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Why is iPhone 4 Sim Unlock with SAM not Working and What are Alternative Unlock Exploits?

Updated on June 27, 2016
amuno profile image

Alfred is a long-time teacher and computer enthusiast who works with and troubleshoots a wide range of computing devices.

SAM Unlock

SAM for iPhone 4 unlock is no more.

Just days after the hugely popular SAM iPhone unlock was unveiled to the unlock and jailbreak community, the mighty Apple Inc finally came up with solutions to block the unlock exploits. This simply meant that anyone that had not yet used SAM exploit by 27th April of 2012 would not succeed if they tried. The window period which lasted less than a week had closed!

SAM (Subscriber Artificial Model (RIP)) was a creation of Loktar Sun, whose exploits helped remind Apple that any system is never perfect, and that hacker battles will always persist. SAM exploited loopholes in Apple activation servers and somehow, got basebands (particularly 04.12.01 and 04.11.08) to activate the recipient iPhone.

SAM worked by fooling the servers to accept the manipulated ICCID details of the original sim into the new sim card: the original card here meaning the card supplied by Apple carrier partners like AT&T or Verizon, in the US.

For this exploit to work, the original sim had to be inserted into the iPhone first. However, just in-case the user had misplaced the original sim, an alternative exploit method helped identify and unlock the iPhone.

As of 27th April 2012 however, Apple began patching all server holes and as of now any new exploits via SAM cannot unlock the iPhone. This was also confirmed by a popular jailbreaker, MuscleNerd, via Twitter. Apparently no new unlocks are being reported from anywhere.

Locked with Phone 4 04.12.1 and 04.11.08?

Of course this comes as a shock to many who still carried with them locked iPhones. Some were probably still waiting to see how the unlock faired before digging in. Some upgraded their IOS and basebands, and were finding it hard to unlock, and were were stopped by Apple server patches!

The jailbreak community is still stuck with the 04.11.08 baseband nightmare and the thought of 04.12.01 baseband is certainly maddening.

If you are one of those that missed the SAM wave, take heart. The jailbreak community is working around the clock and it is only a matter of time before alternative unlocks will be available.

Unlock iPhone 4 using Gevey sim and IMEI

However, those that are ready to part with some little cash, the now working unlock solution can be achieved via IMEI unlock.

Read more about IMEI unlock HERE!

Gevey Sim iPhone unlock!

You may also be aware that during the SAM fever, another unlock by Gevey Sim maker Applenberry, was floated around the internet. This unlock required that you purchased and used Gevey Ultra 5.1 for GSM iPhone 4 from ApplenBerry.

The disappointing part was that the idea behind this unlock was reportedly stolen from Loktar Sun.

When darkness hovered over the original SAM unlock on the 27th, the Gevey unlock was also caught in the wave and could therefore not work. ApplenBerry had to recall their non-functional sim card trays.

ApplenBerry sims recalled.

Protect your SAM unlock

Those who successfully unlocked their iPhones using SAM, need not to sit back and relax. Just like many have lost their unlock status in previous unlocks, you too may face the lock if you do not protect your unlock status.

This happens incase your iPhone malfunctions or you accidentally download an update or any patch from Apple. You need to be for-armed so that you do not ruin your unlock.

To safely backup your unlock status, and save SAM, follow the guidelines in the links below to save your unlock ticket:

Backup your activation token with Cookie in Cydia.

Backup your activation ticket with Redsnow.

Restore SAM Ticket.

Does your iPhone still use SAM exploit?

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    • profile image

      Cronik 3 years ago

      and still waiting ,,,,, hahaha

    • amuno profile image

      Alfred Amuno 5 years ago from Kampala

      Hello Imran. It is indeed strange that you managed to unlock your iPhone using the old SAM exploit, but again failed to do it on a different iPhone.

      I suppose something in the first iPhone made it possible to unlock. I can imagine that the phone was already factory unlocked and you only did not know about it! (possible)

      Or may be it had been unlocked before, using SAM, and all you did was restore the saved tickets.

      Otherwise free unlock solutions do not seem to be available at the moment, until iPhone and Chronic development teams come up with some kind of solutions.

      If however your phone was bought in contract with an Apple partner and it is out of contract by now, you should be able to unlock it for free. This page ( lists all Apple partners and their unlock solutions. This means that yo should be having purhace documents!

    • profile image

      imran 5 years ago

      Amuno i know its strange but i just unlock my iphone 4 (5.1.1 bb 04.12.1) few days ago with the help of sam its working very good i have this problem today i have an other iphone 4 with same ver and bb but not able to unlock it with sam is there any other free way to unlock my phone?

    • amuno profile image

      Alfred Amuno 5 years ago from Kampala

      You are welcome Tan.

    • profile image

      Tan 5 years ago


    • amuno profile image

      Alfred Amuno 5 years ago from Kampala

      Hello Hiwa, the first two paragraphs of this article tries to explain your question.

    • profile image

      Hiwa Muhamed 5 years ago

      why sam did not working iPhone 4s 5.1.1

    • amuno profile image

      Alfred Amuno 5 years ago from Kampala

      Time is coming when the new basebands will be available. But for now stay calm and wait. Thanks Prerak.

    • profile image

      Prerak 5 years ago

      Thanks for inf. amuno

      I am despieately waiting for day when i ll be able to use my iphone 4 with any carrier , speciLly wihout all this gevey , 112 ... Really this messed Up such a good phOne

    • amuno profile image

      Alfred Amuno 5 years ago from Kampala

      Thanks Milo. Just hung on there coz finer solutions are just around the corner.

    • profile image

      Milo.K 5 years ago

      this is the first useful article i've found.. explained well and yes i will wait patiently

    • profile image

      Ale 5 years ago

      Any other alternatives?

    • profile image

      apple 5 years ago

      I want Steve Jobs back!!!