Sold iPhone 5 on eBay. How to help buyer activate without changing my own contract?

pound4pound

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 22, 2012
1
0
Hi,

I bought an iPhone 5 from Apple on an AT&T contract and then sold it for a profit on eBay to somebody also on AT&T. They are having a hard time with activating the device as it apparently requires my billing zip and last 4 digits of my SSN to activate. I removed the SIM card before shipping the phone. An AT&T rep told me I have to activate with my info, which will deactivate my own phone line until I go to the AT&T store and ask for a new SIM card. Is this accurate? How can I help my ebay buyer activate his new phone?

Thank you!
 

benguild

macrumors 6502a
Jul 29, 2003
821
36
Hi,

I bought an iPhone 5 from Apple on an AT&T contract and then sold it for a profit on eBay to somebody also on AT&T. They are having a hard time with activating the device as it apparently requires my billing zip and last 4 digits of my SSN to activate. I removed the SIM card before shipping the phone. An AT&T rep told me I have to activate with my info, which will deactivate my own phone line until I go to the AT&T store and ask for a new SIM card. Is this accurate? How can I help my ebay buyer activate his new phone?

Thank you!
Yeah I went through this last year. Unfortunately, there's absolutely no way around it.

The way I fixed it was by remote desktoping into their Mac using Screen Sharing and using the DVD Player App in "Always On Top" (so the window always covers other windows) to type in the information without them being able to see it.

Doing so activated my iPhone number on their phone, so I had AT&T on the other line and a new SIM Card ready for them to activate immediately on my end.

Unfortunately, SIM Cards are not reusable, so you need a new SIM for your phone.

The best thing to do is activate the new handset when you get it (next time) and then switch the working SIM into whatever handset you want to keep. After the handset is activated once it'll work forever. However, it must be activated by the original owner first to prevent theft in transit.
 

Xarthan

macrumors regular
Jul 11, 2008
154
62
The best thing to do is activate the new handset when you get it (next time) and then switch the working SIM into whatever handset you want to keep. After the handset is activated once it'll work forever. However, it must be activated by the original owner first to prevent theft in transit.
what i discovered is if you erase the settings (reset iphone), it'll bring you back to the activation screen and you'll need the same info again.
 

SavMBP15

macrumors 6502
Mar 26, 2010
371
5
You are pretty much screwed.

Best thing to do is have the person ship the phone back to you and you refund them. That is unless you want them to have some very sensitive data that they could use to hack your life 1 year from now after you forgot all about it.
 

mebc

macrumors newbie
Sep 25, 2012
1
0
what i discovered is if you erase the settings (reset iphone), it'll bring you back to the activation screen and you'll need the same info again.
Is this true even if you pull out the nano-sim ship it without one and have them go to AT&T and get a new nano-sim?
 

nicusor

macrumors newbie
Sep 20, 2012
7
0
Hi,

I bought an iPhone 5 from Apple on an AT&T contract and then sold it for a profit on eBay to somebody also on AT&T. They are having a hard time with activating the device as it apparently requires my billing zip and last 4 digits of my SSN to activate. I removed the SIM card before shipping the phone. An AT&T rep told me I have to activate with my info, which will deactivate my own phone line until I go to the AT&T store and ask for a new SIM card. Is this accurate? How can I help my ebay buyer activate his new phone?

Thank you!
I bought a 5 off eBay as well, had the original owner take out their SIM before turning on the phone and then walked over to an AT&T store and they gave me a new SIM programmed with my phone number. Easy and the SIM was free.
 

jls1986

macrumors member
Sep 24, 2012
53
0
Will this happen when I sell my 4 on eBay? I'll just need to tell them to go into an AT&T store to have it activated?
 

trixnrice

macrumors member
Aug 5, 2008
68
0
with AT&T or any sim carrier for that matter, activating an iphone has never needed that info to activate. you just insert a new sim card, and as long as they have an active account, the phone will activate. what the heck is the buyer from the op talking about. Trying to take sensitive information perhaps? lol. This has been the case since the beginning of cingular wireless, and for any phone. Iphone is no different. I just sold two att iphone 5's on ebay, buyers no issues with this at all. Sadly, At&t reps have no idea what they are talking about.
 

Mercenary

macrumors 65816
Sep 17, 2012
1,154
546
Surely you still have to pay the 24 months worth of contract fees to AT&T? And unless you sold it for a massive profit your not going to make any money from it?
 

trixnrice

macrumors member
Aug 5, 2008
68
0
Surely you still have to pay the 24 months worth of contract fees to AT&T? And unless you sold it for a massive profit your not going to make any money from it?
its called the dummy line loop hole. there's many options to go about it depending on how your account is set up, but yes, you make a significant profit. i'll just leave it at that.
 

brawl96

macrumors newbie
Jan 25, 2010
3
0
Guys, I bought an iPhone 5 with the no commitment pricing(for $750) and recently posted that to eBay. So far I haven't opened the 5 box and still using my 4S. Just to be clear, I have to open the box, take the sim card out and then ship it to him and every things good? Or should I keep it sealed and let him swap the cards(but if he doesn't swap the sims and turns it on, does my current 4S deactivate automatically, or does the buyer have to get my info?
 

SenseiPhone

macrumors regular
Jun 9, 2011
107
2
Guys, I bought an iPhone 5 with the no commitment pricing(for $750) and recently posted that to eBay. So far I haven't opened the 5 box and still using my 4S. Just to be clear, I have to open the box, take the sim card out and then ship it to him and every things good? Or should I keep it sealed and let him swap the cards(but if he doesn't swap the sims and turns it on, does my current 4S deactivate automatically, or does the buyer have to get my info?
iPhone with no commitment doesn't ask for SSN+Billing Zip Code.
SSN + Billing Zip code only required for iPhone purchased with contract / as an upgrade.
 

brawl96

macrumors newbie
Jan 25, 2010
3
0
iPhone with no commitment doesn't ask for SSN+Billing Zip Code.
SSN + Billing Zip code only required for iPhone purchased with contract / as an upgrade.
Well in that case it wasn't no commitment pricing, rather just a really expensive upgrade because I DID use my SSN and zip to purchase it. In this CSS, what do I do?
 

XboxMySocks

macrumors 68020
Oct 25, 2009
2,194
153
Unfortunately, SIM Cards are not reusable, so you need a new SIM for your phone.
Incorrect. If the provider isn't an *******, they will change which SIM is registered with your account. Most will want to make you pay for a new one.
 

brawl96

macrumors newbie
Jan 25, 2010
3
0
Incorrect. If the provider isn't an *******, they will change which SIM is registered with your account. Most will want to make you pay for a new one.
Tom, my provider is AT&T. Can you read my above comment and help me out?
Ps- nice to see you again on Mac rumors of all places.
 

XboxMySocks

macrumors 68020
Oct 25, 2009
2,194
153
Tom, my provider is AT&T. Can you read my above comment and help me out?
Ps- nice to see you again on Mac rumors of all places.
Oh hey man, no if you purchased it no commitment there will be NO Sim card in the phone. I did the exact same thing. It will ship without a SIM card.
 

ZipZap

macrumors 603
Dec 14, 2007
5,439
858
You can call ATT and ask them to clear the SIM upgrade information. They'll still extend your contract. Does not matter what phone is used as long as you pay your account.

Just understand your cheap upgrade is gone for 2 more years
 

ndn001

macrumors newbie
Jan 31, 2012
12
0
Hi,

I bought an iPhone 5 from Apple on an AT&T contract and then sold it for a profit on eBay to somebody also on AT&T. They are having a hard time with activating the device as it apparently requires my billing zip and last 4 digits of my SSN to activate. I removed the SIM card before shipping the phone. An AT&T rep told me I have to activate with my info, which will deactivate my own phone line until I go to the AT&T store and ask for a new SIM card. Is this accurate? How can I help my ebay buyer activate his new phone?

Thank you!
I read some where that getting a unlock code from ebay helps you to by pass the activation, don't know exactly how it works