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  1. Thread AuthorThread Author   #1  
    sdge007's Avatar
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    Default Buying iPhone5s -> break contract -> unlock phone?

    I went to the apple store the other day, and asked some questions, and they were not as competent as I had hoped... ANYWAY... here's my plan.

    Basically, I'm leaving the country (leaving the US) in March, and need a very standard world phone that can be used anywhere (especially in Asia) and I want the iPhone 5s.

    I have 2 upgrades from ATT on my family plan. The one upgrade is for me, and I don't want to use it, because in 6 months I'm going to need to break the contract, and that costs $$$, so here are the two plans I want to do.

    Plan A
    Use my my mother's upgrade (the other upgrade) and then pop my SIM into her phone, and take her phone. When I leave, she will continue on with her contract. The problem here would be that I would not have an unlocked iPhone.

    Plan B
    Use my own upgrade, and then pay the early termination fee when the time comes.

    Now I'm not sure if when I break contract and pay the early termination fee (if I do plan B) if I can demand to have the phone unlocked. I'm also not sure if I do plan A, if I can somehow unlock through a 3rd party type situation. I have seen unlocking services for other iphones that send you a code or some such, but I'm not sure I can assume that will happen for the 5s.

    LASTLY, I'm not sure if the ATT iphone5s is the same (as in physical hardware) as the Tmobile iphone5s, and whether the Tmobile 5s is more "world phone" than the ATT version.
    It seems like there is just one GSM version of the iphone according to this website Apple - iPhone 5s - Technical Specifications


    Any help is much appreciated, AND I apologize if this should be in some other forum.... or if I am breaking any other rules here.
  2. #2  
    MrLogan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying iPhone5s -> break contract -> unlock phone?

    The T-Mobile iPhone 5s and AT&T iPhone 5s are identical models (A1533). You can pay the ETF and request an unlock; why not just buy the unlocked phone instead of dealing with the hassles of juggling upgrades and requesting an unlock?
  3. Thread AuthorThread Author   #3  
    sdge007's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying iPhone5s -> break contract -> unlock phone?

    Well... there is a 325$ ETF which goes down by 10$ every month. So after 6 months, the etf is $265, plus the 200$, which comes out to a $465 iphone 5s. That's a savings of almost 200$, which is quite a bit.

    Ideally I would like to do Plan A, but assuming I'll be able to do some 3rd party unlock seems annoying.

    Thank you for your response MrLogan!
  4. #4  
    Rocket_Girl's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying iPhone5s -> break contract -> unlock phone?

    Quote Originally Posted by sdge007 View Post
    I went to the apple store the other day, and asked some questions, and they were not as competent as I had hoped... ANYWAY... here's my plan.

    Basically, I'm leaving the country (leaving the US) in March, and need a very standard world phone that can be used anywhere (especially in Asia) and I want the iPhone 5s.

    I have 2 upgrades from ATT on my family plan. The one upgrade is for me, and I don't want to use it, because in 6 months I'm going to need to break the contract, and that costs $$$, so here are the two plans I want to do.

    Plan A
    Use my my mother's upgrade (the other upgrade) and then pop my SIM into her phone, and take her phone. When I leave, she will continue on with her contract. The problem here would be that I would not have an unlocked iPhone.

    Plan B
    Use my own upgrade, and then pay the early termination fee when the time comes.

    Now I'm not sure if when I break contract and pay the early termination fee (if I do plan B) if I can demand to have the phone unlocked. I'm also not sure if I do plan A, if I can somehow unlock through a 3rd party type situation. I have seen unlocking services for other iphones that send you a code or some such, but I'm not sure I can assume that will happen for the 5s.

    LASTLY, I'm not sure if the ATT iphone5s is the same (as in physical hardware) as the Tmobile iphone5s, and whether the Tmobile 5s is more "world phone" than the ATT version.
    It seems like there is just one GSM version of the iphone according to this website Apple - iPhone 5s - Technical Specifications


    Any help is much appreciated, AND I apologize if this should be in some other forum.... or if I am breaking any other rules here.
    I understood that moving was one legitimate reason to break contract (no penalties). Especially if move is overseas, where it would be impossible (and unaffordable) to keep US service provider. Check te fine print. They don't have to know that YOU know you're moving... You may have to pay difference between subsidized vs full price of the phone, but I would think you would not be subject to ETF.s
  5. Thread AuthorThread Author   #5  
    sdge007's Avatar
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    Default Re: Buying iPhone5s -> break contract -> unlock phone?

    The only thing is the difference between subsidized and full price of the phone is more than the ETF.

    If I bought an iphone for 200$ subsidized, and then quit immediately, and paid the ETF for 325$ it would be a 525$ iphone.... which would be over 100$ cheaper than an outright buy.
  6. #6  
    Eileen89's Avatar
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    Default

    Thread moved to the Carrier Discussion Lounge for better exposure.


    Sent from my iPhone 5S using Tapatalk Pro..

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