American iPhone in China

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    Avatar photoj_hoke

    Hi all,

    Any up-to-date info or advice on bringing an American iPhone onto a Chinese network with a Chinese sim card? I currently have a 5c, which I’m planning to remove from AT&T prior to the move to China. Presumably I need to have it “unlocked” (with Apple or with the carrier?)? Any reason to purchase an already-unlocked iPhone on the internet before arriving? My friend seems to think she just took her iPhone to China, plopped in a new sim card, and voilà, but that seems too good to be true.

    Any info would be great. There are many articles online, but many are dated and we all know China doesn’t sit still for very long…

    All the best,


    Avatar photoChris Ziich

    You will have to unlock it with the carrier which should be as easy as calling, asking, and punching a code into your phone, assuming you’ve fulfilled the contract with them if you bought it subsidized.

    Then you’ll be free to use any Chinese GSM carrier (Unicom, China Mobile). You should check the model number and the bands it supports if you want to be on 4G

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