What’s the Point to Unlocking the iPhone?

Wow, I just unlocked my iPhone. Now what am I going to do with it?

I keep seeing all of these headlines for “iPhone Unlocked” on every blog in the lands.

Who gives a damn?

Am I missing something here? What is the benefit of unlocking the iPhone? It only works on GSM networks and the last time I looked (U.S. only) there are two AT&T and T-Mobile. So what have you achieved? Well, sure, you could cancel your AT&T contract and move over to T-Mobile.

Here’s the catch: You still have to buy out of your AT&T contract ($175 early cancellation fee). You still have to pay for a new contract with T-Mobile. ($29 – $79 a month + Voice Plan)

So, exactly who have you rebels hurt by unlocking the iPhone?

Apple already got paid when you bought the phone.
AT&T got paid when you signed the contract.
You pay cancellation penalty to AT&T and they don’t have to provide the service.(Get money, don’t provide service, sounds pretty good.)
T-Mobile gets paid.


Who loses by unlocking the iPhone?

Your warranty on that $500 – $600 phone is now voided. (Good luck when you have a problem.)
You “get” to use T-Mobile’s lousy service. (You will look so hot screaming, “Why can’t I make a damn call” at that sexy phone.)

Again, I Don’t Get It!

If I am missing out on something, please let me know.

UPDATE – THANKS FOR YOUR COMMENTS, I DO GET IT NOW. I GUESS I FORGOT ABOUT NON-U.S. CUSTOMERS. THANKS FOR SHOWING ME THE ERROR OF MY WAYS.

Update: See how they disappointed me with the new iPod Touch.

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40 responses on “What’s the Point to Unlocking the iPhone?

  1. kam

    well you can look at it from your point of view. Or you can look at it from the point of view of all the people who like to travel with their phones to over sea’s or Canada and Mexico. The gsm network is world wide most people want to be able to use their phones Europe and Asia this is why unlocked phones are gaining in popularity. With regular T-mobile or Cingular phones you can call up the providers and get a unlock code so you can use these phones over sea’s with the iphone this isnt the case this is why its a big deal.

  2. SirOJ

    I am quite curious on how Apple is going to sell that thing in Belgium. Locked phones are forbidden there… you have to be able to change operators on each phone sold there.

    Not that I am a big fan of government interfering but that makes sense.

  3. jessica

    I have a friend that I live with, and we live in Canada. He bought an Iphone in the USA with no contract, unlocked it, and put a regular Rogers plan on it. So, his iphone now works in Canada.

  4. SR

    I already have an account with t-mobile, so an unlocked ipod lets me continue with the service I already have (which despite it’s flaws is a better deal than at &t). So, it does help some people.

  5. Chuck

    What’s the Point to Unlocking the iPhone? well for me since I’m moving to Mexico, I’m buying an unlocked I-phone (yeah that means not paying to AT&T anything)and in Mexico I can buy a sim card in Telcel that doesn’t have any monthly fees so for me it’s pretty useful. That you are too short sighted to see the advantages outside US that’s another thing.

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