View Full Version : iPhone 4 from O2 in the UK - locked?

04-05-2013, 03:15 PM
Hi all,

A friend got given an iPhone 4 with a cracked screen, it was on O2 in the UK originally. I replaced the screen, and the phone goes mint, however...

It's fully updated (6.0.3 I think) and after putting in the Vodafone SIM, the phone doesn't pick up the network, and in the carrier settings etc it seems to be locked to O2.

If the phone is reset with the Vodafone SIM in, when it gets to the 'activation' stage, the message 'Only compatible SIM cards from a supported Carrier may be used to activate iPhone. Please insert the SIM card that came with your iPhone or visit a supported Carrier's store to receive a replacement SIM card.'

I do still have the O2 SIM, if I put this in the phone will activate, but then we go back to issue one.

So, I assume the phone is Carrier locked to O2? Would that be right, and if so, how can we go about unlocking it? I'm a bit of a novice with iOS and iPhones in general.

Thanks! :)

Speedy Gonzales
04-05-2013, 03:28 PM
Jailbreak it

Alex B
04-05-2013, 03:29 PM

I've never tried it, but it's a better solution than a jailbreak.

04-05-2013, 03:46 PM
Thanks guys - I would really like to avoid jailbreaking it if possible.

That OK unlocking thing look awesome - O2 do unlock the phones for free if you're on a contract, or for 15 quid on prepay, but the SIM we have will have been deactivated by now, so that's rather difficult in this case cause we can't get hold of their support without the phone number that was on the SIM, which we don't know.

Will look into that ebay unlock thing.

Thanks heaps.

04-05-2013, 04:13 PM
I've bought that O2 reset - will see how it goes! Thanks heaps Alex.

Alex B
04-05-2013, 04:17 PM
Sweet, i'd be keen to know how it goes. Jailbreak it's self does not unlock the phone btw, you still need an unlock, not sure on the details.

04-05-2013, 06:32 PM
Yeah post back and let us know how you go :)

06-05-2013, 09:55 AM
Well, it looked all very positive, but I got this email back yesterday...

Dear Buyer,
We are really sorry however the O2 UK unlocking service is went down and not working now :( There were some issues on O2 UK server and now it is completely down and not working at the moment unfortunately :( all of our o2 uk IMEIs were failed because of that.
As far as we know noone can unlock O2 UK network now. All unlocking servers are not working properly.
As such we've refunded your payment fully. You can check your card details or paypal account for the refund.
Please cancel the transaction by agreeing to our request, we've just sent it.
We really appreciate if you don't leave us negative or neutral feedback because it was not in our control, the news came just today.
Thank you again for your patience and sorry for any inconveniences it may caused.

They say they'll refund the whole amount to the credit card etc, they were good to deal with the whole time.
Bit of a pain though haha. I assume this is just a temporary thing, I'm trying to find out from them if they expect it to be working again at some stage.

06-05-2013, 10:16 AM
Jailbreak it
Jailbreak does not unlock a phone, it's basically the equivalent of root on an android.

There are other IMEI unlocks around and for a lot cheaper than 100 pound.

Speedy Gonzales
06-05-2013, 10:55 AM
Either way it still lets you use whatever you want

Alex B
06-05-2013, 10:56 AM
It was only about $15 quid before, it's gone up, probably so people don't buy it.

06-05-2013, 11:08 AM
Yeah, all up after any fees/exchange rate etc it cost like $36.

Shame. So just to confirm, jail breaking the phone does not unlock it - eg we wouldn't be able to use it on Vodafone in NZ? Speedy seems to think it does, I always thought it didn't.

Speedy Gonzales
06-05-2013, 11:25 AM
The last jailbreak I tried for a mate it was on VF. He put a TC sim in it worked fine. After the jailbreak. That was a few yrs ago now. Whether things have changed now (with the Iphone updates etc, I have no idea). I don't have one / or own one.

You just have to make sure, the jailbreak is for the current version of IOS or whatever its called on the Iphone. But you may still need Itunes (in case you want to go back to the original rom / version that's on the Iphone)

Alex B
06-05-2013, 11:34 AM
NZ iPhones have never been locked, it would have worked fine on TC even without a jailbreak. Jailbreaking does not and has never unlocked the phone.

Speedy Gonzales
06-05-2013, 11:44 AM
I'm pretty sure this one was locked to VF. Because the guy tried another sim before the JB. It didnt work. Oh well

06-05-2013, 12:03 PM
Nope none in NZ have ever been locked.

You can unlock it without jailbreaking it too. When you flash the firmware you get the option of choosing to jailbreak it, unlock it, install Cydia, and stuff like that... At least you used to when I last did it :D

06-05-2013, 02:45 PM
If you jailbreak, you could find some apps in cydia that will unlock the phone. Like this: http://www.redmondpie.com/unlock-ios-6-on-iphone-4-and-iphone-3gs-using-ultrasn0w-fixer/

07-05-2013, 09:42 AM
Shame. So just to confirm, jail breaking the phone does not unlock it - eg we wouldn't be able to use it on Vodafone in NZ? Speedy seems to think it does, I always thought it didn't.

Jailbreaking will just let you side-load software onto the phone (ie not from the Appstore) so you can change themes, settings, etc etc. It wont unlock it.

10-06-2013, 09:47 AM
Just a quick update on this - the unlocking service obviously fixed itself, so I re-bought that item from that same company on eBay, took three days, all sorted. Very easy.

So as long as the IMEI on your phone is clean, I certainly can recommend this. :punk