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How to unlock any Android phone and use any SIM

unlock any Android phone and use any SIM

You might be excused for assuming that phone contracts work along these lines: purchasing the phone outright will enable you to move networks with ease, but purchasing the device on a contract entails being locked to the carrier.

While that is partially accurate, it unquestionably does not convey the entire picture. 

If your phone is locked, you won’t be able to use your minutes, messages, or data with a different SIM card, but once your contract is up, you’ll probably be free to do anything you want.

Networks are no longer permitted to offer locked phones in the UK. A new set of regulations from the UK’s communications watchdog, Ofcom, that went into effect in December 2021 will bar any networks from being able to offer a phone that isn’t unlocked.

It’s still possible that your phone is still locked if you purchased it before that deadline.

Just to be clear, we’re talking about phones that might be service provider-locked.

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Is unlocking your phone legal?

It is entirely legal to unlock your phone if you have completed your contract’s payment schedule. The same holds for any phone you paid for in full.

Since you technically don’t own the phone if you’re still paying off your first contract, probably, you won’t be able to unlock it for use with other carriers until that time. 

Before you begin the procedure, it is worth checking with your carrier to see if they have anything against it.

How to unlock your android phone

Once you know how unlocking a phone may be surprisingly simple.

  • You must first call your provider and ask for an unlock. Not the network of the new SIM you’re attempting to use, but the old network.
  • You can turn your phone off, insert your new SIM card into the SIM card slot, and then turn it back on once you’ve received confirmation from your provider that your phone has been unlocked.
  • Attempt placing a call right now to see if the unlock worked or not. The unlock has been successful if you can make a phone connection over the new network. If not, get in touch with your network provider again for more help.

The phone might need to be reset if you don’t have the original SIM card before it can be unlocked.

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Get in touch with your network provider

Looking more closely at step one, we’ve provided a list of all the well-known network service providers in the UK so you can learn how to unlock your phone. Choose your carrier from the list below, then adhere to the instructions.

EE

Go to the EE phone unlock page.

You must be the account holder for the phone and number, have had the phone for at least six months, be current on your payments, and not have reported it lost or stolen to unlock your EE phone.

EE will now unlock any cellphone for free, unlike in the past when it would charge to unlock specific devices, such as those that were still under contract. 

You only need your phone’s IMEI number, which is typically printed on the original box or may be found by dialling *#06* on the keyboard of the device.

Although EE strives to unlock phones promptly, in some circumstances it may take up to seven days.

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Giffgaff

The way that Giffgaff provides a “unlockapedia” where you can search for your phone’s make and model to learn how to unlock it is a little odd.

O2

Your phone can be unlocked by O2 at any time. You will have to make payments on your contract until it expires, though.

The network provides more comprehensive instructions here. According to O2, using My O2 Online or the My O2 app is the simplest way to go about doing it.

You won’t need to contact the firm to unlock a Sky Mobile phone that you bought from Sky; it should already be unlocked. Instead, give your new SIM a try; it ought to function.

You might need to navigate to Settings > Mobile Data > Mobile Data Options > Mobile Data Network > Reset Settings if you’re using an iPhone.

Tesco mobile

Whether you are on contract or not, it will be free to unlock your Tesco Mobile phone.

You simply need to have your IMEI number on hand and submit an unlock request.

On Tesco Mobile, the process of unlocking a phone can take up to seven days.

Three

Although Three offers an online unlocking form, your phone will already be unlocked if you bought it from the company after January 1, 2014.

Virgin Mobile

You shouldn’t have any issues because the majority of Virgin Mobile phones come pre-unlocked. It should work once you simply give the new SIM card a try.

Vodafone

You can utilize Vodafone’s online unlock request form. An unlock code from the business may take up to 10 working days to arrive. You must also pay your bills on time.

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Unlocking your phone with a third-party service

Before using a third-party unlocking service, we always advise verifying with your network operator, however, occasionally it might be quicker and easier.

Read the fine print before you provide your money to a third-party unlocking service to avoid getting ripped off with additional fees at the end of the procedure.

Doctor SIM, which guarantees a refund if the unlock is unsuccessful and doesn’t catch us off guard with any unexpected costs, has been tried and tested by us. If you’ve tried the ways mentioned above, it might be an option.

We advise staying under £25 for the cost of unlocking your phone. Someone is taking a chance if they try to charge you more than that.

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