Can an iphone 5 under contract with AT&T be unlocked for use on Tmobile?

basketlacey

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I am an iphone newbie. I am so confused by unlocked/jailbroken/etc. My family is die-hard tmobile fans. We love their rate plans and the customer service is fantastic. However, my dd really really wants an iphone and of course, its not offered by Tmobile. We would love to surprise her with one for Christmas. My inlaws have AT&T and have two phones eligible for upgrades with no desire to do so. They like their iphone 3Gs. Can I purchase their upgrade and then have it unlocked so we can use it on Tmobile? Will this work? Will it mess up the AT&T service for the 3Gs phone?
 

vietalogy

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Shouldn't effect their old phones. You can get unlock service on eBay for dirt cheap less then $5 for each phone. Just pay for phone and upgrade fee's. Depending on their data plans they might have to pay more unless they have unlimited since AT&T increased their data plan rates.


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basketlacey

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Shouldn't effect their old phones. You can get unlock service on eBay for dirt cheap less then $5 for each phone. Just pay for phone and upgrade fee's. Depending on their data plans they might have to pay more unless they have unlimited since AT&T increased their data plan rates.


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Thank you! They both have data plans already so I don't think it impacts their plans. We would just upgrade one of their phones but never actually switch the sim card. I would instead get a sim card from tmobile and activate the iphone with that one after its been unlocked. Do I have that right?
 

vietalogy

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Thank you! They both have data plans already so I don't think it impacts their plans. We would just upgrade one of their phones but never actually switch the sim card. I would instead get a sim card from tmobile and activate the iphone with that one after its been unlocked. Do I have that right?

Since they have the 3GS I'm sure their data plan has increased depending what data plan. When you upgrade you will have to update data plan and pricing sucks but at&t wants every penny they can get. For example my sis had the 200mb for $15 with iPhone 4 since I upgraded her phone to iPhone 5 the data plan is now 300mb for $20 as I recall.


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anon(4698833)

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Yes, you can have carrier locked iPhone's unlocked for use on other networks.

No, it will not effect their service at all.

You can find unlock services on eBay, many of us used one when the iPhone 5 was first released with no problems.
 

basketlacey

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Thanks to everyone for the replies!

Yes, you can have carrier locked iPhone's unlocked for use on other networks.

No, it will not effect their service at all.

You can find unlock services on eBay, many of us used one when the iPhone 5 was first released with no problems.

Can you tell me if this is considered a "factory" unlock or a software unlock and do I even care? If she syncs it with itunes regularly will that be an issue?
 

anon(4698833)

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It is really no different than a carrier unlocked phone from the factory...software unlocked really applies to unlocks done via a jailbroken method. This is done with the IMEI number and essentially removed the phone from a carrier locked "list", and is permanent. Software unlocks are only good while that phone is jailbroken on the firmware it was unlocked on, and is not considered permanent.
 

tourist31

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Nov 28, 2012
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Hi

Can anybody help me, I am currently in the US, Houston, with family member for medical treatment and I would love to buy the iphone 5... however it must be unlocked as I live in Africa and I will be using a local network there... however I have been to the apple store, AT&T and sprint and nobody will sell it to me unlocked... i'm so sad, as I have read many forums on the internet about people who have bought the iphone 5 full price and are using it in other countries... but I just don't know where I can but it here in Houston, as I am running out of places to look for it unlocked... can anybody help me please?