How to Activate a Sprint Phone

Three Methods:Activating a New Phone with New ServiceActivating a Replacement PhoneActivating a New SIM Card

If you've purchased a new phone and started new service with Sprint, your new phone will be automatically activated when you power it on for the firs time. If you got a replacement phone for an existing line, you can activate your new phone online, or you can visit a Sprint shop. For replacement SIMs, you'll need to insert the new SIM and then call Sprint.

Method 1
Activating a New Phone with New Service

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    Turn the device on. If you've purchased a new phone from Sprint and started a new cellular plan, your phone will activate itself when you start it up for the first time. This method is a little different for each phone, but the general process is the same.
    • If you are an existing Sprint customer and you're upgrading one of your existing lines to a new phone, see the next section.
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    Proceed with the initial setup process. Your new phone will take you through an initial setup. During this, you'll be asked to select your language, create and sign in with accounts (Apple ID for iPhone, Google accounts for Android), and set up other phone services.
    • Your phone should automatically activate after connecting to a wireless network or detecting cellular signal. Make sure you're within cellular range in the Sprint network.
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    Test your activation. Your phone should have activated automatically during the setup process. If you can see cellular signal bars at the top of your screen, your phone has been activated and you can start making and receiving calls.
    • It may take a few minutes for your activation to take effect.

Method 2
Activating a Replacement Phone

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    Back up your data on your old phone. Make sure that all of the data on your old phone is safely backed up before activating your new one. This includes photos, contacts, important text messages, and voicemails.
    • Sync your contacts to Google or iCloud (depending on your phone's manufacturer). This will allow you to easily retrieve them when you sign in with that account on your new device.
    • Copy important text messages into a new document and then save that document on your computer. Old text messages will generally not appear on your new device. Listen to your voicemails and write down details for important ones, as you won't be able to retrieve them on your new phone.
    • Connect your old phone to a computer to easily backup your photos and videos. Your computer should automatically prompt you to transfer media when you connect. See Send Pictures from Your Cell Phone to Your Computer for more details on transferring photos.
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    Gather your replacement phone packaging. You may need to enter your new device's serial or IMEI number during the activation process. You'll be able to find these printed on the new device's packaging.
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    Visit the My Sprint website. You'll be activating your phone using the My Sprint website. Visit and log in with your My Sprint account. If you don't have an account, you can create one by entering your Sprint phone number and verifying your identity.
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    Find the "Devices" section of the "My Account" page. This will display all of the phones and lines on your account.
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    Click the "Manage this device" menu next to the line you want to change phones for. Make sure the line you select is the one that you want to activate for your new phone.
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    Select "Activate a new phone." This will begin the new phone activation process for that line.
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    Enter the information for your new device. Depending on the device you're activating, you may need to enter the serial number or IMEI for your new device. You can find these on the new phone's packaging.
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    Click "Continue" and then "Activate." This will activate your new phone and deactivate the old one on that line.
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    Confirm that your new device is activated. Activation may take a few minutes to complete. Once the activation is successful, you can setup and start using your replacement device.
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    Contact Sprint if activation fails. If you can't get your new phone activated online, you'll need to contact Sprint. You can take your phone into a Sprint store and have a support technician activate it for you, or you can call 1-888-211-4727.[1]

Method 3
Activating a New SIM Card

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    Note of your SIM serial number, device serial number, and IMEI. You can find these numbers printed on the SIM, on the back of the phone, and on the phone's packaging.
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    Insert the new SIM card in the phone. The phone will need to be compatible with Sprint SIM cards, and unlocked if it was previously used with another carrier. Not all unlocked devices are compatible with Sprint SIM cards.
    • Sprint requires a specialized SIM for each different device that supports a SIM card. Make sure that you get your replacement SIM directly from Sprint so that you get the correct one.
    • SIM cards are typically inserted into a tray along the side of the phone, or under the battery if the battery is removable.
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    Dial *2 to connect to Sprint customer service. You'll be taken through an automated menu until you are able to talk with a live support agent.
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    Ask to have your SIM activated. As long as your device is eligible and unlocked, the Sprint representative should be able to activate your SIM.
    • Sprint will only activate SIM cards for the following non-Sprint devices: iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 5s (Verizon only), iPhone 5c (Verizon only), Motorola X Pure Edition (16, 32 & 64 GB – all colors), Nexus 6 (32 & 64 GB – black and white), Nexus 5 (16 & 32 GB – black, white and red), Nexus 5X (all versions), Nexus 6P (all versions), HTC One A9 (Sprint version only), iPad Air 2, iPad Air (Verizon only), iPad mini 4, iPad mini 3, iPad mini 2 (Verizon only) and iPad Pro.[2]
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    Restart your phone. After the agent activates your SIM, power down your phone and restart it after a few minutes. You should see that it is activated.

Article Info

Categories: Cell Phones