I have an iPhone 4 that I got from my uncle (it's a little used), but I don't have the original SIM that came with that iPhone, and I want to unlock it, can I ask the old carrier to unlock it with only the IMEI and others information that do not depend on the SIM card? Will it be able to receive a carrier settings update on iTunes?

  • Since you said you had to take it to the carrier, please post that as an answer. The question can still stand. Thanks. Sep 24 '11 at 17:05

Yes. Carrier settings are sent when you connect to their respective cellular service. So if you purchased an unlocked iPhone 4 from Apple, and inserted a SIM from AT&T, you would be pushed the latest carrier update. If the next day, you removed the AT&T SIM and inserted one from Bell Mobility, then you would be pushed a carrier update for that respective carrier.

The updates are based on your iOS version number and the wireless network you are connected to (of course you need the respective SIM as well). You won't receive updates should you remove the SIM (or fail to insert one), but then it becomes a moot point because you need the card to connect to a network, making a carrier update rather pointless to begin with.

When the original carrier unlocks the device, it will be able to handle any wireless network. And the new carrier you sign with, will issue you a SIM.

  • My situation is the following: I asked my old carrier to unlock my iPhone, I couldn't give them a phone number, I'm not sure if they can do that with only the IMEI number, instead of the original SIM, can I connect one from the same carrier and get the unlock via iTunes?
    – user4141
    Sep 18 '11 at 1:30
  • The unlock is provided by the carrier. iTunes has nothing to do with it. You'll have to call the carrier the phone was originally locked to a speak with a customer service representative. State your situation and hopefully they can unlock the device based on the UDID (Unique Device Identifier).
    – user10355
    Sep 18 '11 at 2:34
  • But as far as I know the unlock is delivered via iTunes, well, I'll talk to them, thanks anyway.
    – user4141
    Sep 18 '11 at 2:36
  • Where did you hear the unlock was sent through iTunes?
    – user10355
    Sep 18 '11 at 3:03
  • I live in Brazil, at least here it's delivered using iTunes, my dad's unlock was sent through it. Also, I found this on Google: gigaom.com/apple/apples-official-iphone-3g-unlock
    – user4141
    Sep 18 '11 at 13:02

I had to take it to the carrier, they didn't tell me if I could do this without them. That's all I know :(


Been having the same problem for 4 months. I backed up and restored and it still didn't worked. I was pretty bummed out..and I really didn't want to go to a repair shop for phones cause they cost a tonnnn! So I just randomly thought that maybe something sticky got inside the button and used a pair of eyebrow tweezers (the pointy ones like this one: http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31xBWTSHbiL.jpg) and I basically just stuck it around the button maybe 3 or 4 times really well and TADA! I DON'T HAVE THE ISSUE ANYMORE!!! I'm so happy I saved money by not getting it repaired :'D

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