Unlimited AT&T Data with unlocked phone

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by aes0804, Sep 22, 2015.

  1. aes0804 macrumors newbie

    aes0804

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #1
    I'm on an unlimited family data plan that has been grandfathered since the iPhone 3G. I'm thinking about getting an unlocked phone, but I want to keep my AT&T plan. Is this possible? I'd imagine that I would just need to buy an AT&T sim, but would this violate the plan? How much do the SIMs cost?

    Apologies if these are elementary questions - I'm used to my 2 year AT&T plans!
     
  2. iNinja08 macrumors regular

    iNinja08

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #2
    I'm on the Verizon grandfathered unlimited and I can just buy the phone at full price and keep my unlimited data. I figured this would be the same for ATT but cant confirm.
     
  3. FredV macrumors member

    FredV

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2011
    #3
    Do you have a recent iPhone? you should be able to pop in your sim to the new phone and it wont affect your plan.
     
  4. jav6454 macrumors P6

    jav6454

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2007
    Location:
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    #4
    If you buy your phone outright, then you don't do anything with your plan.
     
  5. aes0804 thread starter macrumors newbie

    aes0804

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #5
    Thanks everyone for your replies!
    I have a 5, but I'm planning on purchasing an unlocked 6S later this year. Would I just need to buy an ATT sim to keep it on the plan? I'm assuming if I buy it outright, then I won't be eligible for the yearly upgrade?
     
  6. aesc80 macrumors 6502

    aesc80

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2015
    #6
    First off, nice username.

    Secondly, you can always move your sim over to the 6S if you buy an unlocked version down the line. If memory serves me well, the 5 used a nanoSim, which is the same being used today. You could also buy an AT&T full price model, and Apple will simply issue you a new SIM card. Either way, you won't lose unlimited data by buying a new, full price, phone.
     
  7. appygirl82 macrumors 6502a

    appygirl82

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Location:
    Oregon
    #7
    As long as you don't leave AT&T or otherwise change your plan you are fine.

    I also have the unlimited and I have switched back and forth with devices (Android and iPhones) and staggered upgrades in between lines. I've never lost it.

    I'm doing the Apple Upgrade Plan and basically that's the same as being your own device....it won't effect the plan.
     
  8. aes0804 thread starter macrumors newbie

    aes0804

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #8
    I want to be able to use different SIMs when I travel, and I'd like to do the Apple Upgrade Plan. @appygirl82: do you have an unlocked phone? I don't really understand the relationship between unlocked and the carrier. I would think that by not entering into a contract, you would negate the plan, but it seems like that isn't the case. Can anyone explain how the two work together?
     
  9. aesc80 macrumors 6502

    aesc80

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2015
    #9
    As of right now, "unlocked" simply means the T-Mobile version of the iPhone. The AT&T model has an extra band (Band 30) that AT&T will solely use, though it hasn't rolled out. That being said, if you buy a provider phone at full price, you should be able to unlock it (after all, it's not behind a contract). So, if you have AT&T, you can buy their version with the extra band, then have it unlocked. If you don't want to have to deal with the unlocking process, then go with the current "unlocked" version.
     
  10. aes0804 thread starter macrumors newbie

    aes0804

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #10
    Thanks @aesc80 - I like your username as well.
    A few more questions...
    1) If I buy unlocked at Apple, will they be able to set it up with my ATT account or is that a process with ATT?
    2) If I buy unlocked on the Apple Upgrade plan, can I switch to a locked version after a year (if I want to get the band)?
    3) Do you know where I can find out whether or not I can get the unlocked phone and do the Apple Upgrade without losing the plan?
     
  11. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Location:
    Oregon
    #11
    Take the SIM card out of your iPhone 5 and put it in your new iPhone.

    From what I understand, the plan doesn't require you to be tied to a specific carrier. I don't think the phone under this plan will be locked. Nobody is sure on this until they are available.

    The plan is seperate from your phone and contract. You are grandfathered into the plan until you switch to something else.
     
  12. /dev/toaster macrumors 68020

    /dev/toaster

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2006
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #12
    I've had every single iPhone since the first iPhone. I am grandfathered in. There was 1 year when they switched to LTE that there was some confusion on upgrading.

    You might run into some issues there. Just be very careful. The sad fact is AT&T messes up, they can't and won't fix it. They try to do everything they can to kill off unlimited plans.
     
  13. appygirl82, Sep 23, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015

    appygirl82 macrumors 6502a

    appygirl82

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2012
    Location:
    Oregon
    #13
    @aes0804 I am currently under contract with my phone (husbands also) in which we have the unlimited. Basically as long as you don't change or cancel your service you can continue to keep it.

    Basicslly as long as the service stays active, your good to go! You can switch devices as much as you want :)

    And no my phone is not unlocked, they are AT&T phones.

    I am also doing the Apple Upgrade Plan. Going to let my contracts expire, cancel those extra lines and just keep my primary 2 lines. Then down the road I could switch carriers or whatever since phone will be unlocked.
     
  14. Le Big Mac macrumors 68020

    Le Big Mac

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #14
    Question is answered above - pay full price for the phone and put your SIM in it.

    Now, since you're on the unlimited plan, the contract price has built in a new phone every two years, which requires a two year extension. You have two choices: 1) convert to basically a month-to-month contract after your most recent 2 year period is up, but pay the same price; 2) take advantage of the subsidy your contract price includes and buy a new phone as soon as you're eligible, and then sell it new in box - taking advantage of the subsidy, but locking yourself in for another two years.
     

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