Each method for checking if your iPhone is Unlocked takes a few minutes to complete it.
There is no need to be an iPhone expert to follow our simple guides!
- Check Locked or Unlocked iPhone Lock status via Settings (Software) – 1 minute
- By using 2 or more SIM-Cards (Hardware) – 5 minutes
- With an iPhone IMEI Check service (Online) – 10 seconds
If you own a used (Second hand iPhone), then you should definitely read our “How to avoid 6 lethal risks of buying a used iPhone“.
Intro on the available methods for checking if an iPhone is Unlocked
We divided the methods based on 3 major categories. A Software, a hardware and an online approach.
Each method has its pros and cons. You should decide which suits you better, but we will also make our recommendation!
The first 2 methods require the physical presence of the iPhone so you can review its settings and test other SIM cards. The third method can show you if your iPhone is unlocked remotely with a detailed report (You can get it online).
The first 2 methods are completely free since all you have to do is to check the iPhone’s settings or test a few SIM-Cards. However, the third method is a paid service, since it needs to access non-public databases which require a small fee.
1 - Checking if an iPhone is Unlocked via "Settings" - 1 minute
Since many users are asking us how to find out if their iPhone is unlocked without using other SIM cards, we found this method that can show you if your iPhone is locked or unlocked (There is some margin of error though).
- (Step 1) Power ON your iPhone
- (Step 2) Tap on “Settings” and then go to “Cellular”
- If you can find the “Cellular Data Network” tab then most likely your iPhone is Unlocked
- If you do not see this option (The “Cellular Data Network”), then most likely your iPhone is Locked by a Mobile Network
- (Step 3) Power OFF your iPhone and eject the SIM-Card
- (Step 4) Re-do the whole process from Step 2
- If without the SIM-Card the “Cellular Data Network” is there, then there are high chances that your iPhone is Unlocked
Unfortunately, this method is not 100% accurate, because the presence of the “Cellular” option alone does not mean that it is definitely unlocked. However, its absence is very likely to mean that your iPhone is locked.
Another drawback of this method is that it can not tell you which provider the iPhone is locked to.
2 - Using two or more different SIM-cards for checking if an iPhone is Unlocked - 5 minutes
With this method, you can definitely tell if your iPhone is locked or not.
It is a very simple method and requires at least 2 SIM cards (if you have more, even better!).
- (Step 1) Power OFF your iPhone
- (Step 2) Insert the first SIM-Card inside SIM-Tray (Use the proper tool to eject the SIM-Tray to be 100% sure that you will not damage it – Read Apple’s Guide on Switching SIM-Cards)
- (Step 3) Power ON your iPhone
- (Step 4) Check your iPhone’s Screen
- (Step i) If it shows a “SIM not supported” or “SIM Invalid” message, then your iPhone is Locked
- (Step ii) If you can normally access the Home Screen but you cannot make any phone calls, your iPhone might have a different kind of a lock (Maybe Blacklisted)
- (Step iii) If you can make phone calls, then this means that this SIM-Card it allowed (It is not 100% sure that your iPhone is Unlocked)
- (Step 5) Power OFF your iPhone again and insert the second SIM-Card
- (Step 6) Power ON your iPhone and check your iPhone’s Screen
- (Step i) If it shows again the “Step 4i” error codes, then your iPhone is definitely locked to a mobile network
- (Step ii) If you can access the Home Page but you cannot make any phone calls, then your iPhone is Unlocked for sure, but most likely it is Blacklisted
- (Step iii) If you can make phone calls, then your iPhone is Unlocked (At least inside the country you currently live in)
With this method, you can be 100% sure if your IPhone is locked, but not if it is unlocked for all carriers worldwide.
If you have other SIM cards in your possession, then you can try them too. If you are lucky and you find a SIM card that lets you make phone calls, then the provider of this SIM is also the lock carrier (The network in which that iPhone is locked to).
3 - Find if your iPhone is unlocked with an iPhone IMEI check service - 10 seconds
This method can check if your iPhone is unlocked or locked remotely within seconds.
All you need to know is your iPhone’s IMEI number.
Companies offering IMEI Check services have access to databases (GSX & GSMA databases) used by Apple and providers to identify the lock status of all iPhones.
By accessing these databases, they guarantee accurate & real-time results, meaning that after completing the service you will know exactly if your iPhone is unlocked or not and to which carrier.
Our recommendations for verified IMEI Check services:
We have worked with a very large number of companies that offer IMEI Check services.
For the past few years we only work with 2 specific companies, due to the fact that they are able to provide instant reports to us.
If you are not interested in instant results, then you do not have to choose them.
UnlockSpector & iPhoneUnlock.Zone - IMEI Check services
|Comparison of Services||UnlockSpector.com||iPhoneUnlock.Zone|
|Network Identification Check||Supported||Supported|
|Blacklist Status Check||Supported||Supported|
|Financial / Contract Check||Supported||Supported|
|IMEI Replacement Check||Supported||Supported|
|Delivery Time||Up to 10 seconds||Up to 10 seconds|
Conclusions: Which method to choose for finding if my iPhone is unlocked or locked?
If the iPhone is near you, then trying the first 2 methods should be your first approach. They are free and they are very quickly to follow. If you are lucky, you will be able to understand if the iPhone is locked or not.
If it’s impossible to check iPhone’s settings or try different SIM cards, an iPhone IMEI Check service is the only available solution for you. The results are 100% accurate (and instant if you pick the providers that we suggest), so you will be certain if your iPhone is unlocked, apart from the other info about it.
The majority of our visitors use iPhone IMEI Check services to save time and to be 100% confident about their iPhone status.