Are T-Mobile iPhones Unlocked? (All You Need to Know)

Are you thinking about getting a T-Mobile iPhone and want to know if they’re unlocked so you can switch to another carrier?

Well, I’ve been researching this topic and have found a lot of useful information that’ll answer that question plus so much more, so keep reading to learn what I’ve discovered! 

Are T-Mobile iPhones Unlocked In 2024?

T-mobile iPhones are not unlocked and will remain locked to prevent you from switching to another wireless carrier for a certain period. However, you can get your iPhone unlocked after you’ve met all of the eligibility requirements set by T-Mobile, which is done automatically after your iPhone has become eligible in 2024.

Do you want to know more about the T-Mobile iPhone unlock process or have additional questions? If so, continue reading below to learn even more facts!

How Do I Unlock My T-Mobile iPhone?

You cannot unlock your T-Mobile iPhone yourself and you’ll have to wait until you’ve met all of the T-Mobile device unlock requirements before your iPhone is automatically unlocked.

Furthermore, the specific criteria that T-Mobile requires you to meet before your iPhone can be unlocked include the following:

  • The T-Mobile account is in good standing
  • The device can’t be reported stolen, lost, or blocked
  • You must have the device on T-Mobile’s network for 40 days
  • Your device must be paid off in full
  • The account balance has to be zeroed out if the phone is part of an account that was canceled
  • Your device has to have been sold by T-Mobile

Additionally, some iPhones cannot be unlocked automatically by T-Mobile, which means you’ll get a notification on the device within 48 hours after the device is eligible to be unlocked.

Note that you will have to follow the steps outlined in that automated notification to get your device unlocked.

What Is the T-Mobile iPhone Unlock Policy for Prepaid Plans?

T-Mobile has a separate unlock policy for prepaid plans, so if your iPhone is on a prepaid plan, you’ll be eligible for a device unlock after the following requirements have been met:

  • The iPhone must be activated on the T-Mobile network for at least 365 days, or you’ve spent more than $100 on refills and it’s been more than 14 days since the device was activated
  • You can’t have more than two devices unlocked within 12 months for each line
  • Any additional information that is requested by T-Mobile must be submitted before the device can be unlocked

Are There Exceptions to the T-Mobile iPhone Unlock Policy?

Are There Exceptions to the T-Mobile iPhone Unlock Policy?

T-Mobile does include exceptions on the device unlock policy, such as for actively deployed military personnel. However, you’ll need to contact T-Mobile for more information.

For example, you may have to submit paperwork showing your deployment to get your iPhone unlocked early from T-Mobile if the coverage isn’t in your location.

How Can I Check to See If a T-Mobile iPhone Can Be Unlocked?

You can simply log in to your T-Mobile account to see if your iPhone can be unlocked and what the lock status is of that device, so it’s quick and easy to check anytime you want!

How Long Does It Take for a T-Mobile iPhone to Be Unlocked?

Once your iPhone has met the eligibility requirements set by T-Mobile, it should only take two business days for the iPhone to be unlocked.

However, if the iPhone cannot be remotely unlocked, you’ll be notified of that within those two days with the additional steps that need to be taken for it to become unlocked.

Can ATT Unlock a T-Mobile iPhone?

AT&T cannot unlock a T-Mobile iPhone since it’s the only company that can unlock the phones that were purchased from T-Mobile, which includes the MVNOs from T-Mobile.

Therefore, if you plan to switch carriers from T-Mobile, you’ll have to contact T-Mobile to have your phone unlocked if it’s eligible before switching carriers.

Are Best Buy T-Mobile iPhones Unlocked?

The Best Buy T-Mobile iPhones will be unlocked since Best Buy is an authorized Apple retailer and isn’t part of T-Mobile.

Furthermore, the T-Mobile unlock policy only applies to phones that were purchased from T-Mobile itself and do not apply to retail stores.

To know more, you can also read our posts on whether or not T-Mobile throttle data, do T-Mobile phones have SIM cards, and how do T-Mobile hotspots work.


T-Mobile iPhones aren’t unlocked until you’ve met the eligibility requirements for a device unlock, which includes the device being paid off and your account being in good standing.

However, if you’ve purchased the iPhone from another retailer, the device will be unlocked since it’s an Apple authorized retailer. In addition, there are certain situations where you can get around the T-Mobile iPhone lock policy (i.e if you’re being deployed from the military).

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Cara Suppa

Cara Suppa has been freelance writing for over a decade and holds a BA in English and an MS in Integrated Marketing Communications. Outside of work, she is an avid cook, gardener, and discount shopper.

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