Used iPhone 5c, invalid SIM activation. Help!

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by nmwald1, Jan 2, 2015.

  1. nmwald1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2015
    #1
    Hi, I recently bought a used Iphone 5c off of ebay. It was listed as having a bad esn with sprint and came with no sim. I just plan to use the phone mainly for the wifi features, no calling so it's no problem to me that the "phone" part of it wouldn't work right now. However when I got it I reset it and now it will not let me activate it without a sim card. I went to walmart and bought one of their Family Mobile nano sim cards (Through T-Mobile) and was assured this would work but when I put it in it says it is an invalid sim card. Is there a way around this, do I need a specific sim card from a specific carrier? Any help much appreciated. Thanks in advance!
    Nathan
     
  2. nickprete11 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2012
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    #2
    Sprint phones are never unlocked. You'll need a Sprint SIM.
     
  3. nmwald1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2015
    #3
    Great. Is that something I can buy in a store like the Walmart thing or do I have to go on ebay again for one? Thanks.
     
  4. eyoungren, Jan 2, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2015

    eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #4
    Either Apple or Sprint could give you one if you were a Sprint customer. Not being a Sprint customer though I don't know what they could do for you.

    Sprint has two different SIMs for the iPhone. The iPhone 5 SIM (SIMGLW406R) is paired with the 5 and you cannot use the phone without it. It won't work in an iPhone 5c/5s/6 or 6+.

    The SIM for the 5c/5s/6 and 6+ is a different part number (SIMGLW416C) and can be rotated between those models but not with an iPhone 5.

    Hope that helps.
     
  5. nmwald1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2015
    #5
    Yeah, I've spent the day buying activation kits for everything I could find and none of them worked. All of the sims were not authorized. I couldn't find a sprint or a verizon one though. I did go to the sprint store and they weren't interested unless they could sell me something, which it turned out they couldn't. I'm at a loss.
    Thank you though for your help.
     
  6. nmwald1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2015
    #6
    Hi again! Well I got the guy at the Sprint store to put a sim card in my phone just long enough to activate it. Which is great. Everything is working perfectly except now I have the dreaded "imessage activating" problem. I've tried turning imessage on and off, signing in with my apple id. Should this be a problem? Does imessage not work on the iphone 5 without a sim? I thought it was just connected to your apple account.
     
  7. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #7
    Can't answer that. I can relate my experience with my sister's iPhone 3GS though. She gave it to me as a Christmas gift, but it was AT&T and I'm on Sprint so I used it only on WiFi.

    Had no issues with iMessage using an email address through my Apple ID. Of course, I could not send any iMessages off WiFi, but 99% of the places I used the phone at had WiFi.

    However, I made my sister leave her old AT&T SIM in the phone so maybe that was the difference. IDK.
     
  8. nmwald1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2015
    #8
    I think that's it. I think it needs some kind of sim card in there. Which in my case would have to be any kind of sprint sim. Which brings me full circle because imessage is what I use the most :) I basically use it obviously as a itouch. Wish I'd just stuck with the iphone 4s :/
     

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