It would seem loads of existing VM customers may be entirely unaware that they have EE locked phones which the new VM SIM will not work in, even if just as a replacement for an existing working VM SIM.
The EE offices you need to call to get the phone unlocked (for which there is a fee in many cases) would appear to be closed due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The EE online form is only for existing EE customers.
0800 956 6000
I can personally confirm that I have dropped an ASDA sim into an affected phone and the ASDA SIM worked, as apparently has a similarly afflicted soon to be ex VM customer down the thread.
Actual EE sims will also almost certainly work.
Plusnet sims will also likely work, although from personal experience I would never recommend a move to Plusnet and can't personally confirm it has worked in these circumstances.
Thanks for the info. Going to let my wife have this one if I can get it going! I've just purchased a new S9 . This is unlocked so would the sim that's causing the problem work ok in it? I wouldn't want this one locking up as well!
It would seem VM are phasing the EE capable sims out. The 2 letters I have seen with the people who have contacted me seem to say quite clearly that the new (VM/unlocked phone required ) sim must be activated within 30 days to avoid losing service.
Now I don't know whether this is a marketing threat 'o' gram to try to force you to move onto the new sim but we can only assume they mean what they say (whatever the cost to the customer) and that they will start disabling the older sims in 30 days as they state.
But even if not, you will be back in the same boat when VM move from EE to vodaphone which I assume this is in preparation for.