Forgot PIN and PUK: Unlock SIM card on iPhone, iPad & Android smartphone

If you have forgotten your PIN, entered it incorrectly several times or if you need your PUK that cannot be found to unlock the SIM card, it can be frustrating. But even if you can no longer find the sequence of numbers, you don't have to despair. There are different options for unlocking the SIM card on iPhone, iPad and Android devices; also and especially without the identification numbers.

Unlocking the SIM card on iPhone, iPad and Android device is usually possible via the online customer center. Even without a PIN and PUK. The hotline can also help, but sometimes only for a fee.
Unlocking the SIM card on iPhone, iPad and Android device is usually possible via the online customer center. Even without a PIN and PUK. The hotline can also help, but sometimes only for a fee.

Unlock SIM card without PIN and PUK

If you switch on your smartphone or tablet, the operating system has some useful functions even without dialing into the cellular network; the camera or internet via WLAN, for example. However, the iPhone in particular is also made for communication via cellular networks - you have one for that SIM card in use, but their PIN has been forgotten, not at hand or has been lost for good, then only the PUK will help you (after entering the PIN incorrectly three times). If that is also missing, then you need the support of your network operator; So Telekom, Vodafone or Telefónica (o2 & E-Plus).


If you are a Telekom customer, you can use the online customer center, among other things. Simply click / tap on the corresponding SIM / the associated tariff, and then in the "SIM cards" line on "Settings". Your SIM card settings will now appear, where the first point is directly “Show PIN and PUK”. Select this point and you can unlock your SIM card.

If you do not have access to the Internet, you can also dial the customer service hotline 0800-3302202 or the abbreviated dialing 2202 from your mobile phone and query your unlocking number with your mobile phone number, card number and personal customer password. The same works in the Telekom shop. Please note, however, that the publication of the PUK through support is not free.

Matching link: Questions and answers from the network operator


Vodafone offers a similarly simple procedure via the Internet: To do this, simply log into the “MeinVodafone” area online and check the “SIM card” area in the “Devices” area. The PUK or the SuperPIN can then be read out there. Vodafone also offers you help and support via the relevant channels on Facebook and Twitter. In addition, you can - quite old-fashioned - of course use a hotline. Simply dial 0800-1721212 (landline and other networks), 0172-2290229 or the speed dial 1212 (both Vodafone network).

Matching link: All information on the provider page

Telefónica (o2 / E-Plus)

If you use the o2 network, you can also take the necessary steps online to unlock the SIM card. To do this, log in to the “My o2” customer area and check the “Mobile radio contract” area. You will then find the PIN and PUK for activating the SIM card in the "Manage SIM card" area. Alternatively, you can find support from support under the numbers 01804-055282 and 0176-88855282. There is also a chat on the o2 website that can guide you through the necessary steps.

Matching link: Thread in the o2 help forum

iPhone and iPad: Open the input field again

If you want to unlock the SIM card and the only problem is that you have tapped the corresponding input field under iOS (or on the Android smartphone), then there are three solutions. Because if you still know the PIN number, you just have to display the input field again and then enter the code. And this is how it works:

  1. Switch off the mobile phone / tablet once and then switch it on again; as usual, the PIN number of the SIM card is requested
  2. Activate and deactivate airplane mode; PIN is requested due to the new network dial-in
  3. Dial any number (except emergency) and then confirm the message "Unlock blocked SIM card?"

Remove (leave) SIM lock

The so-called “SIM lock”, ie the setting of a smartphone such as iPhone or Samsung Galaxy S model to a specific SIM card or to a specific network operator, is no longer quite as common, but still possible in isolated cases. Usually this forced connection only exists in the first year or at most during the minimum contract term of a bundle (24 months). Any SIM card can then be used with the smartphone. If this should be the case beforehand, you can have the provider remove the SIM lock; but that is almost always only possible for money.

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6 Responses to “Forgot PIN and PUK: unlock SIM card on iPhone, iPad & Android smartphone”

  1. Hans Juergen Wilhelm

    Great this information, thanks for this post.
    I saved that as a PDF right away.
    I have already subscribed to your newsletter.

  2. My daughter entered the SIM incorrectly three times. She never knew who was right, but she wanted to move on quickly to play her games. We don't have a SIM card for the iPad 2 at all, because we go in for WiFi and only use it at home.

    Now the iPad 2 requests the PUK. Never had. Maybe when I bought it 8 years ago. Of course I can't find that anymore.

    How can I unlock that thing so my daughter can play her games again? Or can anyone somehow use it in the household again?

    I would be very grateful for quick help during the Corona vacation.

    Best Regards,

    1. Hello Marcin! You can easily take the SIM out of the iPad with a paper clip. Then he will no longer ask you for a SIM code. You received the PUK with the SIM card at the very beginning. Without this, you will no longer be able to activate the SIM card. But that is not necessary for the operation of the iPad. Simply pull out the SIM card with a paper clip and then restart ... then your daughter can play again. : D

  3. Hello Sir Apfelot,

    many many thanks. The mood is saved again and the school can remain stolen.
    A young heart is very happy. And I've learned something, at least that old SIM cards are chucked after contracts.

    Thank you!

    And all the best ...


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