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Please help... What's an ESN on iphone

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Bassistcali, Mar 21, 2014.


  1. Bassistcali

    Bassistcali

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2013
    I'm looking for a backup phone and am looking at iPhone 3gs. I read what an ESN is but don't Iphones take Sim card? How could I have a bad or clean ESN, and does it even have one?
     
  2. GrumpiusMaximus

    GrumpiusMaximus I've Seen Things You People Wouldn't Believe Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2013
    Location:
    Kent, United Kingdom
    An ESN is an identifying number used with CDMA phones. That is, phones without SIM cards. Only GSM phones have SIM cards - and they use an IMEI number as the equivalent.

    Not an ideal backup phone. It'll only work on Sprint and Verizon and you can't simply swap a SIM in to change the number.
     
  3. Bassistcali

    Bassistcali

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2013
    Can I jailbreak it and unlock it though cydia?
     
  4. GrumpiusMaximus

    GrumpiusMaximus I've Seen Things You People Wouldn't Believe Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2013
    Location:
    Kent, United Kingdom
    It's probably possible. Google it. I've never had to unlock a CDMA phone.

    If you're on one of the non-CDMA networks with your other phone though, there's no point in trying. The CDMA hardware won't work with GSM infrastructure.
     
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  6. Bassistcali

    Bassistcali

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2013
    I think I get it but why do the phones like one is a Verizon iPhone 4, it says bad ESN but it has a Sim card slot so wouldn't that make it gsm?
     
  7. 1958Bassman

    1958Bassman

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2007
    ESN is the acronym for Electronic Serial Number and it's part of the hardware. It's like the cell phone equivalent of a MAC address on a network card/device- it's unique and isn't supposed to be cloned, although it can be. It's how the cell phone system finds a phone- the call comes in, the system "asks" around for that ESN and if it's active, it causes the phone to raise its hand and be recognized. Once this happens, there's an electronic "hand shake" and the call can go through.

    Most phones use a SIM card but some are harder to access than others.
     

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