Can I unlock a US iphone for use in the UK?

nme_uk

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Nov 23, 2008
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I am currently in new york for work, and saw the IPhone here at the apple store. I'm wondering whether I can buy one of these at 199 USD without having to commit to a two year at&t plan?

Can I just pick up an 8gb iphone at the apple store, or will they make me sign up to a contract there and then?

Also, if I don't need to sign up there and then, can I then take the phone back to the UK to be unlocked to use on the tmobile network?

Thanks
Nme
 

nme_uk

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Nov 23, 2008
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Shame! I thought that if apple were allowing you to activate at home, then I could buy in store and unlock later! I was really hoping that there wouldn't be a contract to sign at purchase!

Oh well!

When did this change out of interest? I heard it used to be possible?

Thx
 

Rene Ritchie

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Jan 12, 2007
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They're selling it to you for $199 because they're subsidizing the price, knowing they'll more than make up for it with the fees you'll pay over a 2-year contract (in Canada, it's a 3 year contract!)

That's why the iPhone is so cheap now.

You can buy it off-contract for probably around $700-$900 (even factory unlocked in places like Hong Kong), because that's actually what it costs.

If you don't sign a contract, it's like AT&T just handing you $500 in cash. I'm guessing the likelihood of that happening is about the same as you just offering to pay AT&T $1200 for it -- slim to none :)
 

Dalekkiller

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You can activate at home in the UK, that's what I managed to do but I got my iPhone from the Carphone Warehouse. I got my 1st gen from O2 and was also able to activate that from home. As Rene says, you can get unlocked phones in Hong Kong but you're probably better off going with an O2 contract with unlimited data (all plans have unlimited data included).
 

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