How to Unlock a CDMA U.S. Cellular Phone

By Chanel Adams

Your cell phone has a Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) lock that prevents you from accessing other networks. Unlike Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) phones that use a Subscriber Identification Memory (SIM) card, you will need unlocking software to unlock your U.S. Cellular cell phone. First, you need to obtain an International Mobile Equipment Identification (IMEI) number from your phone. This code provides the software information about your phone, so you can get the right unlock code.

Dial *#06# on your phone's keypad. Press the "OK" button. Write down the 15- or 17-digit IMEI number.

Go online to locate and research unlocking software. Examples include CDMA Software, Unlock to Talk and Cell Corner.

Purchase the software with a debit card, credit card or PayPal account. As of 2010, CDMA Software costs between $199 and $420, Unlock to Talk costs $389 and Cell Corner costs between $20 and $35. Download the software to your desktop and follow installation instructions. Restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

Attach one end of the data cable to your cell phone. Connect the other end to an available USB port on your computer.

Wait for the software to detect your cell phone. Enter the IMEI number, when prompted.

Enter the unlock code, as provided by the software. Press the "OK" button. Wait for notification that you have unlocked your cell phone.