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Unlock Phone - Things To Know From AT&T

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Unlock Phone - Things To Know From AT&T

 

DeviceUnlock_.png

Unlocking Your Device - Requests & Facts

 

Your device is designed to work on the AT&T wireless network, and may require a device unlock to operate on another compatible wireless network. AT&T can send you unlock instructions upon request, provided that we can reasonably obtain them from the manufacturer and that you meet the requirements below. You should receive a response within two business days.You will find information on how to unlock your device and answers to most questions below.

 

Notice: AT&T cannot unlock devices from other wireless carriers. 

 

How To Request A Device Unlock 

  1. Go to our Device Unlock portal.
  2. Select Yes if you are an AT&T Customer, No if you are not an AT&T customer
  3. Enter your telephone # if you are an AT&T Customer. Enter your IMEI if you are a non-AT&T Customer.
  4. Follow the prompts. 

If you have an issue with the site, delete cache, cookies, and restart your browser. In some instances you may need to use another browser. 

 

Business customers can request an unlock code for a business device Here.

 

To check status of your request

  1. Go to our Status Portal.
  2.  Enter your IMEI Number & Request Number.
  3. Follow the prompts.

General Requirements for All Unlock Requests

  • The device must be designed for use on, and locked to, the AT&T wireless network. (For help see Device Unlock Support)
  • It must not be reported lost or stolen.
  • It’s not associated with fraudulent activity.
  • All the device’s service commitments and installment plans are completed, and all early termination fees are paid in full.
  • The device is not currently active on a different AT&T customer’s account.
  • If you performed an early upgrade, you must wait the 14-day buyer’s remorse period before you can request to unlock your previous device.

eBay & Non-AT&T Purchases

If a phone is purchased from a non-AT&T authorized dealer or sites like eBay, AT&T may be unable to unlock the device. Before purchasing the device, make sure the seller performs the unlock request. In some instances, you will have to contact the seller to perform the request.  

 

Postpaid Customers

  • Your account must be active for at least 60 days, with no past due or unpaid balance.

Prepaid / GoPhone®

  • The device must be active for at least six months of paid service.

Non-AT&T Mobility Customers

  • You’ve never had an AT&T wireless account and you meet the General Requirements for unlock requests.

Deployed Military Personnel (Current AT&T Customers Only)

  • Current AT&T customers who are active and deployed military personnel, and have provided deployment verification, need to meet all the General Requirements, except those related to the device's service commitments, installment plans and early termination fees.
  • AT&T, at its sole discretion, may limit the number of devices military personnel can unlock.

Important:

AT&T reserves the right to deny any unlock request that it concludes would result in an abuse of this policy or is part of an effort to defraud AT&T or its customers. AT&T further reserves the right to alter this unlocking policy at its discretion without advance notice.

 

ChrisZ, AT&T Community Specialist

AT&T Customer Care

Need help with an account specific question?  Post a new question here on the forums by clicking the "Ask a Question" button.
For additional support, please visit us at our AT&T services hub.
Follow us on: Twitter @ATTCares and @DIRECTVService

*I am an AT&T employee, and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
54,967 Views
Message 4 of 275
Employee

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@schroem1  Its now a paperweight, it will not only not be able to be unlocked it will not be able to be used an any network, you may have some luck if the person that reported the fraud i.e stolen  called at&t or the original carrier and tell them the stolen /lost phone was located.

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THE FOLLOWING IS INCLUDED WITH EACH POST

While AT&T employees do look at forum posts from time to time, we are here to represent the forum with our experiences as customers on our own time and do not represent AT&T in any official capacity with our responses.
*I am an AT&T employee, and the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent AT&T's position, strategies or opinions.
Message 91 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@schroem1 i dont buy it. So much data is messed up in their imei database. Look at this thread. ATT is just locking as many devices as possible its very important you change services and ditch ATT. Dont buy another one of their devices if this thread isnt enough proof of that idk what is. Leave activation locking up to companies that can do it like apples icloud activation lock.

Message 92 of 275
ACE - Expert

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic


@JoeJohn wrote:

@schroem1 i dont buy it. So much data is messed up in their imei database. Look at this thread. ATT is just locking as many devices as possible its very important you change services and ditch ATT. Dont buy another one of their devices if this thread isnt enough proof of that idk what is. Leave activation locking up to companies that can do it like apples icloud activation lock.


@JoeJohn

 

Most of these problems come from folks buying a prepaid phone thinking they paid full retail price for it...  And a ton of them are iPhones.

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*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.
Message 93 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@GLIMMERMAN76 1. Buy a prepaid sim. 2. Take an iphone that is over 2 years old paid off and never been on a prepaid service but has not been unlocked by ATT. 3. Stick the new prepaid sim in that phone. 4. Send a text

message or use some data to verify its been activated. 5. Try to get the iphone unlocked.

 

 

you will recieve an error saying the phone was subsidized by att and wont be unlock eligible till after 6 months. 

 

Moral of the story: do not purchase devices or use sim cards from ATT its better to avoid their services all together. Plenty of carriers do not lock their phones (sprint & verizon) cdma

Iphones are backward compatable with gsm. ATT makes it difficult for you to recoup the cost of your device, preventing upgrades, turning your phone to a brick. ATT will keep this software bug inplace, hopefully someone files anticompetitive practice LS.

Message 94 of 275
Contributor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

Hi,

 

I am a long time customer of AT&T.  I have had my LG G5 for 1 year and paid it off the day I purchased the phone. I sent a request to unlock the phone but it was denied. I called customer service and, after a 30 min call and 20 min being on hold, I was told that the matter would be pushed through and was given a case number. The following morning, I received an email claiming that it was denied due to the fact that my phone wasn't paid in full. Please help!!

Message 95 of 275
Contributor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

Hi @ATTCustomerCare

 

I am a long time customer of AT&T.  I have had my LG G5 for 1 year and paid it off the day I purchased the phone. I sent a request to unlock the phone but it was denied. I called customer service and, after a 30 min call and 20 min being on hold, I was told that the matter would be pushed through and was given a case number. The following morning, I received an email claiming that it was denied due to the fact that my phone wasn't paid in full. Please help!!

Message 96 of 275
ACE - Expert

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic


@JoeJohn wrote:

@GLIMMERMAN76 1. Buy a prepaid sim. 2. Take an iphone that is over 2 years old paid off and never been on a prepaid service but has not been unlocked by ATT. 3. Stick the new prepaid sim in that phone. 4. Send a text

message or use some data to verify its been activated. 5. Try to get the iphone unlocked.

 

 

you will recieve an error saying the phone was subsidized by att and wont be unlock eligible till after 6 months. 

 

Moral of the story: do not purchase devices or use sim cards from ATT its better to avoid their services all together. Plenty of carriers do not lock their phones (sprint & verizon) cdma

Iphones are backward compatable with gsm. ATT makes it difficult for you to recoup the cost of your device, preventing upgrades, turning your phone to a brick. ATT will keep this software bug inplace, hopefully someone files anticompetitive practice LS.


@JoeJohn

 

sprint does lock their phones ONLY verizon does not and that is changing this month....  I also bought a iphone x from apple inserted a att sim card in it..  It got locked...  Sent in for unlock code and phone was unlocked in about 6 minutes.  Prepaid is where the problems are.

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*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.
Message 97 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@GLIMMERMAN76 ATT is where the problems are. I really don’t see how you contribute anything valuable to this community. This is my favorite from ATT.

 

You've tried to unlock this device too many times. Wait 30 days and then submit a new request.

 

Thanks for choosing us,
AT&T”
 
No reason, just i tried too many times which was once because their system failed as usual the first time. Phone unlocks work like 1 out of 8 times.

 

Message 98 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@GLIMMERMAN76 Are you actually saying its not a problem that they are locking a phone you paid for? This is anticompetitive. Do they like send you free tshirts or something? How can you defend these practices?

Message 99 of 275
ACE - Expert

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic


@JoeJohn wrote:

@GLIMMERMAN76 Are you actually saying its not a problem that they are locking a phone you paid for? This is anticompetitive. Do they like send you free tshirts or something? How can you defend these practices?


@JoeJohn

 

Actually I like device locking because its really suppose to stop theft...  Do I think ATT's unlocking system needs work yes and I have complained about it for years(prepaid should not lock a paid off device like it does).  Is it that big of problem that ATT locked a phone then I got it unlocked later?  Not really...  I have never had a problem unlocking a phone on any carrier...  If you don't like ATT's rules and policies you are free to leave and find another carrier you have to speak with your wallet...  I did when I moved to att from verizon years ago.

Award for Community Excellence 2019 Achiever*
*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.
Message 100 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@GLIMMERMAN76 locking doesnt prevent theft it prevents using the phone on another carriers network. Icloud activation lock prevents theft. Regardless you can always load hacked software on the phone to get around this. It has no purpose but to force a consumer to use one carrier. ATT rules would be reasonable if they honored their policies but they don’t. This is nothing more than a scam in my opionion. For instance an iphone user travels abroad and uses an att prepaid simcard on business. Now when they get back home their phone is locked, they have to spend time on the phone with customer support trying to get them to honor their policy. This costs money, now you need staff entire teams of people to manually work around the software bugs in their system. There is a reason well managed companies like google and verizon would never do this. Because it increases operational overhead. By not honoring their policy through their unlock portal they loose any short term money they could have made in operational overhead due to supporting droves of angry customers that a phone they paid for not purchased from att was locked. If you think this has any positive effect on customer loyalty - long term outlook - seriously you need help. If you walk into an att store you just can feel how irritable the sales staff is because they are so uncompetitive. ATT just really has no other hope but to use anti competitive practices and govt lobbying to slow down their imminent demise. They have good coverage, they could compete, but they just cant seem to consistently provide anytype of service. They constantly have to have promotions to get people to join to make up for their complete lack of consistency in their pricing and service. The tech giants have stepped in, they are not happy. From a cash standpoint, they can compete with a monopoly. Its only a matter of time now untill the free market speaks. If they only listened to their customers they could probably prosper and be around forever. But the fact they are so desperate they have to sell two for one locked phones shows they lack any vision or real strategy.

Message 101 of 275
ACE - Guru

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@JoeJohn Man don't talk about what it costs you. You've spent a lot of time here which certainly has cost you. And why? You can take your phone to another carrier and they'll buy you out of AT&T. I'm looking right now at T-Mobile as they can save me ~$1,000 a year. There are several locked phones that would go over if that move were made and they'd all be replaced with new S9+. Sprint is doing this and I'm sure Verizon is - I haven't checked -.Locking phones provides the carrier more advantages than it does the end user, no question. Unlocking phones shouldn't be as much of a pain as it is with AT&T. My understanding is that Verizon will be locking phones soon. They all have the right to do so with subsidized phones. But once a phone has been paid for in full, obligation met the phones should be unlocked and I believe it should be an automatic thing. Why would you spend so much time on this when you can easily walk away from AT&T to another carrier?

 

I was with Bell Atlantic from 1989-1994 and had to move over to Bell South Mobility because Bell Atlantic wasn't able to provide service ion the area any longer. Bell South Mobility changed names to Cingular who bought AT&T. At some point in the Bell South Mobility I changed phones and from a business paying for it to me paying for it. So I've been a customer for a long time, which means nothing to AT&T. I've had my times that I've been very upset with AT&T, I mean very upset. You seem to be over the edge upset. Honestly, you should take your phones to another network and not waste time on what has become a circular debate.

 

I'm looking to leave because of cost, not because of the things I'm upset about. Why? Because I know that eventually I'd get upset with Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint etc

ODad
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*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.
Message 102 of 275
ACE - Expert

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic


@JoeJohn wrote:

@GLIMMERMAN76 locking doesnt prevent theft it prevents using the phone on another carriers network. Icloud activation lock prevents theft. Regardless you can always load hacked software on the phone to get around this. It has no purpose but to force a consumer to use one carrier. ATT rules would be reasonable if they honored their policies but they don’t. This is nothing more than a scam in my opionion. For instance an iphone user travels abroad and uses an att prepaid simcard on business. Now when they get back home their phone is locked, they have to spend time on the phone with customer support trying to get them to honor their policy. This costs money, now you need staff entire teams of people to manually work around the software bugs in their system. There is a reason well managed companies like google and verizon would never do this. Because it increases operational overhead. By not honoring their policy through their unlock portal they loose any short term money they could have made in operational overhead due to supporting droves of angry customers that a phone they paid for not purchased from att was locked. If you think this has any positive effect on customer loyalty - long term outlook - seriously you need help. If you walk into an att store you just can feel how irritable the sales staff is because they are so uncompetitive. ATT just really has no other hope but to use anti competitive practices and govt lobbying to slow down their imminent demise. They have good coverage, they could compete, but they just cant seem to consistently provide anytype of service. They constantly have to have promotions to get people to join to make up for their complete lack of consistency in their pricing and service. The tech giants have stepped in, they are not happy. From a cash standpoint, they can compete with a monopoly. Its only a matter of time now untill the free market speaks. If they only listened to their customers they could probably prosper and be around forever. But the fact they are so desperate they have to sell two for one locked phones shows they lack any vision or real strategy.


@JoeJohn

 

what tech giants would that be that have stepped in?  Google?  Project Fi is just a testing ground for google...  I alpha and beta tested it...  Using sprint and Tmobile does them no favors in some areas....

 

The prepaid thing has to do with iPhones unlocked overseas android phones don't lock to ATT...  I know I use a ton of them for work...  Overseas iPhones also do not lock to ATT...  The problem with iPhones locking to ATT has to do with the universal model that best buy is selling or a phone that is ATT branded in the first place then it gets locked...  But if you unlock the phone BEFORE you insert a prepaid sim the phone stays unlocked.

 

 

Award for Community Excellence 2019 Achiever*
*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.
Message 103 of 275
Mentor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

@ODad i agree with you they have a right to lock subsidized phones because if they didnt they would be unable to profit. People simply wouldnt be able to get phones at a low upfront cost. But relocking phones, turning paid off phones into no longer eligible locked prepaid devices, and just simply telling people try again in 30 days with no reason is a complete abuse of their market position. I have two phones they still need to unlock. And ill be on here for years if thats what it takes. Its priciple that they are doing this to so many consumers. So the longer it takes them to unlock my phones, the more bad PR they will receive. If I have to start writing stories to tech bloggers and journalists outlining my unbelievable interractions I will. Justice must be served, and i know just about every att customer feels the same way. So at my own expense I will educate them with the proof of my interractions to bring this scam to light.

Message 104 of 275
Contributor

Re: We can't unlock this device because it hasn't been active for at least six months of paid servic

I don't understand why the system says that I have not been active for at least 6 months. I have had this S7 with the current AT&T sim since June 2016. I bought the AT&T sim card in Sept 2015. I even bought the phone at full price from Best Buy.


I have been mostly on the 25 cents/minute plan for the entire time (sometimes I switch to the $2 daily if I need data). Why would my account not register as being active for at least 6 months?

Every time I email AT&T, they tell me to submit an unlock request, which is promptly declined. Any suggestions on how I can unlock my phone? I can't afford another phone.

I have read through the requirements listed at https://www.att.com/esupport/article.html#!/wireless/KM1008728. I need assistance beyond what is written on that page.

My hunch is that AT&T either counts the 6 months consecutively (if you switch plans, the counter goes back to zero), or the 25 cents / minute plan isn't considered a qualification of 'active accounts'.

Please help,

Thanks!

Message 105 of 275
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