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  • Non-Contract AT&T iPhone 5s Unlockable Through iTunes



    Wednesday TechCrunch discovered that non-contract AT&T iPhone 5s can be unlocked through a simple iTunes rest.

    The process reportedly works with iPhone 5s purchased at full price from AT&T. The process is unbelievably simple, especially when compared to AT&Ts traditional unlocking procedure which involves submitting a form online, sending an actual fax (yes fax machines still exist), and waiting a week for a restore.

    TechCrunch confirmed the procedure with AT&Ts tech support and completed the once-step process without any problems. After the iTunes reset, TechCrunch’s Romain Dillet simply trimmed down a compatible T-Mobile micro-SIM card to fit in the iPhone 5’s nano-SIM tray.

    However, it appears there are still some catches resulting from Apple adding a device's IMEI to their database at the time of purchase. TechCrunch was able to successfully unlock an iPhone 5 purchased through Apple’s retail store, but was unable to perform the unlock on a unit pre-ordered through AT&T even though the device was purchased at full price. The catch appears to be the device tied to an existing AT&T account during the pre-order process according to TechCrunch.

    The simple unlock process is encouraging, especially when accompanied by reports that Verizon iPhone 5’s ship unlocked for GSM networks.

    Source: TechCrunch [via AppleInsider]
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Non-Contract AT&T iPhone 5s Unlockable Through iTunes started by Phillip Swanson View original post
    Comments 42 Comments
    1. D0D's Avatar
      D0D -
      Hi I have been trying to download the redsn0w_win_0.9.13dev4.zip at https://sites.google.com/a/iphone-de...edirects=0&d=1 and I keep getting SSL connection error using chrome. Is there any where else I can get this version of redsn0w, if so could you let me know. Thanks
    1. armyjoe98's Avatar
      armyjoe98 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Chula View Post
      I'm sending My Sprint iPhone 5 back and getting me an At&t one the only thing I want to ask can iphone 5 be use on prepaid if I'm gonna have to wait on Tmobile to fix the speed problem they have to make iphone compatible they said before the end of the year I'm crossing my fingers...
      I called Sprint told them me and my wife travel often to Mexico. within 10 minutes all our iphones were unlocked all we had to do was restore via iTunes.
    1. back2thebeatof84's Avatar
      back2thebeatof84 -
      Quote Originally Posted by clikzip View Post
      I actually just got my 4s unlocked that was technically still under contract. If the imei isnt attached to the account in contract it can be unlocked. Regular customer care wanted me to do the online form. I told them i wanted tech support, tech support looked at it and the phone was released from at&t in less than 5 minutes. Restored in itunes and Bam unlocked 4s with 18 months left in contract. Paid for my new 5. So basically what I took from this is at&t has a system that itunes connects to to determine whether or not the phone is still attached to at&t, once released and a restore is done its unlocked. Find a stupid tech support person and you can prolly get your 5 unlocked..
      I recently tried to unlock my 4S with AT&T, but they said it was still under contract. What you're saying is that, say I have my mother put her SIM card in, it would be able to be unlocked via a Tech Support associate, merely because it shows her account and not mine?

      If so, I'm about to sell my 4S, so I might give that a try.
    1. uri8472's Avatar
      uri8472 -
      Something I don't understand is, should not a non-contract phone be unlocked already out of the box?
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by jwil736 View Post
      You can use the same phone on AT&T if you get it unlocked, but you would only be able to get 3G/HSPA+.
      From what I have read, the handsets available from AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon, all have identical hardware and capabilities. Therefore I see no reason why an iPhone 5 from Sprint or Verizon wouldn't be able to utilize LTE where available on AT&T, or vice-versa.
    1. jabij1's Avatar
      jabij1 -
      So if I'm understanding correctly, I can walk into any apple store (given they have them in stock) and purchase an ATT iphone for full price with no contract/tie down whatsoever and I'll be able to unlock it right away? Will it essentially become a factory unlocked iphone?
    1. jdm.accord's Avatar
      jdm.accord -
      I sell phones (95% iPhones) on eBay for a living and get all mine unlocked from the same guy who unlocks my blackberry and Android phones. $8 per iPhone and it doesn't matter if its lost/stolen or tied to a contract. Takes 1-5 hours, even on the iPhone 5 (done 4 of those already). Spent $3K on iPhone unlocks from him since April. So much easier than dealing with AT&T.

      I do not sell these unlocks, nor will I tell you my eBay user ID so this is not an advertisement. Just saying look around a little and you can get any iPhone unlocked for quite cheap.
    1. mydarkblueshirt's Avatar
      mydarkblueshirt -
      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      From what I have read, the handsets available from AT&T, Sprint, and Verizon, all have identical hardware and capabilities. Therefore I see no reason why an iPhone 5 from Sprint or Verizon wouldn't be able to utilize LTE where available on AT&T, or vice-versa.
      No. The LTE bands are different between the CDMA and GSM iPhone 5s.

      A1428 is the GSM model and uses LTE bands 4 and 17. LTE won't work with Sprint's or Verizon's service on this model.

      A1429 is the CDMA model and uses LTE bands 1, 3, 5, 13, and 25. LTE won't work with AT&T's service on this model.
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      So when you unlock an AT&T iPhone 4S couldn't you then use it on a CDMA carrier?
    1. mlee19841's Avatar
      mlee19841 -
      Quote Originally Posted by MXCO View Post
      Pretty soon every iPhone on the market will be unlocked.... I don't like it much, value of the iPhone are gonna go down if eBay or Craigslist get flooded with unlocked iPhone's. now I miss Steve jobs more.
      True

      Quote Originally Posted by subywrex View Post
      So when you unlock an AT&T iPhone 4S couldn't you then use it on a CDMA carrier?
      Different bands
    1. uri8472's Avatar
      uri8472 -
      Quote Originally Posted by mydarkblueshirt View Post
      No. The LTE bands are different between the CDMA and GSM iPhone 5s.

      A1428 is the GSM model and uses LTE bands 4 and 17. LTE won't work with Sprint's or Verizon's service on this model.

      A1429 is the CDMA model and uses LTE bands 1, 3, 5, 13, and 25. LTE won't work with AT&T's service on this model.
      Starting with the iPhone 4S, there is just one set, which has support for both GSM and CDMA. That is, whether you get it from Apple, Verizon or Sprint, it is the same device. Which parts of the device that are used is what differs. I am assuming the same applies to to the iPhone 5, else they'd be taking a step backwards.
    1. subywrex's Avatar
      subywrex -
      Quote Originally Posted by uri8472 View Post
      Starting with the iPhone 4S, there is just one set, which has support for both GSM and CDMA. That is, whether you get it from Apple, Verizon or Sprint, it is the same device. Which parts of the device that are used is what differs. I am assuming the same applies to to the iPhone 5, else they'd be taking a step backwards.
      That's what's was asking. If you unlock a 4s because it is the same hardware for all carriers shouldn't it work for CDMA too?
    1. realism's Avatar
      realism -
      Quote Originally Posted by MXCO View Post
      Pretty soon every iPhone on the market will be unlocked.... I don't like it much, value of the iPhone are gonna go down if eBay or Craigslist get flooded with unlocked iPhone's. now I miss Steve jobs more.
      Cry me a river Justin.
    1. RiotNrrrd's Avatar
      RiotNrrrd -
      "The process reportedly works with iPhone 5s purchased at full price from AT&T."

      Given your recent story - and pimping - of unlock services here on ModMyI, why would anyone ever buy "at full price" when they can get their subsidized phone for much cheaper and use one of the 3 services I've seen advertised in the story on this site?

      (I have no idea how those services are legal, since technically you're not supposed to be allowed to ask for an unlock if you are still on contract. Maybe those sites - iUnloc.kr, NegriElectronics.com, unlockstation.com - are "legit", but I don't see how anyone with an AT&T iPhone can use them unless we're talking off-contract eBay etc. purchased phones.)
    1. docmagoo2's Avatar
      docmagoo2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by uri8472 View Post
      Starting with the iPhone 4S, there is just one set, which has support for both GSM and CDMA. That is, whether you get it from Apple, Verizon or Sprint, it is the same device. Which parts of the device that are used is what differs. I am assuming the same applies to to the iPhone 5, else they'd be taking a step backwards.
      As someone else said there are different models, AFAIK there are three
      A1428 - US /Canada GSM
      A1429 - CDMA
      A1429 - GSM - international

      That's from the specs on apples website. There's nothing to say they're all combined like the 4S
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by docmagoo2 View Post
      As someone else said there are different models, AFAIK there are three
      A1428 - US /Canada GSM
      A1429 - CDMA
      A1429 - GSM - international

      That's from the specs on apples website. There's nothing to say they're all combined like the 4S
      It appears the CDMA and International GSM are actaully the same device, as they both have the same model number (A1429), and having spoken to both Verizon and Sprint employees, the CDMA iPhone 5 that they are vending is capable of GSM for customers that travel abroad (and can technically work on domestic GSM carriers for 3G and below, but not with LTE.) So there are in fact two models, not three; Apple just happened to list the same model twice.
    1. cypherstream's Avatar
      cypherstream -
      The iPhone 5S ? Is that like what the iPhone4S did to the 4?

      :-)
    1. Chula's Avatar
      Chula -
      Damit it getting really hard for me to get an AT&T iPhone 5 without contract I've called and even went to astore with no luck they told me the only way to do it was with a plan that they don't sell cellphones like that to contact Apple n of course they r not available yet any suggestions anyone???I'm so mad I return my Sprint iPhone for now to be stuck with nothing
    1. Chula's Avatar
      Chula -
      I just want my unlock iPhone 5 64 gb back
    1. docmagoo2's Avatar
      docmagoo2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by szr View Post
      It appears the CDMA and International GSM are actaully the same device, as they both have the same model number (A1429), and having spoken to both Verizon and Sprint employees, the CDMA iPhone 5 that they are vending is capable of GSM for customers that travel abroad (and can technically work on domestic GSM carriers for 3G and below, but not with LTE.) So there are in fact two models, not three; Apple just happened to list the same model twice.

      Ahhhh so the international model is pretty much a world phone...