How To Unlock An Android Cellphone & Use Any SIM

You might be forgiven for considering that cellphone contracts go one thing like this: shopping for the cellphone outright offers you the flexibility to change networks with ease, whereas getting the gadget on contract means you are locked to the supplier. 

Whereas that’s true to some extent, it positively would not inform the total story. A locked cellphone will forestall you utilizing your minutes, texts and information with a brand new SIM, however as soon as the contract is up you are most likely free to do as you please.

By the top of 2021, firms will now not have the ability to promote locked handsets. UK communications regulator Ofcom has launched a brand new algorithm that can forestall any networks from being allowed to promote a cellphone that is not unlocked, however till these guidelines come into play in December 2021, you could discover cellphone you purchase right this moment is locked to the provider you bought it from.

There are many nice cellphone networks within the UK, so it is comprehensible that you simply would possibly wish to swap supplier sooner or later. 

Simply to make clear, we’re referring to telephones which may be locked to specific service suppliers. If you’re locked out of your gadget on account of forgetting your password, PIN or swipe gesture, take a look at our information right here. 

Is it authorized to unlock your cellphone?

When you’ve completed paying to your contract, it’s fully authorized to unlock your cellphone. The identical goes for any cellphone you bought outright.

Nevertheless, when you’re nonetheless within the technique of paying off your preliminary contract you technically don’t personal the cellphone but, that means unlocking your cellphone to different suppliers is dangerous. Some carriers could don’t have anything in opposition to it, however it’s positively price checking earlier than you violate their phrases and circumstances.

Earlier than you proceed, it is price being 100% certain that your cellphone is already seemed. Take a look at our devoted information to learn the way.

Find out how to unlock your cellphone

Unlocking a cellphone will be surprisingly simple as soon as you know the way.

1. First, you’ll must contact your supplier and request an unlock. This have to be the unique community, not the community of the brand new SIM you’re attempting to make use of.

2. When you’ve had affirmation that your cellphone has been unlocked by your supplier, you’ll be able to energy down the cellphone, put your new SIM card into the SIM card slot, and switch the cellphone again on.

three. Now, strive making a name to search out out whether or not or not the unlock has been profitable. When you’re capable of join a cellphone name over the brand new community, the unlock has labored. If not, get again in contact along with your community supplier for additional help.

When you don’t have the unique SIM card, you could must reset the cellphone earlier than it may be unlocked.

Contact your community supplier

Taking a better take a look at the 1st step, we’ve listed every of the favored community suppliers within the UK that will help you learn the way to go about unlocking your cellphone. Discover your provider from the checklist beneath and observe the directions offered.


Go to EE’s cellphone unlock web page

To unlock your EE cellphone, you have to be the account holder for the gadget and quantity, have had the gadget for at the very least six months, have paid your invoice up-to-date and haven’t reported the gadget as misplaced or stolen.

If in case you have an EE pay month-to-month gadget, you’ll have the ability to get your cellphone unlocked at no cost when you’ve completed your contract. When you haven’t, it’s going to price £eight.99 to unlock it. The identical goes for a pay as you go gadget (free if purchased direct with EE by the requester, or £eight.99 if not).

Any second-hand gadget locked to EE that you simply bought by way of eBay, Gumtree and many others will price £eight.99 to unlock, as will any EE small enterprise gadgets.

EE goals to unlock your cellphone inside 72 hours, however it might probably take as much as ten days in some circumstances.

You will discover out extra about unlocking your EE cellphone and get in touch with EE immediately by clicking right here.


Giffgaff is a bit uncommon in that it provides an ‘Unlockapedia’ that you should use to seek for your cellphone make and mannequin to learn the way to go about unlocking it. You’ll discover the Giffgaff unlockapedia right here.


Go to O2’s cellphone unlocking web page

O2 will unlock your cellphone at any time, at no cost in case you are on a Pay Month-to-month tariff. Nevertheless, you will must proceed to pay to your contract till it ends.

When you’re a pay as you go buyer, it is also free to unlock your cellphone. O2 says that the simplest approach to do it’s through the use of the My O2 On-line or My O2 app.

Sky Cellular

Telephones bought by way of Sky ought to already be unlocked, so that you received’t must get in contact with the corporate to unlock your cellphone. As an alternative, strive your new SIM and it ought to work. When you’re utilizing an iPhone, you could want to enter Settings > Cellular Information > Cellular Information Choices > Cellular Information Community > Reset Settings.

Tesco Cellular

Go to the Tesco Cellular unlocking request type.

When you’ve acquired a pay as you go cellphone with Tesco Cellular, it is going to be free to unlock 12 months after it was activated. To unlock it earlier than that it’ll price you £10.

Pay month-to-month gadgets are additionally free to unlock with Tesco Cellular, except it’s a model new, flagship cellphone or pill, however Tesco will let you already know while you get in contact along with your unlock request.

It might probably take as much as seven days to unlock a cellphone on Tesco Cellular. You merely want to finish the web unlocking request type discovered right here.


Go to the Three unlocking request type.

Three has a web based unlocking type obtainable, however when you bought your cellphone from Three after 1 January 2014 your gadget will already be unlocked.

Virgin Cellular

Most Virgin Cell phones will already be unlocked, so you should not have any hassle right here. Simply strive the brand new SIM card and it ought to work with out requiring any additional motion.


Go to the Vodafone unlocking request type.

You’ll have the ability to use Vodafone’s on-line unlock request type. It might take as much as 10 working days to recieve an unlock code from the corporate. You’ll must be updated along with your payments, too.

Utilizing a third-party unlocking service

We might at all times suggest checking along with your community supplier earlier than you resort to a third-party unlocking service, however generally it may be a lot faster and simpler.

It’s necessary to be careful for third-party unlocking providers that sting prospects with further payments on the finish of the method, so remember to learn the small print earlier than you hand over your cash.

We’ve tried and examined Physician SIM, which guarantees a refund if the unlock is unsuccessful and didn’t shock us with any hidden charges. It could possibly be an choice when you’ve tried the strategies listed above.

We wouldn’t suggest paying something greater than £25 to have your cellphone unlocked. If somebody is attempting to cost you greater than that, they’re attempting their luck.

For extra particulars directions about learn how to unlock an iPhone, go to our sister web site Macworld’s tutorial right here.

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