July 13, 2017

How to unlock your network-locked iPhone

This is a request we get quite often. Somebody bought or received an iPhone from somewhere else, but when they insert a Zambian SIM card, it turns out to be locked to a carrier in the country of origin.
We used to offer to unlock it. What we would do, what everybody here that offers this service do, is to simply turn around and order an unlock from one of the many online services that specialises in this. But in the end, we have come to the conclusion this is not something we can offer with the high service quality we want to give to our customers:
  • The online service is actually incredible simple to use and requires no tinkering on the part of the customer, so we don’t really offer any value addition
  • For the administration and time spent we have to charge an overhead (as well as to protect ourselves against currency fluctuations, since we charge in Kwacha but the online service charge in dollars or pounds), but given the first point, it feels like we do not offer much for this charge
  • Since most of the charge goes directly to the online service upon ordering, we have to charge the full price up front. This is against our general policy, and it just feels wrong. Full payment on delivery feels better for us and our customers
  • It takes up to a week to deliver the unlock, and in many cases we have had there has been some snag and the unlock cannot be delivered from the online service. They issue a refund in such cases, which we forward to the customer, but the turnaround for the whole process might be 2-3 weeks, which is a long time to wait for a refund and no results.
Therefore we think it is best if you, if you find yourself in this situation, handle the process yourself. We have used the online service Doctor SIM for this, which has a reputation for being one of the best. We promise the process is very simple and the unlock itself is basically fully automatic and does not require you to do anything with your iPhone (except possibly a restart)
If you run into trouble or need help, or if you do not have an intl card you can use for payment, please feel free to be in touch for assistance!

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