AT&T Will Unlock Off-Contract iPhones Starting Sunday


Five years on, the iPhone's still got it.
image via flickr •

Those of you who have purchased your iPhone off-contract, aka for the full price, will be happy to hear that AT&T will begin unlocking iPhones at customers’ request this Sunday. Carrier unlocking will allow customers “in good standing” to switch out the AT&T SIM for a SIM on another network, as long as the bands are supported. This is great for customers who want to travel with their AT&T iPhone internationally. 

An AT&T spokeswoman confirmed the news to Engadget, saying that “a policy change concerning iPhones” will be rolling out on Sunday. Presumably, all customers will have to do is call AT&T support to get their device unlocked. AT&T explained to us in a statement:

“Beginning Sunday, April 8, we will offer qualifying customers the ability to unlock their AT&T iPhones. The only requirements are that a customer’s account must be in good standing, their device cannot be associated with a current and active term commitment on an AT&T customer account, and they need to have fulfilled their contract term, upgraded under one of our upgrade policies or paid an early termination fee.”

Getting AT&T to unlock the iPhone has been a highly requested feature among customers. Customers will not only be able to use their AT&T iPhone overseas, but will also be able to use it with other carriers like T-Mobile. There have been numerous methods and bugs allowing you to unlock, but AT&T’s new policy is much easier. Historically, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook reportedly forced AT&T to unlock certain customer’s iPhones through a special request.

For those of you whose two-year contract has run out,  you will also be able to unlock your iPhone. However, if you’re still on a two-year contract with AT&T, you’re still locked in.

  • nolavabo

    But only off-contract iphones? Better than nothing I suppose.

    In Europe, nearly ever country has consumer laws in place that force carriers to unlock locked phones after a certain period. This varies from country to country, but is as short as 6 months in some places.

  • zviivz

    I only realized that iPhone from ATT is virtually unlockable after using for a couple of months. By then, it’s already too late to return them. I thought any phones can be unlocked if you’re with the carrier for certain period of time, e.g. 90 days or 6 months (I don’t remember). Well, the CSR conveniently did not mention this specifically when we signed the contract. I know I’m suppose to read before signing it but who reads hundreds of lines – that’s another legal BS IMO.

    I will never buy iPhone or any phone from ATT again. Ever !!

  • Jack

    AT&T sucks

  • Dario Rementeria

    This is great start. Soon other companies that don’t allow unlocking will follow suit. Here in Canada I think Rogers will unlock your phone but for a price.

  • ejin91

    Hi, im here in the philippines and i bought my iphone unlocked with at&t in the US. I dont know where to go to unlock my phone here in PH. Pls help. I really dont know what to do and where to go.