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How To Check If My Phone Is Unlocked

Phone advice | by Charlotte Bolton | May 14, 2024

How To Check If My Phone Is Unlocked

When you check out a smartphone on Envirofone, you may notice that it is described as ‘unlocked’ when you take a closer look. But what does this mean? Is this something to consider when you buy a refurbished phone, and can you just ignore this? 

We are here with this phone guide to help you understand what this term means, so if you are considering trading in an old phone or buying a new one, you understand the importance of whether you have a locked phone or not.

Related blog: How to stop your phone from overheating

What does having an unlocked phone mean?

First of all, let’s explore the term ‘unlocked’ and what it means. It is a software code that prevents your phone from working on any other cellular network, meaning if your phone is ‘unlocked’ you can get service with any network and use your device like an actual phone. But if your device is still locked, you are very limited as to what you can do, this means limitations on making calls, texts, downloading apps and more. 

A phone must be unlocked when it is traded into Envirofone and must be unlocked when it is sold on our website. 


Can I check to see if my phone is unlocked?

There are a couple of simple ways to check if your phone is unlocked or not. First of all, if you put the SIM card out and put a new one in from another network if the phone can still make calls, send texts, and connect to the internet, your device is unlocked. Sometimes, this can prove to be inaccurate however, if the two SIMS connect to the same network, you won’t be able to tell if the phone is locked or not. To get past this, you can check through the settings instead which we recommend.

For Android:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Select ‘Connections’, then ‘Network and Internet’ or a similar option.
  • Tap ‘Mobile Network’.
  • Select ‘Choose Network’ or ‘Automatically Select Network’. If your phone shows several networks it's unlocked. If it is stuck on one, it’s locked. 

For iPhone:

  • Go to Settings.
  • Tap ‘General.’
  • Tap ‘About’.
  • Tap ‘Carrier Lock’. If it says ‘No SIM Restrictions’, your phone is unlocked. If it names a network, it’s locked to that one. 

If you notice your phone is locked, however, don’t panic! It’s very simple to unlock these devices. Usually, an unlock code or software update is needed, the phone will only work for the network provider you bought it from, so it’s best to take it in for them to get sorted. 

Related blog: Cybersecurity Tips for Safer Internet Day



Remember, when you shop at Envirofone, all our smartphones are already unlocked. They will have been previously tested, checked and repaired to ensure they are working like new, then as they can no longer be called Brand New, are sold at a much lower price under the tag Refurbished. We have Samsung, apple iphone and more waiting for you.

We don’t only have refurbished unlocked mobile phones, you can check out our refurbished tablets, laptops, and consoles too!

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