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I would like to purchase an iPhone 8 as a gift for a current Verizon customer who is still using an old iPhone 5c. I plan to purchase the phone outright and since the cost at the Verizon store is the same as with Apple, I would prefer to get it directly from Apple. My question is, can I buy her a SIM free phone from Apple or must I buy a Verizon activated phone from Apple instead? This person has a current, activated Verizon account with a Verizon iPhone 5c phone (which was paid off in monthly installments a long time ago). My guess is that since she already has a Verizon account with the 5c and an active SIM card, I could just go with the SIM free option and then all she would need to do is transfer her Verizon SIM card to the new phone and it will work fine. Is this a correct assumption?

Thank you!

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In theory, that would be fine.

When you buy a phone from Apple it will be unlocked for use with any network so they can just put their network sim into it and be good to go.

They both use nano sims so the sim will be good to swap straight away.

The only issue is that Verizon have been using(and AFAIK are still using) a different model of iPhone to the rest of the US networks.

If you're buying it from an actual Apple Store you could ask them just to make sure 100%. As I'm not from the US, I'm not 100% sure what the deal is with CDMA/GSM models as they are all GSM in Europe.

Assuming Verizon still uses CDMA, you would need to make sure that the iPhone is a CDMA version.

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