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Sim free new Apple Iphone 6s locked to TalkTalk

Ash_Belfast
Participant
Message 36 of 36

Hi,

I bought a new sim free unlocked iphone 6s from Carphone Warehouse, then used a sim from TalkTalk to activate it but have realised that the handset has now been locked to the network.

Some facts below

1. The TalkTalk sim used was a monthly sim only contract hence the handset is owned fully by me and not by TalkTalk so the network shouldn't be locking it. However, it did!

2. Contacted TalkTalk customer services over the phone, only to be surprised with the standard and rather adamant reply that ''TalkTalk does not lock mobile phones and it does not sell Apple iphones so it hasn't locked it''.

3. The phone is locked and only a TalkTalk sim would work on it. Or (here comes the further surprising bit) a Vodaphone sim works in it but of no other network.

4. Since TalkTalk sells mobile connections which are in reality serviced by Vodaphone, it is Vodaphone which has locked it, but TalkTalk customer services have no clue about it or just wouldn't accept and take responsibility for it.

5. On a lot of research, the possible options available to me are

a) get the phone jailbroken, which I do not want to as it is a brand new costly iphone and I do not want the Apple warranty to be impacted negatively.

b) Contacted Carphone Warehouse i.e. the seller, by complaining to them for selling me a phone which got locked when I paid for a sim free / unlocked phone only to be surprised further that their fineprint actually had mentioned it. When Apple sells iphones directly from Apple stores they do not get locked but when Carphone Warehouse sells them, they get locked to the first ever network of the sim used for activation. Carphone Warehouse apologised and refunded £30 to me for the inconvenience however wouldn't exchange the phone. On why it is allowed to happen remains unanswered as yet, as needs to be investigated by challenging both Apple and Carphone Warehouse re their fair selling practices.

c) Get a Vodaphone pay as you go sim, top it up for £20, and after 30 days ask Vodaphone to unlock the phone by paying them a fee to them. Again something which appears to be a very unfair practice especially as neither I was, nor I want to be compelled to be a Vodaphone customer.

 

Now the questions, Should TalkTalk not be taking ownership of this issue as I am a TalkTalk customer and resolve it for me i.e. unlock my iphone which got locked because of using their sim card especially when the handset is owned 100% by myself?

 

Next Steps : I am going to write to TalkTalk, followed by a complaint to Ofcom, copies sent to Apple, TalkTalk, Carphone Warehouse, BBC 'Rip Off Britain' team and other such relevant media etc.

 

Will update the progress here...

 

thank for reading!

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35 REPLIES 35

Message 21 of 36

@ferguson wrote:

Look, it doesn't matter how much you go on about this, TalkTalk cannot unlock a phone which they didn't provide to you in the first place. This issue has cropped up before, that's why I suggested Google. 


Just because an issue has cropped up before and a solution has not been found does not mean the issue isn't there, TalkTalk can not unlock the phone yet because they do not have a procedure in place to instruct Vodaphone to do it on their behalf doesn't mean google is the solution either. TalkTalk didn't provide me the phone but it was their sim card when put in the phone which locked it ie the first network, and it was my phone so I could perhaps legally hold them responsible to reimburse the cost of the phone too unless they had a legal disclaimer in the terms & conditions of the sim only contract, which I would be asking my solicitor to have a look at, and since they are the providor of services for Vodaphone network, it is their responsibility as per ofcom to get unlocked from Vodaphone, which they need to be made to understand. It may not be be easy for me to do it but then bringing any ethical change is not easy in present day, however it is the correct thing to do and I shall get it done!

 

Ps I do not know yet under what category and why this string posted by myself was moved by yourselves with the Explanation field as blank as got the email below, which too will look at in more detail later

 

Reason: Moved to more appropriate area of forums.
Explanation:
Thanks for being a TalkTalk Community member.

 

 

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Message 22 of 36

Look, it doesn't matter how much you go on about this, TalkTalk cannot unlock a phone which they didn't provide to you in the first place. This issue has cropped up before, that's why I suggested Google. 

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Message 23 of 36

Had I used a 3 sim card to activate the same iphone it wouldn't have got locked, even if it had, 3 gets it unlocked for free, however TalkTalk simply because do not have a procedure yet is happy to project it to be oblivious of the fact that Vodaphone is doing it and is charging money to unlock. That procedure is what TalkTalk has to have as it on its own website suggests for other networks to do yet does not have the procedure in place for its own customers.

 

https://help2.talktalk.co.uk/contact-numbers-unlock-your-phone

"To see if your handset is locked, just insert your new SIM into your mobile - if it doesn't work straight away, your handset has been locked.

TalkTalk advise you to contact your current network provider and ask for your handset to be unlocked. Unfortunately, we are unable to help directly in the unlocking process and some operators may charge a small fee. A list of the main operators can be found in the table below:

Vodafone 08700 776 655 (pay as you go)
08700 700 191 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the Vodafone online form
O2 0844 809 0222 (pay as you go)
or complete the O2 online form
0844 809 0202 (pay monthly contracts)
Orange (EE) 07973 100 450 (pay as you go)
07973 100 150 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the EE online form
T-Mobile (EE) 0845 412 5000
or complete the EE online form
Virgin 0845 6000 789
3 0843 373 4444 (pay as you go)
0843 373 3333 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the 3 online form
Tesco Mobile 0845 301 4455 or 4455 from your Tesco Mobile
Talkmobile 0333 304 8064 or 5888 from your "

 

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Message 24 of 36

 

Sorry but thats a false statement. It is not a fault with the device, the nework has locked it!

 

"How to unlock your iPhone
You can unlock your iPhone, so you can use it with different carriers. An unlocked phone is sometimes called a SIM-Free or contract-free phone.

Use the steps below to contact your carrier and unlock your account. Then follow the steps to finish unlocking your iPhone.
Contact your carrier

See if your carrier offers unlocking. Only your carrier can unlock your iPhone.
Contact your carrier and request an unlock. Your account might need to meet requirements for unlocking. After you submit the request, it might take a few days to complete. To get your request's status, contact your carrier.
After your carrier confirms that they unlocked your iPhone, follow the steps below."

https://support.apple.com/en-gb/HT201328

 

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Message 25 of 36

You haven't got a "fault" with TalkTalk, you have got an issue with your handset, your recourse is with the vendor of the equipment.

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Ash_Belfast
Participant
Message 26 of 36

Ofcom Website confirms that TalkTalk should not be denying this issue

https://www.ofcom.org.uk/phones-telecoms-and-internet/advice-for-consumers/problems/mobile-faults-gu...

 

''Mobile phone service faults and problems - Ofcom

What if my provider doesn’t own the network?

Your provider is responsible even if they use another company’s network to provide their service to you.''

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Message 27 of 36

Besides Vodaphone has accepted in writing that they have locked it and have advised me to contact TalkTalk. Now simply because TalkTalk while has a procedure in place to sell Vodaphone serviced sim cards and doesnot have a procedure to look at the aftersales issue of unlocking does not absolve it from its obligation to its customers in fairness.

i am in the process of collecting and collating all evidence and will update the next steps here, including the written response from TalkTalk, and Apple in the next few days.

 

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Message 28 of 36

@ferguson wrote:

It is nothing to do with TalkTalk, they do not lock their handsets/SIMs so they do not have any procedure to unlock them. And they did not your provide your handset. Your issue has arisen entirely as a result of where you purchased your phone and the way in which Apple administer them. Good luck with Ofcom.


1. Vodaphone locks it, as they do not have their own network and use Vodaphone, but it is them (TalkTalk) which should be unaswerable to their (TalkTalk's) customers.

2. They do not have a procedure for it doesn't mean that should not have one!

The sheer unwillingness or ignorance by a company to recognise a problem which is there and impacting its customers negatively does not absolve it from its obligations, whether be Carphone Warehouse which not so long back the same company as TalkTalk, Apple or Vodaphone and Yes if not Ofcom, then there is the small claims court too to look after consumers rights in this country, I will pursue this till the end! Will also be writing to the BBC and other media to highlight this issue.

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Message 29 of 36

It is nothing to do with TalkTalk, they do not lock their handsets/SIMs so they do not have any procedure to unlock them. And they did not your provide your handset. Your issue has arisen entirely as a result of where you purchased your phone and the way in which Apple administer them. Good luck with Ofcom.

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Message 30 of 36

@ferguson wrote:

Excuse me? You are entirely wrong. And please do not question my ethics.

 

If you buy an iPhone from a third-party provider such as Carphone Warehouse then they lock to the first network SIM. Nothing to do with TalkTalk at all. Unless you stuck a TalkTalk SIM in your Carphone Warehouse iPhone without checking first. Or second. Google again, I am disinclined to help further.


If you buy an iPhone from a third-party provider such as Carphone Warehouse then they lock to the first network SIM. The network of the first Sim was that of TalkTalk!

 

Thank you for your time Ferguson, I am questioning TalkTalk's competence and ethics in relation to this issue and unless you represent TalkTalk, it shouldn't worry you much. Thank you once again for suggesting Google which you think you know and is the possible solution, however I do not agree that it is the best answer but Thank you anyways, I shall be writing a complaint by post to TalkTalk then to Ofcom as stated earlier.

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Message 31 of 36

Excuse me? You are entirely wrong. And please do not question my ethics.

 

If you buy an iPhone from a third-party provider such as Carphone Warehouse then they lock to the first network SIM. Nothing to do with TalkTalk at all. Unless you stuck a TalkTalk SIM in your Carphone Warehouse iPhone without checking first. Or second. Google again, I am disinclined to help further.

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Message 32 of 36

@ferguson wrote:

TalkTalk don't and never have provided iPhones. Nor do they lock any handsets to their network. So nothing to do with them I'm afraid. You need to contact Carphone Warehouse actually, their practice of selling so-called SIM-free iPhones has long been an issue. Only iPhones bought from Apple directly are truly unlocked. Google is your friend.


Thank you for you reply,  'Nor do they lock any handsets to their network' the statement is Not True but false 1. Because TalkTalk doesn't have its own network but uses Vodaphones network, 2. Vodaphone has locked it but as I am a TalkTalk customer, it is TalkTalk which should own up to the issue and have a mechanism in place to communicate with Vodaphone to sort out its customers.

Easy to shrug of one's ethical commitments nowadays isn't it? But it is not ethically right!

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Message 33 of 36

TalkTalk says to contact other networks for unlocking but when it has done it i.e. Has locked an iphone which it didn't even sell it would simply not accept it and offer a solution, is it ethically right?

 

Below from TalkTalk's website

https://help2.talktalk.co.uk/contact-numbers-unlock-your-phone

 

To see if your handset is locked, just insert your new SIM into your mobile - if it doesn't work straight away, your handset has been locked.

TalkTalk advise you to contact your current network provider and ask for your handset to be unlocked. Unfortunately, we are unable to help directly in the unlocking process and some operators may charge a small fee. A list of the main operators can be found in the table below:

Vodafone 08700 776 655 (pay as you go)
08700 700 191 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the Vodafone online form
O2 0844 809 0222 (pay as you go)
or complete the O2 online form
0844 809 0202 (pay monthly contracts)
Orange (EE) 07973 100 450 (pay as you go)
07973 100 150 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the EE online form
T-Mobile (EE) 0845 412 5000
or complete the EE online form
Virgin 0845 6000 789
3 0843 373 4444 (pay as you go)
0843 373 3333 (pay monthly contracts)
or complete the 3 online form
Tesco Mobile 0845 301 4455 or 4455 from your Tesco Mobile
Talkmobile 0333 304 8064 or 5888 from your Talkmobile

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Message 34 of 36

TalkTalk don't and never have provided iPhones. Nor do they lock any handsets to their network. So nothing to do with them I'm afraid. You need to contact Carphone Warehouse actually, their practice of selling so-called SIM-free iPhones has long been an issue. Only iPhones bought from Apple directly are truly unlocked. Google is your friend.

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Ash_Belfast
Participant
Message 35 of 36

Update from Vodaphone

 

Hi,

Thanks for getting in touch about unlocking your phone. You’re almost done – there are just a few things you need to do to complete the process.

What you need to do next

Request you to contact Talk Talk customer support Team to process your unlocking request further.

Thank-you
Ronak Jadhav
The Vodafone Unlocking Team

 

 

Lets see what TalkTalk staff has to say next..

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