How to Unlock iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X for Any Carrier and Any Country

If you buy a smartphone on a monthly plan from some mobile carrier like T-mobile and AT&T, you would probably get a carrier-locked device. The story is not much different when we talk about iPhone 8/8 Plus and iPhone X. And, you are probably wondering why your iPhone would be locked in the first plan, and how would you be able to use it, if it comes locked. Well, let me explain.

Why Your iPhone is Carrier-Locked?

Carrier providers lock iPhones and other smartphones to ensure that you will use the devices on their mobile network during the contract.

You will not have any problem if you are using your iPhone on its original provider network. However, you would not be able to use it on any other carrier network worldwide. So, if you are traveling in other countries, and you want to swap SIM cards quickly to get local mobile service, that would not be possible. Additionally, the same scenario would happen if you try to use SIM cards from other carriers in your country. That means you are limited to use only the mobile network from which you bought your iPhone from. For those of you who want to learn more about locked iPhones check the following article How to Check if Your iPhone is Locked by a Carrier?

So, what can you do to get rid of the carrier lock?

There are some ways how to unlock your iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X for any carrier worldwide which I will explain to you here. However, no matter which one you would like to choose, in the following section you can find the first step you need to take.

Check if You Own a Carrier-Locked iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X?

Before jumping in any unlocking process, you should make sure that your iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X is locked. To make your life easier, I will tell you that if you bought your iPhone directly from an official Apple Store, you should skip the rest of the article. Your iPhone is neverlocked. You can use it for any carrier worldwide, and you DO NOT need to do any procedures to gain an unlocked status. However, if you get your iPhone from some local mobile operator, the odds are that you have a locked device.

The simplest way to check if your device is locked to a carrier network is by swapping SIM cards. Remove your original SIM card, and insert one from a different carrier network. If your device is unable to get the service, it is probably locked. If you don’t have a SIM card from a different carrier network, you can perform other methods for checking if your iPhone is locked to a carrier network. Take a look at this article for more info How to Check if Your iPhone is Locked by a Carrier?

Unlock Your iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X with Your Carrier Provider

After you are sure that you own a carrier-locked iPhone, you can start with the unlocking procedure. The first, and usually the easiest way for unlocking your iPhone is with your carrier provider.

First of all, you should know whether your carrier offers an unlocking service or not. However, most of the popular carrier networks like Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile can assist you in unlocking your iPhone. They even do that for free if your device meets their requirements.

So here is what you should do.

  1. Go to the official website of your mobile carrier and search for a carrier unlocking service.
  2. Follow the instruction given on the site. Some may require filling a request form and others downloading an official unlocking app.
  3. When you get a confirmation for your unlocking request, they will start the unlocking procedure.
  4. When your carrier provider finishes with the procedure, you will be notified about the status of your device. Your mobile carrier will unlock your iPhone directly or send you an unlock code.
  5. Once they unlocked your iPhone, remove the original SIM card, insert the new one, and set up your iPhone again.
  6. If they didn’t give you a new SIM card, you should backup your iPhone and reset all settings. After that, you can restore your iPhone from the backup.

Note: If you get a message in iTunes telling that your SIM card is incompatible with the iPhone here is what you should do.

  • Restore your iPhone through iTunes.
  • After the confirmation, that your mobile operator successfully unlocked your device, restore your iPhone from a backup.

If you tried all the steps from above and your iPhone is still locked, contact your carrier again and let them know about your iPhone’s status. They tell you further instructions to unlock your device.

Perform an IMEI Carrier Unlock

Another way to unlock your iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X is with using its IMEI number. I know that you may not know what IMEI number means, so here is the explanation.

What is an IMEI number?

The (IMEI) International Mobile Equipment Identity number is a unique serial or identification number that all smartphones and mobile phones have. It is usually 15 digits long. You can find your Phone’s IMEI number on the original box your phone came in. Additionally, you can get your IMEI by entering a specific code on the dialer of your iPhone.

Once you officially unlock your iPhone using your IMEI number, it will be whitelisted in the Apple database. Based on the feedbacks IMEI unlocks work 100%. What is even better when using IMEI to unlock your iPhone is that it works even on the latest iPhone 8/8 Plus and iPhone X. Also, this unlocking method is permanent, and after you’ve done it, you can update or restore your iPhone without a risk for re-locking it again.

The IMEI Unlocking Procedure

  1. The first thing you need to do in order to unlock your iPhone is to get the IMEI number. Here are different ways how to do that.
    • Dial *#06# on your iPhone dialer and a 15-digit number (IMEI) will appear on your screen.
    • Connect your iPhone to a Mac or Open iTunes and select your iDevice. Go to the Summary section. Pay attention to the Phone Number field, and click on it to see your IMEI number.
    • Go to Settings on your iPhone. Click on General then open the About section, and you will see your IMEI number.
  1. The next thing you need to do is finding a reliable IMEI unlock service. You can simply search iPhone IMEI unlock on Google or eBay and pick out one referring to its ratings, reviews, and sales.
  2. After you have selected your unlocking service, you should follow their instructions and send them your IMEI number.
  3. Now you just need to wait they quoted delivery time for the email that will give you the further unlocking instructions.
  4. When you got the email, insert the new SIM card you want to use (from a different carrier than the original SIM card), and a message will appear on your screen, telling you that your SIM card is not valid.
  5. Now, connect your iPhone to your computer and open iTunes. A message will appear telling you to activate your phone.
  6. Click OK, and another message will show up, letting you know that your iPhone was successfully unlocked. You’ve just unlocked your iPhone.

Keep in mind that the last few steps may vary, depending on the unlocking service that you will choose. However, most of the services work in a similar way, so no matter which one you pick, the procedure will not be drastically different.

Wrap Up

Having an unlocked iPhone gives you an opportunity to use your iPhone 8/8 Plus or iPhone X, on any mobile network worldwide. So, if you want to have freedom to use your iDevice on different carriers or in different countries, you should definitely pick one of the methods above.

Additionally, feel free to share your experience in unlocking your iPhone and suggest if you know any other unlocking method.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.