How to Check if Your iPhone Is Locked or Unlocked

If you’re buying or selling an iPhone, it’s essential to know if it’s locked or unlocked. If your iPhone is locked, it’s tied to a specific network like AT&T or T-Mobile and remains locked until you’ve finished your contract.

You can check if your iPhone is locked or unlocked in the settings by contacting your carrier or by using a SIM card from a different carrier.

Check if your iPhone is locked in Settings

  1. Tap Settings.

    Settings App on the iPhone
    Tap Settings.
  2. Scroll down and tap General.

    General Settings on the iPhone
    Tap General.
  3. Tap About.

    More Information About the iPhone in General Settings
    Tap About.
  4. Scroll down and check for “Carrier Lock”. If your iPhone is unlocked, it should say “No SIM restrictions”. If your iPhone is locked, it’ll say “SIM locked.”

    Carrier Lock Information in Settings
    Look for Carrier Information to know if your device is locked or unlocked.

Check if your iPhone is locked by contacting your carrier

If the Settings method didn’t work, you can also call your carrier and ask them. This will only work for your device, and you won’t be given any information about someone else’s device that you’re planning to buy.

You can also check your carrier’s website. Here are some sites of popular carriers in the U.S. that you can use:

These sites may ask for your device’s serial number, which you can find by following the steps below:

  1. Tap Settings.

    Settings App on the iPhone
    Tap Settings.
  2. Go to General.

    General Settings on the iPhone
    Tap General.
  3. Tap About.

    More Information About the iPhone in General Settings
    Tap About.
  4. Look for “Serial Number”. You may be asked to provide this serial number when contacting your carrier.

    Device's Serial Number in the Settings
    Find your device’s serial number in the settings.

How to Check if iPhone is Locked With IMEI

Many IMEI checker sites online will tell you if your iPhone is locked or unlocked. One site you can use is https://imeicheck.com/simlock-iphone. For this site, you will need your device’s IMEI or IMEI 2 if you have an iPhone X or later and the serial number. Here’s how you can find your IMEI:

  1. Go to Settings.

    Settings App on the iPhone
    Tap Settings.
  2. Scroll down and tap General.

    General Settings on the iPhone
    Tap General.
  3. In the “General” settings, tap About.

    More Information About the iPhone in General Settings
    Tap About.
  4. Scroll down, and you’ll find IMEI or IMEI2.

    IMEI and IMEI2 Numbers in the Settings
    Look for IMEI and IMEI2.

How to Check if iPhone is Locked With a SIM Card

You need to have two SIM cards from different carriers for this method. Power off your iPhone and switch your current SIM card with the one from another carrier. Switch it back on and then make a phone call. 

If the call goes through, that means your iPhone is unlocked. If it doesn’t, your iPhone is locked to a specific carrier.

Change SIM Cards on the iPhone to Check if It's Locked or Unlocked
Check if your iPhone is locked or unlocked by changing the SIM card. (Source: 9to5mac.com)

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