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Posted Nov 19, 2010
Unlock procedure question

I got the subsidy unlock code for my phone (SE W580i) from AT&T's CS and found the step-by-step process for applying that code in this forum.  I have several questions about that process I would like to have answered before I proceed:

 

In Step 2, it says to insert a SIM card from another carrier.

 

I do not have another carrier's SIM card.  I am unlocking this phone so that when I travel abroad, I can buy a local SIM card to use the phone as a PAYGO device in that country.

 

Is it absolutely necessary to have a SIM card in the phone when applying the unlock code?

 

If I insert a non-activated AT&T SIM card, would that suffice?

 

Does having the other carrier's SIM card in the phone cause the phone to be locked on to that carrier's network?

 

Thanks in advance for your help.  I don't want to take too many attempts and end up turning the phone into a paper-weight.

 

 

 

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11-20-2010 3:17:54 PM
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VOILA!! That combo worked, it is now unlocked. May have been on the wrong screen when I tried it the first time. Kept turning the camera on. Thanks for staying with me on this. Now, since I have found an expert, I hope you can guide me regarding a debranding process I read about while looking for the unlock procedure. Do you recommend it? Do I lose anything, other than AT&T logos? Do I gain any significant functionality? Any gothcha's? If all is OK, do you know of a safe reliable source for the debranded firmware? Free would be nice.
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Unlock procedure question

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Nov 20, 2010
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Although I used another carrier's SIM when I subsidy unlocked my W580i, I believe with at least some of the SE's you don't even have to remove the at&t SIM. :smileyhappy:  And I also believe an inactive SIM will work as well.

 

Having another carrier's SIM in the phone will not cause the phone to become locked to that carrier - all it does is allow a menu that is normally masked with an at&t SIM in the phone to be displayed.  So it won't hurt to try following the procedure with your at&t SIM in the phone (or with an inactive SIM) just to see if you get to the service menu used to unlock the phone.  The issue with the limited number of tries doesn't come into play unless you are in the appropriate service menu and then you enter an incorrect code multiple times.  If you aren't in the correct place, you won't be using any of your attempts to unlock the phone via code.

                                                                                                                         =^..^=
There must be a happy medium somewhere between being totally informed and blissfully unaware.

     - Doug Larson

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

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Nov 20, 2010
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Thank you for your reply. I will give the inactive SIM a try.

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Nov 20, 2010
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You're welcome!

                                                                                                                         =^..^=
There must be a happy medium somewhere between being totally informed and blissfully unaware.

     - Doug Larson

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Unlock procedure question

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Nov 20, 2010
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Alas, premature celebration. While inactive, the AT&T SIM still causes the phone to display the AT&T menus. Therefore, could not get the >left arrow >* >* sequence to get me out of those menus and take me to the 'secret' unlock menu. Will see if I can borrow a foreign network SIM to give it a try. Will let you know how that works, if and when. Thanks again.

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Nov 20, 2010
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mbient wrote:
Alas, premature celebration. While inactive, the AT&T SIM still causes the phone to display the AT&T menus. Therefore, could not get the >left arrow >* >* sequence to get me out of those menus and take me to the 'secret' unlock menu. Will see if I can borrow a foreign network SIM to give it a try. Will let you know how that works, if and when. Thanks again.

Are you certain?  My W580i has a deactivated SIM in it and <**< does bring me to the "Personalize" menu, where "Network" is an option (represented by an unlocked padlock on my W580i - your's should still be a locked padlock).

 

The sequence given to me by at&t in my subsidy unlocking instructions was left arrow * * left arrow; not the sequence you've indicated above.  You may want to try the sequence they provided me with to see if it takes you to the appropriate spot. :smileywink:

                                                                                                                         =^..^=
There must be a happy medium somewhere between being totally informed and blissfully unaware.

     - Doug Larson

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Unlock procedure question

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Nov 20, 2010
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VOILA!! That combo worked, it is now unlocked. May have been on the wrong screen when I tried it the first time. Kept turning the camera on. Thanks for staying with me on this. Now, since I have found an expert, I hope you can guide me regarding a debranding process I read about while looking for the unlock procedure. Do you recommend it? Do I lose anything, other than AT&T logos? Do I gain any significant functionality? Any gothcha's? If all is OK, do you know of a safe reliable source for the debranded firmware? Free would be nice.

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Nov 21, 2010
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Thanks, no need for the debranding info now. Found all I needed to know elsewhere in this forum. Leaving well-enough alone. Was more a matter of curiosity than need. I doubt if I would ever use any of the added functionality debranding would add. This phone is just going to be a PAYGO emergency phone in the car, and perhaps, a traveling phone to use foreign networks when in another country (buy their PAYGO SIM).

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Nov 21, 2010
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Great!  I'm glad to hear you've gotten it unlocked. :smileyhappy:

 

If you ever do decide you want to debrand, I'd probably recommend DaVinci Team, although it's not free.  Depending on your level of technical expertise there are free methods available, but I'm not technically oriented at all and so I've chosen to leave my W580i branded as well.  It's primarily just a "fun" phone for me, so the niggles of the branding aren't so much of a concern.  The only additional thing that I can think of that you loose with debranding and some care about is the ability for IM activity to be charged as messages and not data.  It's at&t's IM client that handles the billing in that manner.  Just FYI in case you do consider it again.

                                                                                                                         =^..^=
There must be a happy medium somewhere between being totally informed and blissfully unaware.

     - Doug Larson

*The views and opinions expressed on this forum are purely my own. Any product claim, statistic, quote, or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider, or party.

Re: Unlock procedure question

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Nov 22, 2010
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Thank you for taking the time to post your inquiry; I'm glad to see that the users were able to provide you with some assistance. Thank you all for your help. This thread will now be closed; feel free to open a new thread should you need further assistance. Thank you.

 

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