I think everyone will agree with me when I say: iCloud activation lock is a complete pain in the ass, and I don’t really know what were Apple thinking when they put in a system so stern that a device you spent hundreds of dollars on becomes unusable?
But, it turns out that there are some solutions to fix this problem. Even better, there is one of them completely free and the other are paid solutions.
What is iCloud Activation Lock ?
If you bought a used iPad or iPhone, and you are trying to set it up, it will keep asking you for iCloud Login details of the previous owner, which you don’t have, and this will make your device unusable.
What is the purpose of iCloud Activation Lock ?
iCloud Activation Lock is actually a great idea in some way, because it puts people off stealing your device as it will be unusable for them.
Almost 60% of second hand iPad and iPhone bought and sold legitimately have iCloud Activation Lock, left on by mistake, and this means buyers can’t use them.
The easiest way to have your iCloud Unlock is by contacting the seller, or original owner of the device and asking them to remove it from “Find My iPhone”, iCloud removal is a simple process and can be done from any PC or Smartphone connected to the internet via iCloud.com.
How to Remove iPhone or iPad device from Find My iPhone or iCloud
- Sign in to iCloud.com or Find My iPhone app on another Apple device.
- Select the device.
- Click Erase.
- After the device has been erased, click Remove from Account.
This will remove the lock on your device, to read the full article describing what to do before you sell or give away your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch here: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT201351.
iCloud removal is possible! and if this sounds like your problem with your device then the good news is you can Remove iCloud activation lock to use your iPhone normally, and you can do an activation lock bypass to use some of your iPhone’s features despite it being iCloud locked, and this is called an iCloud bypass tool.
Bypass iCloud Activation Lock is possible too! and if the device locked due to theft you may still be able to bypass iCloud activation lock as described later in this article and get some functionality. But you won’t be able to unlock the iPhone completely.
How to find your iPhone’s IMEI Number
- Option 1: Dial *#06#
- Option 2: If you have an iPhone 5 or newer, your IMEI is printed on the back of the device.
- Option 3: If your iPhone is not activated, there will be a little “i” button on the screen, tap it and you will see the IMEI.
How does iCloud lock work ?
If the feature called Find My iPhone was turned on in the device, it will automatically link the iCloud account to the iPhone.
The idea form this is to help users find their devices if it’s lost or stolen. If the worst comes to the worst and they can’t get their iPhone back then they can use Find My iPhone to erase the contents of the phone and lock it permanently. However there is a solution using either an iCloud bypass or an iCloud unlock.
Can you Remove iCloud lock with jailbreak ?
Simply, no you can’t, and there is websites claim that you can remove the iCloud lock by jailbreaking your iPhone. But this is not true. jailbreaking your device will only unlock your iPhone after the lock has been removed by another method.
How to Unlock iCloud Activation Lock ?
There are two options available, An iCloud Bypass “activation lock iphone” to get limited functionality back for free, or an iCloud Removal Lock to get full functionality back for a fee.
Models of iPhone, iPad you can do an iCloud unlock on
You can do an iCloud unlock from the 1st generation of iPhone and iPad, so you can do an iPhone iCloud Unlock and iPad iCloud Unlock.
How to Unlock iPhone X Lock
iPhone X was announced on September 12, 2017 and was released on November 1, 2017. iPhone X AKA iPhone Ten comes with a version of iOS 11.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus Lock
iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus was announced on September 12, 2017 and was released on September 22, 2017. iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus comes with a version of iOS 11.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus Lock
iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus was announced on September 7, 2016 and was released on September 16, 2016. iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus comes with a version of iOS 10.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus Lock
iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus was announced on September 9, 2015 and was released on September 25, 2015. iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus comes with a version of iOS 9.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus Lock
iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus was announced on September 9, 2014 and was released on September 25, 2014. iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus comes with a version of iOS 8.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c Lock
iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c was announced on September 10, 2013 and was released on September 20, 2013. iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c comes with a version of iOS 7.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 5 Lock
iPhone 5 was announced on September 12, 2012 and was released on September 21, 2012. iPhone 5 comes with a version of iOS 6.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 4s Lock
iPhone 4s was announced on October 7, 2011 and was released on October 14, 2011. iPhone 4s comes with a version of iOS 5.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock iPhone 4 Lock
iPhone 4 was announced on June 7, 2010 and was released on June 24, 2010. iPhone 4 comes with a version of iOS 4.0 and of course the device can be unlocked.
How to Unlock ipad Lock
To unlock iPad lock “ipad activation lock” you need the same process as the iPhone, because the iCloud locking system is the same for both devices iPhone and iPad.
If you bypass iCloud then you can use your iPhone to do a variety of things but not using the standard apps you would expect from an iPhone.
Instead you are bypassing the iPhone software and using a different interface to allow you to do a variety of things such as watch video, send SMS, login to social media.
Unfortunately you can’t use the device as a standard phone.
However the iCloud bypass tool is free, with no fee involved.
iCloud Bypass Hack
This is a very clever hack that allows you to bypass the iCloud activation by setting up your iPhone to use different software on it using a thing called “DNS bypass”.
You don’t need a SIM card inserted to get this to work as it uses Wi-Fi to connect.
It is a little fiddly but this hack isn’t that difficult to do if you follow the video or written instructions below.
- Reboot your iPhone ready to set it up as a new device.
- Start the setup process and select your country and language.
- On the “Choose a Wi-Fi Network” screen press the “i” next to Wi-Fi symbol for the Wi-Fi network you want to connect to.
- Scroll down to where it says ‘DNS’ and type in one of the following
USA/North America: 126.96.36.199
In rest of the world: 188.8.131.52
- Tap “Back >” at the top left of the screen.
- Click your Wi-Fi network
- Type in the Wi-Fi password and click “Join” at the top right
- The iPhone will try to activate by going to a new screen. Don’t let it, hit the Back button at the top right to return to the WiFi page where you will be logged in.
- Once logged in you will see a screen which will say something like “iCloudDNSBypass.net” at the top.
If you remove the iCloud lock completely then you can setup the iPhone or iPad as if it were a brand new device and use it properly. However an iCloud activation lock removal costs money and there are many dubious websites that run scams offering this type of service. You need to make sure you pick the right one so you don’t get scammed.
How to unlock iCloud for free
Unfortunately there is no free solution to unlock iCloud that works. They are all scams.
Jailbreaking does not work as it will only unlock your iCloud after the lock has been removed by another method.
Software downloads don’t work either as the lock is stored on Apples servers not on your device. Having software on your computer and iPhone won’t help especially if it includes viruses or other malicious software hidden within it.
Websites that appear to interface with Apples servers are also a scam. They don’t.
The only way I have found to permanently remove the iCloud lock is by using a paid removal service.
Paid iCloud removal worked for me, although there are some scammers that charge as much as $300 USD “£220” and don’t unlock your device.
Best iCloud Removal Service
iPhoneIMEI.net are the best of the bunch They managed to unlock every iPhone I sent them. I simply provided my iPhone model, IMEI code, and paid using my card as described in the simple step by step instructions below.
They were the only ones in my shortlist that managed to do so. They also unlocked them faster than anyone else with each one taking 1 or 2 day to do. There customer support was great with replies coming back from my queries in under an hour.
They are also good value for money charging approx $50 USD (£39.99) per unlock.
The price is in GBP (£’s) as it is an English based company. They offer iCloud removal not matter where you are located – so anywhere in the world. If you are not in England this is not a problem.
If your iPhone is locked to an iCloud account and you need to get it unlocked, you should use iPhoneIMEI.net.
Website URL: iPhoneIMEI.net
Official iPhone Unlock
Official iPhone Unlock managed to unlock 5 out of 6 Phones, so they couldn’t quite manage them all. The older iPhone 4 couldn’t be unlocked.
I filled in the online with my iPhone model, IMEI code, and paid using my card as shown in the simple step by step instructions below.
They refunded me for the unsuccessful unlock quickly and without a fuss.
They unlocked each phone fairly quickly – between 2-5 days which is pretty good – but not as fast as iPhoneIMEI.
Their customer support was fairly responsive but could take up to a day to respond. They were direct and weren’t quite as warm and friendly as they could be.
They were the same price at approx $50 USD (£39.99) per unlock but the payments are structured differently.
It isn’t clear on the website but you pay approx $25 deposit (£19.99) with the balance due before the unlock is completed.
This has lead to some reports of clients feeling ‘blackmailed’ with a second payment before they get the unlock completed. They could make the payment structure clearer on their website to prevent this as only the headline price of £19.99 is prominently advertised.
This is another reason why they are 2nd place.
Official iPhone unlock accept a wider variety of payment methods including American Express. They are a UK based company so the prices are in GBP (£) but they can unlock phones regardless of where you are located.
It works for iPhones worldwide.
Overall this is a good supplier but not quite up to the standard of the best. The fact that they couldn’t unlock everything and were a little less friendly puts them in 2nd place.
Not quite as good as the iPhoneIMEI but I’d still say Official iPhone Unlock is a safe bet if you need to unlock your iPhone, iPad or apple Watch from iCloud.
Website URL: OfficialiPhoneUnlock.co.uk
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