You might ask, “can Apple unlock my iPhone?” because you want the freedom to take your phone to any provider or network. When you buy a smartphone directly from a specific provider, the provider will lock that phone to its own network. You can’t take a Verizon phone to AT&T or take a Cricket phone to T-Mobile and expect it to work. Though Apple released the iPhone in several different models over the years, most providers lock those phones to their own networks. Instead of asking, “can Apple unlock my iPhone?,” you might search for an unlocked phone online.

When Apple first announced the iPhone, only AT&T had the rights to sell that phone. Companies began turning up that would jailbreak a phone, which let it work on other networks. Apple will not unlock your iPhone, and unlocking the phone may actually void your warranty. Buying an unlocked phone online is a far better choice.

While you cannot take your current iPhone to Apple and request that the manufacturer unlock it for you, you can buy unlocked phones online. Both the iPhone 5 and iPhone c come unlocked. These phones are usually available for less online than you would pay at a local store too. The iPhone 5 c is a newer model that comes with a larger screen, a better camera and a touchscreen that is a little more sensitive than the screen on older models.

Instead of asking, “can Apple unlock my iPhone?,” you might ask about other models that are available unlocked. The Advance 4.0 is an unlocked phone from BLU that has a large amount of memory and a sleek design that looks like an iPhone. The Moto 2 from Motorola also mimics the look of the iPhone and comes with some of the same great features but costs much less.

With an unlocked phone, you can go to almost any provider and get service. While you may find that Apple cannot or will not unlock your iPhone, you can get an unlocked model or a similar phone online.