The Verizon iPhone 5 currently comes GSM unlocked which means with the proper SIM card, it works with AT&T or T-Mobile. Verizon confirmed this to be the case last week and today it has again confirmed the feature saying that it will not re-lock the iPhone 5 and that it will continue to be sold unlocked.
In comments made to USA Today, the carrier confirmed that its version of the iPhone 5 will remain unlocked, a feature that the carrier hasn’t advertised but is extremely useful for those that may wish to use their device on another network.
With an appropriate Nano SIM card, which can be bought through AT&T and through T-Mobile sometime next month, users will be able to get on the networks of Verizon’s competitors.
With the iPhone 4S, Sprint initially released the phone unlocked only to release a software update that re-locked the phone. Verizon spokesperson Brenda Rainey says that Verizon has no plans to re-lock the phone.
This is a unique feature to the Verizon iPhone 5 as AT&T only unlocks phones once a contract is run out and Sprint’s iPhone 5 comes locked, Sprint will unlock the device for international use after three months of good standing with the carrier.
Those who wish to use the iPhone 5 on AT&T and T-Mobile will find the device compatible with AT&T’s 4G HSPA+ network which is much faster than 3G but slower than 4G LTE. As for T-Mobile, right now, the device will only be able to pick up HSPA+ in the limited amount of areas where it has set up its new 900MHz frequency.
The carrier is building that out, likely an effort to attract iPhone 5 customers, and those who wish to run the iPhone 5 on T-Mobile should see faster data speeds in more markets over the course of the next year.
The iPhone 5 is Apple’s latest iPhone and it comes with a new 4-inch display, iOS 6, 4G LTE data speeds for AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile and a price tag starting at $199 for a 16GB model.