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How to Unlock Your BlackBerry 6 Smartphone

By Kevin Michaluk on 6 Aug 2010 10:37 am EDT
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* Update: Ho humm.. my bad. I'm a bit of a dumbass today! So actually, just realized, I guess this method of unlocking when you have the non-native SIM card present was already in OS 5.0. In 5.0 I've always unlocked my devices without having the non-native SIM, so didn't even realize this was the case.  So basicaly, you're in the same boat between 5 and 6 if you have the foreign SIM you want to use. And it's easy either way.  Click here to see the unlock if you want to do it and don't have the SIM. Good to see it done in BB6 regardless. Carry on. lol *

As we mentioned in our BlackBerry 6 Review, RIM made a lot of subtle changes throughout the operating system that all together make for a pretty big change in user experience (going back to OS 5 after using 6 for a few days is tough!). One subtle but welcome change is to unlocking your phone. It's easier than ever in BlackBerry 6.

How to unlock your BlackBerry in BlackBerry 6:

  1. Get an unlock code from your carrier or a company that provides unlocking services
    1. Visit our BlackBerry Unlocking Forum for more info on Unlock Companies 
  2. Turn off your BlackBerry, and put in the SIM card from the non-native carrier
    1. As in the video above, I put a Rogers SIM card into an AT&T BlackBerry Torch
  3. Turn on your Blackberry Smartphone
  4. When the device boots up, you will automatically be prompted for your MEP code that was provided to you by your carrier or the unlocking company
  5. Enter the code, and you're done!! Your device is now permanently unlocked.

If you have a BlackBerry you'd like to unlock that's not on BlackBerry 6 (you're on 4.5, 4.6, 4.7, 5.0, etc.), be sure to visit our previous tutorial on How to Unlock your BlackBerry.

And in case you're wondering why would I want to unlock my BlackBerry? there are a couple of main reasons. First, if you travel a lot -- especially overseas -- you can buy local SIM cards and save yourself some serious international roaming fees. Second, when a new device comes out on a different carrier and it's not available on your own carrier yet, you could buy the device off contract from the carrier who is selling it, unlock it, and run it on your local carrier. Keep in mind here that different carriers use different radio technologies, so you'll need to make sure you're getting a device that will fully work on your carrier (or at least be aware that it will work, but not to the extent it will on the native carrier). 

Reader comments

How to Unlock Your BlackBerry 6 Smartphone

62 Comments

In the USA you could run the AT&T BlackBerry Torch on Edge on T-Mobile (2G) but you won't get the 3G working for you.

Though T-Mobile overseas it should work and have the 3G in full effect. 

Oh ok, thanks. Do you know if any Canadian carrier uses the same bandwidth as T-mobile? I really want the 3G to work.

Wind & DAVE (aka Mobilicity) support AWS which is the same type of network that T-Mobile US uses. However neither are getting the Torch at this point.

Now, all they need is a carrier that is willing and able to provide the code for you when you switch your service to them, instead of getting it from the carrier the device is from.

now that its easy to unlock, how can i get my hands on one when it gets released august 12th? i live in egypt.

when buying one do you have to buy it with a 2 year data plan or can you buy it unlocked?

I've noticed that the Pearl 3G is very similar (while running OS 5), as it prompts you when you start it up with a foreign SIM card if you'd like to unlock it. The difference is that the prompts don't come up after that as to whether or not you'd like to wipe it or what-not.

My Friend was playing around with my old 9530, running OS 5, and the same kind of prompt showed up asking for the unlock code.

Wow...talk about being late to the party. This feature has been avalable in all builds of 5.0 for all devices. This is not new to OS 6.0 by no means.

CDMA vs. GSM....Sprint wont accept a phone unless it says SPRINT on it so it AINT gonna happen. Drop BB and get the Samsung Epic when it comes out in a couple of weeks. You'll still have your keyboard and touch screen but on a UP TO DATE OS. Droid Does

That is kinda lame, who the heck wants to see two carrier names at the top??

The new unlock process is good though, way simpler.

So what if I dont have another carrier's SIM card? Can it still be unlocked like previous BBS by going into options > SIM card > (type MEPD) > (type MEP2) ????

For what it's worth, typing MEP2 in the ~~emulator~~ does not bring up the "Enter Network MEP key" dialog.

Yeah, I was hoping for improvement on that front. They do need to show that so we can see how long it takes.

I wanted to check if a T-Mobile phone would work at my sister's house which was totally dead to my VZW phone so I called VZW, unlocked my 9630 and went to a T-Mobile store for a pay-as-you-go SIM. When I next visited I switched SIMs and found T-Mobile has a good signal at her house.

Result: Purchase of 9700 and switch to T-Mobile. T-Mobile may have the poorest coverage BUT IT WORKS WHERE I WANT IT TO WORK and VZW doesn't, despite multiple calls to CS and many years of being promised that they'd fix the problem.

Why are you getting the roaming triangle, with AT&T still listed as the carrier? Any other blackberry I have ever unlocked and inserted my own sim never behaved like this. If this is the case it looks like the "turn data off when roaming" feature would be useless with anything but an AT&T sim card...

On the top of the phone it says the carrier as AT&T - Rogers is because he is roaming using a rogers sim on AT&T network. I got the same display when i went to florida for the week and was roaming. Once he is back on just Rogers towers that will change back to just Rogers.

I'm positive because I live in Ontario, Canada on the border of Michigan, United States and if I go out of Rogers range I can pick up AT&T towers when roaming. The display on the top will change to the AT&T - Rogers.

CDMA vs. GSM....Sprint wont accept a phone unless it says SPRINT on it so it AINT gonna happen. Drop BB and get the Samsung Epic when it comes out in a couple of weeks. You'll still have your keyboard and touch screen but on a UP TO DATE OS. Droid Does

why is it saying "AT&T-Rogers" once unlocked??? Shouldn't it just say "Rogers"??

And what's this "AT&T address book" BS??? I know AT&T had a part in developing this - which in itself irritates me to no end - but seems like there is waaaay too much "AT&T-ness" in this thing... For that reason alone, probably will pass. May look for a Rogers, Telus or Bell one once they release. I HATE having carrier specific crap on my phones. AT&T has taken it to new extremes... may as well be VZW...

it's bad enough AT&T removed blackberry apps (apparently) adn replaced with "AT&T maps".... wtf??

I actually just recently unlocked the Storm 9530 i'm using on AT&T using this same method. When i was in the process of following the instructions to unlock it given from the website i received the unlock code from, i thought initially putting the code there when it first came up was a bad idea because the instructions i was given said to do it how previously described in older tutorials.

In the end, attempting to unlock my Storm the older way, previous of OS 5, it wasn't working correctly for some reason. When i started the process over from the beginning and for the hell of it decided to input my 16 digit unlock code in the same manner as shown for BlackBerry 6, it worked like a charm and i was unlocked and running AT&T before i knew it!!

I was wondering the same thing. I've been wanting this berry since I first heard about it. I have an S1 and ready to upgrade but only for the torch or S3 (whenever they decide to release it)

So, do I enter the unlock code of the Carrier I bought the phone from, or the Carrier that I am switching over to?

Sorry, My question is stupid, but I'm not familiar with unlocking.

And one last question, Could I buy a phone in America, and then unlock it to use as my phone in Canada?

I'm looking to get this unlocked for Tmobile USA and want to make sure I can still sync it to my BES for work. Will this still work with Tmobile's data service?

Does anyone think there will be a way to use the Torch on Verizon anytime soon? I am sooo in love with the phone but I dont want to switch to AT&T :(

help?, hey would u know what would i have to do to get the internet working on t-mobile?, i bought the 9800 torch, unlocked on EDGE, but i cant get the browser to work. i had a 9700.... when i try going to a internet site, i get a message that pops up:

your device does not currently have any Browser Configuration Service Book Entries.

Please contact your service provider to enable the Browser on your device.

does this mean i have to change my blackberry internet web to a smartphone web through my t-mobile carrier.?

We can provide unlock codes for the blackberry 9800 torch so you could use it with any gsm carrier worldwide.
We also provide full support and directions on how to enter the unlock code and it's very easy. 

Is there any concerns with an AT&T device being unlocked to work on the Rogers network in Canada? Im thinking the Torch would retail far cheaper in the USA than in Canada and my objective is to get one Stateside and save a few Loonies.
Thanks!

Hey guys, Question for you: I bought a at@t torch and am using on H2O network which uses at@t network. Phone works fine and so does text. Cant get browser up or email even though I have that included in monthly deal. I seem to think maybe unlocking might straighten this out. What do you all think? Thanks for all you guys hard work and updates throughout the years on our Blackberry adventures. Keep up the good work.....

Hey guys I just unlocked my Blackberry Bold 9700 form unlockgenie.com (http://unlockgenie.com/) I got the code very quick and it worked without any trouble. I like to share the instructions to all which came along with the unlock/MEP code hoping that this might help someone to unlock their phone.

Instructions for unlocking Blackberry Bold 9700

1. Remove the SIM card

2. Power on the phone

3. Turn off all Wireless Connections

4. Go to Settings.

5. Go to Options.

6. Go to Advanced Options.

7. Go to SIM card.

8. Type the letters mepd (you will not see text appear on screen while typing).

9. Now type mep2

10. It will say "Enter Network MEP Code".

11. Type in the unlock code ( 8 or 16 digits ), press in the trackball to confirm.

12. If there is more than one code provided, type each one until the phone says 'Code Accepted'.

13. Restart the phone (and re-enter SIM).

14. Turn your Wireless Connections on again.

I just received an unlock code FREE at freemyblackberry.com - I have never advertised anyone's site before, but it was free and in my email within 12 hours - pretty sweet!

Is a Blackberry 6, a device model I've never heard of, or is this a reference to OS 6? Since my BB 8330 Curve has been stuck at 4.0.175 with no updates available for nearly over a year & a half now; which models actually do use OS 6? Does "unlocking" only apply to certain BB models? There seem to be many references to SIM cards, but my Curve 8330 has no SIM card. Do you know which BB models with QWERTY keyboards actually do have SIM cards so they can be unlocked, or can you direct me to a link with a list of them? Thanks

I have unlocked my att 9800 torch and put in the verizon sim from my other storm and nothing happened what procedure do I need to do to get it operational.. Thanks for the help