What Is SIM Free iPhone?

Sim-Free Iphone

Whenever we buy an iPhone, we have always been asked whether we want to go with a SIM-free iPhone or a carrier-locked iPhone. Sometimes, we become incompetent to decide because of insufficient knowledge about SIM-free and carrier-locked iPhones. Having enough knowledge about SIM-free iPhones has become essential as sellers always ask about our choice. 

Quick Answer

SIM-free iPhones have gained a lot of eyeballs in the past few years. Yet, some people still aren’t aware of this term. In simple terms, SIM-free iPhones are iPhones that aren’t tied to any carrier. You get the freedom to use any carrier of your choice on your iPhone. This is one of the most common reasons behind the popularity of SIM-free iPhones. 

We have created a guide answering all your questions related to SIM-free iPhones. This guide answers multiple questions, like the benefits of SIM-free iPhones, the difference between a SIM-free iPhone and a carrier-locked smartphone, etc.

What Is a SIM-Free iPhone?

In general, SIM-free iPhones are iPhones that aren’t tied to any carrier company. This type of iPhone comes without a SIM card, and you can get the freedom to choose the SIM card yourself. SIM-free iPhones are also called unlocked smartphones as they aren’t bound to any contract with any carrier company. 

SIM-free iPhones come with Wi-Fi connectivity. This is the only way to access the internet without installing your own SIM card. Another way to connect to the internet is by using the SIM card of your favorite carrier. 

Many third-party companies deal with SIM-free iPhones, such as John Lewis, PC World, Argos, Carphone Warehouse, AT&T, and more. Most importantly, Apple also sells SIM-free iPhones, and you can directly buy from them. In addition, most Apple iPhones come with a SIM-free variant.

What Are the Benefits of a SIM-Free or Unlocked iPhone?

Here are some of the primary benefits of SIM-free iPhones.

  • You can change carriers anytime without any penalty. 
  • You get the freedom to choose your carrier.
  • You get higher resale values from SIM-free or unlocked iPhones than carrier-locked iPhones. 
  • You can insert an international SIM card while traveling to different countries.

What’s the Difference Between a SIM-Free iPhone and Carrier-Locked iPhone?

One of the differences between SIM-free iPhones and carrier-locked iPhones is the carrier contracts. SIM-free iPhones aren’t tied to any contract by the carrier company, and you can use any SIM card of your choice. 

On the other hand, carrier-locked iPhones are tied to contracts by the carrier company. You don’t have the freedom to switch your carrier anytime as you have signed an agreement with the company. You can only change your carrier when the contract ends, and you have made all the dues. 

If you still decide to change your carrier during the contract period, you must pay the penalty fee, which can cost more. Companies charge penalties to incur the loss.

We always recommend using a SIM-free iPhone because you can use your carrier anytime without paying a single penalty. 

Keep in Mind

One drawback of unlocked iPhones is that the carrier doesn’t assure whether the HD voice call or data network will work properly. You could face network problems while using SIM-free iPhones.

Is a SIM-Free iPhone More Expensive?

No. SIM-free iPhones and carrier-locked iPhones cost the same. The only difference is that the unlocked iPhone comes with zero carrier locks. Whereas the Locked iPhone comes with carrier locks. 

Can You Unlock Your iPhone After Buying It?

You can only unlock your iPhone after all the payments and the contract with the carrier company has ended. If you do this before the contract ends, you will break the contract and need to pay the penalty to the carrier company. So, if you decide to unlock your iPhone after buying it, you must ensure that you aren’t tied to any contract and make all the payments. 

How To Check If Your iPhone Is Unlocked or SIM-Free

If you currently own an iPhone and want to check whether it is unlocked or unlocked. Fortunately, you can check it in a few steps. 

Here’s how you can check if your iPhone is unlocked or SIM-free.

  1. Head to your iPhone Settings
  2. Go to “General” > “About”.
  3. Look for the “Carrier Lock” section. Check what’s written in the Carrier Location. 

Voila! You now know whether your iPhone is unlocked or not.


SIM-free iPhones have a lot of benefits. Many users prefer SIM-free iPhones over carrier-locked iPhones because of the flexibility they get. SIM-free iPhones come with zero carrier locks, which is your primary benefit. You must have now understood what SIM-free iPhones are with the help of this detailed guide.

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