Can I Put My Access Wireless SIM Card In Another Phone?
Access Wireless is a government-funded Lifeline and Affordable Connectivity Program provider that offers free monthly services and devices to eligible low-income households. Qualifying customers can apply to receive an unlimited monthly plan with free talk, text, and data, plus a free smartphone.
In order to use the free monthly services, a customer must have a phone in which they can put the Access Wireless SIM card that holds all of the client’s information and connects the phone to the client’s account and free monthly services. When it comes to getting a phone, Access customers have three options:
- They can receive a Access Wireless free smartphone if they qualify for the Lifeline and ACP government assistance programs and apply for the right plan.
- They can purchase an Access phone at Access’s online shop at shop.accesswireless.com/shop/?_product_category=phones.
- Or they can bring their own device to Access and only get a free Access Wireless SIM card. In this case, they can put their Access SIM card into the other phone and use their services on that phone. However, not all phones are compatible with Access’s services. The device must be carrier-unlocked and compatible with Access’s network. To check your phone’s compatibility with Access and thus make sure your Access SIM card will work with another phone, visit accesswireless.com/shop-phones/eligible_phones, enter your phone’s IMEI in the provided box, and the system will let you know whether or not you can bring your phone to access.
In Order to Put My Access SIM Card Into Another Phone, Must I Unlock the SIM Card or the Other Phone?
So what to do if the phone you are planning to bring to Access is not compatible? Should you unlock the Access SIM card or the other provider’s phone?
Well, the SIM card cannot be unlocked. The SIM card is simply a smart card that contains all of the user’s account information and connects its services to the device. An Access Wireless SIM card will only ever be able to connect you to an Access account and service (if, of course, you have a phone with which you can use the card).
As such, in order to use your Access SIM card with another carrier’s phone, you must unlock the phone. Phones are the ones that are often locked to a specific network. However, most phones can easily be unlocked. You must simply contact the provider that sold you the phone and ask them to remotely unlock the device. If the company determines that the device is eligible to be unlocked, it will do so immediately. If the phone is also compatible with Access’s network (check at accesswireless.com/shop-phones/eligible_phones), you can then bring it to Access and use it with your Access SIM card.
Can I Put Another SIM Card Into My Access Wireless Phone?
Just like Access Wireless has a program that allows customers to bring their own devices to their services, many other wireless providers offer that option as well. Each provider has its own network and services and the phone you bring must be compatible with their services. You will probably be able to check your Access phone eligibility at the other provider’s website.
However, before you take your Access Wireless phone to another provider and put another company’s SIM card in it to use it with the other provider’s services, you will have to unlock your Access Wireless phone.
Access Wireless Unlock Eligibility
As mentioned before, it is never the SIM card that gets unlocked, it is always the phone. In order to use your Access SIM card with another phone, the other company’s phone must get unlocked. To use another provider’s SIM card (and thus services) with your Access phone, you must unlock your Access phone.
As a prepaid provider, Access will, upon request, unlock any Access mobile phone no later than a year after the initial activation of the phone if the customer is in full compliance with Access’s terms and conditions.
When a phone is eligible to be unlocked, Access will notify the customer or will automatically unlock the phone remotely at no additional charge. Such notice may be provided at an Access store, website, via text message, or via call.
The phone is eligible to be unlocked if:
- It was provided to you directly by Access Wireless.
- It is paid in full.
- It has been activated for at least a year.
- It is not reported as lost, stolen, blocked, or connected to fraudulent activity.
- The associated account is in good standing.
Access Wireless Unlock Process
If you wish to unlock your Access phone, you must contact Access’s customer support service. Ask to speak to a representative and request a phone unlock.
Within two days of receiving an unlocking request, Access will unlock an eligible phone (they will most likely be able to do so remotely and the process will only take a few minutes), initiate a request to the original equipment manufacturer to unlock an eligible phone, explain to the customer why the phone is ineligible for unlocking (if that is the case), or offer a reasonable explanation as to why Access Wireless needs more time to process the unlocking request.
What to Do After Unlocking Your Access Phone?
After you have successfully unlocked your Access phone, you are at liberty to take it to another provider. However, whether or not you will be able to use it with the other provider’s services depends on that company’s frequencies and technologies to provide wireless network access. If these technologies and services are compatible with your unlocked Access phone, you will be able to officially bring it to the other provider and use it with the other company’s SIM card.