Friday, 4 July 2014

Are "Unlock bootloader" and "SIM Network Unlock" the same thing?

We recently got a question from one of our customer that we think will be beneficial to many people and we would like to share it with all our visitors. The question is:

I've always thought that if my cell phone is unlocked this means that it will work with any carrier. If the device bootloader is unlocked, then does this mean that my phone will automatically work with a different carrier? So, does unlocked device and unlocked bootloader mean the same thing?

The answer to the question is No, they're completely unrelated things. As the question says, an unlocked device means that it's not locked to any particular carrier, therefore you can use a different SIM card from almost any GSM network around the world and it will work. On the other hand, a locked cell phone will not allow you to use any SIM card except for the one the phone is locked to.

The bootloader is the first piece of software that runs when you turn the phone on: it's in charge of loading the core Android code, so that Android can load itself and run. A locked bootloader uses digital signatures to verify the Android code it's loading, which means it will only boot a ROM (firmware image) that's signed by the device manufacturer. In contrast, an unlocked bootloader will load any ROM. Unlocking a locked bootloader will wipe the device.

So to be super clear: bootloader-unlocking does NOT network unlock a device. It also voids the warranty and stops any DRM'ed video, music and app from playing and working. Needless to say, you should not attempt to unlock the bootloader unless you know what you are doing.

If you now wish to SIM network Unlock your phone and use other SIM cards go to

Still have some questions? Please leave your comment below and we will come back to you within 24 hrs.