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Verizon begins 60-day SIM lock policy on new phones

AT&T has always locked their cell phones - meaning, you could not use a non-AT&T SIM card in an AT&T phone without getting the phone "unlocked" (obtain a lock code from AT&T).

Verizon on the other hand has not locked its phones all for the last several years (per agreement with the FCC over licensing - long story). So you could pop in a SIM card from another carrier right after you bought your new Verizon phone.

Now Verizon has changed their policy: they will lock phones for the first 60 days of use after you buy them. After 60 days, the lock will automatically be removed, so no need to unlock.

So if you are going overseas and plan to buy a SIM card for your new Verizon phone, try to buy it at least 60 days before you leave on your trip. ;-)

https://www.droid-life.com/2019/08/19/fyi-verizons-60-day-device-lock-policy-is-live/

Posted by
4410 posts

I saw that article and wondered how this will help deter theft. I suppose keeping a stolen phone around for 60 days is inconvenient. But is it a deterrent?

Posted by
5687 posts

I suspect "preventing theft" is an excuse to lock start locking their phones. Verizon originally had to agree not to lock them when they licensed LTE bandwidth originally - an agreement with the FCC at that time. The current FCC is more corporate-friendly and agreed to their new policy, which violates the original agreement. I wouldn't be surprised if 60 days eventually turns into 90 days...120 days...

Posted by
4410 posts

It's ironic because when I called Verizon to confirm whether my phones are locked, they were so adamant in "assuring me that Verizon phones are unlocked." Obviously that was before this new policy.

Posted by
5687 posts

Well, if you bought the phones more than a month ago (when new policy went into effect), then yes, they would be unlocked. They aren't locking all old Verizon phones for 60 days starting with the new policy - just new phones. It wouldn't surprise me if some Verizon CS people aren't aware of the new policy, though.

Posted by
1117 posts

What does "preventing theft" have to do with locked phones, except make customers believe they get some kind of advantage out of the lock? Locking phones is purely company interest, forcing customers to stay within their contract.

If someone is able to steal a phone, they are probably also able to jailbreak it.

Posted by
220 posts

TMobile is only 40 days. Verizon are husslers.Please consider TMobile.