Unlocked iPhone Carrier Compatibility Guide

Unlocked iPhone Carrier Compatibility Guide



Buying an unlocked iPhone may sound confusing, but Swappa wants to help make that process as easy as possible. The following guide will walk you through everything you need to know about purchasing an unlocked iPhone that’s compatible with your wireless carrier.

What is an unlocked iPhone?

An unlocked iPhone is one that is not restricted to a specific carrier network, has been paid in full, and is no longer being financed. Often times these are sold as “SIM-free” models directly from Apple, although you’ll need to look at the specific model number to make sure it’s compatible with your network.

Can an unlocked iPhone be used on any carrier?

Although an unlocked iPhone is not locked to a specific wireless carrier, it may still have some hardware restrictions (such as missing network bands) that prevent it from working 100% optimally on every wireless carrier. You’ll want to verify the unlocked iPhone model in question is compatible with your network before buying, something that we’ll answer in this post.

Once you find the right unlocked iPhone for you, you can either order a SIM card from a wireless carrier you want to switch to or, if you already have wireless service, insert your existing SIM card into an unlocked iPhone and it will activate on your network. Simple as that.

US Carrier LTE Network Bands

VerizonAT&TT-MobileSprint
Band 2
Band 4
Band 5
Band 13
Band 66
Band 2
Band 4
Band 5
Band 12
Band 14
Band 17
Band 29
Band 30
Band 66
Band 2
Band 4
Band 5
Band 12
Band 66
Band 71
Band 25
Band 26
Band 41

For reference, the common LTE network bands used by the major US carriers can be found in the table above. This is only a very basic list. To view a more detailed list on Swappa — one that compares all network bands and frequencies for AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint — simply click the button below.

 

US CARRIER NETWORK BANDS & FREQUENCIES

 

Table of Contents:

Unlocked iPhone SE (2020) carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone SE 2020 on a black background.

The iPhone SE 2nd Gen launched in April 2020 with a single unlocked model for North America: A2275. The iPhone SE A2275 is the “SIM-free” factory-unlocked model you’ll receive when buying directly from Apple. This is the model you’ll want to keep an eye out for if you’re in the US and buying a used iPhone SE (2020).

You can also find the iPhone SE A2296, which is Apple’s global model meant for the rest of the world (excluding the US and China). This model will support most carriers in Europe, the Middle East, and even Japan. Although the A2296 is closely related to the North American model, it lacks the A2275’s CDMA bands. There’s also an iPhone SE exclusively for China with the model number A2298.

Unlocked iPhone SE 2nd Gen A22275Unlocked iPhone SE 2nd Gen A2296
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • Tello
  • US Cellular
  • Straight Talk
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G LTE only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G LTE only)
  • Cricket
  • MetroPCS
  • Mint Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Simple Mobile
  • Ultra Mobile
  • Walmart Family Mobile
  • International
  • Etc.

What’s the difference between iPhone SE A2275 and A2296?

The unlocked iPhone SE (2020) A2275 is the “SIM-free” option by Apple and used for AppleCare replacement devices. This version is fully compatible with all wireless carriers in the US — working on both GSM and CDMA networks — so if you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone SE (2020) that works with AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, the A2275 is your best bet.

Meanwhile, the A2296 has support for GSM networks inside and outside of the US (AT&T and T-Mobile for example), but doesn’t fully support CDMA networks like Sprint or Verizon. This may not be a big deal as most carriers have already begun to retire their CMDA networks in favor of 4G LTE and now 5G. Seeing as how Apple doesn’t offer this model in the states, it’s not something you can find on Swappa.

Unlocked iPhone 11 Pro carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 11 Pro on Swappa

A2160 vs A2215 — what’s the difference?

Apple launched the iPhone 11 Pro in September 2019. And just like its bigger brother, the iPhone 11 Pro Max (compatibility guide), there is just a single unlocked iPhone 11 Pro model for carriers in the North American market: the A2160. This makes it incredibly simple to buy an iPhone 11 Pro that is fully compatible with North American carriers.

Apple also launched the A2215, otherwise known as the “international model,” which has better support for the network bands used by international carriers. In addition, there is also a version with dual physical SIM slots known as the A2217. However, the A2217 is only available in China and Hong Kong.

iPhone 11 Pro (A2160)iPhone 11 Pro (A2215)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • Tello
  • US Cellular
  • Straight Talk
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • MetroPCS
  • Mint Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Simple Mobile
  • Ultra Mobile
  • Walmart Family Mobile
  • International
  • Etc.

The A2160 is the model intended for the North American market, and it is fully compatible with both CDMA and GSM networks. It is available SIM-free and factory-unlocked directly from Apple, as well as from all of the major US carriers. This version is compatible with all wireless carriers in the US, thanks to its ability to operate both on GSM and CDMA networks. So if you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone 11 Pro that works on all US carriers, the A2160 is your best bet.

The A2215, on the other hand, was released in European and Asian markets. It is compatible with LTE networks and supports GSM fallback on carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile. Known as the “international model,” it has better support for the network bands used by worldwide carriers. However, it doesn’t fully support Verizon’s or Sprint’s legacy 3G CDMA networks. This isn’t a major issue, however, as Verizon and Sprint are in the process of retiring their legacy CDMA networks in favor of nationwide 4G LTE.

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Unlocked iPhone 11 Pro Max carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 11 Pro Max on Swappa

A2161 vs A2218 — what’s the difference?

Apple launched the iPhone 11 Pro Max in September 2019. Just like its little brother, the iPhone 11 Pro (compatibility guide), the iPhone 11 Pro Max launched with a single model for North American carriers: the A2161. This is the version that you can buy through carriers in the US, as well as unlocked through the Apple Store.

Apple also launched the A2218, which is also known as the “international model,” which offers better support for the network bands used by international carriers, but lacks support for legacy 3G CDMA networks currently in use on Verizon and Sprint. Finally, there’s also the A2220, which includes dual physical SIM slots and is sold exclusively in China and Hong Kong.

iPhone 11 Pro Max (A2161)iPhone 11 Pro Max (A2218)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • Tello
  • US Cellular
  • Straight Talk
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • MetroPCS
  • Mint Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Simple Mobile
  • Ultra Mobile
  • Walmart Family Mobile
  • International
  • Etc.

The A2161 is the model intended for use in the North American market — and as such, it is fully compatible with CDMA and GSM networks. You can buy the A2161 through all of the major US carriers, as well as SIM-free and factory-unlocked directly from the Apple Store. If you’re looking for a device that will primarily see use in North America, the A2161 is the iPhone to buy.

The A2218 is known as the “international model,” and it is intended for European and Asian markets. It can be used in the US on LTE networks, and is compatible with the majority of common LTE bands worldwide. The A2218 supports legacy GSM networks on carriers such as AT&T and T-Mobile, but it does not support Verizon’s and Sprint’s legacy 3G CDMA networks. However, this shouldn’t be a deal-breaker for most since Verizon and Sprint are in the process of retiring these networks in favor of nationwide 4G LTE.

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Unlocked iPhone 11 carrier compatibility

Apple iPhone 11 Unlocked


There are three different models for the iPhone 11, the A2111, A2221, and the A2223. The A2111 is the model you’ll most often find in the US and Canada, and the A2221 is the global (International) model. The A2223 is limited to China and Hong Kong, so for the purpose of this compatibility guide, we’ll be focusing on the A2111 and the A2221.

The A2111 and A2221 each support many of the same carrier bands, and each can be used in the United States. However, there are some differences in band support, and depending on your carrier — there may be some limitations with US carriers if you have the A2221.

A2111 vs A2221 — what’s the difference?

If you are located in the United States — you will most often find the A2111. Apple offers the A2111, and the most common Unlocked iPhone 11 here on Swappa is also the A2111. The A2111 has support for GSM and CDMA networks, which means you will have the widest support for US carriers.

iPhone 11 (A2111)iPhone 11 (A2221)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Straight Talk
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T (partial support, missing FDD-LTE Band 14)
  • Verizon (partial support, 4G only)
  • T-Mobile (partial support, missing FDD-LTE Band 71)
  • Sprint (partial support, 4G only)
  • International Carriers

iPhone 11 (A2111) – United States and Canada

  • FDD‑LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 29, 30, 66, 71)
  • TD‑LTE (Bands 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48)
  • CDMA EV‑DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz)
  • UMTS/HSPA+/DC‑HSDPA (850, 900, 1700/2100, 1900, 2100 MHz)
  • GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

*Found on the A2221, but not on the A2111 – FDD-LTE (Bands 11, 21, 28, 32)

iPhone 11 (A2221) – Global / International

  • FDD‑LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 66)
  • TD‑LTE (Bands 34, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 48)
  • UMTS/HSPA+/DC‑HSDPA (850, 900, 1700/2100, 1900, 2100 MHz)
  • GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

*Found on the A2111, but not on the A2221 – FDD-LTE (Bands 14, 71), CDMA EV‑DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz)

Bottom line, if you are looking for an Unlocked iPhone 11 for use with a US carrier — the A2111 is the model you should first consider.

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Unlocked iPhone XS carrier compatibility

A1920 vs A2097 — what’s the difference?

In 2018, Apple made it easy people looking for an unlocked iPhone XS that works on their carrier. In 2018, Apple introduced only a single unlocked iPhone XS model for carriers in the USA: A1920. The unlocked US variant makes it dead simple to figure out which unlocked iPhone XS is compatible with your wireless carrier.

Keep in mind there’s also the iPhone XS A2097 which is the “global model” for European and Asian markets (although it also shares some compatibility with US carriers), and an A2098 model intended for Japanese carriers. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone XS A1920 (US) and A2091 (Europe)?

The A1920 is the GSM+CDMA model and is fully compatible with any US carrier including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. The A2091, on the other hand, is Apple’s GSM-only version and does not support CDMA networks. To find out which unlocked iPhone XS model will work for your carrier, see the table below.

iPhone XS (1920)iPhone XS (A2091)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • Tello
  • US Cellular
  • Straight Talk
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • MetroPCS
  • Mint Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Simple Mobile
  • Ultra Mobile
  • Walmart Family Mobile
  • International
  • Etc.

The A1920 is the de facto iPhone XS for the US, once sold as the “SIM-free” option by Apple and used for AppleCare replacement devices. This version is fully compatible with all wireless carriers in the US — working on both GSM and CDMA networks — and is the preferred model for anyone living in the states. If you want an unlocked iPhone XS that works with AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, the A1920 is your best bet.

Meanwhile, the A2091 has better support for GSM networks (AT&T and T-Mobile) and worldwide carriers, but doesn’t fully support CDMA networks (Sprint and Verizon’s 2G/3G network). This shouldn’t be a big deal since most carriers are already in the process of retiring their CMDA networks in favor of 4G LTE, something the A2091 does support. Since Apple didn’t technically sell this model in the states, we don’t even offer it in the Swappa marketplace.

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Unlocked iPhone XS Max carrier compatibility

A1921 vs A2101 — what’s the difference?

In 2018, Apple introduced only one unlocked iPhone XS Max model for carriers in the USA: A1921. With only a single unlocked US variant, this makes it dead simple to figure out which unlocked iPhone XS Max is compatible with your wireless carrier.

There’s also the iPhone XS Max A2101 which is the “global model” for European and Asian markets (although it also shares some compatibility with US carriers), and an A2102 model intended for Japanese carriers. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone XS Max A1921 (US) and A2101 (EU)?

The A1920 is the GSM+CDMA model and is fully compatible with any US carrier including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. The A2091, on the other hand, is GSM-only and does not support CDMA networks. Both the A2101 and A1920 have dual SIM functionality (eSIM+nano SIM). To find out which unlocked iPhone XS Max model works on your carrier, see the table below.

iPhone XS Max (1921)iPhone XS Max (A2101)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • Tello
  • US Cellular
  • Straight Talk
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • MetroPCS
  • Mint Mobile
  • Lycamobile
  • Simple Mobile
  • Ultra Mobile
  • Walmart Family Mobile
  • International
  • Etc.

The A1921 is the only unlocked iPhone XS Max for the US. This is the version Apple offers as their “SIM-free” model and is used for AppleCare replacement devices. This model is fully compatible with all wireless carriers in the US — working on both GSM and CDMA networks — and is the preferred model for anyone living in the states. If you want an unlocked iPhone XS Max that works with AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, or any MVNO in the US, the A1921 is your best bet.

Meanwhile, the A2101 is compatible with GSM networks (AT&T and T-Mobile) and while it has better support for worldwide carriers, it doesn’t fully support Verizon or Sprint’s 2G/3G CDMA networks. This shouldn’t be an issue as most US carriers are already in the process of retiring their CDMA networks in favor of 4G LTE, something the A2101 supports. Since Apple technically never sold this model in the states, we don’t even offer it in the Swappa marketplace.

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Unlocked iPhone XR carrier compatibility

Apple iPhone Xr Unlocked

Apple has a handful of different models for the iPhone XR. In total, you’ll find the A1984, A2105, A2106, A2107, and the A2108. The A1984 is the model you will most often find when shipping here in the US, however, the A2105 also offers support for some US carriers. The A2106 is the Japanese model, and the A2107 and A2108 are both for mainland China.

A1984 vs A2105 — what’s the difference?

As we are highlighting US carrier support for the Unlocked iPhone XR — we will be focusing on the A1984 and the A2105. Both models are supported here in the US, however, the A1984 has full support for GSM and CDMA networks, which means it will have the widest support for US carriers. The A2105 does not offer the same CDMA support, so carrier support for Verizon and Sprint will be limited.

iPhone Xr (A1984)iPhone Xr (A2105)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket Wireless
  • Mint Mobile
  • Straight Talk
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Visible
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (partial support, 4G only)
  • T-Mobile (partial support, missing FDD-LTE Band 71)
  • Sprint (partial support, 4G only)
  • International Carriers

iPhone XR (A1984) – United States and Canada

  • FDD‑LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 29, 30, 32, 66, 71)
  • TD‑LTE (Bands 34, 38, 39, 40, 41)
  • CDMA EV-DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz)
  • UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1700/2100, 1900, 2100 MHz)
  • GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

*Found on the A1984, but not on the A2105 – FDD-LTE (Band 71), CDMA EV-DO Rev. A (800, 1900 MHz)

iPhone XR (A2105) – Global / International

  • FDD‑LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 12, 13, 14, 17, 18, 19, 20, 25, 26, 28, 29, 30, 32, 66)
  • TD‑LTE (Bands 34, 38, 39, 40, 41)
  • UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA (850, 900, 1700/2100, 1900, 2100 MHz)
  • GSM/EDGE (850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

*Found on the A2105, but not on the A1984 – FDD-LTE (Band 28)

Essentially, if you are looking for an Unlocked iPhone XR for use with a US carrier — the A1984 is the model you should first consider.

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Unlocked iPhone X carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone X

You can find two models of the unlocked iPhone X for US carriers: A1865 and A1901. There is also an A1902 model, but it’s strictly for Japanese carriers so we’ll be leaving it out of this post. For now, let’s focus on the only two US iPhone X models you should be caring about.

So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone X A1865 and A1901 and more importantly, which model is compatible with your carrier network? Let’s go over the differences in carrier compatibility which should help you find the right iPhone X for Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint or your favorite prepaid MVNO.

A1865 vs A1901 — what’s the difference?

The iPhone X A1865 is the GSM+CDMA model and works on any US carrier, including Verizon and Sprint. Meanwhile, the iPhone X A1901 is the GSM-only version — sold as the AT&T and T-Mobile carrier model — and not 100% compatible CDMA networks.

iPhone X (A1865)iPhone X (A1901)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • International
  • Etc.

A1865 models have full CDMA support, which is what Verizon and Sprint use for their 2G and 3G connectivity. Although the A1901 will not support Verizon or Sprint 3G CDMA, it is compatible with their 4G LTE bands, which still makes it a viable option if you’re on those networks.

The A1865 is sold by Apple as the “SIM-free” model and is typically used by Apple for replacement devices, so if you want an iPhone that offers 100% compatibility with all four major US carriers (and a potentially better resale value), your best bet is to go with the A1865 model.

That doesn’t you should ignore the A1901 model (even if your on Verizon or Sprint), especially if you come across a great deal. Whichever model you decide to go with, you can start shopping for unlocked iPhone X deals on Swappa by clicking the button below.

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Unlocked iPhone 8 carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 8

A1863 vs A1905 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 8 comes in two US carrier models: A1863 and A1905. There’s also the A1906 model, but it is intended for Japanese carriers so we’ll be leaving it out of this post. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone 8 A1863 and A1905?

The A1863 is the GSM+CDMA model that works on all any US carrier, including AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint and prepaid MVNOs. Meanwhile, the A1905 is the GSM-only version — sold as the AT&T and T-Mobile carrier model — and is not 100% compatible with CDMA networks.

iPhone 8 (A1863)iPhone 8 (A1905)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Cricket
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • International
  • Etc.

A1863 models offer full CDMA support, which is network technology Verizon and Sprint use for 2G and 3G connectivity. Meanwhile, the A1905 will not support Verizon’s or Sprint’s CDMA networks (2G/3G), but is still compatible with their 4G LTE bands. This means the A1905 could still be a viable option if you already have a Verizon or Sprint SIM.

The A1863 is sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model and is typically used by Apple for replacement devices. So, if you want a phone that works on all four carriers (which could mean a better resale value), you’ll need to get the A1863 model.

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Unlocked iPhone 8 Plus carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 8 Plus

A1864 vs A1897 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 8 Plus comes in two US carrier models: A1864 and A1897. There is also model A1898, but it is intended for Japanese carriers and isn’t covered in this article. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone 8 Plus A1864 and A1897?

The A1864 is the GSM+CDMA model and works any US carrier, including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. Meanwhile, the A1897 is the GSM-only version — sold as the AT&T and T-Mobile carrier model — and does not support CDMA networks.

iPhone 8 Plus (A1864)iPhone 8 Plus (A1897)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Cricket
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • International
  • Etc.

The A1864 offers full CDMA support (the wireless technology behind Verizon and Sprint’s 3G networks) and is sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model, typically used by Apple for replacement devices. If you want a phone that works on all four carriers, and has a potentially higher resale value, you’ll want to go with the A1864 model.

The A1897, on the other hand, does not support Verizon or Sprint’s 3G CDMA networks, but is still compatible with their 4G LTE bands. This means the A1897 could still be a viable option for those already with Verizon or Sprint, especially if you find a great deal on this particular model.

SHOP UNLOCKED IPHONE 8 PLUS DEALS

Unlocked iPhone 7 carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 7

A1660 vs A1778 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 7 comes in two US carrier models: A1660 and A1778. There is also the A1779 model, but it’s intended for Japanese carriers and isn’t covered in this article. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone 7 A1660 and A1779?

The A1660 is the GSM+CDMA and works any US carrier including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. The A1778 is the GSM-only version — sold as the AT&T and T-Mobile carrier model — and does not support CDMA networks.

iPhone 7 (A1660)iPhone 7 (A1778)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Cricket
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • International
  • Etc.

The iPhone 7 A1660 offers full CDMA support for Verizon and Sprint’s 3G networks. This version is sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model and typically used by Apple for replacement devices. If you want an iPhone that works on all four carriers (and has a potentially higher resale value), you’ll want to go with the A1660 model.

Meanwhile, the iPhone 7 A1778 is mainly for AT&T/T-Mobile customers and while it doesn’t support Verizon or Sprint’s 3G CDMA networks, it is compatible with their 4G LTE bands. This means the A1778 could still be a viable option for those already with Verizon or Sprint, especially if you find a great deal on Swappa.

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Unlocked iPhone 7 Plus carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 7 Plus

A1661 vs A1784 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 7 Plus comes in two US carrier models: A1661 and A1784. There is also the A1785 model, but that version is intended for Japanese carriers so we’ll skip it in this post. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone 7 Plus A1661 and A1784?

The A1661 is the GSM+CDMA model and works on any US carrier including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. The A1784 on the other hand is the GSM-only version (the carrier model for AT&T and T-Mobile) and does not support CDMA networks.

iPhone 7 Plus (A1661)iPhone 7 Plus (A1784)
  • AT&T
  • Verizon
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Cricket
  • Etc.
  • AT&T
  • Verizon (4G only)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (4G only)
  • Cricket
  • International
  • Etc.

In addition to supporting GSM networks, the iPhone 7 Plus A1661 offers full CDMA support for Verizon and Sprint’s 2G and 3G networks. The A1661 is sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model and is typically used by Apple for replacement devices. If you want an iPhone that works on all four carriers (and has a potentially higher resale value), you’ll want to go with the A1661 model.

As for the iPhone 7 Plus A1784, this version s mainly for AT&T/T-Mobile customers and while it is not compatible with Verizon or Sprint’s 3G networks, it does support their 4G LTE bands. This means the A1784 is still be a viable option for those already with Verizon or Sprint, so it’s worth keeping an eye out in case you come across a great deal on Swappa.

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Unlocked iPhone 6S carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 6S

A1633 vs 1688 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 6S comes in two US carrier models: A1633 and A1688. There’s also the A1700 but since it’s intended for the Chinese market, we’ll leave it out of this post. So, what’s the difference between the unlocked iPhone 6S A1633 and A1688?

Both the A1688 and A1633 are GSM+CDMA models and work on any US carrier including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. But just because they work on all major carriers, doesn’t mean there aren’t differences.

iPhone 6S (A1633)iPhone 6S (A1688)
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Etc.
  • Verizon
  • AT&T (missing Band 30)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • International
  • Etc.

While both models are compatible with AT&T, the A1633 is the only model that supports LTE band 30 (2.3 GHz), also known as Wireless Communications Service (WCS). This is a specific LTE band that AT&T will sometimes use for big cities, so while the A1688 also works fine on AT&T, it won’t be able to take advantage of band 30.

This is an issue you start running into with legacy devices like the iPhone 6S and older — they don’t always have the necessary hardware to take advantage of more recent network advancements. For instance, both unlocked iPhone 6S models are also missing support T-Mobile bands 66 and 71.

So as you can see, the A1633 is the most comprehensive of the two models. In fact, the A1633 was sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model and is typically used by Apple for replacement devices. Meanwhile the A1688 was the specific model sold in T-Mobile, Verizon, and Sprint stores.

If you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone 6S with the best carrier support (and potentially the highest resale value), the A1633 is definitely the way to go.

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Unlocked iPhone 6S Plus carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 6S Plus

A1634 vs 1687 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 6S Plus comes in two models for US carriers: A1634 and A1687. There is also model A1699, but it is intended for Chinese carriers so isn’t considered for this article.

Both the A1634 and A1687 are GSM+CDMA and will work on any US carrier, including Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint. Overall these are the most compatible devices Apple has ever made.

iPhone 6S Plus (A1634)iPhone 6S Plus (A1687)
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • Etc.
  • Verizon
  • AT&T (missing band 30)
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Cricket
  • Mint Mobile
  • Ting
  • US Cellular
  • International
  • Etc.

The A1687 was the carrier model for Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint, and sold in their stores. Although compatible with all US carriers, there is one band difference that makes the A1634 more ideal for AT&T users.

The A1634 is the only model that supports Band 30 on 2300 MHz (2.3 GHz), also known as Wireless Communications Service (WCS). Band 30 is an LTE band sometimes used by AT&T for big cities. So while A1687 will also work fine on AT&T, it won’t be able to take advantage of band 30.

This is an issue you start running into with legacy devices like the iPhone 6S Plus and older — they don’t always have the necessary hardware to take advantage of more recent network advancements. For instance, both of these unlocked iPhone 6S Plus models are also missing support T-Mobile bands 66 and 71.

All in all, the A1634 is the most comprehensive of the two models. In fact, the A1634 was sold by Apple as their “SIM-free” model and is typically used by Apple for replacement devices. So if you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone 6S Plus with the best carrier support (and potentially highest resale value), the A1634 is your best bet.

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Unlocked iPhone 6 carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 6

A1549 vs A1586 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 6 comes in two models for US carriers: A1549 and A1586. What exactly is the difference between between the A1549 and A1586?

The unlocked A1549 model is considered the “world phone” iPhone 6 and comes in two versions: GSM or CDMA. This means the unlocked A1549 will work great on Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, overseas, and with countless MVNOs here in the states.

The GSM version was sold on AT&T and T-Mobile, while the CDMA model was sold on Verizon. Furthermore, the unlocked CDMA version also has support for GSM networks, so if you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone 6 that’s mostly compatible with US networks (minus Sprint) as well as overseas carriers — the unlocked A1549 (CDMA model) is the way to go.

iPhone 6 (A1549)iPhone 6 (A1586)
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (missing band 41)
  • Cricket
  • World phone version
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • Etc.

Meanwhile, the A1586 supports the same CDMA and GSM networks as the A1549, but adds better compatibility for Sprint and was sold as their locked carrier model. This makes the the A1586 the better model for all US carriers (since it covers all bases), including CDMA networks like Sprint or US Cellular. Unlocked A1586 models are a little more difficult to find, but if you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone 6 on Sprint, you’ll definitely want to stick with the A1586.

The A1586 was also sold as the SIM-free version and is used by Apple for replacement devices (so this should tell you something about network compatibility). Since the iPhone 6 is older, the A1549 and A1586 are missing T-Mobile bands 12, 66, 71, and AT&T’s band 12. However, both models support VoLTE, you don’t have to worry too much about full CDMA compatibility, as formerly CDMA-based carriers like Verizon and Sprint have already begun transitioning to 4G LTE for calling, texting, and data.

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Unlocked iPhone 6 Plus carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone 6 Plus

A1522 vs A1524 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone 6 Plus comes in two models for US carriers: A1522 and A1524. What’s the difference between the A1522 and the A1524?

The unlocked A1522 model is considered the “world phone” iPhone 6 and while it works great on Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and MVNOs here in the states, it’s not 100% compatible with Sprint. The A1522 comes in two versions: GSM (AT&T and T-Mobile) or CDMA (Verizon).

Of the two, the unlocked CDMA version (Verizon) offers the best network compatibility seeing as how it also supports GSM networks. So if you’re looking for a version of the iPhone 6 mostly compatible with US networks — as well as overseas carriers — the unlocked A1522 (CDMA) model is the way to go.

iPhone 6 Plus (A1522)iPhone 6 Plus (A1524)
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (missing band 41)
  • Cricket
  • World phone version
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint
  • Ting
  • Etc.

Meanwhile, the A1524 offers the same CDMA+GSM network support as the A1522, but has better compatibility for Sprint thanks to including band 41. It’s the A1524 that was also sold in Sprint stores as their locked carrier model. This makes the the A1524 the better model for all US carriers (since it covers all bases), and offers full compatibility with AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint. Unlocked A1524 models are a little more difficult to find, but it’s your best bet if you’re on Sprint.

The A1524 was also sold as the SIM-free version and is used by Apple for replacement devices thanks to its full network compatibility. Since the iPhone 6 is older, the A1522 and A1524 are missing T-Mobile bands 12, 66, 71, and AT&T’s band 12. However, both models support VoLTE, you don’t have to worry too much about CDMA compatibility as formerly CDMA-based carriers like Verizon and Sprint have already begun transitioning to 4G LTE for calling, texting, and data on their networks.

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Unlocked iPhone SE carrier compatibility

Unlocked iPhone SE

A1662 vs A1723 — what’s the difference?

The unlocked iPhone SE comes in two models for US carriers: A1662 and A1723. There’s also an A1724 model, but it’s intended for Chinese carriers so we’ll leave it out of this post. So, what’s the difference between the A1662 and A1723?

The unlocked A1662 iPhone SE is considered the “world phone” and while it’s fully compatible with Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and MVNOs here in the states, it’s not 100% compatible with Sprint. For Sprint customers looking for full compatibility, you’ll definitely want to stick to the A1723.

iPhone SE (A1662)iPhone SE (A1723)
  • Verizon
  • AT&T
  • T-Mobile
  • Sprint (missing band 41)
  • Cricket
  • US Cellular
  • Etc.
  • Sprint
  • International

A1662 models have support for LTE bands used by Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile. This includes Band 13, used by Verizon, and Band 29, used by AT&T. The A1723, on the other hand, is lacking these. Both the A1662 and A1723 support Band 12, used by T-Mobile, which the previous iPhone 5S was lacking.

Meanwhile, the A1723 has all the bands used by Sprint, including the band 41, which Sprint uses for their high-speed “Spark” network. Although the A1662 does not include band 41 support, it will still work with Sprint 4G LTE, just not optimally. If you’re looking for an unlocked iPhone SE with the greatest US carrier compatibility (and potentially higher resale value), the A1662 is your best bet.

The A1662 was sold as the SIM-free version while the A1723 is considered the global phone model. That means the A1723 has some international roaming bands missing from the A1662 — such as band 7 — used in Canada and other countries. The A1662 will still get LTE signal globally, just not at the highest speeds available.

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