    After that i will give it a try, inserting my prepaid T-mobile SIM card and connect it to iTunes.

    Unfortunately i don't think a tourist like me could buy a contract bonded phone.. any thoughts?

    Nice info, i hope i could get 16gb silver iphone 5s this weekend..

    Hey Verizon is CDMA isn't it? How could you get it work at AT&T network which is GSM network? CDMA in Indonesia is not well developed so i only want iPhone that works at GSM network. Btw my provider in Indonesia use GSM 900/1800 MHz band and 3G/HSDPA 1900/2100 MHz. What you guys in US use? my Lenovo S880 that i brought here is unable to catch the 3G signal. I only got 2G signal (EDGE). My Lenovo 3G is working at 900/2100 MHz frequency only.

    It's killing me since i bought a prepaid internet plan that cost me ~$70 which allow me to tether the internet connection but i only got 2G speed! huff that's my bad since i ASSuming..

    One more question, what's the policy of returning phone to Apple store? say the AT&T didn't work at T-Mobile network means it's not unlocked. Could i return it to apple store and get my money back?
     
  19. JOSE891 macrumors 6502a

    JOSE891

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2012
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    #19
    I'm pretty sure you don't have to restore the iPhone with iTunes anymore just to unlock it. Or at least this was true with a few of my friends iPhone 5S's I unlocked with a 3rd party.
     
  20. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #20
    You misunderstand.

    My point was that if you buy an AT&T phone at full price and it turns out to be locked, then you should be able to easily unlock it. You would of course want to check before leaving the country (so you can return just in case).

    I cited my experience with a known locked phone being unlocked as reassurance that the unlock worked. I did not suggest buying a subsidized phone.
     
  21. foobi macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2012
    #21
    WTF.. So we can buy unlocked phones at Apple Store. Lets take a trip to USA :)
     
  22. Col Ronson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #22
    Sigh. This has been discussed 50,000x. the verizon iphone has an unlocked sim card slot. It is a world phone in every sense of the meaning, so it will work on most networks worldwide (GSM, not CDMA). The ATT/TMo/Verizon phones are the same exact model

    [​IMG]

    you can return your phone to the apple store for WHATEVER reason you want ;)
     
  23. adityokusumo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #23
    Thanks for the information!

    I got you now, so if it's locked i'll try your suggestion. Thanks

    All hail USA!

    Sorry for that, thanks for explain it to me for the 50,001 times. appreciate it.. So it will work on any GSM network worldwide but it won't work at all CDMA network? Then i have more opportunity to get one. Is there any forecast when Apple will restock the gold one? I'll leaving Friday next week..

    huh, what a generous company. If i end up returning it i will try to give ridiculous reason then.. i'm sure somebody here already try that :D
     
  24. adityokusumo macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2013
    #24
    Question

    For those who bought iPhone 5S AT&T/T-Mo/Verizon, could you please go to http://iphoneimei.info/ and put your phone IMEI then share with us what the result? my friend told me the site will tell you whether your phone is Factory Unlock or Software Unlock..
     

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