So your phone is locked on a network and you would like to use a WorldSIM travel SIM, a different SIM- or just unlock it to increase its resale value. The first thing is to realise that phone unlocking is perfectly legal in the U.K. The reason why networks are allowed to lock phones is generally because locked phones can be sold for a subsidised price.
You can use a number of options to unlock your phone. For instance, you can take it to any unlocking expert and they will do it for you for a charge ranging from £10-£20. However you may be surprised that some networks do offer this service as well. For instance, O2 offers free unlocking service. Although they won’t allow you to cancel the contract but they will unlock the phone for you free of charge. Vodafone will charge about £20 to get it unlocked within a day. EE on the other hand, is a bit stricter and you will have to have a contract with them for at least 6 months before they can unlock the phone for you. There is also a fee of £20.42 to unlock the phone and it can take up to 10 days for them to do this. Three allows free unlocking to pay as you go customers or you have to be on a contract with them for at least 30 days.
Generally there are two ways of unlocking your phone:
- Remote unlocking: requires you to enter a special code into your phone. This code gets rid of all the restrictions and allows you to use it on any network or SIM. This is the most common method used.
- Clip and Cable: The second method involves unlocking your phone through a special data cable and software. Most people would send their phone to a dedicated unlocker for this. Although, it is possible to do it yourself but it can be time consuming and a complex process.
Unlocking your phone using a code
You may be able to unlock your phone using a code. Here are a few steps to help you unlock your phone using a code:
- Search online: This code is often available online on various websites for free. This free method mostly works for older Nokia phone and other older handsets. Websites such as unlocknokiafree may have codes for you to use. However, some websites may charge you for the code.
- Check the correct brand or model name: If you would like to get a desired unlocking code for your mobile, it is important to find the right code using the correct brand and model number. There are chances that you would know this already. But in all cases make sure you have the brand and model number right to get the right code for you. This can usually be found on the handset, or on the box or any documentation you may have received while purchasing the mobile.
- The Network: This is the network the phone is locked to.
- IMEI: IMEI is the International Mobile Equipment Identity. It is a unique number assigned to all mobile phones which gets marked as invalid when the phone is reported as lost or stolen. You can easily find the IMEI number of your mobile phone by typing *#06# into your handset. Please make a note of this number.
- Generate the Code: The website will provide a code based on the information you would have provided. The code will look something like this #pw+3478298039+1# (Nokia), or *2676*645# for other makes. To unlock the mobile phone you will need to take the SIM card out and then put in a different SIM. You will then be able to put in the code.
- Enter the Code: This can vary for different phones. Rather than using the regular text keys you will be required to use the * key. For example, to produce a ‘p’ you will have press the * button three times within two seconds, to a produce a ‘w’ * button for four times within two seconds and for a ‘+’ * button twice within two seconds.
- Hurray!!! You will now get a message that your phone restriction is off. Remember, you will generally have five attempts to enter the right code in. So you need to be very careful.
To use a WorldSIM SIM card will need to have an unlocked phone, if you need a new one check out the video of our worldwide dual SIM Android phone, the Orbizz