Why bother unlocking your handset?
It’ll allow you to choose a SIM only deal from any provider, not just the one who sold you your phone in the first place.
This could make your phone bill much cheaper or mean you can get more data, calls or texts for the same price you pay now.
What will you need?
To unlock your phone you’ll need to know your handset’s:
- Make e.g. Samsung or Apple
- Model e.g. Galaxy S10 or iPhone 11
- Unique 15 digit IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) number
Check your IMEI number by entering *#06# into your phone app.
A pop up will then appear and display your IMEI number ready for you to use.
Does your phone need unlocking?
It’s worth checking because some suppliers offer handsets that are already unlocked and some networks have affiliates that can be switched between.
For example, Vodafone is affiliated with Clear Mobile, so if you switched from one to the other, you wouldn’t need to unlock your device.
You can check if your phone is unlocked by popping a SIM card from a different network into your phone. If it works, your phone is already unlocked and you’re good to go.
How to unlock your phone
If you find your phone does need unlocking you’ve got two options:
- Use an online unlocking service
- Ask your phone provider
Use an unlocking service
If you want to unlock your phone straightaway, you can use an online Irish phone unlocking service.
You’ll be given a unique unlock code with instructions on how to enter it into your phone to unlock your device.
The fee for getting your phone unlocked through these services will vary depending on your handset, so check the full cost before going ahead.
Contact your phone network
If you’re happy to wait, you can contact your existing network to unlock you handset for free once you’re out of contract.
Most networks require you to call or email them with your request, but some let you submit your request online, including:
However, you may have to wait between 3 and 21 days from requesting your code to unlock your phone.
Some networks will only unlock handsets bought directly from them. This means if you bought your phone somewhere else they may decline your request.
Now your handset is unlocked, you’re free to find the best SIM only deal, below are some of the leading offers:
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