Unlocked iPhone 4 Officially Available in US

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True to the rumors, Apple began selling unlocked GSM-based iPhones in the United States on Tuesday. The change means customers can buy an iPhone without an AT&T service contract, and they can use their combination iPod and smartphone on other GSM-compatible networks such as T-Mobile.

iPhone 4, now unlocked in the U.S.iPhone 4 gets carrier-free option in U.S.

Unlocked iPhones have been officially available in other countries for some time. In the U.S., however, iPhone users had to resort to hacking their phones if they wanted to move from AT&T or buy SIM cards for use in other countries.

Apple’s Web site stated:

If you don’t want a multiyear service contract or if you prefer to use a local carrier when traveling abroad, the unlocked iPhone 4 is the best choice. It arrives without a micro-SIM card, so you’ll need an active micro-SIM card from any supported GSM carrier worldwide.

Buying an unlocked iPhone 4 may give customers the freedom to choose their cell service provider, but it also comes with some drawbacks. T-Mobile’s data network, for example, doesn’t use the same 3G frequencies the iPhone supports, so users will be limited to EDGE speeds. Users will also give up Visual Voicemail features when using a carrier other than AT&T.

The unlocked iPhone 4 costs more than AT&T-bound models since it is sold without carrier subsidies. Customers that want to pay less for their iPhone can still buy locked models that are tied to AT&T.

The unlocked iPhone 4 is available in black or white, and is priced at US$649 for the 16GB model, or $749 for the 32GB version.

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5 Comments Leave Your Own

b9bot

Not with AT&T, they say they don’t know how, LOL!!!!
What a bunch of B.S.!!!!!

vpndev

I wonder if AT&T stores will be carrying contract-free ones too ?

webjprgm

Do you think current AT&T iPhone 4 owners will be able to pay the difference to unlock theirs?

I know some people who wait to be in the UK to buy new iPhone versions, so it can be unlocked and therefore work when traveling abroad.  This will be great for those kinds of people.

vpndev

There should not be a payment needed unless you want to cancel your contract. Then the early-termination-fee (ETF) applies, and I think it’s $350.

I don’t want to cancel mine but I would like my iPhone unlocked to use in Europe this Fall. I want to have a local number there so that European friends can call me with a local call, not an international call to the U.S. number.

computerbandgeek

Just to weigh in on the whole “you should be able to unlock your phone after the 2-year contract is up” discussion:

There’s an Apple KB article (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1937) with a table that shows which carriers allow unlocking after the 2-years is up. AT$T is not one of those, which means even after your 2 years is up, AT$T will NOT unlock your phone, even though you own it fully.

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