Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

Contributor

Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

I am one of three on a family plan on AT&T. Last April (a year and a few months) we began a two year contract. I started out with a flip-phone and had unlimited texting and a certain amount of calling. A few months ago I lost my phone, and was not able to find it. I still get billed the $10 a month even though I don't use the phone. I would like to upgrade to a 16gb iPhone 4S, and have found it new on eBay for about $300 or so. I want to buy it new if that helps anyone. My questions are: Can I buy it on eBay, or must it come from an authorized seller? Does the phone have to be unlocked or does it have to come from AT&T? Can I unlock it once I buy it? Will AT&T let me make this upgrade from a non-data plan to a data plan? Any other tips would be great. Thanks so much for your help!

10,072 Views
Message 1 of 6
ACE - Professor

Re: Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

The short answer is yes, you can use the iPhone 4S on the AT&T network, locked or unlocked to AT&T. Make sure the iPhone you buy was meant for use on AT&T and not another carrier such as Verizon, Sprint or UK carriers.

You will be able to add a data plan to your account when you call Customer Care or stop by your nearest AT&T store. Smiley Wink
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*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 2 of 6
Contributor

Re: Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

Thanks! So what do I look for on eBay? Unlocked for AT&T?
Message 3 of 6
ACE - Professor

Re: Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

I would simply put in something like "AT&T iPhone 4S" or "AT&T iPhone 4S factory unlocked" if you want the device unlocked. It's very important that you read the descriptions and ask questions to the seller as you would not be able to unlock the iPhone yourself if you wish to pursue that option in the future for traveling purposes etc.
~Sunshine Smiley Happy
*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 4 of 6
Scholar

Re: Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

You might get a good bargain on a locked one cause the unlocked phones seem to
Go for more on auction sites Smiley Happy
Message 5 of 6
Explorer

Re: Can I buy an iPhone on eBay and use it with my AT&T account?

Be careful, I've seen horror stories where customer's purchase phones outright and go to activate them only to have their account suspended for using a device that has been marked Stolen and Blocklisted by the original owner who called in saying their device was stolen.  Make sure the person you find on Ebay has a good seller rating.

Message 6 of 6
You must type a description before you click preview or reply.
Share this topic
Announcements

Are you looking to upgrade and activate your device?

Let us help make Ordering, Upgrading and Activating easy!

Additional Support