Hey forum! I'm looking to buy a smartphone. I'd like to buy it outright, unlock it, and use it on the T-Mobile network. I know I need carrier permission to do this (I'm in the US), so my question is, which carrier (if either) will let me unlock their phone, and what is required for them to do so? For reference, here are some of the phones I'm looking at:
Sony Xperia TL - Prob. my preferred choice.
Pantech Discover - Maybe a bit wide for me, but I could work with it.
LG Spectrum 2 - Prob. my no. 2 choice after the Sony.
Droid RAZR MAXX HD - Nice, but too pricy. Also hard to find (though I haven't checked my local stores yet), and no removable batt. Not a deal breaker, but a useful feature none-the-less.
I'm willing to consider other phones. I'm also willing to buy pre-unlocked phones, if anyone knows a reliable seller, but my preference is a sealed, NIB retail device.
I'm planning an overseas trip for late this year/early next, which is part of the reason why I want to unlock.
I have a friend with an AT&T account in good standing.
I chatted with a Verizon cust. service. rep last night, and she confirmed that Verizon phones are GSM compatible. I read somewhere that Verizon phones were SIM unlocked out-of-the-box, but the rep said they were locked to the Verizon network. Correct me if she's wrong on either of those points.
If you're interested, here are some other phones I looked at along with what I ultimately didn't like about them.
Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks!