Can you buy an iPhone and use it with any network?

Can you buy an iPhone and use it with any network?

Often the best way to get a brand-new phone is by entering into a contract with a mobile phone network. With this, not only do you pay for your phone and service in one convenient monthly fee, but you also get to upgrade your phone as part of the same contract after a set duration (usually two years). The biggest issue with this system is that you become locked into that contract, and have to pay a tidy sum if you want to leave or upgrade early. This also means that until the contract is over, you don’t truly own the phone you’re using. While this is fine for most phone users, it makes sense why others wouldn’t want to be locked into a contract and would prefer to buy their new iPhone without one if possible.

Buying an iPhone unlocked (not tied to a single network) not only allows you to use your phone on any network, but you can also ensure you get the best deals on your data, minutes and messages.

In this article, I’m going to explore why you should consider buying an unlocked iPhone, as well as where to find one at the best price.

iPhone 14 front and back purple

What are the benefits of buying an iPhone unlocked?

While to most, a contract with a carrier will always be the simplest go-to option when it comes to buying an iPhone, there are multiple reasons why you may want to buy an iPhone unlocked. 

Cheaper overall

In most cases, if you’re not in a contract, you’ll save money in the long run by purchasing your phone outright. By buying an iPhone unlocked, you don’t have to pay a set fee each month, and you definitely won’t have to worry about interest.

Flexible fees

The best thing about being contract-free is that you can ensure you’re paying only what you need each month. If you’re barely using any data, you can swap to a plan that gives you less, therefore charging you less. Likewise, you never have to worry about being overcharged if you use all your data or minutes. If you need more, you can simply purchase more. You’re also free to explore other deals from across the networks. Nothing will stop you from getting the best price.

Cheaper roaming

With a contract-free sim-only iPhone, you can use any SIM card from any network. If you’re going overseas, your network will likely charge a lot of money if you use your phone while there. However, it is possible to purchase a local SIM card from the country you’re travelling to, which will make using your phone much cheaper. 

Naturally, international texts and calls will still rack up your bill, but fortunately, you can circumvent that by using internet applications at local data rates, which will make your wallet feel a lot happier.

Where can I buy an unlocked iPhone?

While you’ll struggle to find a network that will sell you an unlocked iPhone, generic retailers like Amazon are one good place to look for the best unlocked iPhone deals. But another great way to buy an unlocked iPhone is straight from the source. 

The Apple store not only sell their devices unlocked and ready to work on any network, but they also have financing options. As of the time of writing, you can purchase an iPhone 14 Pro from as little as £45.79 a month from the official Apple website

While going to the source is a simple way to buy an unlocked iPhone, if you want the best price, our iPhone deal comparison will allow you to compare dozens of Apple phone deals, including unlocked iPhones. Our comparison is updated regularly to make sure you get the best price for the exact make and model of iPhone you’re looking for.

Hands holding up iPhone 14

Where can I buy a cheap iPhone unlocked?

To get the cheapest price for an unlocked iPhone, you can use our iPhone deal comparison tool to find the phone of your dreams. My recommendation is to look for slightly older models to get the most out of your money. The newest version of the iPhone operating system will work on iPhone 8 and newer devices, so if you want the majority of the newest features and the sharpest software, any iPhone from the last 5 years will support that. The iPhone 13 is a great example of an older iPhone that will still give you everything you need and more.

Naturally, the newer the model, the better experience you’ll likely have, but the difference between iPhone models is only really meaningful to those that know what they’re looking for. The average person will enjoy owning an older iPhone just as much as the newest one and will save a lot of money in doing so. Shop around, and don’t be afraid to purchase an iPhone that may be a couple of years old. 

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