Can I Transfer a Sprint Phone to Verizon’s Network?

Kyle Lemmon
Managing Editor
Read More
Published on August 15, 2018
2 min read

Switching your old Sprint device to Verizon’s network can be a total cakewalk—if the phone is unlocked.

Can I bring my Sprint phone to Verizon?

Sprint and Verizon operate under the same radio network, making devices between the two compatible. It just depends on if Verizon is willing to accept your device and if the phone is unlocked.

Keep in mind, all cell phone networks want your business, so it’s more common than not that Verizon would accept a phone (See table below with phones that work on Verizon).

What does sharing the same radio network mean?

Sprint and Verizon operate under the CDMA network, while AT&T and T-Mobile fall under the GSM network. Because of this, it’s infinitely easier to switch from Sprint to Verizon than switching from Sprint to T-Mobile or AT&T.

Here’s the SparkNotes version of what that means: GSM stands for “global system for mobiles,” while CDMA stands for “code division multiple access.” Both acronyms describe the two biggest radio networks used in phones.

Does a phone need to be "unlocked" even though Sprint and Verizon use the same CDMA network?

Yes, because if you want to flash your phone, a.k.a. reprogram it to a new carrier, it needs to be both compatible with Verizon’s network and unlocked in order for Verizon to access it.

Before making the switch, you’ll want to make sure your Sprint account is in good standing too. And be sure to stay on top of any fees associated with switching (such as an early termination fee from Sprint).

How do I unlock my Sprint phone?

In order to unlock your Sprint phone, it needs to have been active on the Sprint network for at least 50 days. Also, you need to fully pay off the device before you’re eligible to switch.

When you’re ready to unlock your phone, contact Sprint and provide the following information:

  • Your Sprint account number and password
  • The last 4 digits of your Social Security number
  • Your cell phone’s ID number (usually the MEID or IMEI number)
How to find the MEID or IMEI number?
Info Box

IMEI (international mobile equipment identity) and MEID (mobile equipment identifier) numbers are 14-15 digit universal numbers that you can find on the back of your cellphone’s battery or by dialing *#06#.

Which Sprint cell phones work on Verizon's network?

Except for the iPhone 5, almost all of Sprint’s newer devices can be unlocked and are compatible with Verizon. Again, it’s just up to Verizon to accept it.

To make sure your phone isn’t one of the bad apples (pun intended), check out Verizon’s page on bringing your own device.

List of phones that work on Verizon's network
iPhones
Android

iPhone 5c

Samsung Galaxy S8 / S8+

iPhone 5s

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

iPhone 6 / 6 Plus

Samsung Galaxy S9 / S9+

iPhone 6s / 6s Plus

LG G5

iPhone SE

LG G6 / G6+

iPhone 7 / 7 Plus

LG V30 / V30+

iPhone 8 / 8 Plus

iPhone X

Will Verizon pay off your Sprint phone?

Unfortunately, no. As we mentioned above, your Sprint phone needs to be paid off in full before you can make the switch from Sprint to Verizon.

Remember, as long as you’ve done your part on Sprint’s end to be eligible to switch carriers and you have an unlocked phone that Verizon accepts, you’re good to go!

Kyle Lemmon
Written by
Kyle Lemmon
Kyle has an unquenchable curiosity for how technology works. For the better part of a decade, he’s tested, torn apart, and talked about the lastest home security, internet, and TV-related tech. When he’s not digging in with the Reviews team, Kyle serves as Craig's underling a panelist on The Legendarium Podcast where he reviews science fiction and fantasy literature.

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  • Deb Zampieri Fisher

    I purchased an unlocked LG Stylo 5 that was originally on the Sprint network. Verizon said it is not compatible with Verizon and they have not been able to activate it on the Verizon network. This is very disappointing!

  • Deb Zampieri Fisher

    I purchased a LG Stylo 5 on ebay which advertised it was unlocked and capable to be added to Verizon. Verizon is saying it is not compatible to the Verizon network because it is a Sprint model number. They did try to add it but wouldn’t work. Very disappointed that I have to return it.