Humberto Saabedra is the Editor-in-Chief of and an occasional columnist for He can also be found musing on things at @AnimeNewsdotbiz

6 responses to “A Comparison of Unlocked iPhone 5 Pricing Against Paying the AT&T ETF”

  1. Tom S

    The nice thing about going the AT&T route though is that you basically get two months of service for less than prepaid pricing. Porting numbers isn’t a big deal anymore, so one could go from say, Carrier X, port to AT&T, unlock the iPhone and pay ETF, then port out to Straight Talk.

    Then you would have an unlocked iPhone that you could sell later on for more money, even though you don’t need the unlock on Straight Talk.

    For AT&T to reject your unlock, I think more would be involved. I think that’s there to prevent someone from pulling this with a family plan, and requesting five iPhone 5 unlocks at once. I think that’s rare too, since the margins would be so razor thin you would wind up losing money selling the devices on eBay versus Apple’s going rates. Maybe if you wanted to sell them internationally… but still, not worth most people’s time.

  2. Paul E.

    When discussing purchasing the Verizon CDMA iPhone 5 unlocked, most writers are forgetting to inform readers that one has to break Verizon’s contract for another $350 on TOP of the unlocked price of $649 if one wants true freedom to use other carriers.

  3. Christopher Price


    I wouldn’t recommend using a CDMA iPhone to begin with for international roaming, as that requires you to have Wi-Fi access to phone home and validate the international SIM, each time you swap SIMs.

    Neither Verizon nor Sprint iPhones can be fully unlocked, they will always bar access to AT&T and T-Mobile home networks. If you want freedom to chose whatever GSM/UMTS carrier at home and abroad, you should buy an unlocked iPhone, or have AT&T unlock one of their iPhones.

    Considering all the LTE bands are incompatible to begin with, for the most part, I’m not sure what the angst is about. It’s not like a Verizon iPhone could even work on AT&T/T-Mobile LTE.

  4. JR

    I have the Verizon iPhone 5 and i have already used it on the ATT network by switching the SIM card… No issues involved.


  5. Tom S

    JR, you’re only using the Faux-G HSPA network. Okay for an emergency… But not something I’d use.

  6. Nahid

    Great writing. Hope, it will be quite helpful to make a decision when purchasing an iPhone (unlocked).