Unarguably, iPhone ranks among the best mobile devices available to the public all over the world. Owning any of these devices can be very exciting as they provide a feel that is exclusive to them. However, upon purchase, the devices are often locked to a specific carrier whose services you may not find satisfactory on the long run. They may charge exorbitantly yet provide services that are quite substandard.
To free your device from the clutches of the carrier it is locked with and have the freedom to switch to another service provider, you will need to unlock it. You may also want to unlock your phone if you are the type that travels and you intend the use the device with the SIM card of local service providers in whatever country you are.
What are the advantages of unlocking your iPhone?
- The basic advantages that can be derived from having your device unlocked are;
- It frees you from the clutches of a single service provider
- It gives you the freedom to shop for new service providers, as well as compare what they have to offer and get the deal that suits your specific need.
- It offers you the freedom to use the device anywhere in the world, with whatever SIM card that works for you there.
What are the unlocking options available for iPhone?
There are basically three distinctive methods that have been used to unlock iPhones at any point in time. We are going to consider each of these three methods and pass our verdict on them.
1. Software Unlocking
This is the very first unlocking method devised for iPhones. It was available in the market just at the same time iPhone 3G was launched into the market. The method involved downloading a piece of software into your device. The software were then able to alter the internal settings of the iPhone and free it up from the carrier it is locked with, allowing you to switch to another carrier of your choice.
The method was efficient due to a loophole in design of the iPhone and Apple was quick to detect and address this loophole. Currently, this method cannot work with iPhone. In fact, since the release of the iPhone 4, this method has not worked.
Even if the method were to work, it is not a safe method. There is a possibility of the software being a malicious mole and exposing your device to the activities of hackers. It was never a good method.
2. Hardware Unlocking
This method surfaced after the first method was rendered inefficient by Apple. It involves physically opening up your device and having some hardware components twitched in order to free the device from a single carrier. This method is normally performed by some pseudo-technicians and will completely void your warranty. Chances of success is also low and there is a possibility that they guys may ruin your awesome device forever.
In all sincerity, this is not the method you want to explore. Asides from the fact that it ruins your warranty and has an extremely low success rate, the guys that are paid to do this can equally sneak in a chip – you never really know what to expect. Your device is precious, do not use this method.
3. IMEI Unlocking
The last in our list of unlocking options and by far, the most reliable method is the IMEI unlocking method. This can also be called the factory unlocking method and remains the most effective method to unlock device. The IMEI is the unique code that identifies your iPhone and is stored in the Apple database. In factory unlocking, the company, using the IMEI of your iPhone, will change its status at the Apple database from ‘locked‘ to ‘unlocked‘, giving you the freedom to switch Network providers.
This method is safe, efficient, and permanent. It is therefore the only recommended method of unlocking your device. The success rate is high; it neither voids the warranty of your device nor put it in harm’s way. This is therefore the only reliable and recommended method of unlocking your phone.