Does Walmart Sell Unlocked iPhones? (Yes But Read This First)


Does Walmart Sell Unlocked iPhones

Have you ever asked yourself if Walmart sells unlocked iPhones? this is one of the questions our readers ask a lot. Well, we´ve got you covered.

You would think that unlocked and locked terminology would be pretty cut and dry. Either a phone is locked to a carrier network or it’s not.

Apparently, that hasn’t been the case for quite some time, and it’s why there are many articles out there that will tell you that Walmart doesn’t sell unlocked iPhones. 

So, does Walmart sell unlocked iPhones? Yes, Walmart sells a “sort of” unlocked iPhone. That is, it locks to a carrier the moment you place a SIM card in it. However, Apple is a little clearer on the matter and their website explains that only Apple can sell you a truly unlocked iPhone. 

The thing is, when you purchase an unlocked iPhone from Walmart, the moment that you place a SIM card inside of it from a particular carrier, it is immediately locked to that carrier, unlike purchasing an iPhone directly from Apple, through which you can exchange SIM cards anytime you want.

Advantages of Unlocked iPhone from Walmart

One of the biggest advantages of purchasing an iPhone from Walmart is immediate and long-term savings. For one, purchasing just about anything through Walmart is cheaper than going with big-name electronics retailers, such as Best Buy.

If there’s one drawback to purchasing an iPhone through a third-party retailer, it’s the fact that you can’t get the latest and greatest. However, Walmart sells the same unlocked iPhone choices that all of the other third-party retailers do, so you can get up to an iPhone 11 Pro Max. 

Walmart also sells refurbished versions, which are iPhones that have been completely overhauled from their original condition and returned to their “like new” status. This often involves replacing the battery with a brand new one as well.

Read Also: Can I Return An Item To Walmart Without a Receipt? (Secrets To Know!)

So, it’s not like you will pick up an iPhone 11 that, for all intents and purposes, looks brand spanking new, only to discover that the battery within is two years old and previously belonged to a teenager.

Also, the additional advantages of purchasing iPhones from Walmart are fairly attractive.

  • Walmart sells a full range of “unlocked” iPhones
  • Walmart typically discounts iPhones
  • Walmart offers a 30-day, money-back guarantee
  • For used iPhones, you can purchase them through Walmart’s Affirm
  • One of the widest selection of refurbished and brand new, unlocked iPhones
  • Walmart is an online retailer as well

When we say “full range” we mean that Walmart sells all of the iPhones that it is able to, in terms of iPhones that fall under the “unlocked status.” However, if you want a brand new iPhone, such as the iPhone 13, and you want it unlocked, Apple is your only choice. 

In typical Walmart fashion, you’ll often find that their iPhones are discounted over other competitor offerings. This isn’t always the case, and the discount may be a chump change in some scenarios, but you’ll certainly find more discounted iPhones at Walmart than you will anywhere else. 

Even if you go with a used, refurbished iPhone, Walmart still honors its 30-day money-back guarantee. It’s not a warranty so much as it’s an assurance that if you don’t like the iPhone experience, you can bring it back within 30 days and get your money back. 

Affirm

Apple iPhones are expensive, even if it’s a few generations back and sold under a “refurbished” status. Fortunately, Walmart offers a financing program through Affirm, where you can take your iPhone home on day one and make payments on it as you go. 

The biggest advantage with Affirm is that purchasing unlocked phones of any kind is difficult to do without paying for the entire phone upfront. Most carriers rope you into a minimum of a two-year contract where you can pay for your iPhone over time and it’s not unlocked.

So you get the best of both worlds here, with an unlocked iPhone that you can pay off in monthly installments. Of course, the Affirm program is subject to credit approval, so not everyone will be able to take advantage of the offer. 

Walmart’s iPhone Selection

Walmart has one of the largest selections of iPhones out there when you combine their online and in-store offerings. If you’re not a frequent Walmart shopper, you might not have noticed that Walmart’s electronics section has been starting to resemble what you see when you walk into a cell phone retailer. 

Their selection is fairly broad and continuing to grow as well. What you can’t find on Walmart’s shelves, you’ll be able to grab online at Walmart.com. 

You can purchase your items on their online site and have them shipped to you, shipped to Walmart, or simply find out whether or not your local Walmart stocks the particular iPhone that you’re looking for. 

Read Also: What is Walmart’s Return Policy After Christmas? (Secrets Nobody Is Talking About)

Pros and Cons of Unlocked iPhones

The pros are pretty extensive, however, this is where things get a little murky because there is “unlocked” and then there is “truly unlocked.”

In terms of the kind of “unlocked,” you will find at Walmart, the iPhone will be unlocked until you insert your first carrier SIM card. 

ProsCons
Your iPhone is unlocked until you find a carrier need for a contract faster software updates bloatwareNot limited to carrier selectionYou have to pay in full Certain carrier bands may not be supported You have to be your own tech support outside of Apple

The advantages of purchasing an unlocked iPhone outweigh the disadvantages for a certainty, however, unless you qualify for Walmart’s Affirm financing, you will have to pay the full cost of the iPhone upfront. 

Also, you may not know what bands your iPhone supports. It’s a virtual certainty that it will support Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T, but despite the fact that those names are the biggest of the bunch, that doesn’t mean there aren’t smaller options you might prefer down the road. 

Final Thoughts

Walmart, like many other third-party retailers, sells unlocked iPhones in all of their retail locations as well as online. However, these aren’t truly unlocked iPhones in the sense that you can’t just jump from carrier to carrier if you wish.

If you want a great deal on a new, used, or refurbished Apple iPhone, you’ll certainly find what you’re looking for at Walmart


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References

https://clark.com/technology/is-my-phone-unlocked/

Lindsey

Lindsey graduated with an MBA in 2009. Since then, Lindsey has worked in the retail and consumer service industry as a manager, advisor, and marketer. Lindsey is also the head writer and Co-founder of Rvandplaya.com. Lindsey is based in Morgantown, West Virginia.

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