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Thread: iPhone SE Unlocking Questions

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    iPhone SE Unlocking Questions

    I bought a new iPhone SE locally, after reading online that a T-Mobile iPhone operates on the same bands as AT&T and that all iPhones were unlocked, even if bought for specific carriers. I knew the phone I was buying was a T-Mobile model and I was under the impression all I had to do was pop in my AT&T SIM and away I would go. Apparently I was wrong. The phone keeps telling me that I have an incompatible SIM or something like that. The phone is not blacklisted, it is just carrier locked. The easy solution would be to have the original owner have it unlocked through T-Mobile but I don't know if he can as it was never activated (they require 40 days paid first) and I can't get him to reply to my calls or texts anyways. He bought the phone through Apple directly. What are my options here as far as getting this to work on my AT&T account? The unlocking services I see advertised online for T-Mobile are very expensive. Why are they so much as compared to all the other carriers? Could I activate the phone on T-Mobiles cheapest prepaid plan for 40 days and then have them unlock it? Any other solutions or good low priced unlock services? Thanks in advance for all replies.

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    I'd get a friend who has a tmobile account to put the phone on their plan. After 15 days Tmobile will unlock the phone. You friend can then disconnect the line.

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    Thanks keason. Have you done this before? From what I've read online it's 40 days. Can I just open my own account and do the same thing instead of bothering anyone else? Thanks for both replies so far.

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    Was the phone purchased from an Apple Store? Then it should be unlocked if it was paid in full when purchased.

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    You stated that all iPhones were unlocked. That is not true. An iPhone purchased under an installment purchase plan, even through an Apple Store will be carrier locked until it is paid in full, and the unlock request is made to Apple by the carrier. T-Mobile doesn't unlock the phone, they submit it's IMEI to Apple, and their system sends the unlock to the phone.

    I purchased another T-Mobile users iPhone SE in March and supposedly they has requested the unlock, but it wasn't done. I made the purchase at a T-Mobile company store and they confirmed that it had no purchase balance due and the account was current with payments. After about a week I requested it be unlocked via T-Force/Twitter and although it took a few days for them to do it, it got unlocked. So I'd say the 40 day period is just a guideline, and to try and get T-Force to do the unlock after you tell them the circumstances.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daleraver View Post
    I purchased another T-Mobile users iPhone SE in March and supposedly they has requested the unlock, but it wasn't done. I made the purchase at a T-Mobile company store and they confirmed that it had no purchase balance due and the account was current with payments. After about a week I requested it be unlocked via T-Force/Twitter and although it took a few days for them to do it, it got unlocked. So I'd say the 40 day period is just a guideline, and to try and get T-Force to do the unlock after you tell them the circumstances.
    Tmobile told us that they will unlock phones after 15 days for established accounts (we are on a business account). You have to wipe the phone and restore the OS for the unlocking to work, they do not have an OTA unlock. I'd try the T-force route first.

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    The OP is saying that the person who sold the phone got it directly through Apple. If the seller bought it under an installment plan and never paid it off, then I agree it would still be locked. Unfortunately, T-Mobile does not have an online unlock feature like AT&T does. Nevertheless, if it wasn't paid in full then you may have to make a claim against the seller.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elevatorguy View Post
    Could I activate the phone on T-Mobiles cheapest prepaid plan for 40 days and then have them unlock it? Any other solutions or good low priced unlock services? Thanks in advance for all replies.
    Unlocking on prepaid services need a year of use or a $100 in refills according to this:

    "Unlock eligibility for Pay in Advance (Prepaid) phones, tablets, and mobile Internet devices

    The device on the requesting line has been active for more than one year on the T-Mobile network.

    If the device has been active for less than one year on the requesting line, the Pay in Advance account associated with the device must have had more than $100 in refills since device first use date. $100 in total refills is required for each device that is requested to be unlocked and does not include the initial activation payment. "

    https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-1588

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    Thanks for all the replies so far. The seller claims he bought it directly through Apple but he is obviously a liar so who knows. It's not blacklisted on the T Mobile website. Pedro in going to PM you right now. Thanks a lot.

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    Not blacklisted and paid in full. I have no idea why the seller won't respond to any of my communication attempts. I made it very clear to him that he might have to make a call to T Mobile to get this phone unlocked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elevatorguy View Post
    Not blacklisted and paid in full. I have no idea why the seller won't respond to any of my communication attempts. I made it very clear to him that he might have to make a call to T Mobile to get this phone unlocked.
    Most sellers won't communicate back once it's sold.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Understood Pedro but I told him that I may need him to call up and have it unlocked if I couldn't use it on my network and he agreed.

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    That's awesome


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by keason View Post
    Tmobile told us that they will unlock phones after 15 days for established accounts (we are on a business account). You have to wipe the phone and restore the OS for the unlocking to work, they do not have an OTA unlock. I'd try the T-force route first.
    Mine did not require the wipe and restore to register with T-Mobile. Once the unlock was processed, after a reboot, my TM sim began searching and found service and was working on my account. This has been my experience with Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile phones and service since the iPhone 3G in 2009. I even had one begin service after a paid unlock while I was driving through the Colombia River Gorge a few years back.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daleraver View Post
    You stated that all iPhones were unlocked. That is not true. An iPhone purchased under an installment purchase plan, even through an Apple Store will be carrier locked until it is paid in full, and the unlock request is made to Apple by the carrier. T-Mobile doesn't unlock the phone, they submit it's IMEI to Apple, and their system sends the unlock to the phone.

    I purchased another T-Mobile users iPhone SE in March and supposedly they has requested the unlock, but it wasn't done. I made the purchase at a T-Mobile company store and they confirmed that it had no purchase balance due and the account was current with payments. After about a week I requested it be unlocked via T-Force/Twitter and although it took a few days for them to do it, it got unlocked. So I'd say the 40 day period is just a guideline, and to try and get T-Force to do the unlock after you tell them the circumstances.
    How do you contact T-Force

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