How to unlock your phone

Unlock your phone NOW!

In most cases it is a simple process to unlock your phone. You have several options:

* As of January 26th 2013, it is illegal in the United States to unlock your phones via a third party.
Please contact your wireless provider for more information regarding their policies on phone unlocking.

What is a locked phone?

Most network operators sell "locked" phones. "Locked" means that the phone is restricted by the network operator to work only on its’ own or affiliate networks. If your existing phone is locked, you cannot use a SIM card supplied by another network provider without unlocking your phone first.

Why do Network Operators lock phones?

Network operators lock phones to create a barrier for their customers to use their phone with a different provider. When you get a phone contract, you often get the phone free or at low cost as an incentive to sign the contract. The network operator loses money on the phone when they do this, but they expect you to continue to use their network for the contract period (by which time, they would have covered the cost of the phone).

Check if your phone is locked

Your phone may be locked if you purchased it on contract or pay as you go. To check, insert a SIM card from another network into your phone and switch it on. If you are able to view the menu then your phone is unlocked. If the phone does not allow you to view the menu, but displays an error message such as "Phone restricted", "SIM not valid", or "SIM card not accepted, insert correct SIM card", your phone is most likely locked to your network provider. If you are not sure, contact your provider and ask them if your mobile phone is locked or not.

Learn More

For further information on laws applied by different countries to SIM/Network locking, refer to Wikipedia.