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How to Unlock TracFone iPhone 12/11/X/8/7/6 for Free?

Want to switch your TracFone iPhone to another carrier?

It’s not easy for you if your iPhone is locked. You may encounter an error message saying “SIM Not Supported” after inserting another SIM card.

This is annoying! But don’t worry, our research will help you unlock your TracFone iPhone without any hassles!

Why It’s Possible for You to Unlock a TracFone iPhone?

Before 2016, TracFone is well-known for having non-unlockable pre-paid phones, this means a TracFone device could not be able to switch to any other carrier providers.

For example, if you insert an AT&T SIM card into your TracFone iPhone, you’ll see an error message like “SIM Not Supported” or “SIM Not Valid”.

sim not supported

Locking handsets is a customer retention strategy by carriers. But it’s not user-friendly.

After the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) made settlement negotiations with TracFone in 2016 [1], the pre-paid users are allowed to switch to other networks.

This ruling covers all TracFone’s brands, including:

  • TracFone
  • Straight Talk
  • Net10 Wireless
  • Total Wireless
  • SafeLink Wireless
  • Simple Mobile
  • Telcel America
  • Page Plus Cellular
  • Clearway Wireless for Business

So, the following guide will help you unlock either of the above carrier networks.

About Our Research On TracFone iPhone Unlock

We have been helping our readers unlock their iPhones since 2020. We chose them randomly from those who left a comment on our website or sent emails to us asking for help.

1Researched Methods

2Tested Devices

The devices we used in this TranFone Unlock Research are:

  • 1x iPhone 5x (tested with Method 1 & 2)
  • 1x iPhone 5c (tested with Method 1 & 3)
  • 1x iPhone 6 (tested with Method 1)
  • 1x iPhone 11 Pro (tested with Method 1 & 3)
  • 1x iPhone 12 mini (tested with Method 1 & 2)

3Results of This Research

If you don’t want to go through the entire article, here are the research results that will help you unlock your TracFone iPhone quickly:

  • Only iPhone 6 unlocked successfully by TracFone (took 6 days). The others can’t be unlocked due to their strict requirements
  • After testing many iPhone unlocking services available we concluded DirectUnlocks offers a great service. They successfully unlocked all the tested iPhones (within 24 hours for each)
  • The hardware solution (UB SIM) can bypass carrier lock on all the tested devices (within 3 minutes for each). But it’s not a permanent solution

4Conclusion

  • Apple can’t unlock your iPhone, only TracFone or third-party unlockers can
  • Only one method is recommended by Apple [1]. That method is method 1
  • TracFone may refuse to unlock your iPhone if you don’t meet their requirements such as being with them for 12 months, having no outstanding debt, and being the original owner
  • Third-party unlockers can unlock your iPhone without requirements, although the quality of them varies greatly between them.

Method 1. The Official Way to Unlock TracFone iPhone Free

The only free way for you to get your TracFone iPhone unlocked is to send an unlock request to TracFone.

Differing from Android phones, your iPhone will be unlocked over the air. There is no TracFone unlock code needed.

The following are some simple steps you can follow to completely unlock your Tracfone iPhone.

1Steps for TracFone iPhone Unlock

Step 1. Check Eligibility

One thing you should note is that not all TracFone phones are capable of unlocking even after the FCC ruling.

So, make sure you meet all TracFone iPhone unlock requirements:

  • Your iPhone must be pre-paid.
  • Your iPhone shouldn’t have an association with fraudulent activity and shouldn’t have been reported as stolen or lost.
  • Your iPhone must be activated on TracFone service for more than 12 months.
  • Your phone number should not be recycled or ported.
  • Your iPhone must have active service or be within 60 days after service expired.
  • You must be the original owner of a Tracfone branded iPhone
  • For customers from Straight Talk, SIMPLE Mobile, Total Wireless, NET 10, TracFone or Telcel: your iPhone must have been launched to the market after 02/11/2014 (this means only iPhone 6 & above can be unlocked) and activated on TracFone service after 2/11/2015
  • For customers from SafeLink: Your iPhone must have been activated on TracFone service after 2/11/2014.
  • Your TracFone account must be in good standing – no financing issues.
  • You can only send the unlock request once every 12 months.

Tired of reading the above unlocking policy?

You can check if you are eligible by calling 1-888-442-5102 between 8:00 am and 11:45 pm (Eastern Time, 7 days/week) or check online with your phone number or IMEI.

tracfone online eligibility checker

For more details on IMEI, see our article on how to find IMEI from a carrier locked iPhone.

Step 2. Wait for Unlock

If your iPhone eligible to be unlocked, TracFone will take care of the rest for you.

The unlocking process will usually take up to 7 days. TracFone will inform you when it’s unlocked.

Step 3. Activate Your iPhone

Once TracFone gets your iPhone unlocked, you’ll need to activate it before using it. Here’re two ways to activate your iPhone:

Insert a New SIM Card

  1. Power off your iPhone
  2. Insert a new SIM card that is from a different carrier
  3. Power on

Restore Your iPhone

  • Connect your iPhone to computer via a USB cable
  • Launch iTunes and select your iPhone icon
  • Click on Back Up Now
  • After making a backup, click on Restore iPhone
  • Finally, click on Restore Backup

itunes iphone summary

2Our Experience with This Method

Here are the detailed results after using this method:

  • For iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s, they weren’t unlockable since it was released before 02/11/2014.
  • For iPhone 6, TracFone successfully unlocked it in 6 days.
  • iPhone 11 Pro & iPhone 12 mini are not eligible to be unlocked as they are activated on TracFone for less than 12 months.

3What to Do If You’re Not Eligible for a Tracfone Unlock?

tracfone unlock eligibility results

If it’s an old iPhone (iPhone 5s and below) that can’t be unlocked. TracFone offers 4 options for you:

  • Ask for a partial cash refund.
  • Request a trade-in value of your iPhone.
  • Ask for a new unlocked handset for Lifeline customers.
  • Most of the requirements have something to do with time. If that’s the case, it is advisable to wait.

You must check if you’re eligible for the above options. Just make a phone call or check online as mentioned above.

If you can’t meet their requirements, don’t worry, method 2 and method 3 may be a good choice for you. We’re going to talk about them below.

Method 2. Using a TracFone iPhone Unlock Service

Can’t unlock your TracFone iPhone with the above free ways? Then an unlocking service may be a good option.

After doing a thorough review of many TracFone iPhone unlocking services, DirectUnlocks stands out from them.

directunlocks

DirectUnlocks is good as they managed to unlock every tested iPhone within 24 hours. A 100% success rate isn’t something you can better, so they have our vote in this respect.

1Steps for TracFone iPhone Unlock

Here is how you can unlock your TracFone iPhone:

Step 1. Visit DirectUnlocks TracFone iPhone unlocking page.

Step 2. Enter the IMEI of your iPhone. You can find it by dialing *#06# on your iPhone keypad.

dial code to find imei iphone

Step 3. It will automatically detect the model of your iPhone according to the IMEI.

Step 4. Click on Unlock and then complete the payment.

directunlocks tracfone iphone unlock

Step 5. Finally, wait until they get your device unlocked. It usually takes less than 24 hours.

3Our Experience with This Method

  • They unlocked all the iPhones which can’t be unlocked by Method 1
  • The delivery time for all the iPhones are less than 24 hours (The fastest is 5.5 hours)
  • It’s a permanent solution, even after we update and restore the tested iPhones, they stay unlocked
  • They are well priced from $28

Method 3. Using a Hardware Solution

The last way we tested is to use a hardware solution – UB SIM – a small computer chip the same size as a micro-SIM.

This chip can easily bypass the TracFone lock and allows you to use any SIM card on your iPhone. They successfully unlocked the tested iPhones.

1Steps to Unlock TracFone iPhone

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to a Wi-Fi network

Step 2. Take out the SIM tray from your iPhone [2].

Step 3. Insert the UB SIM along with a SIM card into your iPhone.

Step 4. Wait for 15 seconds and a menu should appear. Tap “ICCID Mode“.

Step 5. Then enter the latest ICCID code: 89014104279605345149

Step 6. Then you’ll see “Setup Complete” on the screen. Tap on Accept and then Continue to finish the activation.

2Our Experience with This Method

  • They unlocked all the iPhones which can’t be unlocked by Method 1
  • This is a temporary solution, the iPhone will be locked again after updating the iOS version
  • They only ship this chip to users from the US, UK, EU, Russia, China and India, and will take 5-10 days to receive it

FAQs About TracFone iPhone Unlock

Here’re the frequently asked questions you may be interested.

1What Does It Mean When a TracFone is Locked?

If your iPhone is carrier locked, then it will only work with the carrier you bought it from, in this case Tracfone.

An unlocked phone will allow you to switch to a compatible carrier if you want.

2Why Should I Unlock My TracFone iPhone?

  1. Switch to any network carrier you prefer without limits
  2. Receive a higher price when selling your iPhone
  3. Switch to a cheaper plan freely

3How to Check If My TracFone iPhone is Locked?

There’re two simple & effective ways to do that:

  1. Insert a new SIM card from a different carrier. If your iPhone showing an error message like “SIM Not Supported” or “SIM Not Valid”, then it’s locked.
  2. Using an accurate iPhone IMEI checker [3], they will offer more details about your iPhone such as the blacklist status, replacement status, etc.

4Will TracFone Unlock My iPhone Automatically After Contract Fulfilled?

No, you’ll have to send an unlock request to them or they won’t unlock it for you.

5Can I Use the Above Methods for My Straight Talk iPhone?

Of course yes! The above methods work for all TracFone branding, including:

  • TracFone
  • Straight Talk
  • Net10 Wireless
  • Total Wireless
  • SafeLink Wireless
  • Simple Mobile
  • Telcel America
  • Page Plus Cellular
  • Clearway Wireless for Business

6Will My Unlocked iPhone Work on All Networks?

If your iPhone is unlocked by method 1 or method 2

No. Network technology (GSM, LTE, CDMA, etc.) varies from each other. You need to make sure your iPhone is compatible with the network you prefer.

For example, a CDMA iPhone can’t use a SIM Card from a GSM network.

If your iPhone is unlocked by method 3

Yes. The UB SIM allows you to use any SIM card on your iPhone after bypassing the carrier lock.

The Bottom Line

This is all about our research on TracFone iPhone unlock. If you want a free way, then send an unlock request to TracFone will be your best choice.

Don’t be panic if you can’t meet all TracFone’s requirements, you can still get your iPhone permanently unlocked from TracFone by using DirectUnlocks.

Or if you want to use your iPhone on any network carriers, then UB SIM is your best choice.

If any questions, feel free to contact us by leaving a comment below or dropping an email to us!

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Eric is an Apple Certified Independent Technician after gaining AppleCare service certifications for both iOS and Mac. He is passionate about helping people to make the most of their iOS devices.

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