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  • Remote IMEI Unlocks Now Available for iPhone


    Reports have been trickling in the last few hours via my email, IMs, etc that there is a new remote unlocking via IMEI available for all GSM iPhones. There have been a few forum goers mention they can do it, which seems a bit shady (no actual business, no way to get money back other than trust, etc). By far the most reputable we've seen though is Negri Electronics, whom we've known for years. They've been selling unlocked phones for years, and are trustworthy good folks.

    Here's the gist of it - you pay someone $175 (that seems to be the going rate across everyone we've heard from), and send them your iPhone's IMEI. Within 24 hours, they send you an email saying it's unlocked. You then sync with iTunes, and your iPhone is unlocked. That's it. No codes to enter - you're just unlocked. It doesn't work with Verizon iPhones (they don't take a SIM card), and it doesn't work on any iPads. But any GSM iPhone - $175 for an unlock that won't care what firmware, update, or jailbreak status you're on. Just like a factory unlocked iPhone (which it basically then IS), it's unlocked for the life of the phone.

    How does it work? Well - Apple has a database already which they query when you do a sync in iTunes to check your devices lock status. That's how it works if you call your carrier and they unlock the device for you - you sync in iTunes and it is unlocked. There is a source wholesaling remote unlocks, and many in the industry suddenly today picked up the ability to do this. It would seem someone with access to this db is basically selling that access - as far as my research shows, everyone who is selling this is getting it from the same source. This could be totally sanctioned and legit, or this service may just as suddenly stop being available one day (although once you've been unlocked you'll be so forever).

    If you've got a need for this, and your carrier isn't going to do it for you - this is good news. I have not yet personally tested this, although the folks at Negri have, and my IMEI is in the queue to be unlocked, I will update this story tonight with my personal results. I would strongly recommend you stay away from random eBay folks and websites that are popping up to do this, and use Negri Electronics's service (same cost) if you're interested (no, we don't get a cut and we aren't getting anything out of recommending their service over others, ha). They've been around a decade doing this with a solid track record.

    Again, I will update this story with my personal experience sometime tonight.

    UPDATE: I received word back from Negri Electronics that my iPhone was unlocked. I synced in iTunes, and didn't get a "unlocked" message (only 60% of users do though). I am currently trying to find a non-AT&T SIM I can cut and install to verify the unlock. I do not have ultrasn0w installed on this iPhone, nor have I ever. I will update again asap when I can confirm.

    Negri Electronics has also paused the service as they have had a huge response and the source has a queue of thousands of IMEI's. Once those have been processed, the service will reopen.


    UPDATE 2: Success! I have verified my iPhone 4 is unlocked. It wasn't QUITE as simple as advertised - I wound up having to make sure I was updated to 4.3.1, and when I did iTunes told me "Congrats, your iPhone has been unlocked!" But I did no processing other than update to 4.3.1, and have verified the iPhone works on an active T-Mobile SIM. I do not have ultrasn0w installed, nor have I ever on this device. Here's a couple screenshots:

    This article was originally published in forum thread: Remote IMEI Unlocks Now Available for iPhone started by Kyle Matthews View original post
    Comments 1028 Comments
    1. dhlizard's Avatar
      dhlizard -
      Quote Originally Posted by bballcat03 View Post
      I put my order in this weekend with Wireless (see the unlocking section for his thread). He says anyone who placed an order this weekend could get a refund if they wanted.

      I'm keeping my order in, for now. I got a gevey sim today, so I'm up and running currently. And if the remote goes through, I'll already have my micro sim anyways cause of the Gevey. So I'll be set. If it is apple shutting it down, my I4 is still unlocked, and I'll save $150 that I'll blow on something else I probably don't need
      (edited)
    1. woohoo's Avatar
      woohoo -
      Maybe This can clear up confusion on unlocking:

      "factory unlocked" vs Carrier locked iPhones 1 Year, 5 Months ago Karma: 106
      Reposting my replies from philmug:

      FACTORY UNLOCKED is a misnomer. By definition, it should have been "NEVER LOCKED" iPhones since those units were actually NEVER locked, either at the factory or by Apple. Literally speaking, no iPhones are being unlocked at the factory level. Instead, unlocked iPhones simply means their serial/model number combo are NOT included in the list of serial/model numbers that are locked to a certain carrier, or CARRIER LOCKED iPhones, which is kept at the Apple servers.

      Both factory unlocked and carrier locked units still need to be activated via iTunes connected to Apple's servers prior to first use. This process is what determines if the iPhone is carrier locked or not. If it's in the clean list, then it activates whatever SIM is inserted at the time of activation. If it's carrier locked, it activates too provided a correct SIM is inserted at the time of activation. There is no unlocking done at the factory at all. And there is no difference between unlocked and carrier locked units in terms of features.

      In the case of carriers that offer unlocking, like in Australia, their iPhones are initially carrier locked, meaning the serial/model number combo is still in the Carrier Locked list at Apple servers. Now, if the customer wants his iPhone unlocked, usually for a fee, the only thing the carrier needs to do is send a request at Apple to remove the serial/model number from the list. Then it will now be "unlocked". From this moment on, no matter how many times you update the iPhone, it will now just activate regardless of the SIM that is inserted.

      If you are not sure that the iPhone you are buying is "NEVER LOCKED", tell the seller to restore the firmware to OFW and then test your Smart or Sun SIM on it. If it activates with your SIM in it, then the iPhone is "NEVER LOCKED". Another way is by looking at the Model number as I described here

      3G and 3GS unlocking is basically still the same. Before they are endorsed to you or given to you by the carrier that offers official unlocking, before it's even unsealed, it's already locked to that carrier (serial/model combo) otherwise the carrier wouldn't offer official unlocking in the first place. It will be very expensive if the carrier locking is done at the factory level.

      In the case of 2G, it's easier. Since all 2G were only sold in the US, all serial/model numbers are carrier locked, to AT&T. So it was just a matter of being activated or not.

      I guess it's safe to say that there should have been 3 kinds of officially called iPhone units; Never Locked, Carrier Unlocked, and Carrier Locked hehehe. Although Carrier Unlocked is basically the same as Never locked once the serial/model number is removed from the Locked list at the Apple server.

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    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      hmmmmm....don't know if i can blame this on SAM or not but i've never had any issue like this before...

      trying to update my iphone i'm getting an error saying it can not be updated...unknown issue (3194)

      so i try a restore...same thing...

      so i try a DFU restore...same thing...

      i've rebooted everything about a billion times and nothing is working...

      the only thing different than what i've ever had before is of course this new unlock and i just used SAM before i decided to try and update...oh...and i guess the animated bootscreen...

      any ideas? or am i now screwed and locked to 4.3.1 forever?

      edit: i also backed up with TinyUmbrella before doing anything...but i have no idea why i'm having this issue...
    1. exNavy's Avatar
      exNavy -
      Are you sure you don't have your hosts forwarded elsewhere instead of apple if trying to restore to stock firmware?
    1. K8L's Avatar
      K8L -
      Quote Originally Posted by Am_I_Evil View Post
      hmmmmm....don't know if i can blame this on SAM or not but i've never had any issue like this before...

      trying to update my iphone i'm getting an error saying it can not be updated...unknown issue (3194)

      so i try a restore...same thing...

      so i try a DFU restore...same thing...

      i've rebooted everything about a billion times and nothing is working...

      the only thing different than what i've ever had before is of course this new unlock and i just used SAM before i decided to try and update...oh...and i guess the animated bootscreen...

      any ideas? or am i now screwed and locked to 4.3.1 forever?
      Same pop up here. It only concerns data network settings isn't? Does it prevent you from sync or restore?


      Sent from my iPhone using ModMyid
    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      Quote Originally Posted by exNavy View Post
      Are you sure you don't have your hosts forwarded elsewhere instead of apple if trying to restore to stock firmware?
      if you can tell me what that means i'll check....lol

      Quote Originally Posted by K8L View Post
      Same pop up here. It only concerns data network settings isn't? Does it prevent you from sync or restore?


      Sent from my iPhone using ModMyid
      seems to sync/backup fine as far as i can tell...but i cannot restore/upgrade...
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Quote Originally Posted by Am_I_Evil View Post
      if you can tell me what that means i'll check....lol



      seems to sync/backup fine as far as i can tell...but i cannot restore/upgrade...
      What firmware were u on!
    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      Quote Originally Posted by thazsar View Post
      what firmware were u on!

      4.3.1
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Quote Originally Posted by Am_I_Evil View Post
      4.3.1
      Get TinyUmbrella
      Start the TSS server
      Restore as normal w/ iTunes

      Let us know if that works
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      What firmware are you trying to install now? If 4.2.1, try running greenpois0n NOW
    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      i'm just trying to upgrade to 4.3.2...no idea why i'm running into an issue...
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Sounds like the hosts file.

      Do as I said before w/ TinyUmbrella but first go to the Advanced Tab and uncheck the CYDIA/HOST FILE box and Apply

      Then start the TSS Server and restore in iTunes
    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      tried the tiny umbrella route....seemed like it was gonna work...but no go...

      different error (21) but still an error

      edit: trying with the cydia thing now...
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      There are more solutions if this doesn't work but it's a bit complicated....
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Quote Originally Posted by Am_I_Evil View Post
      tried the tiny umbrella route....

      different error (21) but still an error
      You unchecked the Cydia/Host file thing?
    1. exNavy's Avatar
      exNavy -
      I guess post 825 is invisible.
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Quote Originally Posted by exNavy View Post
      I guess post 825 is invisible.
      Ha! I'm on my iPhone but I assume 825 already covered this before! That's hilarious
    1. Am_I_Evil's Avatar
      Am_I_Evil -
      seems to be restoring currently...after the first try in tinyU i was stuck in recovery...but now just doing a regular restore without anything seems to be working so far...

      we shall see...

      ok folks...now lets see if my IMEI unlock is still around after...
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      Quote Originally Posted by Am_I_Evil View Post
      seems to be restoring currently...after the first try in tinyU i was stuck in recovery...but now just doing a regular restore without anything seems to be working so far...

      we shall see...

      ok folks...now lets see if my IMEI unlock is still around after...
      It'll be gone if the TSS Server isn't running...
    1. thazsar's Avatar
      thazsar -
      So what's the verdict?