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Apple begins selling unlocked, SIM-free iPhone 6s & 6s Plus

Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 9.48.57 PM

Two weeks following the initial launch of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, Apple has added a new purchasing option for the devices to its online store. Starting today, customers can buy an iPhone 6s or 6s Plus SIM-free, unlocked, and without a carrier…

Apple explains on its online store that purchasing a SIM-free iPhone means customers do not have to sign a contract commitment with a carrier, nor do they have to deal with carrier financing. It also notes that the device does not come with a nano-SIM, meaning that customers can go to a carrier of their choice and get a SIM, assuming the carrier supports the wireless bands the iPhone has. This, of course, means that the entire cost of the device must be paid upfront.


The SIM-free iPhone comes without a wireless contract commitment or carrier financing. It doesn’t come with a nano-SIM card for iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, or iPhone 5s. And because it’s unlocked, it isn’t tied to one carrier, so you can get a nano-SIM from any supported carrier worldwide, such as AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, or Sprint in the United States.

The SIM-free iPhone 6s holds the A1633 model number, while the 6s Plus is model A1634.

Furthermore, the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s are now available in a second wave of countries. As the clock turns to October 9th around the world, the devices are available in the following additional countries:

Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Greenland, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Maldives, Mexico, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and Taiwan

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  1. chrisgp123 - 7 years ago

    Do you still have to choose between a GSM (for use on AT&T or T-Mobile) or a TDMA (Verizon or Sprint) version or is that no longer a thing?

  2. Sunny Bhambhwani - 7 years ago

    I ordered a tmobile unlocked version for overseas use. Will the sim free version be the same or would it be totally different and I should change my order

    • digesh9870 - 7 years ago

      Same here. Even I am confused. I have already received my iPhone 6s plus (unlocked t mobile) from Apple yesterday. The LTE chart on Apple website shows that the sim free models supports one additional lte band and that is band 30. I don’t know if there are any other differences. What to do ?

    • Mark Maidwell - 7 years ago

      I have the tmobile unlocked. all i did was remove tmobile sim and put my sim and no issues.. live in caribbean

  3. Interesting that this is a big deal in US – a symptom of the differing market conditions. In Australia, iPhones sold through the Apple store have long (always?) been carrier-independent – you can purchase a SIM at the store of your choice, but the phone is not locked to it. If you wanted to buy under carrier finance you always went to the carrier’s online or offline stores, not to Apple.

    • strawbis - 7 years ago

      It’s not just Aus either! Buying direct from Apple UK gets you a SIM free and “permanently” Unlocked iPhone. I stress “permanently” because some 3rd party retailers’ iPhones will lock to the first SIM you put in the phone. It’s a great way to get a discount deal from a carrier, because they know you can switch whenever you’re not happy.

  4. jamessmooth - 7 years ago

    But can I buy the TSMC chip iPhone? :D

  5. freddyjdc - 7 years ago

    iPhone 6S and 6S+ Factory Unlock Codes Service. It’s safe, fast and simple. You’re invited to visit

  6. But 1633 is the model no. for ATT was well. What is the difference :/ ??

  7. ebernet (@ebernet) - 7 years ago

    Unlike the iPhone 5 and 5S where there are many variations (and separate ones for CDMA and GSM with LTE), and the 6 and 6 plus were there were a couple of models supporting some overlapping and some different LTE bands, the 6s and 6s plus are for the most part universal. There is the A1633 and A1634, which work on ALL carriers (if unlocked) and supports 23 bands, and the other model that has ONE less band (band 30, used by AT&T here in the states, so 22 bands. The AT&T phone has all the bands, the Sprint/VZ/T-Mobile has one less band, but is still pretty universal. The unlocked one is the AT&T version, unlocked…

    This harkens back to the 4S, before LTE, which was the last (and first) Universal iPhone. LTE bands took awhile before there were communications chips that could handle ALL of the bands. NO IDEA why they made a model with one less band. Really makes no sense… They could have made them ALL the AT&T phone…

  8. Andrew Brett Watson - 7 years ago

    It’s almost 8 am in Spain and the iPhone 6S is still not available for purchase…. aaaaargh I can’t wait!

    • Andrew Brett Watson - 7 years ago

      Update: At 8:10am Spain time the iPhone 6S became available to order online. I got my wife the rose gold 6s and a matching rose gold apple watch.

  9. Ilko Sarafski - 7 years ago

    It’s interesting that they put only “Bosnia” since the country’s name is “Bosnia and Herzegovina”. It doesn’t really matter anyway. Good thing that every year they expand and improve their first-date and second-date releases! Let’s see how much they are going to cost over here, in Bulgaria.

  10. 89p13 - 7 years ago

    Back to the story — I’ve purchased the T-Mobile phone directly from Apple (at full price) for the last 3 releases and they have always been “unlocked” as my main carrier is AT&T, but I occasionally pop a T-Mobile sim in. I am also able to purchase local, country / carrier specific micro-sims and use them when I travel abroad. I’ve never run into an issue with any of these phones becoming locked to a particular carrier.

    With no sim installed and looking at the carrier under the “General/About” section, the phone self-identifies as T-Mobile – but it still functions as an unlocked GSM iPhone.

    So – I’m not sure what the difference is between what I have and what Apple is now selling – except my phones ship with a non-activated T-Mobile SIM card and these new products don’t.

    BTW – Both of the iPhone’s 6s Plus phones I bought have the TSMC A9 Chips.

  11. Kawaii Gardiner - 7 years ago

    Dear Americans, welcome to what the rest of the world has had for ages.

  12. 89p13 - 7 years ago

    And IF you want an unlocked iPhone 6s Plus w/128 GB of RAM – it’s a 3 to 4 week lead time. I have no idea what the lead time is on any of the other models but I’m surprised that it’s still 3 to 4 weeks for this model.


  13. andrewduncanvisser - 7 years ago

    I would like to know if the A1633 “AT&T” iPhone 6s that I bought last week (and am using with a MetroPCS sim) is the same as this new unlocked iPhone that Apple are now selling?

  14. Fabrizio Badini - 7 years ago

    Lower demand (last year unlocked was sold in january)

  15. ebernet (@ebernet) - 7 years ago

    As mentioned before, as far as I know AT&T in the US is the ONLY carrier nationwide using Band 30 (WCS A and B). It would have been simpler if Apple made just one phone, like that people would not be worrying like all of you are. The other phone (the one for T-Mobile, Sprint, VZ, etc) will work just fine in every situation. The AT&T one MAY (just may) have more band options in the US when on AT&T, that’s it.

    That being said, my 128 GB iPhone 6s+ is the AT&T model, with the TSMC chip, so I’m sitting pretty :)

  16. dgallentine2020 - 7 years ago

    Can u use straight talk

  17. Anita Wong - 7 years ago

    So buying sim free i can use it worldwide right?

  18. bargainshopuk - 7 years ago

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Avatar for Chance Miller Chance Miller

Chance is an editor for the entire 9to5 network and covers the latest Apple news for 9to5Mac.

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