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How to Change Your Verizon iPhone 5 Number



Today, many consumers will be the proud new owners of a new Verizon iPhone 5. And many of those users will have stolen an upgrade from a family member or sibling on a different number. Verizon won’t change the iPhone 5 number in-store, instead, it makes users do it online. Here, we show you how to do that.

Those who stole an upgrade to buy the iPhone 5 will likely have different number attached to the phone than the one that they wish to use with it. And because of the Nano SIM in the iPhone 5 and security concerns, Verizon cannot sell an iPhone 5 on one number and switch it to another number in store.

Instead, those who buy an iPhone 5 on one number and wish to switch it to another need to go online and follow some simple instructions in order to get the desired number attached to the new iPhone 5.

Read: Steal an Upgrade? How to Change Your iPhone 5 Number on AT&T.

Screen Shot 2012-09-21 at 1.09.02 PM

This is where you’ll need to go to change your Verizon iPhone 5 number.

Fortunately, the process is an easy one and after a few steps, the number attached to the iPhone 5 will be different than the number the user stole the upgrade from.

Here’s how to do it.

  1. Head to the My Verizon Home page. You’ll need to be logged in to access the next steps.
  2. Click Activate or Switch Device under the “I Want To…” section.
  3. Select which mobile number you want assigned to the new device, and click Next.
  4. Enter your new device’s identification number in the New Device ID field.
  5. Click Submit.

That’s all there is to it. Those that run into issues should have Verizon’s support number close by. While they might not be able to change the number on the phone, they can offer some troubleshooting advice if something goes go wrong in the process.

The iPhone 5 is Apple’s latest iPhone and already, it appears that Apple has a success on its hands. The device is sold out online through AT&T, Sprint and Verizon and the Apple Store is showing lengthy waits for those who order today as well.

Today marks the first time the device has been available in physical retail locations. The iPhone 5 launch isn’t over yet either. AT&T, Sprint and Verizon will be joined on September 28th by C-Spire Wireless and Cricket, both of whom previously carried the previous iPhone, the iPhone 4S.



  1. Eric

    09/21/2012 at 2:39 pm

    It asks about activating an existing SIM and i type in the sim card number but then it tells me to call customer service.

  2. John

    09/21/2012 at 7:22 pm

    You didn’t specify whether or not the iPhone and SIM must first be activated on the original line because until the iPhone is active, it can not be switched online. The bigger question here is can these SIM’s be re-programed once they are activated. Typically, the answer is no, but these LTE SIM cards are quite different from the GSM SIM cards we know so well.

  3. Steve

    09/22/2012 at 9:37 am

    I don’t think the information in this article is accurate when it comes to iPhone 5, which uses a sim card. My situation may have been worse though, as I had a 3g iPhone and 4g LTE iPhone 5 we where trying to switch.

    From what I experienced, you need to call Verizon tech support. You can dial *611 off a Verizon cell phone and choose option 3 off the main menu. They will need to take off the phone off the network for up to 24 hours to reprogram the sim card with the new number. They indicated they are working on making this a faster process but, currently this is how long it is taking likely due to the high demand they are experiencing right now.

    Also note, they where not able to help me in the store, but this seemed to do more with the iPhone 5 using a new sim card they currently don’t have in stock. Otherwise, it seems like they would have been able to simply switch out the sim card and reactivate it with the new number.

  4. Jason

    09/22/2012 at 1:51 pm

    Steve is absolutely right on from what I heard. I’ve talked to at least 6 different Verizon reps and I’ve receive slightly different variations from each – starting from needing a new SIM card, just waiting for the line to be active on the iPhone 5 for 24 hours and then you’ll be able to switch lines within an account, Verizon saying Apple is dictating this process to Verizon saying Apple is doing it. It is absolutely I fathomable that these tech giants could not foresee people trying to do this seemingly uncomplicated request.

    The last I heard from 3 reps corroborated that the iPhone 5 must have no number active on it for 24 hours (after initial activation with an undesirable number). Then the SIM card should accept another number (ie. other number you want to swap within your account).

    That 24 hours ends for me tomorrow morning; in the meantime, I have a $400 paperweight that since the 18% decrease in weight, doesn’t really work as a paperweight.

    If anyone can corroborate what I heard or has a different experience, let me know.

    • Jack

      09/24/2012 at 3:57 pm

      I’ve heard the 24 hour activation as well. But another store, a smaller and more polite one, told me that the SIM card can not be reprogrammed after it has been activated because the information gets written permanently, almost fried, into the SIM card. And this was a way to prevent people from buying the iPhone and turning around to sell it right away for a profit. Verizon is just saving their own asses while making it impossible for us to get a new SIM card, which is the only way to change your number.

    • yvens

      09/26/2012 at 10:14 am

      hi! were you able to easily change the number after the 24 hour waiting period of it being active on your undesired phone number? I’m on the same boat.

    • yvens

      09/26/2012 at 10:16 am

      hi! were you able to easily change the number after the 24 hour waiting period of it being active on your undesired phone number? I’m on the same boat.

    • Robwal

      10/21/2012 at 10:50 am

      This is what I’ve been told by tech support as well. So far I’m on my fourth attempt at this over a 7 day period. The problem is the fact that the techs at Verizon are not familiar with the sim card procedure and haven’t initiated the maturing process. Unfortunately it takes 24 hrs to realize the mistake. So, we’ll try again.

  5. WM

    09/22/2012 at 1:57 pm

    Steve is correct, this article is wrong. The iPhone 5 will either need a new nano sim card or will take up to 24 hours to reset the previously activated one. Call Verizon support and they can flip the switch for you.

  6. JT

    09/24/2012 at 4:42 am

    I also call bullshit on this entire article. I used TWO different numbers to upgrade both my wife’s phone and my phone to an iPhone 5. It was done IN STORE with no complaints.

  7. Jack

    09/24/2012 at 3:51 pm

    There reason Verizon tells its customers to activate the device is to “fry” the information into the 4G SIM Card. I visited two stores today while one told me to activate the device for 24 hours, I went to another saying I had already done the activation. The second store said that they are sorry but there is no way to reprogram the SIM Card as the information is no “fried” into the SIM Card. They told me this is to prevent people from buying the iPhone 5 and reselling it. Verizon is just trying to protect themselves from being ripped off and making things difficult by only allowing a switch in numbers with a new SIM card. And of course there are very few SIM cards available after the release of the iPhone, so it is nearly impossible to get a new one soon.

  8. Brian

    09/25/2012 at 11:30 am

    What they told you is incorrect. Either the SIM card can be reprogrammed, or the phone number attached to the line is not in the SIM card, I don’t know. BUT, I do know that I activated my iPhone 5 on my wife’s line, following the instructions of the VZW CSR on the phone, then was told I needed a new SIM card to switch to my line. After driving around for hours to different stores trying to find one, I got a hold of a tech rep at VZW who said the other CSRs I had talked to were wrong and she could switch it, and she successfully switched it. My iPhone 5 has been on two different numbers, only one SIM card.

    The switching process does take 24 hours, though.

    But a VZW LTE nano SIM can be switched between numbers, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

  9. Joe

    10/04/2012 at 8:15 pm

    I hope Brian is right. That would be the best answer so far. My question is, would this switch to the Iphone 5 do anything to my unlimited data plan that I still have.

  10. Ameer

    11/24/2012 at 8:58 am

    I tried to call the programming number and it said not allowed.

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