How I Did an IMEI Unlock for My HTC One Permanently
If you bought your phone directly from a manufacturer or third-party retailer, you’ve got an unlocked phone that’s good for use with any network. However, what if you bought it through a network provider or on a contract?
In reality, your carrier wants to limit what you can do with your phone, and that means keeping you as a customer by denying access to other networks. So, if you want to change networks, your new SIM card won’t work in your phone. Don’t just stand there and pay ridiculous fees -there’s always something you can do.
Last year, I owned a Verizon-locked HTC One that was on a 24-month contract. Basically, I was not happy with Verizon services. About two weeks prior to my first visit to Paris, I had contacted Verizon to unlock my phone, and learned that I would need to pay an early termination fee to break the contact. That’s when I started looking for options to break free of the chains Verizon wrapped my phone up in.
I will share with you the story of how I unlocked my HTC One with a simple and permanent unlock method (IMEI unlock code). Before we proceed, there are a few things you should understand about unlocking a carrier-locked smartphone.
What’s a locked phone?
Most people tend to buy a locked phone with a carrier contract because it’s much cheaper than getting a factory-unlocked phone.
In the US, you are going to pay between $27 and $30 a month for the HTC One with a 24-month contract through American carriers like Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile (I paid $27 per month for my Verizon-locked HTC 10). If you want to go SIM-free, HTC 10 is now available for a whopping $648, which is pretty expensive for a phone that’s been available for a while on the market.
Basically, a locked phone can only be used on the network it is locked to. So, if you now own a Verizon-locked HTC 10, don’t bring it to T-Mobile, insert a new SIM card and expect it works.
So, why would I want to unlock my phone?
Once your phone is unlocked, you can connect it to any carrier’s frequency-compatible network. This allows you to easily switch between carriers. If you head overseas, you are free to use your phone with a local carrier’s Sim card and use their services without paying crazy international roaming fees.
There are several methods for phone unlocking available on the market, but only one that worked for me.
Unlock code is not rooting
Unlock code seems to be the only effective way for unlocking a phone. Basically, it’s the process by which you enter a code to your phone in order to break all the restrictions imposed by your carrier. This allows you to insert a new SIM card from a different carrier and connect to their service. This is safe, effective, permanent and doesn’t root your device and void your warranty.
How you can get an unlock code
Every mobile phone has a unique set of unlock codes and it’s stored in the carrier’s database. Code unlocking requires help from an unlocking service provider. What they do is to send you the Unlock code generated from your IMEI number you provide.
So, what’s an IMEI number and how can you get it?
Every phone has a unique identifier code, known as an IMEI number. IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) is a 15-digit serial number used to identify your phone (all the information about your device including model number, year of production, and most importantly whether your phone is locked to a particular network).
You can access the IMEI number of your phone by dialing *#06# from your phone app.
There are tons of unlocking service providers out there, but not all of them are trusted and created equal. Some have cheap prices, but spend too much time getting your phone unlocked. Some have unlocks for a wide range of phone models but poor customer support. And, worst of all, some are just scams.
Back in 2014, I had my AT&T-locked HTC One M9 unlocked on a very affordable cost. It’d worked like a dream. However, my phone got re-locked after two months. Baffled, I called my network, only to learn that my phone was blacklisted.
Back to my story
I grabbed my Verizon-locked HTC One last year, and I regretted making that decision. Verizon’s service was lousy and their customer support was really poor. I spent two months looking for a trusted unlock code provider, and I found expressunlock.com. On the face of it, expressunlock.com might seem like any other unlocking website out there. But, when I read all reviews on their site, I decided to place my order.
How I unlocked my HTC 10 Verizon-locked smartphone
First, I visited https://expressunlock.com/unlock-htc in Safari on my Mac, then I entered the IMEI number of my phone and completed my payment. I was pretty nervous because I’d already paid for the service and nothing happened. Three hours later, I received an email from expressunlock with the unlock code and step-by-step guide.
The instructions asked me to turn off my phone, insert a new SIM card and enter the unlock code after restarting the device. Once I had done that, my phone was totally free.
One of the things I like about expressunlock is their customer support. I contacted them two times –once before placing my order and once after the unlock was complete. They responded very quickly, with the information I needed.
Expressunlock is always my number one recommendation thanks to their great prices and excellent customer support.