Looking to switch mobile carriers without having to get a new phone? There’s no need to give up your Boost Mobile device when you swap carriers as long as you unlock it before making the change. Read on below to get all the info on the simple way to unlock your Boost Mobile cell phone.
Is my Boost Mobile device eligible for unlocking?
Boost Mobile will only unlock devices that have been attached to an active account for at least 12 consecutive months. It’s important to request the device be unlocked before the account expires since the account must be active at the time you make the request. Boost will only accept requests to unlock your phone if it is both locked to and designed for the Boost network. That means that Boost will not unlock your phone if it’s on another network even if Virgin Mobile or Sprint manufactured your phone.
Additionally, Boost Mobile will refuse to unlock any prepaid device that has previously been reported lost or stolen. The phone also can’t have any association with reports of fraudulent activity. As long as you meet the criteria we’ve discussed Boost Mobile will respond to your unlock request within two business days. If Boost accepts your request, they will provide you with an unlock code, but if your request is denied Boost is required to explain the basis for that denial.
What is the process for unlocking a Boost Mobile phone?
You must first contact Boot Mobile Customer Care to submit a request to Boost Mobile to have your device unlocked. Once your request has been approved Boost will provide you with an unlock code. Once your device is unlocked, you will be free to use it on another network. When applying for your device to be unlocked be sure to have ready your phone number, the name on your account, and the account billing PIN. The PIN may be different than your password and is often the last four digits of your SSN.
Does it cost anything to unlock by Boost Mobile device?
No. There is no fee for requesting Boost Mobile to unlock your device.
How can I tell if my device has been unlocked?
If you are unable to confirm that your phone has been unlocked your first option is to call Boost Mobile directly. Boost Mobile customer service will be able to review your account and tell you if your device has been unlocked or not. Another option is to insert a SIM card for a different carrier. As long as the SIM card is the correct size this trick should show you if your phone has been unlocked or not. Once you insert the SIM card the name of your new carrier should display on the screen of your device indicating your phone has been unlocked and that you are now on the new network. If the results aren’t obvious it is sometimes helpful to power off the phone and then power it back on. A restart will frequently allow a phone to recognize a new network.
Can I use my Boost Mobile phone with a different network after it is unlocked?
Yes, as long as your device is on the same type of network. For instance, if your phone is GSM-only, it will only function on other networks that are GSM compatible. The same phone would not work on a separate CDMA network.
Boost primarily operates on a Sprint CDMA network, which means their phones are typically compatible with other wireless carriers that run on CDMA networks owned by Verizon or Sprint. There is no guarantee that all of the functions and features of your unlocked phone will work on a different network, however.
GSM vs. CDMA
The significant difference between the two types of networks is GSM networks rely on a removable SIM card to identify users while CDMA phones make use of digital serial numbers embedded within the phone. CDMA phones require specialized programming to switch between networks.
GSM networks are much more convenient given it is only a matter of moving a SIM card from one phone to another. Any unlocked device that is compatible with T-Mobile or AT&T networks should be easily used by both networks with the swapping of the SIM card.
The rise of LTE networks has made life easier for anyone hoping to unlock a Boost Mobile phone and move to a different network. Every LTE network in the country uses GSM technology, which means LTE-enabled devices designed for Sprint or Verizon networks likely are compatible with every GSM network nationwide.
The design of your phone could limit functionality, though. Older phones frequently only use a SIM card to access LTE services. What that means for you is that even on a GSM network you may be unable to access 2G or 3G services.
Military Service Members
The wireless industry association, CTIA, has set strict regulations requiring wireless carriers to allow deployed active military personnel the right to unlock their devices even if they do not meet the 12-month requirement described above. To have your device unlocked, you will need to provide documentation of proving you are deployed, and your account will have to be in good standing.
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