Purchased AT&T iPhone 5 at Apple store & it works with T-Mobile out of the box!

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by sn0warmy, Oct 8, 2012.

  1. sn0warmy macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #1
    I wanted to post my story for others who may be in a similar situation...

    After owning many generations of Android phones I decided I wanted to get back into the iPhone. However, my issue is that I refuse to switch from T-Mobile to Verizon or AT&T because I've been with them for a long time and my rates are extremely low.

    After reading a few articles, namely THIS ONE, I decided to call my local T-Mobile store to see if they received their nano sim cards yet. Much to my surprise they just received their first batch this morning.

    After hearing this great news, I decided to head up to the Apple store and pick up an ATT iPhone 5 for full retail price of $650. I was surprised when they sold it to me no questions asked because I've read that getting the Apple store to sell you the phone without providing proof of being a current Verizon or AT&T customer was next to impossible.

    After making my purchase and checking the phone for nicks/dings (found a very minor one btw) I headed straight to the T-Mobile store. When I arrived I pulled my macbook out along with the iPhone. Once word got around the store of what I was attempting to do, I had an audience of 3 sales people and 2 other customers.

    I turned the iPhone on, plugged it into the macbook and before I could even touch a thing on the mac or the phone iTunes popped up and instantly displayed the message “Congratulations, your iPhone has been unlocked.”

    Without doing anything else I unplugged the phone, popped in my new T-Mobile nano sim and after rebooting I had full 3G signal!! I've tested various phone calls, texts, picture mail, and it all works without issue.

    I've spent a few days researching and haven't found anyone who mentioned it being this easy for them. I know the Verizon one is unlocked right out of the box but from everything I read, the AT&T one should not be. Luckily, this doesn't seem to be the case.


    CLIFFS NOTES:
    - Purchased AT&T iPhone 5 for full price from Apple Store and it works with my T-Mobile nano sim without having to do anything aside from simply plugging it into my mac for 5 seconds.
     
  2. SPEEDwithJJ macrumors 65816

    SPEEDwithJJ

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    #2
    Cool. Thanks for sharing this piece of wonderful news. ;)
     
  3. JodyK macrumors 6502a

    JodyK

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Northern Atlanta suburbs
    #3
    Ooooozing with sarcasm ... OP while this might be news to you and I know your excited to share this info is def not NEW news and has been well documented on the forum. I have been on Tmobile on the iPhone 5 since launch day.
     
  4. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #4
    Ah crap! Sorry guys. I need to do a better job of searching next time.

    Glad to hear you are enjoying this twist as well.
     
  5. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #5
    Good job bro.
    But like said above its well known that all full priced AT&T iphone 5's are fully unlocked.
     
  6. CmoranRVA macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2011
  7. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #7
    Only in a few certain places in the US.
    Untill Tmobile upgrades their 3G+ network all you will get for now is 2G Edge.
     
  8. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #8
    I'm able to get 3G in Denver but edge pretty much everywhere else. The unfortunate truth is that I had similar signal with my Galaxy SIII as well. I rarely got 4G signal or even a strong 3G signal unless I was right downtown. It's just a lack of coverage around here.

    But according to T-Mobile, their LTE coverage should be readily available in the Denver metro area in Q1 of 2013. At which point this phone should pick up 4G from what I've read.
     
  9. JodyK macrumors 6502a

    JodyK

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Northern Atlanta suburbs
    #9
    Tmobile has announced that they are rolling out coverage that will take advantage of the iPhone 4 and aboves bands 3G and their HSPA+ in select markets. No LTE but anything will be better than edge speeds!

    They had said there plan was to put unlocked iPhones on display in stores with marketing material with some kind of tag line like "bring your iPhone to Tmobile" I am in the Atlanta metro area and no speed increase / coverage here yet. Also no in store marketing. The rep at the local Tmobile store says rumor is first of the year in our area. Fingers crossed!
     
  10. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #10
    I'll be happy with Tmobile 3G or even happier with HSPA+.
    I can live without LTE but cant deal with 2G edge.
    So the minute Tmobile refarms their 3G towers in my area Im seriously considering switching.
    $50 a month including taxes for unlimited texts, 3G+ data and 500 minutes.
     
  11. hNicolas macrumors 6502

    hNicolas

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Location:
    Ottawa, ON
    #11
    All AT&T phones purchased at full price are unlocked.
     
  12. Mr Hill macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2012
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #12
    Nice to hear. I'm also on T-Mobile and want to get an iPhone 5 but it seems pointless until they refarm my area for HSPA+. Don't want to pay $700 for a 2G phone. I'm surprised we haven't started getting refarmed yet. Charlotte was one of T-Mobile's first HSPA+ 21 and HSPA+42 markets.
     
  13. JodyK macrumors 6502a

    JodyK

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Location:
    Northern Atlanta suburbs
    #13
    Thanks for letting us know ... :rolleyes: wonder if you read ANY of the replies before you posted this Captain Obvious
     
  14. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #14
    Yep, the main reason why I refused to switch from T-Mobile is their low rates. Right now I'm paying $120/month after taxes for 2 lines with unlimited text, unlimited talk, and 5GB data per line.

    I priced out Verizon and AT&T and even with my company discount each of those carriers were $30+ more per month for the same or less than what I'm getting on T-Mobile.

    I'll deal with 2G in more areas to save $30+/month.
     
  15. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2008
    Location:
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    #15
    I hear you, you cant beat their prices and customer service.
    Now once they refarm their 3G network AT&T will take a big hit I think.
    On a family plan with 3 iphones will save me over $60 a month.
     
  16. sn0warmy thread starter macrumors 6502a

    sn0warmy

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2009
    Location:
    Denver, CO
    #16
    I agree. That would be huge savings for sure. I just hope they stick to Q1/Q2 for their refarm in most markets and not push it to Q3/Q4 or later. Time will tell, I suppose.
     
  17. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2005
    #17
    I wish T-Mobile would publish coverage map for 1900mhz refarm. Otherwise its left to user reports.
     
  18. jaysen macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2009
  19. PeterTran macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2012
    #19
    THIS IS THE INFORMATION I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR, FOR WEEKS! I was wondering where you lived, because all the apple stores in orange county california have none in stock... you are so lucky to find one in stores! I also have tmobile and yes, all att iphones bought at full price at an apple store are unlocked
     
  20. MuGeN PoWeR macrumors 68000

    MuGeN PoWeR

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #20
    I am unable to purchase the iphone 5 at full price at apple store in spokane. What can be done?
     
  21. PeterTran macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2012
    #21
    is it because they won't let you or is it because they dont have it in stock?
     
  22. MuGeN PoWeR macrumors 68000

    MuGeN PoWeR

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2011
    #22
    Tried apple store they say we arent selling at no commitment price. Tried online it asks for the aaccount details. Tried the Other stores like target bb and radio shack they dont have it in the stock. Can anyone tell me these stores receive iphones daily or what?
     
  23. LapsangSouchong macrumors 65816

    LapsangSouchong

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    Location:
    the burrows
    #23
    Yup.

    A question for others: Does an unlocked iphone work fully "as intended" on Tmo?

    ie:

    HPSA+?
    visual voicemail?
    imessage?
    facetime over 3G?

    Just curious, not considering changing. I had my iphone 3GS on tmo, and while it was cheap, certain things didn't quite work as intended.
     
  24. mac.cali macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2012
    #24
    I agree.
     
  25. jrz macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2012
    #25
    OK, I must have been asleep for a month- I actually had no idea a fully priced at&t iphone 5 comes unlocked right out of the box. This is almost unbelievable to me as I have been waiting for Apple to announce the unlocked phones to become available. I am a T-Mobile customer.

    My questions: Is there any risk at all of me buying an at&t phone at full price, that the phone could be locked (or if really unlocked, that it could be locked later)?

    Second: Any limitations (aside from network speed) of the iPhone 5 on Tmo?
     

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