Unlocking Your iPhone Gets Even Easier…Or Does It?

Posted In iPhone - By Louis On Tuesday, April 12th, 2011 With 0 Comments

A couple of new websites have popped up offering the ability to “officially” unlock your iPhone. Negri Electronics and CutYourSim have popped up recently allowing anyone with an iPhone to unlock their iPhone’s for use on any GSM carrier without the need of jailbreaking their phones. The cost for unlocking is around $175 bucks (depending on the site) and are claimed to be 100% legit and future proof. Future proof meaning that you’ll be able to upgrade your iOS software at any time in the future and not lose the unlock on your phone.

Previously, the ultrasn0w unlock allowed you to unofficially unlock your jailbroken GSM iPhone (for free) provided your baseband was at 1.59. There is also the Gevey Turbo SIM method which users have verified as a viable unlock for those with basebands of 2.10 or 3.10. Currently, there is no unlock for iPhone users with a baseband of 4.10. However, news of these sites offering unlocks for ANY iPhone user has raised some eyebrows; specifically surrounding the method and legitimacy of the unlocks these websites are claiming to provide.

As it stands now, after you have made your payment to the website(s), your are requested to send them your IMEI number and within 1-5 days (depending on the website), your IMEI number will be added to the white list database of officially unlocked iPhones. Now, what raises eyebrows here is that only Apple has access to this database so how these companies are able to access the database, let alone modify it by adding new IMEI’s to it, is what has everyone up in arms.

For those wondering the benefits of an unlocked iPhone, the unlock simply allows you to use your iPhone with any GSM (SIM card) carrier around the world. If you’re a frequent international traveler or have some vacation time coming up overseas, the unlocked iPhone would allow you to steer clear of AT&T’s outrageous roaming fees and allow you to simply land at your destination, pick up a local SIM card and pop it into your phone. Sounds great, but the vast majority of iPhone users may never even get the opportunity to use an unlocked iPhone the way in which it was meant to be used. The other main benefit of unlocking your iPhone is resale value. While most folks overseas are able to get their hands on factory unlocked iPhones, we here in the states, aren’t so lucky. For those international travelers or those who lost their factory unlocked iPhones, picking up an already unlocked iPh0ne makes things simpler for them and more lucrative for you when it comes time to sell it.

Now, I had my iPhone 4 unlocked at 1.59 baseband using ultrasn0w. Honestly, I never even used it since I wasn’t going overseas or wanting to switch to another carrier. Here in the US, the only other carrier you were able to use was T-Mobile and now that they’re in the process of merging with AT&T, you don’t really have any options here in the US.

Bottom line here is that, as the old saying goes, buyer BEWARE. Sure it sounds like a nifty little idea to pay up a chunk of change, wait a couple days and get to have an unlocked iPhone but, for me, it seems WAY to shady and untrustworthy. Even as I’m typing this entry, one of the sites has “discontinued” their unlocking service for unknown reasons. Though I’m sure the reasons why will surface later. If you’re in need of an unlock, next time you should buy a factory unlocked one from eBay or somewhere safe(r) than these websites. If you’re really, really desperate for an unlocked iPhone, purchase the service from one of these websites and let us know how it goes :)

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