Know if an Android Phone Has Been Unlocked
Quick & Dirty vs Browser-based vs Android App

Edited by Rob, Anonymous, Eng, Dougie and 21 others

You might think that you can do whatever you like with a mobile phone once you've purchased it, including taking it to whatever carrier you like. Sadly, you might be mistaken. SIM locking is a practice common to many telecom companies. It involves the company locking the devices it sells to its own network. In other words, there's no guarantee that the phone you buy with Company A will work if you switch to Company B" unless you get it unlocked.

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There are ways to beat these companies at their own game by unlocking your device and taking it to whatever company you like. Or leave it there and enjoy the peace of mind, whatever you prefer. If you're not sure if your phone has been unlocked, there is a way to check.

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Android users will be thrilled to learn that there are easy ways to see if their phone has been unlocked. This is extremely useful if you are purchasing a used phone and you want to make sure you can use it the way they want. It's also good to just check to see if your phone has been unlocked. Here's how you do it.

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Method 1: Quick & Dirty

  1. 1
    Power off your phone and remove the SIM card.
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  2. 2
    Insert an active SIM card from a different carrier and power your phone back on.
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  3. 3
    Attempt to make a phone call.
    If you are able to call or text then your phone is not locked to a particular carrier.
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Method 2: Browser-based

  1. 1
    Open the "Phone" app on your Android phone.
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  2. 2
    Tap *#06#
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  3. 3
    Write down the IMEI number that appears.
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  4. 4
    Use a web browser and head to IMEI.info or click her .
    Enter your IMEI number and tap/click "Check."
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  5. 5
    From the new page, tap/click "SIM lock & Warranty."
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  6. 6
    Wait for the process to finish, then a new page will appear to tell you whether your phone is unlocked.
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Method 3: Android App

  1. 1
    Open the "Phone" app on your Android phone.
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  2. 2
    Tap "*#06#
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  3. 3
    Write down the IMEI number that appears or copy it to your device's clipboard.
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  4. 4
    In the Play Store, browse to the IMEI.info app.
    Download and install.
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  5. 5
    Follow the on-screen steps to input your IMEI and find out if your phone is unlocked.
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  • Note: The app restricts users from accessing the information more than a few times without paying a premium. You'll likely be better off using the web version.

Tips Tricks & Warnings

  • Unless you specifically want to unlock your phone, it's probably not useful for you to know whether or not it is unlocked.
  • There are numerous apps and services available to help you unlock a phone. Take the time to research the process for your specific device before trying to unlock it.

Questions and Answers

Given the question details, how do I unlock my phone?

I "donated" to www.unlockphone.me and received an unlock Code. I bought a pay as you go SIM card at 7-11, and put it into the phone. When I power up, I encounter a screen that asks me to input the unlock code. When I put in the unlock code provided by www.unlockphone.me, the phone tells me the code is not accepted. . . Prior to buying the unlock code, I checked whether or not the phone was locked. I found that the only lock was on the service provider and that I had the ability to make 5 tries. If I assume my attempts are being counted, I am down to 2 more tries. Help! The code is probably 0000 or 1234. Contact the manufacturer of the device before you make any more attempts. The phone was never locked before so they should have listed the default code in the user manual. It is worth contacting them because you are probably not the only one who has encountered this!

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See more questions like this: How can I check if my Android phone is unlocked without a SIM card to check against?

Is my Android phone locked? I followed the instructions but nothing happened?

I typed *#06# and nothing happened. Is there something else I should be doing?

  • You can reboot your phone and try dialling *#06# again.
  • You can remove paired Bluetooth devices on your phone and try dialling *#06# again. You can just disable Bluetooth (either from the notification panel or from "Settings", "Wireless and Networks", and "Bluetooth").
  • Turn off the phone and take the battery out to reveal the IMEI or MEID (for CDMA networks) code under it.
  • Press the home button. Tap on the "Apps" icon in the lower-right corner. Tap on "Settings". Tap on "About phone". Tap on "Status".
  • Navigate to https://www.google.com/settings/dashboard and click on "Android". This will reveal your IMEI or MEID.
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After that, you can continue with the tutorial.

See more questions like this: I am curious as to whether or not my phone is locked or not

There is no option to check if phone is unlocked on the website that you directed me too?

I have recently purchased a Galaxy S6 and have been using a with virgin mobile SIM only I bought the phone off ebay and it has been working well until today it was stuck in boot loop this morning so I reset using power button and vol down button. it asked for the SIM pin that was accepted except this time it's asked for a network pin that I have tried the normal pins from phone access . the phone now says "network locked SIM inserted". the SIM works fine in a different phone. any ideas. My phone was working fine on Virgin and has only just started saying that the phone is network locked. I have tried: Hard reset, soft reset. I have googled the problem but no answers. I think it was caused by: No idea I have tried everything I need to find out if this phone was previously locked to a network and if it has defaulted back to this.

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When you purchased it off eBay, do you remember if they listed what network the phone was previously on? Virgin has a Support Page for your situation. They suggest logging into your Virgin Account first to request a Pin/PUK code for your SIM. If this fails then they say to call them so they can work with you on properly unlocking your device. The Virgin pin should work since this phone worked with a Virgin SIM previously for you.

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See more questions like this: I was going to check If this phone I bought was really Unlocked?

Is there any new way to tell if a Galaxy Note3 is already unlocked. I am going international in one week and want to rent a SIM card?

SIM card will only work if my phone is unlocked. My son bought this phone on eBay, he is not sure if it is unlocked

Download and install GalaxSim Unlock. Launch it and check if it offers to unlock your phone. If it does, then your phone is locked. There is also the "SIM lock status" line that shows whether the phone is locked or unlocked. The other methods are shown in the article above (the best one being inserting different SIM cards into the phone).

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See more questions like this: Is my Galaxy locked or unlocked? I'm using another SIM no prob, but no data

Is my LG G3 smartphone an unlocked phone?

Considering purchasing and international SIM card for travel out of the country. I own an LG G3 previous carrier AT&T. Trying to decide whether I need a new instrument or just an international SIM.

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You should be able to swap out to an International SIM card. Especially if the phone is unlocked from AT&T. One thing to look into is the international plans for the carrier you currently have. Many have competitive international roaming plans that are not so bad to the wallet. Especially if you use WiFi as much as possible. This way your phone number will be the same. Keep in mind, that you may not get 4G connection overseas no matter how much you try to tweak the phone.

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The option to click "SIM lock & warranty" does not come up?

I enter the IMEI and info about my phone come up. There is an option to click "warranty" but no option for "SIM lock & warranty". When I click on "warranty" it simply takes me back to the main page where I have to enter my IMEI over again. Any suggestions?

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Use the Google Play app suggested instead. Not every Android phone is the same which is why two methods are suggested.

See more questions like this: Hello, I am looking to check if my Android phone (very old one) is unlocked and if not so how to unlock it? Thanks?

See more questions like this: I don't see any similar lock or warranty button, can you tell me where it is?

How do I know if my phone is compatible with a different carrier?

If I buy this phone from my friend that is an AT&T phone, can I switch it to Straight Talk?. I have tried: I have tried nothing. I think it was caused by: Nothing just needs a new one

Straight Talk has a Bring Your Own Phone program. You can check here to see if the phone you wish to purchase is compatible. Then you would purchase their AT&T compatible SIM for your phone.

The instructions on your website don't seem correct, how do I check if my Samsung Note2 is unlocked?

I'm trying to check if my phone is unlocked. I followed the instruction on the Method 2, found my IMEI and input it on the IMEI website, clicked Check and on the new page, there is no "SIM card and warranty" to click on. Now, what? The step after click on Check is not correct. is there something else I should be doing?

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This Google Play App Galaxy SIM Unlock will tell you if your phone is locked. You can uninstall it if your phone is unlocked or use it to unlock your phone if it is still locked to a carrier.

Can I do a bulk check of IMEI's for Android devices to confirm they are unlocked?

I am a wholesaler of cellular phones. I would like to do bulk checks on IMEI to confirm the unit is unlocked. Do you offer that service?. I have tried: Nothing. I think it was caused by: Nothing

This Youtube Tutorial shows you a fast way for all carriers and models of phones. You will still need to check one at a time, though.

See more questions like this: There is no check when I go to IMEI.info to see if my Android (Samsung Note4) is unlocked?

I entered my IMEI number

A screen said free Motorola info, the screen has a number of items in it, but next the info is blank, no info on unlock status. I have tried: Entered my IMEI number followed the directions. I think it was caused by: That's why we are talking

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Most GSM Motorola phones are unlocked. You can try one of the other apps suggested on this page if you must know for sure.

See more questions like this: Do I type the number that is given like as I'm calling somebody?

Why doesn't my GS7 Edge that is unlocked from AT&T work with VZW?

I went through the unlocking process on my GS7 Edge (was AT&T). I put in the code, tried my VZW SIM card and I cannot make calls. Just emergency calls. It recognizes my number but I cannot make any calls. An Ideas?

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AT&T uses GSM while Verizon uses CDMA for voice calls and data. The Galaxy 7 Edge has some versions that are dual band for voice calls but your best option is to contact Verizon directly regarding your issue. They are making a huge push for customers to bring their own phone and put it on Verizon. You also may not have unlocked your phone correctly.

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IMEI doesn't appear how do I fix this?

When I tap *#06# nothing happen. What should I do?

Go into Settings and find About Phone. Then select Status. Within this menu is IMEI information. Once you select that your IMEI will be displayed.

All my apps were moved to the SD card. My device storage is still full. Why?

Whenever I try to download a new app I'm told not enough space. I have tried: Moved all apps, pics, etc., to the SD card. I think it was caused by: I've tried everything I've been told to do, so I'm asking you. I've come across your name on VisiHow but never need additional info.

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A: I'm not sure how you actually moved "apps" to the SD card. If phones are anything like computers, the apps are installed onto the phone, with very specific directory written in them. If you just copied the installed folder over to the SD card, all the directory would be wrong and the apps won't function...I think...although, I'm not a computer expert.

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However, your problem seems to be copying files over to the SD card instead of actually moving them. Since you've "moved" stuff to the SD card, try taking the SD card out and verify if the files exist in it with a computer and then check if the files are still on your phone.

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Is my phone locked by my previous carrier?

I had an HTC One M8 from AT&T. I switched to MetroPCS but was never able to use the HTC with that network. AT&T had released the phone number (I assume it's because I wanted to keep the same number after moving to MetroPCS) but I don't know if AT&T has completely unlocked it.

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Upon checking with Metro PCS, the HTC One M8 is not compatible with a Metro PCS SIM card. They only support the HTC One and HTC One S. You can check with Metro PCS's Bring Your Own Phone Compatibility Tool before you decide to purchase a phone and use it on Metro PCS.

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See more questions like this: I'm from India and bought a unlocked HTC m8 online. it was working with my carrier for 6 months. Now its not . Is it because it got relocked?

I can't verify my account, how do I bypass it?

How do I bypass my Google account on Samsung S7

You can follow RootJunky's method of for bypassing Google FRP Verification in this YouTube Tutorial. It will take you about 10 minutes and then you will be able to use your phone again.

Help with TracFone from Straight Talk?

I purchased a Samsung Galaxy from a man on Craigslist and he told me that he got it from Walmart on Straight Talk, but they don't recognize the IMEI. Is there any way I can get this phone connected? When it is powered up, it says TracFone wireless, inc. I have tried: Straight Talk said they don't have the phone listed and I need to have it re-scanned, but I can't do that because it is not a new phone. I think it was caused by: I may have been scammed

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Straight Talk offers an Activation Kit for Samsung Galaxy devices. Use their BYOP tool to see if your phone will need the activation kit. Speak directly with their phone Customer Service if you encounter further issues. The Walmart kiosk people are okay but do not always know what to do with an unlocked used phone. Whoever told you that you can't rescan a used phone is completely wrong with Straight Talk's Bring Your Own Phone policy.

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I am putting my IMEI NUMBER AND IT SHOWS IT TO BE INVALID and I cannot put the serial no?

MY PHONE'S serial number has letters but I cannot type the No. since I can only type numbers. Can you please confirm if my cell phone is unlocked. Thanks.

Use one of the apps suggested above since you can't type in alphabetic and only numeral.

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Categories : Android

Recent edits by: Steve obrien, Vincent Leong, Inukshuk

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