Tmobile 5s same as AT$T 5s?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by spinedoc77, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. spinedoc77 macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #1
    I was looking at the bands supported here:
    http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/

    It seems that they lump together the Tmobile and AT&T models into one model, Model A1533 (GSM). Are they the same exact phone? I'm on AT&T, but would love to order a full price phone from Apple, but the only option they have is for the Tmobile one.

    On the same note, according to the same chart the Verizon one seems to have all the same bands as well, does that mean I can use it on AT&T, with the option in the future to use it on Verizon?
     
  2. DarkSel macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    #2
    They're exactly the same phone. Assuming you order the T-Mobile contract-free directly from Apple, it will be unlocked for AT&T.
     
  3. spinedoc77 thread starter macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #3
    Gah, I wished I ordered one at 3am on launch day, I didn't know that. Thanks.
     
  4. spinedoc77 thread starter macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #4
    Asked at the apple store today and they said the difference is that the t mobile one is NOT unlocked and ATT won't activate it. They said it would be a couple of months until they sold a fully unlocked one, although of course the regular ATT one works, when they get some stock.
     
  5. Col Ronson macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 7, 2008
    #5
    theyre either lying or they dont know what theyre talking about. Everyone here who has bought a Tmobile 5S at the apple store has said it is unlocked.

    An ATT phone bought "device only" and then restored on iTunes will become unlocked as well, but most employees dont know this and/or don't advertise it.
     
  6. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #6
    There's a long thread on this topic. I think that there's some misinformation going on. There eventually will be an "unlocked" version for sale in the US. But it is exactly the same phone that is sold for AT&T and T-Mobile (it's been that way since the silent update of the 5 when T-Mobile was added). However, T-Mobile was given some phones that it locked to its network. Those are the ones you get if you buy it from T-Mobile directly.

    However, if you get a full-priced phone from Apple, whether it's AT&T or T-Mobile, it will be unlocked. Not all associates know that, partly because it's unpublicized since Apple promises each carrier a certain number of units will be "theirs." Launch weekend is when carriers try to sign new customers or sell to upgraders.
     
  7. Col Ronson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #7
    Yup. Key word is bought at the apple store. If you buy a tmobile 5S at a tmobile store, 99% likely that its locked to them.

    I was going to buy a full price Verizon just in case they ran out of ATT, those are already factory SIM unlocked.
     
  8. cnotes2019 Suspended

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2013
    #8
    Doesn't matter where you buy them, besides sprint, all others are unlocked via iTunes


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2
     
  9. spinedoc77 thread starter macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #9
    That's awesome, thanks guys. So I'm safe buying it from Apple.com online.

    Just out of curiosity, is the Verizon one unlocked as well? Can I use the Verizon one on AT&T, and will it have all the same bands/functionality as the AT&T one?
     
  10. andyx3x macrumors 65816

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    Mar 1, 2011
    #10
    Even if you buy it full price at the T-Mobile store it will always be locked to them?
     
  11. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

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    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #11
    Buy full price "device only" directly from the apple retail or online store and it will be unlocked. On the online store look for the full price T-Mobile version.

    The Verizon version is GSM unlocked and will work on Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and any GSM international carrier.

    If you buy full price no contract from a T-Mobile store, it will be locked to T-Mobile. You have to contact customer service and ask them to unlock. The downside is they have a list of requirements to unlock. Account in good standing, customer for 40 days and some other nonsense. You're better off buying full price from the Apple store and having an unlocked version out of the box.
     
  12. spinedoc77 thread starter macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2009
    #13
    So just to make sure, the Verizon one has all the same exact bands/frequencies/LTE, etc as the ATT version? I'd be tempted to get that one if in the future I ever decide to switch to Verizon.
     
  13. Truefan31 macrumors 68040

    Truefan31

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    Aug 25, 2012
    #14
    Yeah I don't see why people just don't get the verizon one since it has cdma and gsm support
     
  14. OneMike macrumors 601

    OneMike

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    Oct 19, 2005
    #15
    They don't know what they are talking about. I just asked when I was in line and at least the people at Apple I spoke with were honest enough to say they don't know. That said I just got the AT&T full price and it's unlocked. Since they don't even pull up your account or ask for any verification when buying full price. I don't see a point in getting anything other than AT&T if using on GSM.
     
  15. spinedoc77 thread starter macrumors G3

    spinedoc77

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    Jun 11, 2009
    #16
    I didn't see it mentioned, but the Verizon one is unlocked if purchased full price online and/or an apple store?
     
  16. cnotes2019 Suspended

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    Aug 17, 2013
    #17
    Yes.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk 2
     
  17. KPOM macrumors G5

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    Oct 23, 2010
    #18
    Yes. I was able to get one myself at an Apple Store in Chicago today. I can confirm it works with AT&T just fine. I just needed to tell the associate to sell it to me device only.
     
  18. lordofthereef macrumors G4

    lordofthereef

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    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #19
    Here is the deal. Verizon, by law, CAN NOT sell a phone locked so long as it has an LTE radio in it. Why? You can thank Uncle Sam (literally). US allowed Verizon LTE frequencies with the stipulation that they can't lock the phone. So, anything Verizon that is iphone 5 or beyond will be unlocked.
     
  19. Truefan31 macrumors 68040

    Truefan31

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    Aug 25, 2012
    #20
    So even if you put verizon service on it you could still put AT&T on it as well
     
  20. 1twojay macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    Location:
    Earth
    #21
    So just to clear things up:

    Verizon device only : unlocked
    AT&T device only : unlocked
    T-Mobile device only : unlocked

    Does it matter if its purchased at an apple store or not? Just need to confirm
    also do you have restore before they all unlock or is it plug n play?
     
  21. Coleman2010 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2010
    Location:
    NYC
    #22
    Yes it matters if it is from an Apple store. If you purchase it full price from a carrier it will be locked to their network. You have request a unlock from the carrier. Buy from an apple store.

    Buy "device only" from an apple store, unbox and plug into iTunes. You will see the unlock message.
     
  22. BruiserB macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2008
    #23
    For the person who was told the wrong info at the Apple store, I think they are being told to say the phones are carrier locked, or that they don't know. I think the carriers want to discourage this so Apple is half heartrdly playing along.

    The lady handing out tickets at the store I went to was saying "there are 'officially' no unlocked 5S's available." She made certain that the twinkle in her eye was visible as she said 'officially.' When asked specifics, she said she had heard reports that people who are buying 'device only' are finding they are unlocked, but that neither she nor Apple could guarantee that.

    I was in line for a T-mobile one, and got the only one she had yesterday. I popped in a foreign SIM card I had before trying any other. It activated and roamed on AT&T. Then went back to using my T-mobile SIM.

    I hadn't thought at the time, but I guess it's true that the VZ phone would be the best to get....wider potential resale audience, works on all the same GSM and LTE frequencies, and is known to have to be carrier unlocked. Just one question for VZ phone owners....does the restriction of using data while on a call still apply even if you are using a GSM carrier SIM?
     
  23. ronaldcastillo macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2009
    #24
    Ordered a Gold 5S full priced on Apple.com. Just wanna make sure it'll work with my AT&T sim since T-Mobile is also GSM. Anyone that purchased a tmobile one can confirm this?
     
  24. BruiserB macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2008
    #25
    You will be fine.
     

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