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Verizon's LG G2 is unlocked for AT&T and T-Mobile HSPA+

Verizon's latest devices all have SIM card slots, and more often than not they have the right frequencies to properly roam globally on GSM networks abroad. But stuff an AT&T or T-Mobile SIM into the Verizon LG G2 and you'll find that the device is also unlocked for use on domestic GSM networks.

We're not entirely sure why Verizon has started to have a change of heart on domestic unlocking of the GSM portions of its devices, but several high-profile phones from Big Red have had this functionality out of the box. Our HTC One from Verizon was unlocked as well, and in both cases it doesn't require much jumping through hoops either.

Simply pull out the SIM tray on the G2 (it doesn't even require a tool), and place either an AT&T or T-Mobile Micro SIM in the slot. You'll be prompted to reboot the phone, then on boot up you'll be notified that your phone will need to switch into "GSM/UMTS" mode to work. Head into Settings > Tethering & network > Mobile networks > System select and double check that the switch has been made.

Once you select your network you'll likely only see a SIM card with a "?" mark inside it and a roaming status indicator in the status bar. Stay in the network settings and tap into "Access point names" to add the proper APN for either AT&T or T-Mobile — in our testing the phone wasn't able to pull APNs off of the SIM nor did it have them pre-loaded.

Once you put in a working APN and reboot one more time, you'll be up and running with HSPA+ service (sorry, no LTE) from either carrier on your "Verizon" LG G2. At least on our unit the phone continues to show the "R" roaming indicator over the signal bars and a "?" SIM card indicator, but we can assure you that you're not actually roaming — a quick look in the "About phone" menu will reassure you.

Now we don't expect many people who have Verizon G2's to take advantage of this feature, but it's great to know that if you ever have a need to switch over to another carrier briefly (or hey, even permanently) you'll have the option without getting a new device.

Verizon LG G2 Forums

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

  • Thanks for this. I posted this question in the Maxx Developer Edition story from yesterday but was told it wouldn't work even though I'm pretty sure all the new devices from Verizon should work on at&t and T-Mobile. Posted via Android Central App
  • O sorry didnt see this, so it is confirmed not to work?
  • I asked someone in the MAXX forums, they had the non-developer edition and it worked fine. Apparently all VZW phones are coming sim-unlocked.
  • If only Sprint would allow this! Pretty surprising to hear a cell carrier allow something that benefits the consumer.
  • I remember reading somewhere they were forced to do this after gobbling up some of the spectrum in the most recent auction. Posted via Android Central App
  • Does anyone know if this feature works with moto x and the droid maxx?
  • Yes, I'm interested in knowing if this works an the Moto X s well. Posted via Android Central App
  • Thanks Verizon, for making it even easier for me to leave you in 3 months.
  • 2 phones I'm considering buying from Verizon to use on T-Mobile are the Droid Maxx Developer Edition for the ginormous battery in a fairly thin profile or the HTC One in blue from Best Buy because it doesn't seem T-Mobile will ever get that color.........the LG G2, I can't really see why I would when T-Mobile has it too. Posted via Android Central App
  • So I can pop my T-Mobile nexus 4 into my vzw G2 and I can use T-Mobile? What about if I buy a att prepaid Posted via Android Central App
  • AT&T Prepaid ROCKS!
  • You are going to have a tough time fitting the nexus into the g2. The back on the nexus shatters so maybe you can make it fit.... Posted via Android Central App
  • >>We're not entirely sure why Verizon has started to have a change of heart on domestic unlocking of the GSM portions of its devices<< They haven't changed hearts, they have to be entirely unlocked per FCC regulations. Same went for the iPhone 5 even.
  • All Verizon LTE phones have been SIM unlocked in the last year. It is required by the FCC.
  • I thought the FCC was only requiring that VZW allow any compatible device onto the LTE network. I didnt think it had anything to do with the CDMA radio on the device being unlocked. Do you know where one can find and read the actual rules stipulated by the 700 MHz auction?
  • If I remember correctly they are still forced to unlock them due to the 700mhz spectrum they purchased.... The same one that requires them to include tethering on tiered plans.
  • Do you have to be in a tmobile re-farmed area to get anything more then edge with them? I know that was the case in the past.
  • Hey, I have a quick question. I know this is also true for the VZW iPhone 5 and Galaxy S4, but could AndroidCentral please test this on the Verizon HTC ONE? I would really appreciate that. Thank you.
  • SO can i Buy a Verizon LG G2 and insert a Telus (Canada) SimCard ?
  • Yes. I used a droid DNA in February of last year up there. Worked fine on prepaid sim cards
  • It would be appropriate to list what GSM & HSPA bands are supported in an article like this.
  • Does anyone know if this actually works? I have a verizon LG G2 I wanna try on t-mobile $30 plan, but this phone doesn't have the 1700 band...
  • You can find cheaper brand new phones from here. @LOLOtech_cell.
  • How to acquire this option for HTC ONE HELP PLEASE!!!!
  • I believe it works vice versa too as long as the said GSM Phone is unlocked (not rooted). Generally, if an unlocked phone supports a band that's being utilized by your preferred carrier, then it should work. l can't guarantee that you will get the exact same speed as a carriers' specific locked hardware; but it'll be bearable.
  • that is not true. Verizon can not voice operate on GSM, only their 4g LTE network is accessed through GSM. you can use a verizon phone on gsm carrier , but it does not work vice versa. Only Verizon phones will work on verizon. You may confuse someone thinking they can by an "unlocked" gsm phone , and just pop in their verizon sim card and go. even if the frequency band is supported by verizon, it will not work. If you would like to test my claim, take your verizon phone with your verizon sim card inserted, and switch it from "global," to GSM only. You will find you get no service.
  • Thanks for posting. This was an informative article.
  • I have this device and it is working with T-mobiles LTE data service flawlessly. Forum member Acer73 over at the xda forums ported the stock rom for the LG G Flex over to any device. It too is flawless and much better than the G2 stock rom.
    Google; rayglobe flex port Please update original post as it almost made me buy the S4
  • Can you tell me if this device works in non-refarmed areas, as well? I can't determine if it will work anywhere outside of the 1900 HSPA areas. I have the T-Mobile G2 but am considering getting this to try the wireless charging. However, where I live there are very little refarmed areas. Thanks!