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Thread: Sprint locked my customer owned iPhone?

  1. #1
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    Sprint locked my customer owned iPhone?

    I signed my family up for Sprint's free for a year plan bringing our unlocked phones from Cricket Wireless. I activated my son's iPhone 6s Plus on the free for a year plan, but after a week, my son decided to buy a iPhone 8 plus. He got the new iPhone 8 plus and did an ESN swap with Sprint, then sold his old iPhone 6s Plus to his grand mother to use on RedPocket Verizon. We tried to do the ESN swap on RedPocket today to the iPhone 6s plus, and they told us the phone was not eligible. This is despite the Verizon website showing the phone could be activated. I called Sprint, and they told me the iPhone 6s plus was locked to Sprint. They also said that since I wasn't a customer for 50 days, they couldn't unlock the iPhone 6s plus. I then spoke to a supervisor, and she said she was creating a ticket and we would get an e-mail in 24 to 48 hours.

    Can Sprint really lock a customer owned iPhone to their network? Is this because both Sprint and Verizon are on CDMA? This is frustrating since the iPhone 6s plus was already unlocked and customer owned.

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    Quote Originally Posted by slohasley View Post
    I signed my family up for Sprint's free for a year plan bringing our unlocked phones from Cricket Wireless. I activated my son's iPhone 6s Plus on the free for a year plan, but after a week, my son decided to buy a iPhone 8 plus. He got the new iPhone 8 plus and did an ESN swap with Sprint, then sold his old iPhone 6s Plus to his grand mother to use on RedPocket Verizon. We tried to do the ESN swap on RedPocket today to the iPhone 6s plus, and they told us the phone was not eligible. This is despite the Verizon website showing the phone could be activated. I called Sprint, and they told me the iPhone 6s plus was locked to Sprint. They also said that since I wasn't a customer for 50 days, they couldn't unlock the iPhone 6s plus. I then spoke to a supervisor, and she said she was creating a ticket and we would get an e-mail in 24 to 48 hours.

    Can Sprint really lock a customer owned iPhone to their network? Is this because both Sprint and Verizon are on CDMA? This is frustrating since the iPhone 6s plus was already unlocked and customer owned.
    They cant remotely lock a device, if the device was factory unlocked before it's still factory unlocked now. Pop a TMobile/att/Verizon Sim in it and it will register to the network. What's likely happening is redpocket IMEI database is still reading the phone as being registered to Sprint postpaid.

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    I inserted a Three UK SIM card in the iPhone 6s plus, and it immediately roamed onto T-mobile, sms and data worked. So it's not SIM locked. How do I get the phone off Sprint in RedPocket's IMEI database?

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    Quote Originally Posted by slohasley View Post
    I inserted a Three UK SIM card in the iPhone 6s plus, and it immediately roamed onto T-mobile, sms and data worked. So it's not SIM locked. How do I get the phone off Sprint in RedPocket's IMEI database?
    That I'm not sure of. I don't really know much about redpocket, if they also use Sprint as a provider then that explains why it would come up as still registered to a Sprint postpaid account. My guess would be that there is likely a timeframe that it will clear on its own as redpocket IMEI database likely isn't updated in real time. That's a guess though. But yea, once a phone is factory unlocked no carrier can go and remotely lock it again.

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    Now that I think of it, when I went to put in the RedPocket SIM card today, it still had my son's old Sprint SIM card and was showing a signal. I thought this was just the emergency calling signal. I wonder if it was still registered on Sprint's network. I've since turned the phone off and taken out the Sprint SIM card, but RedPocket was still showing it couldn't be activated.

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    2 iPhones are better than one. Twice the fun. Ask anyone.
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    I used my customer owned iphone 7s on Boost, although I can use it anywhere if I try to sign up for sprint, or sell it on Swappa, it says the IMEI has a balanced owed to Boost.

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    Sprint does some shady stuff with BYOD iPhones (maybe other phones, as well). They turn on the FED flag so other carriers that check think that you have a balance owed to Sprint. Check the phone on Ting's BYOD checker to verify. You have to escalate to Executives Services or something equivalent and explain that they need to clear the FED flag on the phone. They'll eventually do it, but it might take some persistence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTravers View Post
    Sprint does some shady stuff with BYOD iPhones (maybe other phones, as well). They turn on the FED flag so other carriers that check think that you have a balance owed to Sprint. Check the phone on Ting's BYOD checker to verify. You have to escalate to Executives Services or something equivalent and explain that they need to clear the FED flag on the phone. They'll eventually do it, but it might take some persistence.
    Thanks for the info. Here's what I get when I check the IMEI on Ting:
    Sorry, this phone can’t be activated right now. This device has not reached financial eligibility.
    The Sprint account holder is the only one that can clear this balance with Sprint. If you have recently paid off your Sprint device, please ensure you allow 48 hours before checking compatibility.

    If you bought the phone from a 3rd party you may want to ask for a refund.

    This is really making me hate Sprint. I was super happy with the free for a year plan, but flagging my son's free and clear unlocked phone to not be activated on another carrier. That's messed up!

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    I would file an online complaint with the FCC against Sprint's shady practice you described. I bet it'll get resolved promptly after you do that.

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    Sprint locked my customer owned iPhone?

    Reach out to /u/LiterallyUnlimited over on /r/Sprint and tell him that you need a FED flag flipped from “SPCS” to “PLBL”. Be sure to include the iPhone’s IMEI in the message.

    /U/LiterallyUnlimited is a trusted source among the /r/Sprint community. His typical turnaround time for flag flips is 48 hours, much quicker that dealing with Sprint directly for this request.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Beet View Post
    I used my customer owned iphone 7s on Boost, although I can use it anywhere if I try to sign up for sprint, or sell it on Swappa, it says the IMEI has a balanced owed to Boost.
    If it was purchased from boost it's locked to that network for 1 year of active service before they will unlock it(or sprint)

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    Quote Originally Posted by slohasley View Post
    Thanks for the info. Here's what I get when I check the IMEI on Ting:
    Sorry, this phone can’t be activated right now. This device has not reached financial eligibility.
    The Sprint account holder is the only one that can clear this balance with Sprint. If you have recently paid off your Sprint device, please ensure you allow 48 hours before checking compatibility.

    If you bought the phone from a 3rd party you may want to ask for a refund.

    This is really making me hate Sprint. I was super happy with the free for a year plan, but flagging my son's free and clear unlocked phone to not be activated on another carrier. That's messed up!
    I would contact executive services they get things done rather quick and have the resources to get it done.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LTE_A View Post
    Reach out to /u/LiterallyUnlimited over on /r/Sprint and tell him that you need a FED flag flipped from “SPCS” to “PLBL”. Be sure to include the iPhone’s IMEI in the message.

    /U/LiterallyUnlimited is a trusted source among the /r/Sprint community. His typical turnaround time for flag flips is 48 hours, much quicker that dealing with Sprint directly for this request.
    He can't do anything about the FED flag. It has nothing to do with SPCS vs PLBL. That's a different issue.

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    I spoke with Executive Services and they removed the FED flag from all four phones we brought to Sprint. I think I need to wait 48 hours now to be able to activate my mother in law's phone on Redpocket depending on how quickly they update their database. Ting is still showing the FED flag on the IMEI checker.

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    Does the FED flag prevent the phone from working on another provider like Verizon?

    Are all BYOD iphones flagged?

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