Wait can Verizon iPhone 5 work with any carrier?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by theuserjohnny, May 17, 2013.

  1. theuserjohnny macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    I'm confused I thought that since Verizon was CMDA it would not work with any other carries other than them and Sprint.

    So why is it I'm reading about how the Verizon one is GSM unlocked?

    Right now Verizon is offering the iPhone 5 for $99 with the contract and my parents are due for an upgrade. So could they upgrade to the iPhone 5 hand it to me and then would I be able to put in a nano-sim for elsewhere and use the provider (T-Mobile for example).

    Sorry if this has been asked before! But any help in explaining would be really helpful!

  2. hbah427 macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2008
    Yep, VZW iPhone 5s are unlocked for any GSM carrier out of the box. I went to Europe and popped in local SIMs with no hassle at all.
  3. beeinformed macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2010

    Verizon's iPhone 5 does have GSM bands (GSM/EDGE 850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz), so if you're in a T-Mobile refarmed area (where you can get 3G speeds), you'll be okay. Unfortunately, Verizon's phone does not have T-Mobile's AWS 1700/2100 bands as well their LTE bands.

    Verizon's phone, I believe comes unlock but I think your best bet if you want T-Mobile as your carrier, is to purchase their iPhone version.
  4. ipaclansite macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2011
    Some regulatory thing with Verizon forced them to have their iPhone 5's unlocked. So yes, the Verizon iPhone 5 is unlocked and can be used with any GSM carrier.

    The catch is the data bands. They are different from the actual GSM unlocked versions. If you take a look at the Apple site, http://www.apple.com/iphone/specs.html

    The GSM A1428 is the official GSM unlocked/AT&T/T-Mobile version, while the CDMA A1429 is the Verizon/Sprint model. The major differences are the LTE bands, your Verizon iPhone will not be compatible with AT&T or T-Mobile's LTE network.

    The Verizon iPhone also cant access T-Mobile's HSPA+ network aka their original 4G network. It'll take the refarmed 4G fine however if there's service in your area.

    International LTE networks from what I heard is better with the Verizon iPhone as there are more bands covered.
  5. theuserjohnny thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jul 7, 2012
    AHH! There is the catch that I'm looking for!

    Hmm, right now I might try my chances with an iPhone 5s. My parents have no desire of getting a smartphone and they're both due for an upgrade so I can wait it out. I have an ATT iPhone 5 from my Aunt but that isn't until August and by then I'd expect the iPhone 5s to be rolling with news.

    If it works out I'd rather go with a 99 dollar iPhone 5 (or whatever the price for a iPhone 5s is) than pay 700 or so for an unlocked on from Apple.

    I just found this interesting because for as long as I could remember this wasn't possible! Didn't realize this was starting with the iPhone 4s.


    That's what I was worried about, hmm I wonder if the iPhone 5s would include this with the Verizon version (doubtful, but hey who knows).
  6. ipaclansite macrumors member

    Jul 31, 2011
    I think this started with the iPhone 5, not the 4S. The 4S even though is a world phone, it is still locked to a carrier (if you bought it from a carrier) and you will need to ask the carrier to unlock it. The new regulatory laws for Verizon didn't take effect until the release of the 5.

    You'd best stick with the AT&T iPhone 5, if you got it pre-Tmobile release. You'll still be able to receive the LTE band with it.
  7. lordofthereef macrumors G5


    Nov 29, 2011
    Boston, MA

    This really all depends on whether we see a multi banded LTE radio that essentially supports all the bands in question. I am unaware of one in existence (doesn't mean it isn't real, I don't pay attention to that end of hardware news). Assuming its not a reality today, I'd think the next iPhone will omit it seeing as how production would need to start soon if it hasn't already.

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