Does anyone know how to unlock an iphone 5s from its network, so any sim can be used. I know I can pay someone on the black market to do it, but was wondering if someone knew how to do it themselves and could explain what needs to be done.


  • 2
    ring your phone company.
    – Tetsujin
    Jun 18 '15 at 8:56

As far as I'm aware only the phone company the handset it currently registered to can do this. It's a fairly straight forward process [in the UK anyway!].

I think there is possibly a method if you jail break the handset but this obviously carries other risks too.

Beware black market unlocking services, there are lots of scams out there!!

  • 1
    Also be aware that the unlocking process (if done on the black market) can be undone by upgrading the OS on the phone, meaning that you will be reluctant to upgrade to the latest OS with all its security fixes and enhancements. Definitely not recommended to unlock on the black market. Phones can usually be unlocked by the original carrier for free (or a very small fee) if their original contract period is over. Jun 18 '15 at 10:29

Each Carrier has their own process for this. My carrier is US AT&T, to find my carriers instructions I Googled "AT&T device unlock" and was immediately led to this page. I could post links to more carriers device unlock pages but that list would never be complete for a worldwide audience. The correct page for your carrier is most likely not hard to find via Google.

FWIW, usually the original customer must request the device unlock, someone who has already purchased a phone from a private party would not be able to request the unlock without help from the original owner.

As mentioned briefly in another answer, carriers lock devices to their network and will not unlock them until the original contract has been completed. What's actually happening is the carrier has discounted the initial cost of the phone. This discount means the carrier would suffer an immediate loss if the customer simply cancelled and sold the phone. The lock to the network ensures the customer can't do that. Once the terms of the original contract have been met the carrier will unlock.

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