Carrier Nightmare Trying to get 5s Unlocked

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by bkends35, Sep 17, 2015.

  1. bkends35, Sep 17, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2015

    bkends35 macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #1
    I switched carriers to ATT a few weeks ago. I have a 5s but it's locked. I want to use it until my 6s comes because my 4s is brutally slow.

    Edit: It finally got unlocked a few weeks ago. I guess they hadn't gotten the ETF yet.
     
  2. markb1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2015
    #2
    It is Apple that unlocks it. Once the carrier tells Apple that it's ok to unlock, they flag it in their database. Then next time to sync to iTunes, your phone will be unlocked.
     
  3. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #3

    Interesting, why would you need to sync to iTunes though?
     
  4. Jeff R macrumors 6502

    Jeff R

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2014
    #4
    Have you tried syncing your 5S with iTunes? That's how I unlocked my 5S after the request.

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

  5. hockeyman94 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #5

    What Carrier do you have?
     
  6. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    Actually I have not. I pretty much never sync via iTunes. I'll try that after work.
     
  7. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #7
    The phone is locked to us cellular.
     
  8. zone23, Sep 17, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015

    zone23 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 10, 2012
    #8
    I once wanted my AT&T phone unlocked and got tired of begging them so I used an unlock service. Still took a couple days but got it done.

    Edit:

    I'm not see a unlock service for us cellular.
     
  9. noobinator macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #9
    Syncing in itunes does nothing except tell you it's unlocked. All you really need to do is try another sim, and possibly reboot.
     
  10. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #10
    That's what I've always thought. I try my att sim everyday, still invalid.
     
  11. aneftp macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2007
    #11
    Is US Cellular CDMA? I know the iPhone 5S (ATT/Tmobile/Verizon) all are the same. But maybe the iPhone 5S with US cellular is like Sprint iPhone 5S where Sprint locks down the phone like crazy domestically?

    aka, iphone 5S have both GSM/CDMA/LTE bands. But Sprint locks down the phone domestically (but Sprint relaxed their policy earlier this year).

    So not sure how US Cellular approaches their unlocked policy.
     
  12. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    #12
    Had my iPhone 6 unlocked by AT&T when I requested it. I put in a request online and it was done in 10 minutes. Sent me instructions that I had to restore my phone and after I hooked it back up to iTunes it would say "unlocked".
     
  13. mb2008 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    #13
    From US Cellular website (they are CDMA):

    "What is the procedure for unlocking my device?
    1X and 3G eligible devices may be unlocked at company owned or agent operated stores or by calling us at 888-944-9400. Because of the difficulty in unlocking some of our 4G devices you must bring these devices to a company owned store and we will either unlock the device for you or send it to a vendor who will perform the task and then have the device returned to the store. We hope to expand the capabilities of unlocking 4G devices to other distribution locations in the near future. You can call us at 888-944-9400 or your local U.S. Cellular store to determine the closest location to you that can handle your unlocking request. Your device may already be unlocked so be sure to check the unlocking status for your device listed above or by giving us a call. There is no charge for unlocking an individual device but U.S Cellular does reserve the right to charge non-customers a reasonable fee for any bulk requests for unlocking eligible devices.

    How long will it take to have my eligible device unlocked?
    Most devices can be unlocked on the spot but some 4G devices will need to be sent to an outside vendor to have the task performed. If the device needs to be sent to an outside vendor we will have the request processed as soon as is practical but you should plan on at least 3 or 4 days before the device can be unlocked and returned to the company owned store that processed your request."

    This indicates you have to bring in a 4G device?
     
  14. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #14
    Honestly US cell customer service sucks. I went into the store and they said there was nothing they could do so I should go to apple. I went to apple and they told me to go to us cell. I called us cell tech support and they can supposedly send in a request, which is what I've done, twice now.

    I know us cell is CDMA and normally their phones won't work with GSM networks, but the A1453 model 5s I have is the GSM model, it also has CDMA radios. It is internationally unlocked, I've used it on EE and 3, both GSM european carries without a problem. The device is locked domestically though.
     
  15. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #15
    It A1453, so it works on GSM networks, I've used on european GSM carrier EE and 3 without issue. Att even confirmed it works on their network.

    The phone is unlocked internationally but locked domestically.
     
  16. noobinator macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #16
    Did you buy the phone used? Maybe it IS unlocked but blacklisted on AT&T for nonpayment.
     
  17. Shadowbech macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2011
  18. bkends35 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    bkends35

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    USA
    #18
    Nope, bought it new about 2 years ago. If I go a IMEI look up site it just says "us cellular LTE policy, locked"
     
  19. TigerFist macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2015
    #19
    Instead of syncing with iTunes, you can also reset the network settings. This won't delete anything, so don't worry about that.
     

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