unlock iPhone on AT&T: For over more than 130 years, AT&T or previously Bell Telephone Company has been operational in the United States of America. The company can trace its origins back to the founder of telephone, Alexander Graham Bell himself and hence it should come as no surprise that the company is the leading provider of fixed telephone services across the world.
Valued at over 176 billion US dollars, this multinational conglomerate is also the parent company of our favorite WarnerMedia.
Enough lessons on history and current affairs for now. Coming back to the topic at hand, AT&T iPhone can be unlocked in order to switch to some other cell services that you might prefer. There are several ways to do this task and the magnitude of their difficulty changes with various factors that play a role here.
Although the AT&T service is used by a majority of the US population, due to some of the other reason like maybe cheaper data plans or better network coverage by other service providers, you decided to jump ship.
AT&T obviously cannot stop you from doing this but it sure can make the process tough.
There are several methods to do this depending on whether you are the owner, legal, illegal, etc.
- 1 Let’s Begin with the Unlocking of the Handsets
- 1.1 Your AT&T device isn’t reported lost, stolen, or involved in fraud
- 1.2 You have AT&T service and no past due or unpaid balances
- 1.3 Your Device isn’t Active on another AT&T Account
- 1.4 Your AT&T PREPAID® device has been active for at least 6 months
- 1.5 How to unlock iPhone AT&T?
- 1.6 Concluding
Let’s Begin with the Unlocking of the Handsets
Before we get into the intricacies of the whole operation, there are many eligibility criteria you need to be following in order for the process to be legal. Do note that you are assumed to be the first owner of your iPhone in this case.
Your AT&T device isn’t reported lost, stolen, or involved in fraud
The device should always have been in your possession this is a point they take quite seriously as they always do a cross-check.
You purchased your device with an installment or term agreement and:
- You’ve had active AT&T service for at least 60 days.
- You completed your contract (including paying any early termination fees) or paid off your installment agreement at least 24 hours before your unlock request.
You need to fulfill both The fulfillment of just one would not work. Basically the iPhone should be all YOURS.
You have AT&T service and no past due or unpaid balances
Think of your device as a library membership that you want to discontinue. You cannot have any books borrowed and no late fines left unpaid.
Your Device isn’t Active on another AT&T Account
If the device is active on another account, you need to terminate one of those and just be active on one.
You waited at least 14 days after an early upgrade to unlock your old device (30 days if you have a business account).
This is an extremely frustrating policy but quite necessary and also helps the company in case you change your mind after a new update.
Your AT&T PREPAID® device has been active for at least 6 months
This exists so that no one abuses the company as you already get the device at a cheap rate as you preferred AT&T and changing stations immediately after would be a clear misuse of the company and hence the rules.
There are also some other points you must note long with the company legal notice and disclaimer.
- Been called to active duty? If you submit your TCS or PCS (Temporary/permanent change of station) documents, you may not have to complete your installment agreement or contract to unlock your device.
- Have a business-owned device? Be sure your company authorizes any unlock requests.
To Top that Directly in the Words of AT&T
“AT&T reserves the right to deny any unlock request that it concludes would result in an abuse of this policy or is part of an effort to defraud AT&T or its customers. AT&T further reserves the right to alter this unlocking policy at its discretion without advance notice.
If during any one month, more than 100 requests are made from a single source, and if more than 10% of those requests are duplicate IMEI numbers, AT&T will no longer process unlock requests from that source.”
Now that you are well acquainted with the basics and know for sure that the device you have is 100% yours, either after having paid it off from AT&T itself and in full or from a seller who had it claimed entirely from AT&T, we can move on to the unlocking part.
How to unlock iPhone AT&T?
Using the AT&T website
AT&T website offers a very clean and chic approach to unlocking your device if it meets all the desired criteria.
Follow the steps below and you would be well on your way to switch mobile service providers.
Read More: How to Switch from Android to iPhone?
- Open any web browser in either your mobile phone or desktop, laptop, etc.
- Open the link for the mobile unlocking on their official website provided below –
- Make sure that your AT&T phone, tablet, or mobile hotspot is nearby. As they can only unlock devices that work on the AT&T network. Some unlocked phones may not be compatible with other providers.
- Make sure that all the eligibility criteria are met and only then proceed. You can also check the eligibility criteria here.
- Click on the Unlock your device option and fill in the registration form that follows.
- As mentioned, you would need to know your IMEI number in order to complete the procedure and in case you do not, fret not.
Simply open your dial pad and dial in *#06# and press the call button. Your IMEI number should prompt on the screen. This is an exclusive feature of the AT&T iPhone only and does not work for all iPhones.
- Now you need to wait for AT&T to reach out to you. You will get a confirmation email with your iPhone request number. You will, however, need to click on the link sent to you within 24 hours of the arrival of the mail in order for the request to still hold the ground.
- Within 2 business days, you will get a response from AT&T whether your request has been approved or denied. In case it is approved (which it almost always is), you will also be given further instructions you will have to follow in order to fully unlock your iPhone.
Using AT&T Unlocking Services
Before we begin, you would obviously like to know what an official unlock actually is.
Basically, Official or carrier unlock is the process of remotely white-listing your device’s IMEI number in the manufacturer’s (Apple or Samsung) database. As a result, your phone can be used with any SIM-based carrier.
Keep in mind in case you are wondering, the process is COMPLETELY legal and allowed by the mobile phone unlocking laws.
It’s legal to obtain carrier authorized unlock codes From the 25th of Feb 2013. You will not break any laws or warranty with iPhone unlocking and unlocking by third party services is permitted by the cell phone unlocking law.
Factory unlocking is one of the many permanent unlocking solutions for your phone. You can upgrade to the latest firmware without the risk of the iPhone being re-locked. This is also one of the safest ways to unlock. As you will not need to install any software which can harm your phone.
The most important thing, as you might have guessed for this method to work is the IMEI number of your iPhone which can be found as mentioned in the article above. Dialing *#06#. Follow the steps given below in order to unlock your AT&T iPhone using an unlocker.
This unlock is not done by AT&T itself but rather other party applications.
- Visit the website mentioned below in order to begin your unlock procedure.
AT & T Unlocker
- Place on order on the screen you see by using your IMEI number.
- The unlock would cost you around 20 US Dollars.
- After receiving an order Your device will be unlocked within 1-3 business days.
- Added advantage of using this service is that users have a 5-minute window after placing the order wherein they can cancel their order and obtain a full refund.
- Also in case they are unable to unlock your device due to any reason, you will get a full refund. I say that is a win-win.
- You can also track the status of your unlocking online on their website during the time.
There are also many other unlocking services in the market. Which offer even more competitive prices and each has its own individual advantages and disadvantages. There are many services like DoctorUnlock.net, Directunlocks.com, Unlock Authority, Unlockpolice, and Key2iPhone that can help you get the task done more conveniently. Each comes with their own pros and cons. We would recommend you do a thorough analysis of them before proceeding further.
However, since it is our job, we do have another editor choice as far as unlocking is concerned. Do note that they are only a recommendation.
We urge you to go through their terms and conditions before proceeding further with any of those.
- For people living in the United States of America, Canada or the United Kingdom, DoctorUnlock.net is your best bet and an almost sure shot.
- If you’re anywhere in the rest of the world, then we would strongly suggest using DirectUnlocks.
There are many ways in which you could get your iPhone free from the shackles of the AT&T network and all of the methods mentioned here are completely legal and do not hamper your warranty etc.
Do read through the eligibility list mentioned above though before you attempt to unlock your device using any of the above methods as they are EXTREMELY important.
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