Alfred is a long-time teacher and computer enthusiast who works with and troubleshoots a wide range of computing devices.
The cheapest way to unlock and activate the iPhone is through the use of hardware-based sim interposers like R-sim, x-sim, Gevey sim, GPP and Heicard.
The old Ultrasn0w software hack became obsolete after the iPhone 4S and above. The IMEI unlock is always the best option is costly in many places.
Depending on the brand manufacturer, you can use overlay sim interposer to unlock both jailbroken or non-jailbroken iPhones.
However, this exploit does not provide permanent unlock solution. This means the phone will lose its unlock status once the interposer is removed or the iPhone firmware is upgraded to a version unsupported by the interposer hardware.
The good news is that the iPhone warrant remains valid as long as it is not jailbroken.
Those that choose to unlock their iPhones using this method do so because these chips come cheap and are available almost everywhere. A typical sim card interposer goes for less than $20 dollars in most retail and online stores.
How Sim Interposers Work
It is a miniature chip(s) embedded within a thin plastic circuit board which usually mimics the shape of a sim card.
It is attached beneath the new sim card and together, they are placed onto the iPhone sim tray.
Once inside the iPhone, the interposer sits between the card and card reader. (See image below)
This hardware now becomes the go-between the carrier sim and iPhone card reader and basically tells the iPhone how to read network signals!
The chip hoodwinks the handset into thinking it is unlocked and thus permitting voice and data signals to take place.
Popular Sim Interposer Devices in the Market
There is quite a handful of this on the market today and new models and versions are released regularly.
Depending on iPhone model and IOS firmware, you should purchase an interposer that best suits your unlock requirements. You must research and visit a host of their websites and portals before forking out your cash.
Or, you can go through the info illustrated below in order to make informed choices.
For example, you should go for an interposer that supports GSM, CDMA and other popular cellular related features. A few of them ship without support for 3G and 4G connectivity and messaging capabilities and may require jailbreaking and installation of third-party patches.
The following are popular proprietary sim card interposers:
- Gevey sim
- GPP sim
- R-Sim mini
From the list above, R-Sim interposers, in particular, seem to have captured the most market.They are made by a Chines company called Shenzhen RGKNSE Technology Development Co.
RGKNSE has a handful of popular interposers stretching back from R-Sim 5 to the current 10 and supports iPhone unlock starting with 4S right up to 7+.
Popular R-Sim versions are named in a variety of tastes, and this is due to individual features the various interposers can help activate:
• R-Sim 7, 7+
• R-Sim 8, 8+, 8GOLD
• R-Sim 9, 9+, 9PRO, 9GOLD
• R-Sim 10, 10+, 10GOLD
Recommended Sim Interposers for Different iPhone Models and Firmware
Whereas you can ignore interposer limitations by installing an old one in an iPhone running higher IOS firmware version that is recommended, it is always wise to stick to IOS guidelines printed on the package.
This way you avoid missing out on features and you will proceed stress-free.
Below are various interposers and respective iPhones they support:
- R-Sim 7
4S and 5 running IOS 6 and 7.
- R-Sim 8
4S and 5 running IOS 7.
- R-Sim 9
4S, 5, 5C and 5S running IOS 7 and 8.
4S, 5, 5C, 5S, 6, 6+, 6S, 6S+, SE and running IOS 7, 8, 9.
- R-Sim Air
4S, 5, 5C, 5S running iOS 6, 7 on Sprint+N.
- Gevey Ultra S
S, 5, 5S running IOS 5 to 9.3.2
- Gevey Ultra
4 up to IOS 5.1.1
- Gevey US
5S, 6, 6S, SE running IOS 6 to iOS 9.
- New Gevey
4S, 5, 5C, 5S, 6, 6+, 6S, 6S+ running IOS 7, 8, 9.
- X-Sim Evo Ultra
S, 5, 5C, 5, 5S, 6, 6+, SE, 6S, 6S+ running IOS 6, 7, 8, 9.
- Heicard SIM
4S, 5, 5C, 5S, 6, 6+ running IOS 5, 6,7, 8.
R-Sim Mini Upgrade!
In case you want to maintain one sim card interposer for a longer period, you may want to shop for the upgradable interposer and its reader.
RGKNSE makes R-Sim mini which can be upgraded even at home, using a dongle updater.
You simply download and upgrade its firmware to the latest one everytime newer patches are available, or when you have upgraded to the latest firmware.
Recommended Sim Interposer/iPhone Combinations
R sim 10+
R SIM 10
X Sim Evo
R Sim 9 Pro
Gevey Ultra S
Most interposer packages usually contain:
- R-SIM PRO Interposer card
- Micro sim adaptor tray for older iPhones
- Tray Clip
Procedures to Unlock iPhone using R-Sim
There are no strict procedures to be followed because it all depends on iPhone and R-Sim model. But overall, the steps are almost the same.
You will be guided on what to tap and as long as you know the carrier network where you purchased the iPhone, you should accomplish the procedure easily.
You can always try again and again until you get it right.
- Insert the r-sim interposer + sim card + adapter tray into the iPhone.
- The interposer setting menu should automatically pop up and let you configure it.
- Otherwise, go to Settings>Phone>Sim Applications to get started.
- To configure, tap Carrier select or similar title.
- From the menu that pops up, select the carrier to which the iPhone is locked.
- If not listed manually enter the IMSI code.
- To do this, tap input IMSI to continue.
- Next select your iPhone model.
- Select carrier mode from the list that pops up. (i.e. 3G/4G)
- You will be prompted to restart iPhone.
- Click Accept to restart in order to complete unlock and activation process.
Sometimes, activation of Sprint/Verizon/Japan AU may hit a snag especially with older interposers.
As a result:
- iPhone may not show signal
- Text messaging may have issues
To bypass this, you will have to install appropriate auxiliary patches for a fee or free. This RPatch file is provided by the manufacture of the interposer.
Troubleshooting R-Sim Issues
Following the installation of a new interposer, some carrier related features may fail to work in one or other IOS firmware depending. To be on the safe side, you may want to purchase a newer interposer if you own a new iPhone model and OS firmware.
Also, pay attention to the support details printed on the package for a compatible sim card version and firmware versions.
Consider the following options:
- Sim card may not be compatible (64k versus 128k)
- Sim card may be damaged
- OS firmware files may be corrupted
- IOS firmware may not be compatible
- Interposer may be defective
- Turn Airplane On or Off
- Eject and then insert sim tray
- Install a patch
- Jailbreak your iPhone
- Restore iPhone when everything fails
Risks of Using Overlay Sim Interposers
Use of interposers can expose your iPhone to the following:
- Damage your sim card reader. By attaching additional width to the sim card and tray, you are adding additional burden and pressure onto sim reader which can fail as a result.
- Suspect developers may bundle additional codes to the sim interposers for sinister purposes. Sim interposers may facilitate the man in the middle attack when hackers choose to attach exploitative codes. This is particularly so in upgradable mini sim interposers.
© 2016 Alfred Amuno
OSBERT JOEL C from CHENNAI on September 12, 2017: