I will provide simple, straightforward advice on the best way to network unlock an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus smartphone in this easy to read article.
After reading my easy to follow advice you will be able to unlock your device, and use it on any carrier network you want. You will be no longer tied to a single carrier, even if you are still under contract.
Read on to find out more…
I am going to tell you the best way to unlock iPhone 6. When unlocked you can then use any SIM, or use any cell network, anywhere in the world, without restriction.
Getting your iPhone 6 unlocked is good idea because you can:
- Swap to a cheaper supplier with lower call rates or more generous data plans
- Pick a service provider that offers the best cell coverage for you
- Select a supplier that offers the best overseas roaming
- Sell your iPhone6 or 6S as ‘unlocked’ allowing you to get the best price
- Select a network operator with the best customer support possible
Recommended unlock solution
Network unlocking is the best solution because:
- It actually works
- It is reliable
- You don’t have to open the device and fiddle around inside
- It doesn’t void your Apple warranty
- It doesn’t cost that much to do with prices starting at $30 USD (£25 GBP)
- You do it once and your phone is unlocked forever
Step by step iPhone 6 unlocking instructions
- Ask your carrier if you can unlock your device. If so, ask them to do it. If not, ask a reputable unlocker to do it
- Wait for it to be processed by your carrier or unlocker
- Once notified, finalise the unlock on your device making sure you follow the instructions you are given
- Test it to make sure it worked
You will find more details on these steps below.
1: Ask if you can unlock your iPhone
Contact your carrier and ask them if you could have your iPhone 6 unlocked.
The original contract for most suppliers was normally 24-36 months.
The iPhone 6 has been out since September 2014. So it is likely that you will be able to unlock your iPhone without a hitch as it will be out of contract.
Even though your iPhone is out of contract, unfortunately, there will still be a fee for this service.
Tip: Your own carrier may not be the cheapest or fastest unlock option. Shop around.
I reviewed a huge number of tools, software, and websites to find the best options so feel free to use one of my recommendations with confidence.
All of them offer a quick and efficient service – regardless of what your carrier you currently use.
2: Wait for the unlocker to process it
The codes used for unlocking your handset are actually stored on Apple’s servers.
When you ask to be unlocked your chosen supplier need to talk to Apple to get it done. The time this takes varies from country to country but you should get an estimate when you place your order.
Unfortunately, you can’t go directly to Apple yourself, you have to go through your carrier or an approved agent (such as the ones I recommended in step 1).
You need to wait until your agent tells you that Apple has unlocked your iPhone.
3. Finalise the unlock on your iPhone 6
In some cases, you will get some instructions to explain what you need to do to finalise the process.
This can be a simple as rebooting your device, or sometimes it can be slightly more complex.
Depending on your location it can be more complex and require things such as a factory reset, and a restore from backup.
4. Check the device was unlocked properly
Once you have followed the instructions supplied to finalise the unlocking of your handset you should try a SIM card from another network carrier to see if it works.
The SIM card should work if it has been done properly.
The best third party websites for iPhone 6 unlocking
Since networking unlocking is the best option and there are loads of suppliers I decided to try as many out as possible to see who was best.
There are many scammers out there and I wanted to make sure that I was providing good advice.
In a hurry:
If you don’t have time to read the detailed review below the best unlocker was IMEIdoctor.
They unlocked all the devices in 2 days.
Their prices start at just £19.99 ($25) which is good value for this service – although depending on your location and carrier prices can be higher.
Read more why I thought they were best of the bunch here.
Unlocking company reviews
Initially, I needed to find who to use.
I did a quick Google search to find as many companies that offered a factory / SIM /network / IMEI unlocking service as possible.
I looked at each of their websites and reviewed them carefully. I also dropped them an email to check that there was someone in charge.
This reduced my list drastically to 12 prospects.
I then decided to find out what customers thought of them by reviewing feedback left on TrustPilot, RipooffReport, and TrustmarkReviews. This reduced my list down to 4 finalists who I wanted to test thoroughly.
I decided to enlist the help of my vibrant community here at iChimp. I asked for readers that wanted to unlock their iPhone to get in touch. I tried to select people located all around the world. I believed this reflected my readers and also thoroughly tested the quality of the service provided.
I ended up with 16 volunteers with the following models:
- iPhone 6
- iPhone 6 Plus
- iPhone 6s
- iPhone 6s Plus
Each individual emailed me their IMEI code so I could place orders with each of the top 4 suppliers.
The judging criteria
Each supplier was judged based on 4 things:
- Did it work?
- Was it a reasonable price?
- How long did it take?
- Were they responsive to customer queries?
Did it work?
Did they actually manage to get the iPhone network unlocked. Obviously, if they didn’t they were no good.
Was it a reasonable price?
The price depended on the country and phone network – even for the same model of iPhone. Prices typically ranged between $20 to $40 USD (£12 -£30).
How long did it take?
I didn’t want it to take too long. Waiting 21 days for the work to be finished wasn’t good enough.
Were they responsive to customer queries?
Once I had paid my fee I wanted to ensure I was comfortable with what was happening. I wanted to be updated regularly on the status of the process.
I also wanted a responsive customer services team so I could get answers to my question quickly.
Based on my in-depth research I am happy to recommend the following methods.
1st place: IMEUdoctor
IMEIdoctor are brilliant having iPhone unlocked every smartphone.
They are competitively priced with prices ranging from approx $25 USD (£19.99) for English speaking countries such as UK, USA, Canada, Australia, and NZ. Non-English speaking countries tend to cost more. The exact price depends on where you are based and which network provider you are using. If you choose your country and network on their website it will provide you with an exact cost.
They were very efficient and managed to perform unlocks quicker than anyone else. On average it took a couple of days, which is very quick.
It was slower for some territories but this is clearer highlighted on the website when you buy so you are aware of this before you make your purchase.
Customer support was very responsive with most replies coming back within an hour.
All their prices are listed in GBP (£’s) as IMEIdoctor is a UK based business. However, they have no problem unlocking devices from anywhere in the world so if you are not in the UK this is not a problem.
I felt very comfortable spending money with them.
If you want to unlock your iPhone 6, I suggest you go with IMEIdoctor. They are a great supplier that have earned their top spot in my review.
How to request an unlock from IMEIdoctor
Some visitors to this page said they were a bit confused about how to order an unlock so I have written this step-by-step tutorial to make it easy.
1. When you place your order you will be asked for your phones IMEI code. There are 4 ways of getting this code:
- If you haven’t yet activated and setup your device you will see a little “i” button on the screen. Click it and it will display the IMEI code
- On your iPhones keypad dial *#06#
- Look at the back of your device and you should see your IMEI printed in really small text
- Click Settings > General > About on your phone then scroll down and you will see the IMEI listed
7. Your phone will be unlocked in 1-3 working days.
2nd place: Direct unlocks
Direct unlocks are the new boys on the block but they have already built a great reputation for quick and reliable service. They managed to unlock all of the iPhones and iPads without a hitch.
They are a truly international organisation and have US, and UK based sites with pricing given in the appropriate currency used – USD or GBP.
All of my devices were unlocked in a couple of days so it was pretty speedy.
Customer services were good, although not as warm and friendly as our winners (above).
Pricing is competitive although not quite as good as IMEIdoctor. With Direct unlocks you pay a non-refundable pre-order fee The rest of the fee is due before they finish doing the unlocking. This gives the impression that their prices are lower than they really are when you take into account the second payment.
Direct unlocks are rather good and almost got my top spot. They failed to make it due to their lack of track record but they are one to watch.
Other unlocking solutions
There are 3 other methods for the iPhone 6, 6S and 6 Plus:
Of these, some work, some are very dangerous and are likely to damage your device, and others are scams.
I will detail the problems with three of these methods, before explaining which one is best and how to unlock your phone with this method.
The issue with software unlocking is that in short – it no longer works.
Yes, you will probably find quite a number of websites writing about iPhone software unlocks.
But these do not work on the iPhone 6.
Do not pay for any software unlock of any type for your iPhone as it is a scam.
Software unlocks stopped working with the iPhone 4. They won’t work on newer iPhones.
Hardware unlocking was the first type of unlocking that didn’t rely on hacking the SIM card. I definitely don’t recommend going down this route.
Technically speaking, the process involves opening up your smartphone and doing a testpoint on the A17 gate. This type of hack is a variation of the Fakeblank exploit.
To be blunt, the process is the type of hack you find performed in small corner shops in dodgy areas of town.
The hacker needs to open up your device and install a piece of hardware that runs a special computer code. The code will prevent the iPhone being locked to a single network.
The downside is your device is opened and altered by an unauthorised dealer which voids your warranty. So if you have a future issue with your iPhone, such as a broken screen, Apple is likely to refuse to fix it.
It is also a risky procedure with a high failure rate.
It can destroy your iPhone.
It is often quite expensive too – with fees of £100-£200 ($150-$300 USD) charged with no guarantee it will work.
This is more expensive than network unlocking and far riskier.
Gevey SIM unlock
What is Gevey SIM Unlock?
The Gevey SIM unlock requires you to buy a small computer chip that sits between the SIM tray and the SIM card on your iPhone 6. This chip is called an interposer.
The interposer needs to be installed and kept in situ all the time to make sure your device remains unlocked.
How does Gevey SIM interposer work?
This is where it gets a little technical.
You SIM card has a unique IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) number that matches your account with your carrier and your handset. When you turn your iPhone it does an iMEI check with the carrier to see if the handset is network unlocked.
If fitted with an interposer, when you switch your iPhone on the Gevey interposer toggles your phone into flight mode preventing a connection to the phone network. It is forced to use the emergency 112 number to connect.
While establishing a connection the Gevey interposer cycles through IMSI codes to find a suitable combination.
Next, the flight mode is switched off and the fake ‘unlocked’ IMSI code is used instead of the real one.
Problems with Gevey SIM unlock
- It voids your Apple warranty.
- It only works if your iPhone handles 112 calls properly from your location.
- If your phone validates the IMSI code on all incoming calls it doesn’t work.
- This hack only works on some cell phone networks. For example, T-Mobile does not have 3G service using the Gevey hack.
- Due to network issues, some features will not work properly such as Facetime & iMessenger.
- Your mobile cell phone will have a poorer signal causing call dropouts.
- Your phone is likely to get too hot and suffer from a reduction in battery life.
- If your iPhone loses power or reception you have to perform the whole process again.
Some links in this article are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission comes at no additional cost to you.
Please understand that I recommend these tools because they are helpful and useful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to buy something.
Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals.
People Also Ask
What is a network lock?
Put simply, a network lock is a built-in restriction in your iPhone that forces you to only be able to use a SIM from one carrier.
This is normally the carrier you bought your iPhone from ie Sprint, EE, Vodaphone or whoever.
And you can’t change it.
This type of lock is sometimes called a SIM lock, carrier lock, or (master) subsidy lock.
So if you get a SIM from another carrier and put it into your iPhone it won’t let you make calls.
Instead, you will receive a message which says ‘SIM Not Valid’ explaining the issue with a very unhelpful ‘Try Again’ button.
The only time your iPhone won’t have a SIM lock is if it was bought from a seller that offers ‘unlocked’ iPhones – such as the Apple store.
Buying an iPhone at full price would have been no guarantee that it was SIM free. It would have to be specified as an unlocked device.
The only unlocking option that doesn’t void your Apple warranty is a network unlock.
It is also the most reliable and once completed it lasts for the lifetime of your phone.
It is also very simple to do – just follow the instructions below.
How do carriers stop you using another SIM?
Your SIM has a unique IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) code which ties your phone account and handset together.
If you put a different SIM in your phone it checks with your carrier if the IMSI matches the one in its database.
If it doesn’t you get a ‘SIM not valid’ message on your iPhone screen and you won’t be able to use it to make calls.
How does network unlocking work?
When you request to have your iPhone unlocked it is no longer listed in the database as having to use a SIM card with a specific IMSI. Instead, you can use any SIM with any IMSI.
This means you are free to decide which network you want to use.
Is it possible to unlock an iPhone 6 iCloud?
Can you unlock iPhone 6 with iTunes?
You can unlock the passcode of an iPhone 6 using iTunes. You can’t SIM unlock iPhone 6 so you can use any SIM card using iTunes.
What should I do if I can’t unlock my iPhone 6 screen?
If you can’t unlock the screen it means your device is passcode locked. You need to do a reset and restore so you can remove the passcode from the phone.
Can a stolen iPhone 6 be unlocked?
Being able to unlock a stolen iPhone 6 depends on a number of factors such as knowing the Apple ID of the original owner and if you want to keep the data. If you want to keep the data you must have access to a backup so it can be restored. But before you can restore the data you need to remove the iCloud lock.
Can I unlock my iPhone 6 when the screen is not working?
You can unlock the screen using the Voice Over App which can be activated using Siri. Simply hold down the Home button to activate Siri and say “Turn on VoiceOver”. You can also attach an external keyboard to the iPhone 6 and enter the passcode that way.
How do you unlock iPhone 6 when the home button is broken?
To unlock your iPhone 6 with a broken home button firstly plug your device into a computer with iTunes installed on it. On the devices summary page click ‘configure accessibility’ and select ‘VoiceOver’ to enable it. On your iPhone 6 you will be able to double tap the “press home to open” text using your touchscreen to unlock it.
Can you unlock iPhone 6 that is in lost mode?
You can unlock iPhone 6 in lost mode by entering the passcode on the screen or by cancelling lost mode via iCloud.com.
How can you unlock iPhone 6 for free?
You can unlock the passcode for free at home using iTunes. You can also iPhone unlock iCloud for free by resetting the password or getting the original owner to do it for you. You may also be able to factory unlock an out of contract iPhone 6 by contacting your carrier and asking them to unlock it.
Can you unlock your iPhone 6 without a passcode or fingerprint?
If your iPhone 6 is locked and you don’t have the passcode and the fingerprint scanner doesn’t work you need to do a reset and restore so you can remove the passcode from the phone.
Is it possible to SIM unlock any iPhone 6 that’s not paid off?
Yes, you can SIM unlock iPhone 6 that hasn’t been paid off using an third-party factory unlocker.
Factory unlocking an iPhone 6 is not quick, it normally takes 7-28 days depending on your carrier. You can SIM unlock your iPhone 6 faster by using a third-party company such as Direct Unlocks to do it.