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MacRumors
Sep 18, 2007, 10:04 PM
http://www.macrumors.com/images/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com)

One piece of news from the London keynote event was Apple's first public stance on SIM unlocking tools that have become available for the iPhone. The freely available software unlocks the iPhone from AT&T's service and allows users to use any SIM card from any network.

When questioned (http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9037398), Steve Jobs indicated that they will actively try to stop SIM unlocking:
"It's a cat-and-mouse game," said Jobs. "We try to stay ahead. People will try to break in, and it's our job to stop them breaking in."



Article Link (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2007/09/18/apple-to-actively-stop-sim-unlocking/)



dfnj123
Sep 18, 2007, 10:06 PM
looks like all the unlocking people are screwed... :eek:

PatMack
Sep 18, 2007, 10:07 PM
:eek: nooooooooooooooooooooooo :eek:

ok, worse things have happened, but still.

:(

MikeTheC
Sep 18, 2007, 10:09 PM
One has to wonder how defensible a position that is, considering unlocking is not illegal, and in fact it would seem unlocked phones are the typical M.O. of the European cell phone telecom industry.

Ok, Steve, how are you going to fight that, exactly?

dfnj123
Sep 18, 2007, 10:10 PM
btw... by law, all phone in the UK must be unlocked...

You lucky UK people....

Peace
Sep 18, 2007, 10:10 PM
I for one hope they do.Things have never been so screwed up.
The U.S. isn't Europe either.

RichP
Sep 18, 2007, 10:10 PM
This is a much bigger concern for european customers more than US, correct? I wouldnt exactly consider t-mobile a step up in service from ATT. (unless of course you are locked into a contract)

stevehp
Sep 18, 2007, 10:13 PM
whatever...

Give it an hour and there will be a fix after each update.

synth3tik
Sep 18, 2007, 10:16 PM
The people who thought Apple would just sit back and not take action are just silly. Apple is partnered with AT&T and now O2, by not doing anything they could lose these partnerships. Silly, silly people.

JonMan
Sep 18, 2007, 10:29 PM
What exactly can Apple do to prevent unlocking? Worst case scenario, I will not accept any updates.

sparkleytone
Sep 18, 2007, 10:42 PM
whatever...

Give it an hour and there will be a fix after each update.

Yeah. How long did it take to unlock the first time?

Jarbo
Sep 18, 2007, 10:49 PM
Bottom line is that no company can defeat an army of hackers. The iphone begs to be hacked and there are dedicated legions out there willing to try.

In the end something will give but if Apple forces the issue to hard, the community will get bored and backlash will ensue.

severe
Sep 18, 2007, 10:51 PM
Ok, Steve, how are you going to fight that, exactly?

hmm..

I'd think being that..you know.. dood's been in the game a while now:rolleyes:, he just may have the resources to keep up.

My bet's on Steve, care to wager?

nato64
Sep 18, 2007, 11:04 PM
Is anyone surprised?

I'm surprised that Apple hasn't done anything to thwart 3rd party applications... thus far. My theory is that unlocking is an issue while hacking isn't. If you unlock your phone it sort of takes money out of AT&T's pocket that they were going to receive from every iPhone owner. And to someone replying to me saying, "It's my phone, I can do what I want!" I agree. But understand that exclusivity is part of Apple's contract with AT&T and Apple is obligated to protect the iPhone from being unlocked.

Darkroom
Sep 18, 2007, 11:04 PM
Bottom line is that no company can defeat an army of hackers. The iphone begs to be hacked and there are dedicated legions out there willing to try.

In the end something will give but if Apple forces the issue to hard, the community will get bored and backlash will ensue.

i agree 100%... apple can't do anything, especially in countries like CANADA where they iPhone isn't even available yet and where AT&T doesn't exist...

mrkgoo
Sep 18, 2007, 11:07 PM
Yeah. How long did it take to unlock the first time?

It's not about how long it take, but whether you're willing to give up the updates until a hack is figured out. For me, part of the joy of Apple products is their seamless integration. If I have go hack my phone everytime there is an update - well, I'd be kind of annoyed.

Then again, I don't even have an iPhone, so none of this is relevant to me.

jt2ga65
Sep 18, 2007, 11:14 PM
Doesn't Apple get money from AT&T from the monthly recurring fees? If that is true, is it any wonder that Apple wants to keep their phones where they will continue to make money on them?

Honestly, as good as Apple may be, they are a company in the business of making money for their shareholders. As such, I'm sure that they prefer to charge for all programs and services they can. I am actually surprised that they let anyone write third party applications for their computers, let along the iPhone. Back in the Apple II days, it was VERY hard to find any decent 3rd party software. Well, at least it was for me.

-jt2

DeathChill
Sep 18, 2007, 11:23 PM
hmm..

I'd think being that..you know.. dood's been in the game a while now:rolleyes:, he just may have the resources to keep up.

My bet's on Steve, care to wager?

My bet is on the hackers for sure. Apple can't stop them as is evidenced with each OS X release for Intel.

Americanloti
Sep 19, 2007, 12:01 AM
What about the bluebox, Steve?

NewtypeCJ
Sep 19, 2007, 12:07 AM
Maybe stopping it completely is impossible. But they don't have to let unlocked phones play nice with iTunes, I'd imagine. And if they cut it off at that level it'd be pretty devastating since iTunes is the way most people would get all their media onto it, right?

EricHvk
Sep 19, 2007, 12:14 AM
nothing digital is unhackable however you look at it. and oh well so what if they lock it and no one takes the time to fix it? everything i want to do is there nice sms, good phone, aim, video ipod, and ipod if anything if itunes wont let me sync thigns to it even if i dont update or if I do update to osx 10.5 and itunes wont let me we can all ssh our desired media to the iphone manually.

if you have an unlocked phone dont update the firmware.

I think it is very stupid apple has it so locked down, that has been one great thing about osx is it was so open, Im sure it will change or be brought to other carriers eventually. It may be a number of yrs tho.

EricNau
Sep 19, 2007, 12:31 AM
What exactly can Apple do to prevent unlocking? Worst case scenario, I will not accept any updates.
I suspect Apple has been purposefully holding off on some pretty nice updates. How ingenious would it be for Apple to wait until the iPhone is hacked and then release the updates that add critical features and also coincidentally break the hacks?

Or... If Apple really wanted to keep the upper-hand, they could always disable your phone upon the next sync/charge.

polishmacuser
Sep 19, 2007, 12:40 AM
darn it steve why wont you let us live freely i want to use my iphone in europe without being charged 8,000 dollars and yes i was charged 8,000 but they removed it thank god. I would say i had the highest bill so far ever reported you dont have to believe me but i did have that bill.

darkcurse
Sep 19, 2007, 12:50 AM
I don't think its Apple's idea of wanting to keep the phone unlocked. More like ATT breathing down Steve's back because they're the one's who have the most to lose if lets say the iPhone is unlocked. Apple would make more money selling iPhones than the revenue sharing from ATT I would assume. So it is in Apple's interest to get as many iPhones out there as possible.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 12:57 AM
Or... If Apple really wanted to keep the upper-hand, they could always disable your phone upon the next sync/charge.

Apple CANNOT afford to stay ahead of the hackers. It took them awhile to hack it after it was released, but now that people have a handle on the phone, now that tools are available on the phone for hacking--basic programs like ssh, etc., it will take less than a week for a company with some money, or for that matter, a bunch of nerds with code.google.com, to workaround their stuff. Just wait for it on the ringtones. They'll have a new hack before next monday, and that's not even relevant--iToner, which doesn't cost all that much money, still works, so they haven't broken custom ringtones completely even with 7.4.2. And regular, honest users are going to start getting really, really annoyed with constant updates that do nothing but break hacks they aren't using.

If apple updated iTunes to brick your iPhone, someone would hack iTunes so that it didn't do that--e.g., denying it a network connection to phone home to apple to check out the phone. But that's not even the issue--that kind of crap is just BOLLOCKS to regular users who aren't hacking, or--users who are hacking (like me) but don't have their phones unlocked or anything... how will they tell the difference?

polishmacuser
Sep 19, 2007, 12:58 AM
I don't think its Apple's idea of wanting to keep the phone unlocked. More like ATT breathing down Steve's back because they're the one's who have the most to lose if lets say the iPhone is unlocked. Apple would make more money selling iPhones than the revenue sharing from ATT I would assume. So it is in Apple's interest to get as many iPhones out there as possible.
man even steve jobs is under restriction that sucks for man with power, you just cant do anything even unlock a phone :(

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 01:03 AM
Apple would make more money selling iPhones than the revenue sharing from ATT I would assume. So it is in Apple's interest to get as many iPhones out there as possible.

Hmm, I don't know about that. Maybe if they had 3G, but the iPhone wouldn't have its market all that much extended in the US if it were available for any carrier at this point. It's just speculation, but I think Apple is making a KILLING off revenue sharing from plans, and I don't think they would make more if they were selling the iPhone unlocked without any revenue sharing for them. Plus they are control freaks about user experience, so they want to make sure that you are on the network that supports their phone properly.

daneoni
Sep 19, 2007, 01:05 AM
This will be very strange seeing that i've NEVER owned a locked phone in my life. How unnatural...sigh all these nonsense just to own one stupid phone.

Aaargh!
Sep 19, 2007, 01:33 AM
I don't think its Apple's idea of wanting to keep the phone unlocked. More like ATT breathing down Steve's back because they're the one's who have the most to lose if lets say the iPhone is unlocked. Apple would make more money selling iPhones than the revenue sharing from ATT I would assume. So it is in Apple's interest to get as many iPhones out there as possible.
No, it isn't. If it was, why did they partner up with AT&T in the first place ? They could have just started selling SIM-lock free iPhones and let users get their own SIM from whatever provider. Like every other phone manufacturer does.

daneoni
Sep 19, 2007, 01:49 AM
No, it isn't. If it was, why did they partner up with AT&T in the first place ? They could have just started selling SIM-lock free iPhones and let users get their own SIM from whatever provider. Like every other phone manufacturer does.

Visual Voicemail/Youtube

EricNau
Sep 19, 2007, 01:53 AM
Visual Voicemail/Youtube

Youtube?

daneoni
Sep 19, 2007, 01:59 AM
Youtube?

Yeah i read that youtube is somehow tied to AT&T and those who did the unlocking had to do some reverse engineering to get it to work on other networks

LastZion
Sep 19, 2007, 02:03 AM
i agree 100%... apple can't do anything, especially in countries like CANADA where they iPhone isn't even available yet and where AT&T doesn't exist...

Correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't Rogers = AT & T

matticus008
Sep 19, 2007, 02:07 AM
Or... If Apple really wanted to keep the upper-hand, they could always disable your phone upon the next sync/charge.
Well, no, they can't do that.

They can release new firmware which breaks the unlocking hack. They can blacklist the IMEI (preventing you from making calls or using data networks), they can change the contract's terms and then seek damages in court from the account holders who agree to the modified terms. They can update iTunes so that it refuses to recognize or sync with an unlocked iPhone.

They can't, however, just brick the device for the hell of it.

Markleshark
Sep 19, 2007, 02:54 AM
btw... by law, all phone in the UK must be unlocked...

You lucky UK people....

Thats not true in the slightest.

footandmaff
Sep 19, 2007, 03:03 AM
Does anyone know whether you'd be able to use an existing O2 sim card with a different tariff without having to go through the unlocking procedure, just completing the fake activation to get the phone to work initially? I've got no problem with sticking with O2 but I just want to avoid those horrendous iPhone tariffs.

edesignuk
Sep 19, 2007, 03:17 AM
I'm sure their firmware upgrades may well break the unlock.

However, the hard work has been done. The hackers know how it works. They have a process to follow. I really don't think it's anything to worry about.

Those with unlocked phones can just wait a little bit before updating to the latest firmware, while anySIM prepare an updated version of their app to counter Apples changes.

Apple will never win at this game. Microsoft have been trying to stop people using Windows without a legitimate licence for how many years, spent how much money? Have they ever managed to beat the hackers? **** no. Same goes for Apple with the relocking of phone with firmware updates. They're simply wasting their time and resources.

aswitcher
Sep 19, 2007, 03:44 AM
Just Steves RDF to keep the corps happy...they aren't trying that hard.

footandmaff
Sep 19, 2007, 03:56 AM
Just Steves RDF to keep the corps happy...they aren't trying that hard.

That's what I thought, I mean O2 seem to be getting pretty shafted on this deal and with the release of the iTouch so I think this was really more of a lip service announcement (at least I hope)

fastbite
Sep 19, 2007, 04:54 AM
What else is the guy suppose to say? He's not going to be introducing O2 as the UK carrier and indicate publicly that he doesn't care about unlocking the baby. But those are just words, and they know this will always be a loosing battle.

Chromako
Sep 19, 2007, 05:24 AM
Apple will never win at this game. Microsoft have been trying to stop people using Windows without a legitimate licence for how many years, spent how much money? Have they ever managed to beat the hackers? **** no. Same goes for Apple with the relocking of phone with firmware updates. They're simply wasting their time and resources.

Amen. It's my hope that this is all empty rhetoric. I for one would love to get the iPhone but will never do so until it's unlocked. Rhetoric or not, I'm disappointed in Apple.

question fear
Sep 19, 2007, 05:26 AM
Correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't Rogers = AT & T

Not anymore. Apparently the old ATT Wireless owned a stake in Rogers for a while but it doesn't look like they still do, at least according to Wikipedia. Remember, old ATT Wireless was oddly separate from regular ATT, and then it got gobbled up by Cingular. Who then merged back into ATT. Just for the confusion factor. :-D

Rogers Corporation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogers_Communications)

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 06:14 AM
I'm also curious about how Apple will deal with U.K. laws on unlocking. As I understand it, in the UK, mobile phone service providers must unlock a phone if the customer requests it, albeit for a small fee. Does anybody know the details of the law?

LastZion
Sep 19, 2007, 06:16 AM
Not anymore. Apparently the old ATT Wireless owned a stake in Rogers for a while but it doesn't look like they still do, at least according to Wikipedia. Remember, old ATT Wireless was oddly separate from regular ATT, and then it got gobbled up by Cingular. Who then merged back into ATT. Just for the confusion factor. :-D

Rogers Corporation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rogers_Communications)

Wow, I just always assumed AT&T wireless was AT&T... thanks for the info

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 06:18 AM
Well, no, they can't do that.

They can release new firmware which breaks the unlocking hack. They can blacklist the IMEI (preventing you from making calls or using data networks), they can change the contract's terms and then seek damages in court from the account holders who agree to the modified terms. They can update iTunes so that it refuses to recognize or sync with an unlocked iPhone.

They can't, however, just brick the device for the hell of it.


But what about those who buy a phone and cancel their contracts with ATT but keep the phone? Surely, they are still apple customers and should be allowed to sync with itunes?

I don't know the law on these things, but given that the phone is not subsidised I feel there must be restrictions on how these two rogue companies (Apple and ATT) do business?

Compile 'em all
Sep 19, 2007, 06:24 AM
Yeah i read that youtube is somehow tied to AT&T and those who did the unlocking had to do some reverse engineering to get it to work on other networks

NO. YouTube has nothing to do whatsoever with the baseband firmware. In fact, you can have youtube working on a locked iPhone with NO SIM card inside.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 06:26 AM
Apple CANNOT afford to stay ahead of the hackers. It took them awhile to hack it after it was released, but now that people have a handle on the phone, now that tools are available on the phone for hacking--basic programs like ssh, etc., it will take less than a week for a company with some money, or for that matter, a bunch of nerds with code.google.com, to workaround their stuff. Just wait for it on the ringtones. They'll have a new hack before next monday, and that's not even relevant--iToner, which doesn't cost all that much money, still works, so they haven't broken custom ringtones completely even with 7.4.2. And regular, honest users are going to start getting really, really annoyed with constant updates that do nothing but break hacks they aren't using.

If apple updated iTunes to brick your iPhone, someone would hack iTunes so that it didn't do that--e.g., denying it a network connection to phone home to apple to check out the phone. But that's not even the issue--that kind of crap is just BOLLOCKS to regular users who aren't hacking, or--users who are hacking (like me) but don't have their phones unlocked or anything... how will they tell the difference?

It's a hopeless battle against the times. Here we are in a time of pluralism, communication, globalisation, easy-travel and general fluidity of circumstances and Apple - the company that purports to be different - is fighting hard to restrict everything we do with their products. I call it BS and I'm happy to support any hacking effort that will teach them a lesson. I travel/move around a lot (between continents) and I know a lot of people who do and who don't live in one place for more than a year (so 2-year contracts don't work) and who travel frequently all over the world (so roaming fees are not reasonable or feasible). That's the way things are now and Apple just doesn't get it. People also don't like to be told what to do with their expensive equipment. I think this will backlash and Apple will lose out if it continues to push it too far. The latest UK deal is just one example of Apple's arrogance and greed.

I also think that it's just a matter of time before it becomes illegal to lock phones that have not be subsidised by the carrier.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 06:30 AM
Since the customer:
1. Pays for the full price of the phone
2. Don't sign a contract with a carrier at the time of iPhone purchase, like subsisized phones

The customer has the right to go with any carrier they wish.

Apple will have to like it and lump it!

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 06:33 AM
btw... by law, all phone in the UK must be unlocked...

You lucky UK people....

False.

However, at the end of the contract when the phone subsisdy has been paid back, the carrier must unlock the phone at the customers request.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 06:34 AM
False.

However, at the end of the contract when the phone subsisdy has been paid back, the carrier must unlock the phone at the customers request.

But there is no subsidy with the iphone...

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 06:37 AM
But there is no subsidy with the iphone...

Absolutely correct! ( The the original post is how the UK stands with unlocking of phones ).

It seems apple are in a dodgy situation, I wonder how they would fare if any one tried suing them.

question fear
Sep 19, 2007, 06:48 AM
Absolutely correct! ( The the original post is how the UK stands with unlocking of phones ).

It seems apple are in a dodgy situation, I wonder how they would fare if any one tried suing them.

Here's my theory: if anyone sued them or they were ordered by the laws of whatever country they sell the phone in to unlock it they would. With THEIR unlock. One that's probably only available when you fit the criteria (live in a certain place, have certain laws requiring them to do it, etc). They will have to conform to the laws of wherever they sell a product. IIRC don't they lower the volume output of ipods in Europe to meet certain EU standards?

However, even if they will legally unlock under a specific set of circumstances, that does not mean iphonesimfree or any of those are going to be left alone. My assumption is that they will continue to stop 3rd parties, as those are not manufacturer approved, and so it is within their right to change the firmware and relock those phones.

Does that make sense? I am basically just thinking that because something is legal to do doesn't mean everyone who releases a way to do it is in the right. So Apple could unlock phones if ordered to by law but still block iphonesimfree, etc, arguing it's not their method and they are in no way obligated to support them.

daneoni
Sep 19, 2007, 07:55 AM
NO. YouTube has nothing to do whatsoever with the baseband firmware. In fact, you can have youtube working on a locked iPhone with NO SIM card inside.

Are you absolutely sure about that cos this (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=4164619#post4164619) guy (and several others) who couldn't get Youtube to work on another cell network after unlocking their phones would beg to differ. He said AT&T is somehow tied to the Youtube app and requires some legwork to get it working again.

Herego the AT&T/Apple partnership yields Visual Voicemail/Youtube since those dont work right off the bat after an "unlock"

JGowan
Sep 19, 2007, 08:01 AM
Amen. It's my hope that this is all empty rhetoric. I for one would love to get the iPhone but will never do so until it's unlocked. Rhetoric or not, I'm disappointed in Apple.You're disapointed in Apple? Why? For making good on their promise/contract to AT&T to keep the phone in the hands of only AT&T customers? I think it was a tough question to have to answer at a time that Steve wanted to completely keep everything upbeat and positive. I think his short/concise answer was perfect. He called it a cat & mouse Game. Cute and cuddly. Tom & Jerry. Purrfect.

The type of people who want to break the phone for another carrier doesn't care about Apple or AT&T. They care about themselves only. They don't want to play by the rules. And they are in the vast minority. The vast majority are the ones who'll buy the phone for an AT&T plan and not do a thing with it, but Apple has to keep up the impression that they plan on thwarting the breakers every time to discourage the temptation of people who normally wouldn't consider it to actually saying "word on the street is that a simple download of software will allow me to use the iPhone on any network I want." -- People, in general, need to be thinking "Crap, if I play with Apple's phone, it'll be a constant battle and the phone might not work in the morning". The average Joe just wants to buy the phone, use and know it's going to work, day and day out. They don't have to be playing some software game/war with Apple. Those people have too much time on their hands.

Why not just break it and never update again? As people have pointed out, Apple will continue to innovate in their software. Better ways of doing things, bug fixes, improvements and entirely new features and eventually games will land on the iPhone. The Breakers who can't ever update again are shooting themselves in the foot and deserve to be in this Catch-22. Ultimately though, they'll just be mad at Apple. They won't ever admit to themselves that they're wrong. Look at visual voicemail. One of the coolest features and people who've made the phone work with another network are totally missing out. "I don't really care about visual voicemail" -- soon it'll be "I don't really care about playing classic Nintendo games" or a myriad of other great new things that will be passing them by.

Won't all of the updates annoy customers if they're all about keeping people honest? Not really. Not if Apple sprinkles in improvements that the legitimate customers can see. Features in the foreground with the honesty-keeping stuff in the background. People will just say "Apple really cares about making this phone great."

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 08:08 AM
The type of people who want to break the phone for another carrier doesn't care about Apple or AT&T. They care about themselves only. They don't want to play by the rules.

Apple don't want to play by the rules either... why should the consumer?

( In the UK, if you've paid for a phone outright, which you have done if you buy an iPhone then your entitled to have the phone unlocked. Apple are on tender hooks when observing local laws.)

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 08:17 AM
You're disapointed in Apple? Why? For making good on their promise/contract to AT&T to keep the phone in the hands of only AT&T customers? I think it was a tough question to have to answer at a time that Steve wanted to completely keep everything upbeat and positive. I think his short/concise answer was perfect. He called it a cat & mouse Game. Cute and cuddly. Tom & Jerry. Purrfect.

The type of people who want to break the phone for another carrier doesn't care about Apple or AT&T. They care about themselves only. They don't want to play by the rules. And they are in the vast minority. The vast majority are the ones who'll buy the phone for an AT&T plan and not do a thing with it, but Apple has to keep up the impression that they plan on thwarting the breakers every time to discourage the temptation of people who normally wouldn't consider it to actually saying "word on the street is that a simple download of software will allow me to use the iPhone on any network I want." -- People, in general, need to be thinking "Crap, if I play with Apple's phone, it'll be a constant battle and the phone might not work in the morning". The average Joe just wants to buy the phone, use and know it's going to work, day and day out. They don't have to be playing some software game/war with Apple. Those people have too much time on their hands.

Why not just break it and never update again? As people have pointed out, Apple will continue to innovate in their software. Better ways of doing things, bug fixes, improvements and entirely new features and eventually games will land on the iPhone. The Breakers who can't ever update again are shooting themselves in the foot and deserve to be in this Catch-22. Ultimately though, they'll just be mad at Apple. They won't ever admit to themselves that they're wrong. Look at visual voicemail. One of the coolest features and people who've made the phone work with another network are totally missing out. "I don't really care about visual voicemail" -- soon it'll be "I don't really care about playing classic Nintendo games" or a myriad of other great new things that will be passing them by.

Won't all of the updates annoy customers if they're all about keeping people honest? Not really. Not if Apple sprinkles in improvements that the legitimate customers can see. Features in the foreground with the honesty-keeping stuff in the background. People will just say "Apple really cares about making this phone great."

I think you're being narrow-minded about this. There are a lot of people for whom a locked phone is really impossible. I am one of them. I travel between the U.S., Europe and Asia all the time and it would literally bankrupt me if I had to pay ATt roaming charges throughout the world. Do I care about Apple? Only as long as they provide what I want and need. Don't forget, I gave them $400 for a phone! I also stay in places for several weeks at a time, which makes it even more difficult. If ATT provided low-cost roaming, perhaps it would be better, but they don't.


Above all, the rules go against world trends: they're restrictive, punitive, greedy and authoritarian. Apple would have sold triple the number of phones by now if it had sold them unlocked, but opted to force its partners to provide poor plans because it couldn't afford to give apple its 40% share otherwise. Who suffers? The customer, nobody else. I'm a customer of Apple and my phone is an Apple phone. I paid full price for the phone and should therefore not be locked into a plan. The whole point of locking is for carriers to make back the money (and much more) that they put out when providing a new phone withouit a fee. I think very soon this whole locking business will be banned anyway and that will solve the issue once and for all.

Apple don't want to play by the rules either... why should the consumer?

( In the UK, if you've paid for a phone outright, which you have done if you buy an iPhone then your entitled to have the phone unlocked. Apple are on tender hooks when observing local laws.)

Absolutely agreed. Luckily, the EU is not as scared of limiting the power of larger corporations a and protecting the consumer as in the U.S. Apple's practices will not last for long there. First Microsoft's defeat, next is itunes and Apple....

JGowan
Sep 19, 2007, 08:25 AM
I think you're being narrow-minded about this. There are a lot of people for whom a locked phone is really impossible. I am one of them. I travel between the U.S., Europe and Asia all the time and it would literally bankrupt me if I had to pay ATt roaming charges throughout the world. Do I care about Apple? Only as long as they provide what I want and need. Don't forget, I gave them $400 for a phone! I also stay in places for several weeks at a time, which makes it even more difficult. If ATT provided low-cost roaming, perhaps it would be better, but they don't.


Above all, the rules go against world trends: they're restrictive, punitive, greedy and authoritarian. Apple would have sold triple the number of phones by now if it had sold them unlocked, but opted to force its partners to provide poor plans because it couldn't afford to give apple its 40% share otherwise. Who suffers? The customer, nobody else. I'm a customer of Apple and my phone is an Apple phone. I paid full price for the phone and should therefore not be locked into a plan. The whole point of locking is for carriers to make back the money (and much more) that they put out when providing a new phone withouit a fee. I think very soon this whole locking business will be banned anyway and that will solve the issue once and for all.



Absolutely agreed. Luckily, the EU is not as scared of limiting the power of larger corporations a and protecting the consumer as in the U.S. Apple's practices will not last for long there. First Microsoft's defeat, next is itunes and Apple....I'm narrow-minded? Good. Fine.

My opinion: It's a phone. PERIOD. If it doesn't work for you then get another one. This is the perfect example of the phrase "people want to have their cake and it too". You want it both ways even if you have to go into some software war to do it. Stupid if you ask me.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 08:25 AM
Shadowfax,

The problem is Apple HAS TO afford to stay ahead of the hackers. They have to break the unlocks. They are contractually obligated to ATT to keep the phones exclusive, they not ATT are the only ones who can achieve this, ATT is going to be all over them to do it and keep it done.

So, it's a contract they have no choice but to meet the terms of, so I support their actions to do that. But I doubt there's much if anything contractually obligating to keep native apps off the iPhone -- except perhaps anything that uses ATT's network. But an iTunes remote control over Wi-Fi? A native-app to-do list? ATT is only care about this to the point that messy non-network native apps might crash the iPhone, cause software conflicts, etc. And their not going to care much because you're still in a contract with them whether your iPhone works well or not.

The unfortunate outcome for someone like you, someone who has hacked for non-native apps but is with ATT and has not unlocked, is Apple is not going to care. In order to break the unlocks, which they have to do by contract, they are going to lock that thing down hard. Which means you get left out in the cold. In fact, before the slew of unlocks hit, especially the GUI-based, anyone-can-use-no-terminal-commands-required anySIM, Apple's *stated* policy, I think Jowsiak (sp?) said it, was that as far native 3rd party apps, Apple would not support them but they would not intentionally break them; in other words, they would try to co-exist with hobbyists as best they could without going out of their way to keep native apps stable. As of London Tuesday, the obvious implied policy is: we will crush anything native. That sucks for you, since all you want is to put some different software on your iPhone, but you accepted the terms of the ATT exclusivity deal, you're in a contract, you pay your bills, you're harmless except perhaps to yourself when you brick your iPhone.

So, here's my suggestion: The iPhone hacker community, the native apps people, should band together and as a group take a formal stance against the unlockers. Go after them. It's the unlockers that have caused the sea change in policy toward potentially messy but otherwise harmless native apps. (In my opinion, it's the release of anySIM and it's more difficult to use precursors that have held up the current firmware update; from the looks of the fact Jobs leaked all the new features of the new firmware in Lond, he full well expected that firmware to be out by his London announcement, but then they had to backtrack to try and break grand scale, free unlock distribution.) The unlockers are your problem. Go after them. Shut them down and Apple no longer has cause to keep the iPhone so tightly locked up.



Apple CANNOT afford to stay ahead of the hackers. It took them awhile to hack it after it was released, but now that people have a handle on the phone, now that tools are available on the phone for hacking--basic programs like ssh, etc., it will take less than a week for a company with some money, or for that matter, a bunch of nerds with code.google.com, to workaround their stuff. Just wait for it on the ringtones. They'll have a new hack before next monday, and that's not even relevant--iToner, which doesn't cost all that much money, still works, so they haven't broken custom ringtones completely even with 7.4.2. And regular, honest users are going to start getting really, really annoyed with constant updates that do nothing but break hacks they aren't using.

If apple updated iTunes to brick your iPhone, someone would hack iTunes so that it didn't do that--e.g., denying it a network connection to phone home to apple to check out the phone. But that's not even the issue--that kind of crap is just BOLLOCKS to regular users who aren't hacking, or--users who are hacking (like me) but don't have their phones unlocked or anything... how will they tell the difference?

gguerini
Sep 19, 2007, 08:33 AM
It's easy!

Do not update you iPhone before the hackers came out with a new unlock app. :) I dont think it'll take more than a week.

edesignuk
Sep 19, 2007, 08:33 AM
sanford. what a load of nonsense. apple have locked it down because apple are apple, they know best, and they don't want anyone's home brew apps invading their carefully crafted iPhone interface.

SIM unlockers have nothing to do with it.

Fight the good fight, keep that bad boy unlocked with every firmware update apple can muster!

eddiebrock
Sep 19, 2007, 08:35 AM
sanford, I wonder how his anti-unlocking stance is going to hold up in the UK, where by law phones are required to be sold unlocked.

Empty rhetoric used to alleviate AT&T. Nothing more. Especially now that they've got their other carriers picked out worldwide I think they will be worrying about ATT less and less.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 08:38 AM
I'm narrow-minded? Good. Fine.

My opinion: It's a phone. PERIOD. If it doesn't work for you then get another one. This is the perfect example of the phrase "people want to have their cake and it too". You want it both ways even if you have to go into some software war to do it. Stupid if you ask me.

Yes, of course it's just a phone and I don't NEED to use it. My only desire is to be able to do what I want with the phone I paid a lot of money for. If a contract with ATT for two years were the only requirement, I'd say yes and use them. However, it's not enough for them to get my regular monthly fees - they also won't allow me to put in a sim card for when I travel abroad. That means that in order to reach me, my friends abroad have to dial a U.S. number and pay for that, AND I have to pay for the roaming. For those that travel, and whose bills are not paid for as a business expense, this is an impossible situation.

I want FREEDOM and fair business practices.

cal6n
Sep 19, 2007, 08:39 AM
@ sanford

I've been reading your puerile drivel with a mixture of amusement and disgust but I'm bored now. Welcome to my ignore list. Goodbye.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 08:49 AM
sanford. what a load of nonsense. apple have locked it down because apple are apple, they know best, and they don't want anyone's home brew apps invading their carefully crafted iPhone interface.

SIM unlockers have nothing to do with it.

Fight the good fight, keep that bad boy unlocked with every firmware update apple can muster!

I don't know that your statement is not true, but I know what Apple *said* about third-party native apps, and I know up to firmware 1.0.2 they didn't seem to be going to great trouble to lock the iPhone up tight.

Of course they are going to want to keep their design as they intended it, but I still contend and will not be swayed that is the unlocking that has caused the full-force work on locking everyone out of the iPhone, period.

zwiggles1
Sep 19, 2007, 08:54 AM
Please let me know if I'm correct in saying that, as long as I don't update iTunes and install the latest iPhone update, I'm in the clear with my unlocked phone?
Or does iTunes or the iPhone force the update by limiting the use of the program syncing until it's preformed???
Thanks in advance.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 08:54 AM
sanford, I wonder how his anti-unlocking stance is going to hold up in the UK, where by law phones are required to be sold unlocked.

Empty rhetoric used to alleviate AT&T. Nothing more. Especially now that they've got their other carriers picked out worldwide I think they will be worrying about ATT less and less.

That's true, sort of. From the law I've read, phones sold on contracts with carriers may be locked to the carrier in the UK, but after the customer has fulfilled the contract for six months, the carrier is required by law to unlock it. But that doesn't terminate the contract; you still have to pay it out for its original length. Also, apparently, it's a pain to get the carriers to unlock, and they are allowed to charge a fee for it. So for most people early unlocking has no particular financial advantage, although it will have advantage for people in the UK who travel abroad a lot. After six months, they can pay for the unlock, use their contracts in the UK, but use less expensive local service when abroad with a local carrier's SIM.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 08:58 AM
@ sanford

I've been reading your puerile drivel with a mixture of amusement and disgust but I'm bored now. Welcome to my ignore list. Goodbye.

Well, you'll never read this but it's worth responding to. What don't you get about this? The terms of iPhone ownership include a phone locked to a contract with a specific carrier. Accept those terms or don't. The ethical route to taking a stand against such terms is *not to buy the product and not to support the company with your money*. It is not to provide profit for the company, anyway, and think you don't have to accept the terms that have been set forth. Sorry. Your ethics are awash in self-justification of want, want, want. If you don't like the terms, don't buy the damn thing. There are plenty of competitors with more liberal policies just waiting for your money.

eddiebrock
Sep 19, 2007, 08:59 AM
Please let me know if I'm correct in saying that, as long as I don't update iTunes and install the latest iPhone update, I'm in the clear with my unlocked phone?
Or does iTunes or the iPhone force the update by limiting the use of the program syncing until it's preformed???
Thanks in advance.

You're absolutely correct, just make sure that you ensure auto update is off in ITunes and then your iphone won't update unless you voluntarily choose "check for updates". You can sync as much as you want. The best way to connect your phone, if you want my advice, would be to make sure your net connection is off and then plug it in.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 09:07 AM
You're absolutely correct, just make sure that you ensure auto update is off in ITunes and then your iphone won't update unless you voluntarily choose "check for updates". You can sync as much as you want. The best way to connect your phone, if you want my advice, would be to make sure your net connection is off and then plug it in.

There is no auto-update in iTunes. Only auto-sync, which doesn't auto-update. If you've set to automatically check for updates and it finds one, it still requires authorization from the user to perform the update -- at least in the Mac version of iTunes.

SIM cards can identify themselves via the iPhone, I'm sure. iTunes could be modified to lock any iPhone sync'ed, or even just connected to the computer, with a non-approved carrier SIM installed. Being off network won't help with that. But as far as I know the current version of iTunes won't do this.

Also, carriers can determine what equipment you're using on their networks. If to avoid legal wrangles with exclusive carriers other carriers decide to prohibit iPhones operating natively on their network, if they identify an iPhone on their network using one of their own SIMs, they can kill your SIM any time they please.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 09:26 AM
That's true, sort of. From the law I've read, phones sold on contracts with carriers may be locked to the carrier in the UK, but after the customer has fulfilled the contract for six months, the carrier is required by law to unlock it. But that doesn't terminate the contract; you still have to pay it out for its original length. Also, apparently, it's a pain to get the carriers to unlock, and they are allowed to charge a fee for it. So for most people early unlocking has no particular financial advantage, although it will have advantage for people in the UK who travel abroad a lot. After six months, they can pay for the unlock, use their contracts in the UK, but use less expensive local service when abroad with a local carrier's SIM.

But as you know, the iPhone isn't sold on a contract. You buy the iPhone seperately, and outright. So, how are Apple going to justify themselves?

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 09:37 AM
But as you know, the iPhone isn't sold on a contract. You buy the iPhone seperately, and outright. So, how are Apple going to justify themselves?

Indeed.

Gilfanon
Sep 19, 2007, 09:38 AM
I'm a bit mystified by the Apple community. The lock is in place so that Apple could negotiate it's 40% revenue cut (Steve to carriers- "I'll give you exclusivity on the new must-have phone, you just have to give me a 40% cut"). It's a policy that must have come straight from the top, and yet I see posts suggesting that "Steve is just paying lip service to O2 and AT&T about stopping the hacks". If he is, then he's a pretty rubbish CEO- how many other CEOs would be happy to lose the revenue stream from a product that's been in development for years in the spirit of free and open enterprise and "sticking it to those greedy carriers".

Personally, I don't think the tariffs are that bad- people are largely comparing apples and oranges (i.e. tariffs without free wifi and unlimited data to the iPhone tariff). But I'm consistently surprised at people who are surprised that Apple might try and stop the hackers- people who switch SIMs are, in effect, destroying Apple's revenue stream. That much is true regardless of how distasteful you find Steve's exclusive deals- of course Apple are going to move to stop this, they'd be throwing money down the drain if they didn't...

zwiggles1
Sep 19, 2007, 09:45 AM
Good advice from both of you...
I'll make sure I follow your instructions.

There is no auto-update in iTunes. Only auto-sync, which doesn't auto-update. If you've set to automatically check for updates and it finds one, it still requires authorization from the user to perform the update -- at least in the Mac version of iTunes.

SIM cards can identify themselves via the iPhone, I'm sure. iTunes could be modified to lock any iPhone sync'ed, or even just connected to the computer, with a non-approved carrier SIM installed. Being off network won't help with that. But as far as I know the current version of iTunes won't do this.

Also, carriers can determine what equipment you're using on their networks. If to avoid legal wrangles with exclusive carriers other carriers decide to prohibit iPhones operating natively on their network, if they identify an iPhone on their network using one of their own SIMs, they can kill your SIM any time they please.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 09:46 AM
I'm a bit mystified by the Apple community. The lock is in place so that Apple could negotiate it's 40% revenue cut (Steve to carriers- "I'll give you exclusivity on the new must-have phone, you just have to give me a 40% cut"). It's a policy that must have come straight from the top, and yet I see posts suggesting that "Steve is just paying lip service to O2 and AT&T about stopping the hacks". If he is, then he's a pretty rubbish CEO- how many other CEOs would be happy to lose the revenue stream from a product that's been in development for years in the spirit of free and open enterprise and "sticking it to those greedy carriers".

Personally, I don't think the tariffs are that bad- people are largely comparing apples and oranges (i.e. tariffs without free wifi and unlimited data to the iPhone tariff). But I'm consistently surprised at people who are surprised that Apple might try and stop the hackers- people who switch SIMs are, in effect, destroying Apple's revenue stream. That much is true regardless of how distasteful you find Steve's exclusive deals- of course Apple are going to move to stop this, they'd be throwing money down the drain if they didn't...

I agree, but the other side of it is that Apple is losing most likely a tremendous number of hardware sales through their restrictions. Those don't represent a continuous stream of revenue the way subscriptions do, but certainly it could amount to a massive amount of income from hardware sales if the iphone weren't locked?

Am I surprised? No, of course not. But I am disappointed that Apple would go against the trend of consumer choice, flexibility and global mobility. Opening it up would, in the long run, only lead to more business and more profit for Apple. Restricting WILL, I believe, backfire in the long run. Especially in Europe.

DefCon65
Sep 19, 2007, 09:47 AM
I have an iPhone and it's unloacked and the reason is simple - I live in Canada. I did the Windows/Blackberry thing for a long time and last year made the move to a Mac. It has been a whole new computing experience and a very welcome change. When the iPhone was announced I was ecstatic - an Apple device to replace the Blackberry! But no iPhone for Canada......

When it comes to GSM in Canada, there is only one game in town - Rogers and they have shown absolutely no indication that they are planning to release it in Canada so I got one (thanks SC) and unlocked it. It has been everything the Mac switch was and there is one huge benefit to me. Data rates in Canada are hugely expensive so the WiFi capability of the iPhone is a major benefit to me. My data usage has gone down about 75% since I started using the iPhone mainly because I can check my email at the office when away from my desk and at the airport where there is a hotspot ( I work in airline security so I spend about 30% of my time at the airport). Also at home I can do a quick check of email without having to fire up my computer.

So while I have an unlocked iPhone, it is not because I am trying to screw Apple or AT&T or anyone else. If and when Rogers releases the iPhone I will be first in line, but until then I will use it unlocked. The rotten part is with Apple actively trying to stop the unlocks, I can't get the new features and my big question is will leopard be a problem (i.e. will I "have" to update the firmware for it to talk to my Mac).

The iPhone is not just a phone to me, it is a better way to communicate just as the Mac is a better way to compute.

So I'm unlocked and "feature-locked" until Rogers gets off their asses and/or Apple realizes the world doesn't end at the 48th parallel.........

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 09:57 AM
I have an iPhone and it's unloacked and the reason is simple - I live in Canada. I did the Windows/Blackberry thing for a long time and last year made the move to a Mac. It has been a whole new computing experience and a very welcome change. When the iPhone was announced I was ecstatic - an Apple device to replace the Blackberry! But no iPhone for Canada......

When it comes to GSM in Canada, there is only one game in town - Rogers and they have shown absolutely no indication that they are planning to release it in Canada so I got one (thanks SC) and unlocked it. It has been everything the Mac switch was and there is one huge benefit to me. Data rates in Canada are hugely expensive so the WiFi capability of the iPhone is a major benefit to me. My data usage has gone down about 75% since I started using the iPhone mainly because I can check my email at the office when away from my desk and at the airport where there is a hotspot ( I work in airline security so I spend about 30% of my time at the airport). Also at home I can do a quick check of email without having to fire up my computer.

So while I have an unlocked iPhone, it is not because I am trying to screw Apple or AT&T or anyone else. If and when Rogers releases the iPhone I will be first in line, but until then I will use it unlocked. The rotten part is with Apple actively trying to stop the unlocks, I can't get the new features and my big question is will leopard be a problem (i.e. will I "have" to update the firmware for it to talk to my Mac).

The iPhone is not just a phone to me, it is a better way to communicate just as the Mac is a better way to compute.

So I'm unlocked and "feature-locked" until Rogers gets off their asses and/or Apple realizes the world doesn't end at the 48th parallel.........


And there are LOTS of people like you. I will be moving back to Europe in the Spring to a country with no iphone sales and I'll be in the same situation. I hope that Apple at the very least won't restrict the syncing with itunes. I guess as long as we don't update itunes we'll be fine, but as you said, what happens when leopard comes out? Will they force us to update? I hope not. And let's hope the world's iphone hackers see this all as a challenge.

Also, for those who talk about unlockers trying to screw ATT or Apple - what BS! the reason this is all happening is because Apple and ATT want to squeeze every drop of money out of each consumer and give as little as possible. We're just defending ourselves!

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:00 AM
But as you know, the iPhone isn't sold on a contract. You buy the iPhone seperately, and outright. So, how are Apple going to justify themselves?

You have to sign up on contract if you want to use it for anything more than a sculpture. You have to sign up on contract to activate.

Anyway, I didn't say that it was fair or that people would like it; I only mean I'm sure Apple will comply fully with UK law while keeping each UK iPhone sold locked to O2 as long possible. They only *must* justify themselves to the law; justifying themselves to customers is at their option.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 10:04 AM
You have to sign up on contract if you want to use it for anything more than a sculpture. You have to sign up on contract to activate.

Anyway, I didn't say that it was fair or that people would like it; I only mean I'm sure Apple will comply fully with UK law while keeping each UK iPhone sold locked to O2 as long possible. They only *must* justify themselves to the law; justifying themselves to customers is at their option.



True, but justifying themselves to customers is the basis for avoiding long-terms problems with the law. And consumer protection is taken much more seriously in the EU.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:04 AM
And there are LOTS of people like you. I will be moving back to Europe in the Spring to a country with no iphone sales and I'll be in the same situation. I hope that Apple at the very least won't restrict the syncing with itunes. I guess as long as we don't update itunes we'll be fine, but as you said, what happens when leopard comes out? Will they force us to update? I hope not. And let's hope the world's iphone hackers see this all as a challenge.

Also, for those who talk about unlockers trying to screw ATT or Apple - what BS! the reason this is all happening is because Apple and ATT want to squeeze every drop of money out of each consumer and give as little as possible. We're just defending ourselves!

Of course they're trying to squeeze every drop of money out of you they can. Defending yourselves against Apple and ATT dipping into your wallet is *not buying an iPhone*. But if you accept the terms of the deal by buying an iPhone, you should live with consequences of your decision.

As for the Canadian argument, you have things in Canada I can't get here in the States. How terribly unfair. I have should have carte blanche to disassemble and destroy whatever I wish so that I may get those things you have that I can't get here.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:06 AM
True, but justifying themselves to customers is the basis for avoiding long-terms problems with the law. And consumer protection is taken much more seriously in the EU.

Okay, this is a philosophical discussion, not a point of law discussion. In that case, I have no clue how they'll defend themselves to the customers. My guess is they just won't, more or less; and if that has ramifications with EU law down the road, they'll deal with that then.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 10:08 AM
Of course they're trying to squeeze every drop of money out of you they can. Defending yourselves against Apple and ATT dipping into your wallet is *not buying an iPhone*. But if you accept the terms of the deal by buying an iPhone, you should live with consequences of your decision.

As for the Canadian argument, you have things in Canada I can't get here in the States. How terribly unfair. I have should have carte blanche to disassemble and destroy whatever I wish so that I may get those things you have that I can't get here.

Ultimately, of course you're right. Luckily, I don't have to abide by ATT or Apple rules and I can use my iphone unlocked and freely on all GSM networks wherever I go. I do hope that continues, but if doesn't I'll live with that too.

Gilfanon
Sep 19, 2007, 10:11 AM
I agree, but the other side of it is that Apple is losing most likely a tremendous number of hardware sales through their restrictions. Those don't represent a continuous stream of revenue the way subscriptions do, but certainly it could amount to a massive amount of income from hardware sales if the iphone weren't locked?

Am I surprised? No, of course not. But I am disappointed that Apple would go against the trend of consumer choice, flexibility and global mobility. Opening it up would, in the long run, only lead to more business and more profit for Apple. Restricting WILL, I believe, backfire in the long run. Especially in Europe.

Hey, I'm not defending Apple's locking policy in the slightest- I don't buy the visual voicemail justification (I think most people would pass on it if they could have their carrier of choice), I think it's purely about making as much money as they can off this thing. I'm just saying that a post goes up saying "Apple to actively try and stop hacks" and people respond "WHAT?!? Apple you swines!". What do people expect? Apple want to protect their revenue...

Now if you're asking about the exclusivity agreements that's another question entirely. Personally I'm surprised there haven't been more Bill Gates/Steve Jobs comparisons on these boards- if MS tried the kind of squeeze Steve's been putting on Mobile carriers it'd be "MS the evil empire" all over again, but SJ still seems to have retained at least part of his halo. I'm disappointed too, but only because Apple seems to be losing it's geek underdog glow and becoming a bit more hard-edged and corporate... As a result, when Rogers refuse to share revenue with Apple, SJ decides Canadians don't get the iPhone. To quote Kanye West- "Steve Jobs doesn't care about Canadian people"- he cares about profit...

zwiggles1
Sep 19, 2007, 10:17 AM
I have an iPhone and it's unloacked and the reason is simple - I live in Canada. I did the Windows/Blackberry thing for a long time and last year made the move to a Mac. It has been a whole new computing experience and a very welcome change. When the iPhone was announced I was ecstatic - an Apple device to replace the Blackberry! But no iPhone for Canada......

When it comes to GSM in Canada, there is only one game in town - Rogers and they have shown absolutely no indication that they are planning to release it in Canada so I got one (thanks SC) and unlocked it. It has been everything the Mac switch was and there is one huge benefit to me. Data rates in Canada are hugely expensive so the WiFi capability of the iPhone is a major benefit to me. My data usage has gone down about 75% since I started using the iPhone mainly because I can check my email at the office when away from my desk and at the airport where there is a hotspot ( I work in airline security so I spend about 30% of my time at the airport). Also at home I can do a quick check of email without having to fire up my computer.

So while I have an unlocked iPhone, it is not because I am trying to screw Apple or AT&T or anyone else. If and when Rogers releases the iPhone I will be first in line, but until then I will use it unlocked. The rotten part is with Apple actively trying to stop the unlocks, I can't get the new features and my big question is will leopard be a problem (i.e. will I "have" to update the firmware for it to talk to my Mac).

The iPhone is not just a phone to me, it is a better way to communicate just as the Mac is a better way to compute.

So I'm unlocked and "feature-locked" until Rogers gets off their asses and/or Apple realizes the world doesn't end at the 48th parallel.........

Couldn't have said it better myself.
I keep on hearing that the data rates are the prime reason that it hasn't already been launched, plus Rogers is focusing all their resources on 3G. It maybe in line for the Jan/Feb launch w/ 3G...

jb510
Sep 19, 2007, 10:19 AM
#1 You do NOT have some basic human right to own an iPhone.

#2 You bought the phone knowing the rules for it's use.

Many of you living or roaming outside the US sound like you think you have a right to have and use and iPhone as you see fit and somehow Apple is violating that right... you therefore take a stand as if you are conscientiously objecting to that violation. There are other phones that suit your needs, buy those.

It's not entirely accurate to say the phone is not subsidize. Apple undoubtedly is counting on the revenue from ATT Wireless, and therefore is selling the phone for less than they would if they didn't expect that revenue. It may not be subsidized as much or in the same fashion as other phones, but it is subsidized.

That said, I'm not a fan of "Terms of Service" or "License Agreements" etc... I'd like to live in a world where when we buy a product it is ours to do whatever we like with.

I would prefer to see Apple at least offer an unlocked phone for sale at a higher price, or AT&T step up and offer to unlock the phone or release you from the contract for some monetary compensation. This isn't just an Apple thing and there has been legislation floating in congress in the last year to do away with contracts and locked phones. If you seriously want to change things get involved in changing the laws.

gkarris
Sep 19, 2007, 10:19 AM
No ulocked iPhones for you, Europe.

Oh, and there is NO iPod Touch screen problem...

Apple is starting to IMPLODE....

Sony and Dell welcomes you....

Luveno
Sep 19, 2007, 10:23 AM
Are you absolutely sure about that cos this (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?p=4164619#post4164619) guy (and several others) who couldn't get Youtube to work on another cell network after unlocking their phones would beg to differ. He said AT&T is somehow tied to the Youtube app and requires some legwork to get it working again.

Herego the AT&T/Apple partnership yields Visual Voicemail/Youtube since those dont work right off the bat after an "unlock"


We were watching YouTube videos in a diner in Nova Scotia this week, over wireless and via the Rogers network (I believe.) YouTube isn't tied to ATT.

ogee
Sep 19, 2007, 10:24 AM
It maybe in line for the Jan/Feb launch w/ 3G...

Except there is no 3G launch in Jan/Feb. When asked specifically about 3G at the UK O2 launch Jobo said perhaps later next year, not early :(


10:16 - Steve gets back on stage for Q&A. We ask: Why not 3G networks?

Steve: "The 3G chipsets are real power hogs. Handset battery life cuts power to 2-3 hours." Yeah yeah, we've heard it before. "Our phone has a talk time of 8 hours and that's really important when you want to use your phone for internet and music. 3G needs to get back up to 5+ hours, something we think well see later next year. ... WiFi is way faster than any 3G network. Energy efficient EDGE with better, faster WiFi. That's why we chose it."

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 10:27 AM
The revenue sharing is extra revenue for Apple. There is no proof one way or another that this revenue sharing is actively subsisdizing the cost of the iPhone.



It's not entirely accurate to say the phone is not subsidize. Apple undoubtedly is counting on the revenue from ATT Wireless, and therefore is selling the phone for less than they would if they didn't expect that revenue. It may not be subsidized as much or in the same fashion as other phones, but it is subsidized.

JGowan
Sep 19, 2007, 10:28 AM
I'm narrow-minded? Good. Fine.

My opinion: It's a phone. PERIOD. If it doesn't work for you then get another one. This is the perfect example of the phrase "people want to have their cake and it too". You want it both ways even if you have to go into some software war to do it. Stupid if you ask me.

Yes, of course it's just a phone and I don't NEED to use it. My only desire is to be able to do what I want with the phone I paid a lot of money for. If a contract with ATT for two years were the only requirement, I'd say yes and use them. However, it's not enough for them to get my regular monthly fees - they also won't allow me to put in a sim card for when I travel abroad. That means that in order to reach me, my friends abroad have to dial a U.S. number and pay for that, AND I have to pay for the roaming. For those that travel, and whose bills are not paid for as a business expense, this is an impossible situation.

I want FREEDOM and fair business practices.Then the iPhone is not for you. According to you, Apple and AT&T practice unfair business and the iPhone doesn't provide you the freedom you need. Who needs 'em?! Again, go somewhere else.

What you fail to see or acknowledge is that Apple and AT&T have an arrangement to benefit them and THEIR customers. They have a partnership. They have invited YOU to be their partner, one with a contract that binds you to them (AND THEIR TERMS) for 2 years. If you are not willing to be subject to their terms and conditions, don't sign on the bottom line. It's either that, or buy one, reneg on the AT&T plan inside of 14 days (or whatever it is) and then use some internet software to break your phone to work with some other carrier. And then, never update your phone again and miss out on really great features that Apple is sure to bring to the phone over the next 4.5 years.

You feel that $400 gets you the right to have the phone and to use it any way you want. It doesn't. I gives the right to use it they way that Apple and AT&T stipulate. It's a shame that the phone doesn't give you, an international traveler, the ability to travel and keep in contact with your family and friends. Apparently, it is a service you've grown accustomed to and, again apparently, at an affordable price.

I would suggest staying with the phone company and device that have served you well.

Virgil-TB2
Sep 19, 2007, 10:29 AM
One has to wonder how defensible a position that is, considering unlocking is not illegal, and in fact it would seem unlocked phones are the typical M.O. of the European cell phone telecom industry.

Ok, Steve, how are you going to fight that, exactly?I think the quote really is just referring to the contract with AT&T. It's well known that exclusivity is one of the things that AT&T asked for and got, so it certainly must be written in the contract they made with Apple.

In that sense, it *is* Apple's "job" to take all reasonable steps to keep the iPhone locked at least for the period of the contract with AT&T.

What will be interesting is the exact wording of the same parts of the contracts with European providers given that unlocking is far more common over there and has already been firmly established as a legal and normal thing to do.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:33 AM
Highly rational.

I don't like all this exclusivity and contractual requirements business that is escalating, especially in the States, but also elsewhere. I think ultimately these things restrict free trade, the idea that a manufacturer makes a product, sells it wholesale to a retailer, and I can buy it wherever I wish at the best price on offer, not fewer features or these "bonus tracks" -- read, acoustic versions with low production values -- instead of those "bonus tracks."

BUT! But the terms of owning an iPhone are quite clear and if you buy an iPhone you accept those terms. So buy an iPhone if it is available to you under the terms and abide by those terms, or don't buy an iPhone if it is not available under the terms in your area or you don't like the terms.

In the States at least, you know, Apple could just refuse to sell you an iPhone, period. About the only reason a retailer can't refuse to sell something to someone is if they make that decision based on race, gender or religious affiliation. That's the law in States. You could walk into an Apple Store cash in hand fully prepared to sign up with ATT for the full contract and they could just say, No, don't like the looks of you, not selling you one.


#1 You do NOT have some basic human right to own an iPhone.

#2 You bought the phone knowing the rules for it's use.

Many of you living or roaming outside the US sound like you think you have a right to have and use and iPhone as you see fit and somehow Apple is violating that right... you therefore take a stand as if you are conscientiously objecting to that violation. There are other phones that suit your needs, buy those.

It's not entirely accurate to say the phone is not subsidize. Apple undoubtedly is counting on the revenue from ATT Wireless, and therefore is selling the phone for less than they would if they didn't expect that revenue. It may not be subsidized as much or in the same fashion as other phones, but it is subsidized.

That said, I'm not a fan of "Terms of Service" or "License Agreements" etc... I'd like to live in a world where when we buy a product it is ours to do whatever we like with.

I would prefer to see Apple at least offer an unlocked phone for sale at a higher price, or AT&T step up and offer to unlock the phone or release you from the contract for some monetary compensation. This isn't just an Apple thing and there has been legislation floating in congress in the last year to do away with contracts and locked phones. If you seriously want to change things get involved in changing the laws.

gkarris
Sep 19, 2007, 10:35 AM
I think the quote really is just referring to the contract with AT&T. It's well known that exclusivity is one of the things that AT&T asked for and got, so it certainly must be written in the contract they made with Apple.

In that sense, it *is* Apple's "job" to take all reasonable steps to keep the iPhone locked at least for the period of the contract with AT&T.

What will be interesting is the exact wording of the same parts of the contracts with European providers given that unlocking is far more common over there and has already been firmly established as a legal and normal thing to do.

Nicely put, but not reality.

Just like Apple changed the computing world and the music player world, Steve is out to change the mobile phone world.

His quote makes it clear that, like OS X on Macs, iPhones will remained locked... enjoy...

footandmaff
Sep 19, 2007, 10:42 AM
But if you accept the terms of the deal by buying an iPhone, you should live with consequences of your decision.

You're not technically correct saying that you accept the terms by purchasing the iPhone because the user only accepts the terms of service when they activate the phone through AT&T, O2 etc via iTunes. If, as many users have, negate the activation process using the bypass method then surely they also negate the terms of service...?

ScottDrummer
Sep 19, 2007, 10:44 AM
No ulocked iPhones for you, Europe.

Oh, and there is NO iPod Touch screen problem...

Apple is starting to IMPLODE....

Sony and Dell welcomes you....

ive an unlocked iPhone in the UK, i couldnt give a crap whether im breaking licence terms or agreement, i wanted the product, i took the decision buy it and unlock it,whether I have the right or not, you dont have a right to do many things in life, but you do them.
i wish these people who are stuck on their at&t contracts stop whining about other people who have unlocked and not having the right to do so.
you forget that on at&t and o2, if you fail a credit check you can go on a payg contract, therefore this "subsidised" payment surely wouldnt exist.

alljunks
Sep 19, 2007, 10:50 AM
Apple sells more iphone if it comes unlock!!!

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:55 AM
You're not technically correct saying that you accept the terms by purchasing the iPhone because the user only accepts the terms of service when they activate the phone through AT&T, O2 etc via iTunes. If, as many users have, negate the activation process using the bypass method then surely they also negate the terms of service...?

Hmm. I just skimmed the iPhone SLA. It's a gray area, as far as I can tell, whether or not you accept the terms to sign up on contract with a specific carrier just by buying the iPhone. I think you're right, you probably don't accept terms by mere purchase. But devising an unlock or installing the unlock does almost certainly violate the SLA.

So, I revise my statement: You are most likely quite free to buy an iPhone without accepting the contract terms. You can hang it on the wall. Use it as a coaster. Whatever. But activating it by any other means than the exclusive carrier method, or activating it and then installing software that breaks the lock to the exclusive carrier, that violates the SLA, so that you may not do.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 10:57 AM
Apple sells more iphone if it comes unlock!!!

Yeah, I'm sure they considered that. But they also surely discovered that with the right terms of a contractual partnership with an exclusive carrier they'd make more money selling fewer phones.

Dagless
Sep 19, 2007, 11:03 AM
That's okay, I live in the UK :D

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:06 AM
What I don't get is the "I travel abroad a lot" argument for unlocking.

First of all, AT&T does offer an international roaming plan can you switch on and off, paying for it only when you are going to be out of the country. It's not super cheap, but it's a whole lot less expensive than paying full international roaming rates without the plan.

And for maybe $25 you can get a legitimately unlocked GSM world phone -- I think there must be three of them lying around my house right now, either weren't carrier locked in the first place or can be legitimately unlocked as they are post-contract. When the new firmware is released, it has an option to turn off EDGE roaming, so you can still use Wi-Fi without fear of roaming onto international EDGE networks. Don't answer your iPhone if it rings. Pick up a local SIM wherever you are and pay local rates for your cheap-o "travel phone". It's not like you get to keep your current phone number using a local SIM, anyway: you have to tell people who need to call you the local number that gets assigned to your local SIM.

Why is this such a big deal? You can still use everything but the actual phone features of your iPhone this way, and it's not like you'll be missing much because even if the phone were unlocked and it was perfectly permissible to drop in a local SIM when traveling abroad, you're not going to have your usual number, your usual voice-mail box, or any of the features that depend on specific carrier support.

gkarris
Sep 19, 2007, 11:11 AM
ive an unlocked iPhone in the UK, i couldnt give a crap whether im breaking licence terms or agreement, i wanted the product, i took the decision buy it and unlock it,whether I have the right or not, you dont have a right to do many things in life, but you do them.
i wish these people who are stuck on their at&t contracts stop whining about other people who have unlocked and not having the right to do so.
you forget that on at&t and o2, if you fail a credit check you can go on a payg contract, therefore this "subsidised" payment surely wouldnt exist.


I have a T-Mobile USA voice only plan.. :D

(goes back to trying to find "headphones that fit"...)

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:11 AM
ive an unlocked iPhone in the UK, i couldnt give a crap whether im breaking licence terms or agreement, i wanted the product, i took the decision buy it and unlock it,whether I have the right or not, you dont have a right to do many things in life, but you do them.
i wish these people who are stuck on their at&t contracts stop whining about other people who have unlocked and not having the right to do so.
you forget that on at&t and o2, if you fail a credit check you can go on a payg contract, therefore this "subsidised" payment surely wouldnt exist.

Scott,

It doesn't bother me at all that I chose to sign a contract and you didn't have to. The only thing that bugs me is that I really think all this unlocking is holding up the works as far as timely feature updates, and since I paid for my iPhone, too, and I'd like to get the feature enhancements, your decision to violate the license is affecting me, where as my decision to abide by the license doesn't affect you at all.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 11:15 AM
SLAs cannot override the local laws.

If the local laws state a customer is free to unlock a phone they have bought outright, then any SLA is worthless.


Hmm. I just skimmed the iPhone SLA. It's a gray area, as far as I can tell, whether or not you accept the terms to sign up on contract with a specific carrier just by buying the iPhone. I think you're right, you probably don't accept terms by mere purchase. But devising an unlock or installing the unlock does almost certainly violate the SLA.

So, I revise my statement: You are most likely quite free to buy an iPhone without accepting the contract terms. You can hang it on the wall. Use it as a coaster. Whatever. But activating it by any other means than the exclusive carrier method, or activating it and then installing software that breaks the lock to the exclusive carrier, that violates the SLA, so that you may not do.

Steve is out to change the mobile phone world.

Much to the detriment of the customer, unfortunately: the customer pays full price for a phone and yet is still told what network to use.

DeaconGraves
Sep 19, 2007, 11:19 AM
Scott,

It doesn't bother me at all that I chose to sign a contract and you didn't have to. The only thing that bugs me is that I really think all this unlocking is holding up the works as far as timely feature updates, and since I paid for my iPhone, too, and I'd like to get the feature enhancements, your decision to violate the license is affecting me, where as my decision to abide by the license doesn't affect you at all.

Amen.

But how did the "AT&T customes need to stop whining" argument pop up in the first place? It seems to me this thread started on the mere fact that people were somehow SHOCKED that Jobs would try to stop phone unlockers.

As an AT&T customer long before the iphone I don't care about people trying to hack their way around the system. But I find it extremely humorous that everone feels they have some god-given right to do so. Until the iPhone starts dispensing food, clothing and shelter only to AT&T customers that argument can't really be made.

It's a phone, a luxury item. People need to stop acting like Jobs is walking around hacking off people's right hands.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 11:27 AM
2 Words:

Consumer rights.

Amen.

But how did the "AT&T customes need to stop whining" argument pop up in the first place? It seems to me this thread started on the mere fact that people were somehow SHOCKED that Jobs would try to stop phone unlockers.

As an AT&T customer long before the iphone I don't care about people trying to hack their way around the system. But I find it extremely humorous that everone feels they have some god-given right to do so. Until the iPhone starts dispensing food, clothing and shelter only to AT&T customers that argument can't really be made.

It's a phone, a luxury item. People need to stop acting like Jobs is walking around hacking off people's right hands.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:30 AM
Actually, in the States that's not true. Our laws are more concerned with contracts that violate federal laws, but even then, not always. A couple of examples: If my local city laws allow me to paint my house any color I wish without a permit, I may do so. But if I sign a contractual agreement in a community with a homeowner's association, an agreement that I can only paint my house white or blue, then no matter the city law, I signed the contract and I may not paint my house pink. Also we have a federal law that prevents listening in on telephone conversations without a warrant. But if I sign an agreement with my employer that they may if they wish listen in on my telephone conversations at work, then they can, and I have no recourse under the federal wiretap statutes.

In Canada, it's probably different. Apple can forbid exporting of the iPhone to Canada, and if you fly or drive over here and they discover you are Canadian, they can refuse to sell you one. But if you manage to buy one and take it back to Canada, then your country's laws apply. At least as far as SLAs go, I think. There are some international agreements over copyright law that make the country of origin's laws supersede the local laws.

SLAs cannot override the local laws.

If the local laws state a customer is free to unlock a phone they have bought outright, then any SLA is worthless.

Much to the detriment of the customer, unfortunately: the customer pays full price for a phone and yet is still told what network to use.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 11:32 AM
SLAs cannot override the local laws.

If the local laws state a customer is free to unlock a phone they have bought outright, then any SLA is worthless.

Stella is right, and this is very important. Have you guys ever read the MS Windows EULA? Or the one for Media Player? It's evil, evil stuff. And half of it is a total violation of consumer rights, 100% unenforceable.

If the law says you can unlock a phone--and here in the US, the DMCA permits that, and elsewhere, they probably have the same type of things--then you can unlock the phone, even if you "promise not to" by some BS terms of service that you agree to implicitly buy buying the phone and plugging it into your computer.

The SLA is only as good as how much it can hold in court. For Apple's part, they have every right to prevent you from future updates by breaking your unlock with their updates, but if you can unlock the phone with its current software, and you are happy with it, you're golden, and more than likely legal.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:34 AM
Deacon,

I think people abroad often have a wildly exaggerated view of Americans' civil rights. They're really pretty limited. Not that we don't enjoy a free society; of course we do. But the basic set of rights for which we receive absolute protection, that list is pretty short.

Amen.

But how did the "AT&T customes need to stop whining" argument pop up in the first place? It seems to me this thread started on the mere fact that people were somehow SHOCKED that Jobs would try to stop phone unlockers.

As an AT&T customer long before the iphone I don't care about people trying to hack their way around the system. But I find it extremely humorous that everone feels they have some god-given right to do so. Until the iPhone starts dispensing food, clothing and shelter only to AT&T customers that argument can't really be made.

It's a phone, a luxury item. People need to stop acting like Jobs is walking around hacking off people's right hands.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:39 AM
Some of the terms of SLAs and EULAs are notoriously unenforceable in the States. But just because a law permits something in the States does not mean that you can't give up your rights under that law by signing a contract giving those rights away. Contracts are very powerful in their own right in the States. They are frequently enforced even though they may prohibit doing things that some laws otherwise permit. The concept behind this is that you willingly signed the agreement in exchange for something you perceived to have value, so you must live with the consequences.

Stella is right, and this is very important. Have you guys ever read the MS Windows EULA? Or the one for Media Player? It's evil, evil stuff. And half of it is a total violation of consumer rights, 100% unenforceable.

If the law says you can unlock a phone--and here in the US, the DMCA permits that, and elsewhere, they probably have the same type of things--then you can unlock the phone, even if you "promise not to" by some BS terms of service that you agree to implicitly buy buying the phone and plugging it into your computer.

The SLA is only as good as how much it can hold in court. For Apple's part, they have every right to prevent you from future updates by breaking your unlock with their updates, but if you can unlock the phone with its current software, and you are happy with it, you're golden, and more than likely legal.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 11:39 AM
But I find it extremely humorous that everone feels they have some god-given right to do so. Until the iPhone starts dispensing food, clothing and shelter only to AT&T customers that argument can't really be made.

It's a phone, a luxury item. People need to stop acting like Jobs is walking around hacking off people's right hands.

Yeah... there's an amusing point. It's good to bear in mind the company Apple. As I recall, Apple used to fly a pirate flag over at 1 Infinite Loop. Being a pirate is cool, depending on what you're doing. Breaking an SLA to unlock a phone--that's very cool, I am impressed and stoked about efforts to do so, and I would do it in a heartbeat if I felt the need to be on a network other than AT&T. But complaining that companies are evil and limiting choice, and blah... Sometimes that's worthwhile, but most of the time it's a tired, dead horse.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 11:44 AM
Some of the terms of SLAs and EULAs are notoriously unenforceable in the States. But just because a law permits something in the States does not mean that you can't give up your rights under that law by signing a contract giving those rights away. Contracts are very powerful in their own right in the States. They are frequently enforced even though they may prohibit doing things that some laws otherwise permit. The concept behind this is that you willingly signed the agreement in exchange for something you perceived to have value, so you must live with the consequences. True, and I am not very educated about such things. But it seems like I have read that companies are not allowed to sell products with restrictions in their LAs that prevent customers from "reasonable" use of the product. I don't know why I think so, but I believe that license agreements bear different weights than many other contracts, depending on what they say.

studiomusic
Sep 19, 2007, 11:47 AM
Personally I'm surprised there haven't been more Bill Gates/Steve Jobs comparisons on these boards- if MS tried the kind of squeeze Steve's been putting on Mobile carriers it'd be "MS the evil empire" all over again, but SJ still seems to have retained at least part of his halo.

Apple seems to have a "these are the terms... take it or leave it" attitude (see Verizon).
M$ has more of a "TAKE IT OR YOU WILL SUFFER!" attitude (see anti-trust rulings).
That's the difference.;)

anfield11
Sep 19, 2007, 11:48 AM
Thats not true in the slightest.

You're not the real Top Gear guy are you? Brilliant show!

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 11:49 AM
But complaining that companies are evil and limiting choice, and blah... Sometimes that's worthwhile, but most of the time it's a tired, dead horse.

Corporations aren't so much evil as they are just soulless by design. They exist purely to make money. As people we expect better, wish to be treated better, but corporations aren't people. It's great when the Vermont Teddy-Bear Company decides to pay all their line workers not only a living wage, but a great wage, and offer free health benefits, free shift meals, and all that. But they don't have to. So long as they pay the minimum wage and follow any applicable labor laws, which are usually fairly few in the States, they can operate as they choose.

I kind of understand the plight of, or at least sympathize with, people who want the iPhone but can't get it in their country. But for people who can get it with an ATT contract but instead beat their chests about it being their right to do whatever they please and enjoy their iPhone as they see fit, that's fine so long as it doesn't affect my right to enjoy the benefits of my iPhone as I see fit, too. And right now it certainly seems I'm being held up in my enjoyment of new features because some people are breaking the locks and using the iPhone on other carriers. That's my only serious argument against unlocking and someone else may choose to use his iPhone: I'm not crossing you up, so you shouldn't be crossing me up.

Unspeaked
Sep 19, 2007, 11:50 AM
Frankly, I'm surprised so many posters have taken Steve at face value.

He was in front of the press AND his new UK partner, O2.

I don't see him answering a question on iPhone hacks by saying, "Yeah, you know what? It's not worth the time or effort to break them. Let the kids do as they will. I remember the good ol' days when Woz and I tried to screw over the big corporations of the 70s. As a matter of fact, I'm *excited* to see people hacking the iPhone."

Even if that's exactly what he was thinking, he gave the canned PR response, as well he should have.

Gilfanon
Sep 19, 2007, 11:52 AM
2 Words:

Consumer rights.

Am I missing something? Explain how this is a relevant statement? Or are you claiming that Ferrari is infringing your consumer rights by not selling you an F40 for 20? Is the BBC violating your consumer rights by selling you a TV license that doesn't give you access to their programming in Papua New Guinea? If you're sold a contract that says X and Y, how is it an infringement of your consumer rights if the item you've bought does X and Y but not Z? If you want Z, buy a product that gives you Z...

Croatian
Sep 19, 2007, 11:53 AM
Apple can try to stop it, but they need to realize ... Anything that is made can be broken, so i fix something there is a workaround that, and there always will be and more and more with the technology only getting stronger and stronger

Also, apple sells more iPhones because they can be unlocked then when they are locked .....

anfield11
Sep 19, 2007, 11:54 AM
We were watching YouTube videos in a diner in Nova Scotia this week, over wireless and via the Rogers network (I believe.) YouTube isn't tied to ATT.

What settings did you put in to make Edge work on Rogers?

tethead
Sep 19, 2007, 11:57 AM
What I don't get is the "I travel abroad a lot" argument for unlocking.

First of all, AT&T does offer an international roaming plan can you switch on and off, paying for it only when you are going to be out of the country. It's not super cheap, but it's a whole lot less expensive than paying full international roaming rates without the plan.

And for maybe $25 you can get a legitimately unlocked GSM world phone -- I think there must be three of them lying around my house right now, either weren't carrier locked in the first place or can be legitimately unlocked as they are post-contract. When the new firmware is released, it has an option to turn off EDGE roaming, so you can still use Wi-Fi without fear of roaming onto international EDGE networks. Don't answer your iPhone if it rings. Pick up a local SIM wherever you are and pay local rates for your cheap-o "travel phone". It's not like you get to keep your current phone number using a local SIM, anyway: you have to tell people who need to call you the local number that gets assigned to your local SIM.

Why is this such a big deal? You can still use everything but the actual phone features of your iPhone this way, and it's not like you'll be missing much because even if the phone were unlocked and it was perfectly permissible to drop in a local SIM when traveling abroad, you're not going to have your usual number, your usual voice-mail box, or any of the features that depend on specific carrier support.

that is true, and i do also have several unlocked quad-band GSM phones that i use for travel.

the point you're missing i think is that the entire purpose of the iPhone is to consolidate devices. i love having the iPhone so i don't need to take my "gargantuan" 80 gig iPod with me everywhere. when i travel, why then should my owning an iPhone necessitate me carrying around a second phone?!! the countries i visit tend to be in Africa, where i can easily purchase local SIMs and have very cheap discounted rates calling locally and even to the States. should i make calls using AT&T's "discounted" plans from countries such as Kenya, Tanzania, Botswana, Zambia, or Namibia (all countries I visit regularly), those all cost $4.99/minute. now, is carrying a second phone with me worth saving about $4.70/minute? probably. but i would love to have a single phone with a single charger that will work no matter what country i'm in with no matter what SIM i put in it. sure, i've gotta switch SIMs if i wanna hear my AT&T voicemail, but that's a hell of a lot easier (and lighter) than carrying a separate phone and charger just for that.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 12:04 PM
I kind of understand the plight of, or at least sympathize with, people who want the iPhone but can't get it in their country. But for people who can get it with an ATT contract but instead beat their chests about it being their right to do whatever they please and enjoy their iPhone as they see fit, that's fine so long as it doesn't affect my right to enjoy the benefits of my iPhone as I see fit, too. And right now it certainly seems I'm being held up in my enjoyment of new features because some people are breaking the locks and using the iPhone on other carriers. That's my only serious argument against unlocking and someone else may choose to use his iPhone: I'm not crossing you up, so you shouldn't be crossing me up.

Well, situations are all different, even within the US. From my own experience, I spend a lot of time up in Los Alamos, NM (I work for a company there, and I am at school in Oklahoma for now). AT&T coverage is awesome here in Norman, and of course in Texas when I visit family. But it's spotty in New Mexico, and in Los Alamos it is "Partner Coverage." Translation: No roaming fees for usage, but If I spend more than 50% of my minutes or 20% of my EDGE data usage on partner networks for 2 months in a row, I get kicked off AT&T. That's really frustrating for me, because I have been a (not particularly loyal) constant customer of AT&T Wireless, then Cingular, for as long as I have owned a phone. There are places in the US with no AT&T coverage, and there are places in the US with "coverage" but really crappy coverage.

Like I said, I do agree that complaining about rights is sometimes worthwhile but often beating a dead horse, but I don't see the problem with piracy in the sense of violating unenforceable, pointless contract terms--at your own risk. I don't think that Apple's really going to put all that much effort into breaking iPhone unlocks. They will probably break them in future updates, but I dunno how much work that is. At some level it becomes counterproductive, because constant updates for fake things can really hurt your reputation with honest, non-technical customers (I would thing). I don't think that the locking down that they are doing is going to slow down their release cycle for updates to the iPhone.

sanford
Sep 19, 2007, 12:28 PM
I don't think that the locking down that they are doing is going to slow down their release cycle for updates to the iPhone.

I think it's slowing down the release of this new firmware upgrade. I won't repost my whole reasoning here, but just the fact Jobs had iPhones with the new firmware in London and thus leaked the new features seems to indicate the firmware was stable and had planned to be released by then.

At any rate, if your statement that I quoted is true, then I don't much care. I don't care if doing certain things to/with the iPhone is what some iPhone owners perceive as benefit, so long as it doesn't interfere with what I perceive as benefit. That's the extent of my complaint with the unlocking business -- I'm not even a fan of the whole concept of locking phones to a particular carrier, period.

To save a post, responding to the above African traveler, I did not realize the international roaming rates under ATT special plan, even to more obscure destinations, were so high as $5 per minute. I can see how that doesn't seem reasonable, if you were willing to pay more to roam internationally, it should still be in the realm of affordability. I suspect they price it much like airlines in the past have priced full-fare, no-restriction tickets: they expect that corporations not individuals are paying these expenses, so they subsidize their profits from deeper pockets.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 12:29 PM
Am I missing something?

Yes you are...:-)

Gilfanon
Sep 19, 2007, 12:44 PM
I don't think that Apple's really going to put all that much effort into breaking iPhone unlocks. They will probably break them in future updates, but I dunno how much work that is. At some level it becomes counterproductive, because constant updates for fake things can really hurt your reputation with honest, non-technical customers (I would thing). I don't think that the locking down that they are doing is going to slow down their release cycle for updates to the iPhone.

We're talking about hundred of millions of pounds of revenue sharing here. Pounds that will be almost pure profit as the costs of the iPhone will be covered by the sales price, and resellers are no doubt shouldering much of the marketing and sales-related costs. Do you really think Apple are not going to "put that much work in" to protect hundreds of millions of pound's worth of almost pure profit over 18 months? They're a company, not a charity...

persianpunisher
Sep 19, 2007, 01:04 PM
whatever...

Give it an hour and there will be a fix after each update.


For real.. Plus, as developer friendly the iPhone is, software unlocks are going to stay...

freediverdude
Sep 19, 2007, 02:02 PM
Well, I am wondering how the agreements on the iphone can be valid at all, if you don't agree to them while activating on itunes. It seems to me you didn't agree to anything at that point, if you just purchased the phone but activated via other means. I know some of those agreements are supposedly in force as soon as you break the seal on the packaging, but in this case, I don't see any wording on the outside of the packaging to that effect, and you would have to break the seal to get to any documentation inside the box stating that.

ventro
Sep 19, 2007, 02:04 PM
If you watch the youtube video, Steve is almost confused by the question, almost as if he only knew people were hacking the iPhone to add apps, and didn't know people were using it to unlock the iPhone. You didn't even get the impression that he knew what the term "unlock" meant. He went like "Oh you mean hacking", which could mean the addition of third-party apps, instead of flat-out unlocking.

Edit: here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSgEpgKsLjU

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 02:25 PM
We're talking about hundred of millions of pounds of revenue sharing here. Pounds that will be almost pure profit as the costs of the iPhone will be covered by the sales price, and resellers are no doubt shouldering much of the marketing and sales-related costs. Do you really think Apple are not going to "put that much work in" to protect hundreds of millions of pound's worth of almost pure profit over 18 months? They're a company, not a charity...

Uhh, it would be hundreds of millions of pounds if everyone were doing it. As it is, iPhone unlocking is just like installing 3rd Party hacks--it's haphazard and for power users primarily. What percentage of iPhone owners will try to unlock their phones? It's not high. I can tell you they aren't going to be losing that much. I am not saying that Apple won't break unlocking every time that they have a software update--they most certainly will, and that's a given. I am saying that it wouldn't make sense for them to just do minor updates like they have been with iTunes, where they pretend to add features, but mostly just break hacks. I don't see that happening the way they've done with ringtones, because it's a lot more of a pain for users to update their phones--Apple will break unlocking with updates, but they won't update just to break unlocking. That's what I think will happen.

MikeTheC
Sep 19, 2007, 02:32 PM
In the first place, you own the phone, but Apple owns the platform and it's Apple's platform to do with as they see fit.

Why is it that people are so blind to this fact? "Oh, wow, the iPhone is so cool that I won't bother to worry about what restrictions or contractual obligations Apple places me under, I'm going to buy it and not care." That's in effect what you people are doing. It's stupid. Please stop. This thread is making my head throb.

I don't own an iPhone. I don't agree to Apple's EULA, I don't agree to use AT&T as my cell phone carrier, I don't want to use GSM, and I don't agree to have to pay twice for a song (in effect) just for the privilege of using it as a ringtone, particularly when there are more non-song sounds I would want to use as ring tones than songs.

Therefore, I (as I already said) don't own one, didn't buy one, and won't buy one.

How much intelligence does this actually take to figure out?

footandmaff
Sep 19, 2007, 02:41 PM
If you watch the youtube video, Steve is almost confused by the question, almost as if he only knew people were hacking the iPhone to add apps, and didn't know people were using it to unlock the iPhone. You didn't even get the impression that he knew what the term "unlock" meant. He went like "Oh you mean hacking", which could mean the addition of third-party apps, instead of flat-out unlocking.

Yeah that's pretty interesting actually, after watching the video he really did seem thrown by the question and didn't seem to understand what was meant by the term unlocking, despite the fact that the journalist clearly stated "unlocked for other networks".

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 02:43 PM
If you watch the youtube video, Steve is almost confused by the question, almost as if he only knew people were hacking the iPhone to add apps, and didn't know people were using it to unlock the iPhone. You didn't even get the impression that he knew what the term "unlock" meant. He went like "Oh you mean hacking", which could mean the addition of third-party apps, instead of flat-out unlocking.

Yeah, you're right, it does look like he's talking about regular ol' hacks, not just unlocking:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSgEpgKsLjU&mode=related&search=

That's strange, it really seems to contradict what Schiller was saying. At the same time, though, I think it all depends on a lot. I mean, he was talking about "their job security" in terms of DRM. I think that really directly relates it to unlocking--keeping the networks by keeping the phone locked down.

I don't know. In any case, Apple and the networks cannot win the battle in the end. People will hack every update they release within the month, probably even sooner. They can only change the API so much, so it's possible and likely that 3rd party programmers will have to fix their apps often to make them compatible. But how is that different from writing for the Mac Platform? we're STILL suffering from crappy Carbon applications because Apple changed to OS X from OS 9, and developers didn't want to update for a long time. Apple's got one of the fastest-changing APIs in the industry.

And yet with OS X you can't get around the fact that it's OS X. It's OS X on that iPhone, so it's just a matter of getting a compiler for that processor, and then getting your code to compile using that, and "reverse-engineering" the API. Apple will change little things up, and people will find them quickly and fix their stuff accordingly. The initial hack is the hardest, and that's been done.

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 02:46 PM
Why is it that people are so blind to this fact? "Oh, wow, the iPhone is so cool that I won't bother to worry about what restrictions or contractual obligations Apple places me under, I'm going to buy it and not care." That's in effect what you people are doing. It's stupid. Please stop. This thread is making my head throb.

I would say, stop being hypocritical telling people that they are under no obligation to buy the phone and then acting like you have to read this thread and people are hurting you. You are under no contractual obligation to read this thread, and you've said everything you said in your post in previous posts. Allow me to mention to you that there is a button at the bottom of this thread to unsubscribe, and it will never bother you again.

cal6n
Sep 19, 2007, 02:57 PM
In the first place, you own the phone, but Apple owns the platform and it's Apple's platform to do with as they see fit.

Why is it that people are so blind to this fact? "Oh, wow, the iPhone is so cool that I won't bother to worry about what restrictions or contractual obligations Apple places me under, I'm going to buy it and not care." That's in effect what you people are doing. It's stupid. Please stop. This thread is making my head throb.

I don't own an iPhone. I don't agree to Apple's EULA, I don't agree to use AT&T as my cell phone carrier, I don't want to use GSM, and I don't agree to have to pay twice for a song (in effect) just for the privilege of using it as a ringtone, particularly when there are more non-song sounds I would want to use as ring tones than songs.

Therefore, I (as I already said) don't own one, didn't buy one, and won't buy one.

How much intelligence does this actually take to figure out?

Excellent. Another one for the ignore pile. This thread is a goldmine!

flyingdoctor
Sep 19, 2007, 02:58 PM
Whoooooooo, just read the whole thread. Kinda dizzy now and not sure what the first post said :)

Will apple break the unlock with it's updates? I'd say yes. Intentionally or not it will happen. If the unblock exploits a percieved security hole / threat, then it is a no brainer.

Will the phone get re unlocked? Yep. Count on it. Too many smart people out there who will take it as a challenge.

I'm probably a non typical iphone user. I hate mobile phones. Used to purposly have the wrong number put on my business card :D I travel a lot and end up carying a phone, a PDA, an MP3 player (non Apple) and a notebook. The iphone just struck me as being really slick as I could use it as a phone, PDA and MP3 player. I had real probles getting to grips with itunes and the fact I can't use the iphone as a pen drive is a pain but at least they are small.

I use itunes 7.3.x. Don't see any reason to upgrade. It works OK. I think the iphone is brilliant. Sound quality is super. I have a works blackberry which is on an AT&T contract. I really didn't want to have to spend another 60 dollars a month just for the pleasure of using something which cost me 400 bucks to begin with. So I unlocked it. Use the AT&T sim I have and it works a treat. Auto locks into my home wireless network and performs flawlessly. I am assuming that the blackberry push emal is on some kind of edge data plan so I don't see a problem checking the odd email or webpage from the iphone. Could be wrong of course. I have now installed stumbler and a book reader and a dictionary and if I can get the darn thing to sync with outlook on my XP computer I'll be a happy man. However the error it gives me doesn't make sense so I have doubts I'll ever get it to work, but I can manually input the data so no big deal.

Do I want TV out or other upgrades? Not really. More than happy with what I have. I'll not bother updating itunes or the iphone unless it is "safe" to do so. I think apple have a superb bit of kit on their hands. I think it is a pity more people aren't able to use it, but hey that's life. I'm just a passenger on the bus:cool:

Pete

Clive At Five
Sep 19, 2007, 03:43 PM
Okay, what's with all the moral slander that unlockers are the spawn of satan and are undermining the fabric of our country/world?

Let me set up this scene: I do not own an iPhone (yet). Seeing that the iPhones initially cost $500+ and would require an expensive contract, my wife and I began a new two-year contract with AT&T. Since then, the iPhone has dropped $200 & unlocking has been made possible. This would grant my wife and I the option of now owning two iPhones, and being able to continue using our existing phone plan with AT&T.

Apple gets the hardware money. AT&T gets the service money. Granted, Apple won't be getting their 40% cut, but they WILL make a hardware sale that wouldn't have otherwise happened. Plus there are consequences for us: no data plan, and possibly no VVM. All in all, we're paying less to get less, but the original parties are still getting their cash.

Is this wrong? If you're thinking 'yes' right now, what would it take for me to make it right? Cancel my existing AT&T contract, pay a termination fee, then re-enroll with AT&T, paying extra for data and VVM? My other option is just not buying an iPhone, but in that scenario neither Apple nor AT&T see a penny. In the prior two cases, they at least get something, which is better than nothing. So let's assume I pursue one of these two routes.

Until now, I've completely neglected what is fair to me. For example, is it fair for me to pay over a thousand dollars to terminate an AT&T contract so that I can start a new AT&T contact? I would find it VERY difficult to believe if you're thinking 'yes'. Not only wouldn't it be fair to me, but it wouldn't be fair to AT&T. They would probably make less if I signed up for an iPhone contract. And let's not all forget here, the Silver Bullet (and I'm only going to say this once): IT IS NOT ILLEGAL FOR A USER TO UNLOCK HIR OR HER PHONE. This should be argument enough to support us would-be "hackers."

The only immoral part of the iPhone purchasing process is the attempt by Apple and AT&T to limit your rights as a user and force you to use a specified carrier.

End of story.

-Clive

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 04:28 PM
Let me set up this scene: I do not own an iPhone (yet). Seeing that the iPhones initially cost $500+ and would require an expensive contract, my wife and I began a new two-year contract with AT&T. Since then, the iPhone has dropped $200 & unlocking has been made possible. This would grant my wife and I the option of now owning two iPhones, and being able to continue using our existing phone plan with AT&T.

Apple gets the hardware money. AT&T gets the service money. Granted, Apple won't be getting their 40% cut, but they WILL make a hardware sale that wouldn't have otherwise happened. Plus there are consequences for us: no data plan, and possibly no VVM. All in all, we're paying less to get less, but the original parties are still getting their cash.

Is this wrong? If you're thinking 'yes' right now, what would it take for me to make it right? Cancel my existing AT&T contract, pay a termination fee, then re-enroll with AT&T, paying extra for data and VVM?
-Clive

We had a family plan and a new contract, but my specific phone was not under contract. AT&T let us add my phone to the plan and extend the contract (by 2 years from the date of purchase, NOT accumulating on top of the other contract). You wouldn't have to cancel your contract and pay termination fee to get an iPhone (w/o the unlock). You would still have to buy the iPhone data plan, though. AT&T wants more of your money. They aren't going to stop you from buying a device that they don't subsidize so that they can make more money off of you on your monthly bill.

That said, I am not disagreeing with you about the unlock business. I don't think it's wrong for AT&T/Apple to sell you a locked phone, that's standard fare with a contract. I don't know if it's wrong for them to break 3rd party unlocks with future updates... I'm inclined to think not. But for someone to say that it's wrong to unlock your phone? It's not even illegal.

kingtj
Sep 19, 2007, 04:29 PM
...it's a ridiculous idea! Hardware is *not* intellectual property. If I buy a tangible, physical piece of equipment, it most certainly IS mine to do whatever I want with it afterwards. The "restrictions" and "contractual obligations" I'm placed under with my iPhone are ALL about my SERVICE commitment with AT&T .... not about my right to modify the code within the phone itself.

Yes, Apple has made it clear that there's a certain manner in which they'd like things to go related to the phone's operations and features. (EG. Custom ring-tones should all be purchased for 99 cents each through the iTunes store and downloaded to your phone that way.) That doesn't mean if I don't accept that as MY preferred method of doing it, my ONLY logical option is to pass on buying the iPhone!

Looking deeper into that whole situation, one quickly learns that Apple never wanted to handle it that way in the first place. Unfortunately, they're being forced to do so by the RIAA, who insists that cellphone ring-tones made from songs constitute public performances of copyrighted works they hold the rights to -- and so they want financial compensation for them playing on your phones.

Myself? I chose to sign up with AT&T, accepting their terms of service with my iPhone. I will certainly also consider "unlocking" my phone in the future, if I ever travel overseas and it becomes financially advantageous to do so. This, of course, wouldn't change a thing for AT&T, as I'm still paying them my monthly fee as agreed (or paying their penalty for terminating it early?). But it would let me swap SIMs for a "pay as you go" SIM that might make more sense in that circumstance.

It will probably end up for the courts to decide if Apple's official stance of "we're going to block people from unlocking our phone" is acceptable or not. It MAY be perfectly legal, ONLY because their phone isn't really "subsidized" in the traditional sense. (And laws about unlocking refer to subsidized phones.)

But ultimately, Apple sold me a piece of HARDWARE (defined as electronics parts coupled with firmware that makes them function) -- and *I* retain the right to modify any of that for my own personal use. I'm not LEASING the phone from Apple.


In the first place, you own the phone, but Apple owns the platform and it's Apple's platform to do with as they see fit.

Why is it that people are so blind to this fact? "Oh, wow, the iPhone is so cool that I won't bother to worry about what restrictions or contractual obligations Apple places me under, I'm going to buy it and not care." That's in effect what you people are doing. It's stupid. Please stop. This thread is making my head throb.

I don't own an iPhone. I don't agree to Apple's EULA, I don't agree to use AT&T as my cell phone carrier, I don't want to use GSM, and I don't agree to have to pay twice for a song (in effect) just for the privilege of using it as a ringtone, particularly when there are more non-song sounds I would want to use as ring tones than songs.

Therefore, I (as I already said) don't own one, didn't buy one, and won't buy one.

How much intelligence does this actually take to figure out?

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 04:34 PM
What I don't get is the "I travel abroad a lot" argument for unlocking.

First of all, AT&T does offer an international roaming plan can you switch on and off, paying for it only when you are going to be out of the country. It's not super cheap, but it's a whole lot less expensive than paying full international roaming rates without the plan.

And for maybe $25 you can get a legitimately unlocked GSM world phone -- I think there must be three of them lying around my house right now, either weren't carrier locked in the first place or can be legitimately unlocked as they are post-contract. When the new firmware is released, it has an option to turn off EDGE roaming, so you can still use Wi-Fi without fear of roaming onto international EDGE networks. Don't answer your iPhone if it rings. Pick up a local SIM wherever you are and pay local rates for your cheap-o "travel phone". It's not like you get to keep your current phone number using a local SIM, anyway: you have to tell people who need to call you the local number that gets assigned to your local SIM.

Why is this such a big deal? You can still use everything but the actual phone features of your iPhone this way, and it's not like you'll be missing much because even if the phone were unlocked and it was perfectly permissible to drop in a local SIM when traveling abroad, you're not going to have your usual number, your usual voice-mail box, or any of the features that depend on specific carrier support.



Why is it a big deal? Well,what';s the point of having an iphone if you have to bring an extra phone to make calls when you're travelling. If you only travel occasionally, I can see that being a solution, but if you travel frequently it really isn't convenient to bring another phone (and another charger). The whole point and beauty of the iphone (vs. the ipod touch) is the phone feature and that everything is in one small unit...

peestandingup
Sep 19, 2007, 04:39 PM
hmm..

I'd think being that..you know.. dood's been in the game a while now:rolleyes:, he just may have the resources to keep up.

My bet's on Steve, care to wager?
Yeah, but the dudes not been in the phone business very long. Thats a whole nother ball of wax right. A phone is not an iPod.

Virgil-TB2
Sep 19, 2007, 05:29 PM
Nicely put, but not reality. ... His quote makes it clear that, like OS X on Macs, iPhones will remained locked... enjoy...What other network service provider do you want to switch to for OS-X? :)

Seriously though, you are confabulating two different issues, (iPhone locked vs. iPhone unlocked, and iPhone development open vs. iPhone development closed.) You are also somehow trying to equate OS-X being shipped only on Mac PC's with either the iPhone being locked to AT&T's network, or with iPhone 3rd party development being closed? (it's unclear which) Neither comparison makes much sense IMO.

Also, these and many other apparently polarized situations are usually far from being so in reality. There are many shades of grey in-between.

peestandingup
Sep 19, 2007, 05:37 PM
What other network service provider do you want to switch to for OS-X? :)

Seriously though, you are confabulating two different issues, (iPhone locked vs. iPhone unlocked, and iPhone development open vs. iPhone development closed.) You are also somehow trying to equate OS-X being shipped only on Mac PC's with either the iPhone being locked to AT&T's network, or with iPhone 3rd party development being closed? (it's unclear which) Neither comparison makes much sense IMO.

Also, these and many other apparently polarized situations are usually far from being so in reality. There are many shades of grey in-between.
Exactly. OS X is not "locked". Last time I checked, I could install any app I wanted & could pretty much do whatever else I wanted with my machine/OS. Especially with the UNIX shell right there.

Its locked to the hardware, but thats not the issue. This would be like Apple selling their computers & requiring you to ONLY use a certain provider for internet service.

I always said locking down the phone to only certain carriers was the stupidest move Apple could make with such a device. The "no 3rd party apps" stance is just icing on the cake.

indianboy010
Sep 19, 2007, 05:50 PM
can i just fake activate the phone and use my existing att sim without unlocking.
thx in advance
shivam

owen-b
Sep 19, 2007, 06:17 PM
Scott,

It doesn't bother me at all that I chose to sign a contract and you didn't have to. The only thing that bugs me is that I really think all this unlocking is holding up the works as far as timely feature updates, and since I paid for my iPhone, too, and I'd like to get the feature enhancements, your decision to violate the license is affecting me, where as my decision to abide by the license doesn't affect you at all.

Oh what a load of BS. Stop whining, sanford, whoever you are. What is this, the 'sanford show'?

"Apple's lack of updates are being caused by them having to stop the hackers waah waaaaahwaaaaaahh"

Maybe Apple's lack of the latest update is because they just haven't written it with your demanding nature in mind?

big_malk
Sep 19, 2007, 06:20 PM
I fail to see how people can say it is wrong to unlock the iPhone, I can see where the argument comes from, but it's a weak argument at best.

I don't know about the US, but in the UK it's very unusual (maybe even un-heard of) for a network company to not subsidise a phone on a contract, my friend has a >500+ (≈$1,000) for free with a contract.

Limiting the choice to one network seriously limits choice in the UK, where networks are plentiful (Vodafone, Orange, T-Mobile, Three... even Tesco supermarket has its own mobile network!)

So if I have >12 months left on my contract, it would cost me over 360 to buy out my contract, (and its possible O2 will refuse me a contract anyway, long story), should I go without an iPhone?

I've bought one fair and square, Apple have their profit from it. O2 don't, but I have nothing from them in return.

P.S. I read somewhere it illegal to lock a phone to a network in the UK, can anyone confirm (or deny) this? I'm sure 'unlocked' is a term used frequently when buying and selling phones, so it must be legal to have locked phones?

emegmac
Sep 19, 2007, 06:31 PM
I don't understand everyone getting upset by unlocking the iphone. As a apple shareholder I understand why apple locked into a carrier, to profit from monthly fees. But I also believe that unlocking is good for apple also. For one every other country that does not have a contract with apple, ie Canada, every phone sold just helps profits that otherwise would be impossible. Im sure sales have improved by the unlocking that has come about. More sales = higher stock prices. There is a large market outside Us, UK, Germany, ect. There's no denying that the unlock caters to these markets very nicely.

In my personal case I despise AT&T. I have had such bad service by this company. It is the only company I ever delt with that made me so mad They forced me in yelling at the poor phone reps. Also the fact that they give all their records with the US government. I don't liked being spy'd on. When apple anounced the partnership I decided that I would not be giving my money to them for the phone. Since the unlock I have bought one to use on tmobile. Thats revenue that apple otherwise would not have generated.

I think if apple really wanted to tie into one carrier they should haved offered the customer a discounted iphone if you sign the at&t contact. And a higher price for an unlocked phone. this is how its always been in the cell phone arena. What incentive do you have to sign a 2 year contact if you have to pay full price for the phone. Jsut my.02$.

Sedulous
Sep 19, 2007, 06:35 PM
I don't understand why it matters to AT&T or Apple if people unlock the phone. An unlocked iPhone still won't sneak on to AT&T's network. AT&T is still the only service in the U.S. that the iPhone is 100% compatible... if that is not enough for someone, so be it, let them use it with the service they want.

Apple never should have made so many restrictions on how you can use the iPhone. This was the same mentality that nearly killed the Mac.

matticus008
Sep 19, 2007, 06:35 PM
But what about those who buy a phone and cancel their contracts with ATT but keep the phone? Surely, they are still apple customers and should be allowed to sync with itunes?
They would have activated their phones properly and wouldn't have the problem. You wouldn't need to use an activation hack if you had signed up with and then canceled the AT&T service.

Well, I am wondering how the agreements on the iphone can be valid at all, if you don't agree to them while activating on itunes. It seems to me you didn't agree to anything at that point, if you just purchased the phone but activated via other means.
Because willful ignorance doesn't get you anywhere. You have enough information to know that what you're doing is intentionally evading agreement to terms. Your use of the product is legally adequate assent to the terms of the contract given to you with said product.

Your actual agreement is measured only by objective observation, not your secret mental state while doing so.

...it's a ridiculous idea! Hardware is *not* intellectual property.
Actually, that's not entirely true. There are a number of intellectual property rights related to the hardware itself. What you're saying is that possession of the object is yours, which is true.

That does not extend to the software on the phone, however. The firmware on it most certainly is protected by law and owned wholly by Apple.
If I buy a tangible, physical piece of equipment, it most certainly IS mine to do whatever I want with it afterwards.
With the hardware. If you want to snap it in half, play with a soldering iron, or erase the memory and install something of your own on it instead of Apple firmware (and so long as "your" firmware does not contain ANY of Apple's), go for it.
not about my right to modify the code within the phone itself.
Err, no. You have no rights to the code save a nonexclusive license for the execution of said code. You have no legal right of access to Apple's source code. If you want to modify the code and compile it yourself and keep it to yourself, that's fine. If you want to reverse engineer the binaries, you can. But they don't have to make it easy for you to install third-party code. They don't have to allow the distribution of code that infringes on any of their rights. They don't have to work around third-party code on the phones (and therefore can break whatever they want to break, whenever they want to break it).
It will probably end up for the courts to decide if Apple's official stance of "we're going to block people from unlocking our phone" is acceptable or not.
There is no need to take it that far. They can do anything they please with firmware updates, iTunes updates, or carrier network operations.
(And laws about unlocking refer to subsidized phones.)
No, they refer to all cellular handsets. It is not a qualified exception.
and *I* retain the right to modify any of that for my own personal use.
Sure. But they have the right to modify any of it for any reason they feel like, so you've gained no advantage. They still have superior interest in every aspect of the phone's firmware; AT&T likewise still has full control over how it interacts with their network.

LizKat
Sep 19, 2007, 06:37 PM
About half these stylin' posts about unlocking the iPhone or hacking it to accept native third party apps have an attitude that sums up roughly as "If I feel like it, I will." It reminds me of how some drivers act when they rip through our tiny village in this dairy farming valley at 60mph instead of doing 30 for one whole mile...

The thing is, that same "If I feel like it, I will" stance is also taken by the county sheriff's deputies with respect to writing tickets in the zone. Imagine that. And the speeding drivers always seem so shocked when the cop turns on the party lights...

I expect iPhone users who violate their agreements with Apple may be angry and surprised if Apple seriously cracks down or takes legal action against hackers. The hackers won't have a leg to stand on, any more than do the morons who crest this curving hilltop out here in their SUVs at 68mph, without thought of hitting the back of a slow moving manure spreader or an 1800-pound Holstein out for a stroll. A hamburger check at 68mph is not something you can brush off. And I rather suspect that if Apple comes at you with a cease and desist order with plenty of legs in the terms you agreed to, you can't brush that off either.

Time to grow up. The iPhone is a sophisticated mobile communications device incorporating patented and licensed constructions, and it must operate within FCC parameters for such devices. . Of course it has terms of use. Get over it and adhere to them. I've rarely heard so silly a thing as the argument that Apple means disrespect to developers if it's seen to be cracking down on hackers. What?! And as for the unlocking... let Apple do it when the time comes, after its exclusive gig with ATT expires.

owen-b
Sep 19, 2007, 07:07 PM
About half these stylin' posts about unlocking the iPhone or hacking it to accept native third party apps have an attitude that sums up roughly as "If I feel like it, I will." It reminds me of how some drivers act when they rip through our tiny village in this dairy farming valley at 60mph instead of doing 30 for one whole mile...

The thing is, that same "If I feel like it, I will" stance is also taken by the county sheriff's deputies with respect to writing tickets in the zone. Imagine that. And the speeding drivers always seem so shocked when the cop turns on the party lights...

I expect iPhone users who violate their agreements with Apple may be angry and surprised if Apple seriously cracks down or takes legal action against hackers. The hackers won't have a leg to stand on, any more than do the morons who crest this curving hilltop out here in their SUVs at 68mph, without thought of hitting the back of a slow moving manure spreader or an 1800-pound Holstein out for a stroll. A hamburger check at 68mph is not something you can brush off. And I rather suspect that if Apple comes at you with a cease and desist order with plenty of legs in the terms you agreed to, you can't brush that off either.

Time to grow up. The iPhone is a sophisticated mobile communications device incorporating patented and licensed constructions, and it must operate within FCC parameters for such devices. . Of course it has terms of use. Get over it and adhere to them. I've rarely heard so silly a thing as the argument that Apple means disrespect to developers if it's seen to be cracking down on hackers. What?! And as for the unlocking... let Apple do it when the time comes, after its exclusive gig with ATT expires.

And I tire of holier-than-thou types like you.Although technically you have a point about people that say Apple is disrespecting developers - we are being naughty.

But here's a thing. THE PHONE SHOULD NOT BE LOCKED!!!

As is quoted somewhere else in this thread, it's against some law in the US to charge your customers for a phone and then force them to use a certain network if it's capable of using any network.

owen-b
Sep 19, 2007, 07:12 PM
I feel like buying an iPhone and unlocking it just to wind up sanford and (allegedly) delay "his" update by a few more weeks. LOL

Honestly, the sinple facts are these: unlockers don't really have any right to be pissed off when Apple lock the phone back down. They can do that to the code if they want to. It's their code. We just buy the right to use it. It doesn't become our code.

Whether or not Apple and AT&T are allowed to restrict use of the iPhone to just AT&T after we've already bought the handset is another issue, and one that I'd much rather read about rather than people getting terribly personal and/or holier-than-thou with each other, which achieves nothing.

ellisongs
Sep 19, 2007, 07:33 PM
can i just fake activate the phone and use my existing att sim without unlocking.
thx in advance
shivam

Good question.

matticus008
Sep 19, 2007, 07:33 PM
As is quoted somewhere else in this thread, it's against some law in the US to charge your customers for a phone and then force them to use a certain network if it's capable of using any network.
No, it's not. It's against the law to, using copyright law as a basis to do so, sue a customer for unlocking his phone--quite a different beast.

PDE
Sep 19, 2007, 08:02 PM
They would have activated their phones properly and wouldn't have the problem. You wouldn't need to use an activation hack if you had signed up with and then canceled the AT&T service.



But if you cancel, you can no longer use the phone part of the iphone without hacking it. Activation is not the same as unlocking. So, basically, you're left with an ipod touch.


If ATT required a 2-year contract, but didn't lock it to their sim there would be fewer protests. But the fact that they not only get your money every month (guaranteed), but also don't allow you to use it with other sims in other countries is what really ticks me off.

drater
Sep 19, 2007, 08:06 PM
What I want to see is someone do the 2 year contract with ATT, then pay the termination fee of $175. Wouldn't they have to unlock the phone for you then? They said in previous statements that they would be unlocking the phone after a customer has completed his contract, well, the $175 early termination fee would be completing it.

Stella
Sep 19, 2007, 08:27 PM
At the end of customer contracts with O2, AT&T etc, what are Apple going to do?
1. let the customer unlock their iPhone since they've seen their contract through and free to use any network they wish
2. force them to sign up to another contract order for them to continue using their iPhone

It'll be an interesting time.

indianboy010
Sep 19, 2007, 08:34 PM
can i just fake activate the phone and use my existing att sim without unlocking.
thx in advance
shivam
please doesn't anyone have an answer cause im going to buy one tomorrow if i can use it
thx

shadowfax
Sep 19, 2007, 08:43 PM
At the end of customer contracts with O2, AT&T etc, what are Apple going to do?
1. let the customer unlock their iPhone since they've seen their contract through and free to use any network they wish
2. force them to sign up to another contract order for them to continue using their iPhone

It'll be an interesting time.So the terms of service require a 2 year service agreement with AT&T. I wonder what legal power consumers will have in 2 years against Apple/AT&T when they have completed their "contractual obligations" and are still forced to extend their time with AT&T or brick their phone which they legitimately own.

You're right, it will be interesting. Hopefully consumers can find a legal ground to force apple to unlock the phone from AT&T, even if they don't do it of their own accord. And hopefully by then other carriers will support iPhone features like visual voicemail, which I also hope becomes a cell phone standard.

matticus008
Sep 19, 2007, 08:57 PM
But if you cancel, you can no longer use the phone part of the iphone without hacking it. Activation is not the same as unlocking. So, basically, you're left with an ipod touch.
Yep. So what?

It's their phone right up until the moment they hand it to you. They said that they're selling you a phone for use with AT&T service. You said "okay, here's my money." If you don't have AT&T service, then you're out of luck when it comes to any expectation about the device's cellular performance. They don't have any obligation not to frustrate your attempts to use it on other networks.
But the fact that they not only get your money every month (guaranteed), but also don't allow you to use it with other sims in other countries is what really ticks me off.
Sure, but you knew that when you bought it, so you've caused your own distress.

sunnyDlite
Sep 19, 2007, 10:00 PM
SIM cards can identify themselves via the iPhone, I'm sure. iTunes could be modified to lock any iPhone sync'ed, or even just connected to the computer, with a non-approved carrier SIM installed. Being off network won't help with that. But as far as I know the current version of iTunes won't do this.


I use my iPhone as an iPod. I signed up on the goPhone plan to activate legally, and I am going to cancel it, as I intended to stay with Sprint since day one. As long as my ATT sim is in my phone, I don't think it's anyone's business if the service is active or not. Breaking my iPod functionality because I haven't paid my phone bill... that would be WAY too much big brother-ism for me!

big_malk
Sep 20, 2007, 05:06 AM
please doesn't anyone have an answer cause im going to buy one tomorrow if i can use it
thx

I think so, although I can't guarantee it.
I'm waiting for mine to come from eBay to the UK to use with vodafone, so if I can get mine to work, you'll certainly be able to get your AT&T sim to work. Worst case is you'll have to unlock it fully, but with AT&T visual voice mail would still work I expect.

PDE
Sep 20, 2007, 05:54 AM
Yep. So what?

It's their phone right up until the moment they hand it to you. They said that they're selling you a phone for use with AT&T service. You said "okay, here's my money." If you don't have AT&T service, then you're out of luck when it comes to any expectation about the device's cellular performance. They don't have any obligation not to frustrate your attempts to use it on other networks.

Sure, but you knew that when you bought it, so you've caused your own distress.

I did know that, but only because I read about this online. I do NOT think that it is clear on the box that it cannot be used abroad without ATT service, nor did any Apple rep along the way mention anything that another SIM could not be used when abroad. The requirement of ATT activation and contract does not, automatically, preclude using other sims for other services, does it?

I'm sorry, but there are people out there who would have no idea that by signing a contract with ATT, they are not allowed to put another sim card in their phones when abroad. No other manufacturer locks their phones when you buy them directly from them and the assumption is that if you buy directly, and pay full price, it's yours to use as you please. Apple is somehow in between and is happy to sell you the iphone as if you're buying directly, but then have lots of conditions and restrictions that are not really disclosed.

shakastange
Sep 20, 2007, 07:24 AM
When you buy an iPhone from Apple, you DO NOT sign any contract whatsoever. You hand over your cash, you get the phone. A lawyers here could better explain how a contract works but, in my experience with contracts, this is not one that binds you to a specific carrier. Neither are there any terms of how you should use your phone. Many carriers require that you sign up for the contract as part of the phone purchasing process. Again this isn't the case. AT&T only comes in AFTER you already own the phone and you sign onto iTunes.

There is a revenue sharing deal between Apple and ATT but, reports indicate Apple receives revenue only for NEW AT&T customers purchasing the iPhone. If Apple receives 10% from ATT on $50 per month over 2 years, that amounts to only $120. Keep in mind this is for NEW CUSTOMERS only. Many people want the iPhone but will not sign up for whatever reason. I bought one only because the unlock became available. Had it not been for the hackers, this is $400 off the books. Yes we may be in the minority but 10,000 iPhones at $400 a pop is a cool 4 million. Unlocking the phone is not terribly complicated. Even if you cannot do it yourself, everyone knows a tinkerer who is willing.

Apple would've been bothered by these unlocks if the supply of iPhone was constrained and unlockers prevented AT&T customers from buying the phone. The extra revenue would've been lost. But there is enough for everyone and Apple definitely won't complain if some thousands go to people not wanting to go with ATT.

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 07:42 AM
My final word on this subject, a fact which I'm sure will make many of you ecstatic: It matters not whether Apple will lose no money to unlocks, or even if they'll make more money selling more iPhones with easy unlocks available. Apple has a contractual obligation to AT&T to keep the iPhone locked to AT&T in the States for the period of time set forth in the contract -- I've heard as long as five years. Should Apple not apply due diligence in maintaining this exclusivity (doing anything and everything to break the unlocks and keep them broken) AT&T almost certainly -- I haven't actually read the contract between Apple and AT&T, but I can make an educated guess -- has a valid legal claim against Apple. Not only could this result in an expensive settlement or significant award at trial to AT&T, it will cost a fortune to defend, and destroying their partnership with the only stateside carrier committed to supporting existing special iPhone features and any futures ones they should care to release would be disastrous for Apple.

Those of you saying it's not worth it for Apple to put much effort into breaking these unlocks are either woefully naive or merely hopeful because you've unlocked an iPhone and don't want it magically turned into a paperweight overnight.

Finally, on a philosophical note, if the talented people behind these unlocks -- some of them formally educated with advanced degrees -- would put half the effort into solving real problems they put into breaking into a proprietary mobile phone that many may want but absolutely no one needs, we might get something of value accomplished in this world. The fact that they focus their energies on the damn iPhone is testament to why messes in this world indefinitely remain messes.


When you buy an iPhone from Apple, you DO NOT sign any contract whatsoever. You hand over your cash, you get the phone. A lawyers here could better explain how a contract works but, in my experience with contracts, this is not one that binds you to a specific carrier. Neither are there any terms of how you should use your phone. Many carriers require that you sign up for the contract as part of the phone purchasing process. Again this isn't the case. AT&T only comes in AFTER you already own the phone and you sign onto iTunes.

There is a revenue sharing deal between Apple and ATT but, reports indicate Apple receives revenue only for NEW AT&T customers purchasing the iPhone. If Apple receives 10% from ATT on $50 per month over 2 years, that amounts to only $120. Keep in mind this is for NEW CUSTOMERS only. Many people want the iPhone but will not sign up for whatever reason. I bought one only because the unlock became available. Had it not been for the hackers, this is $400 off the books. Yes we may be in the minority but 10,000 iPhones at $400 a pop is a cool 4 million. Unlocking the phone is not terribly complicated. Even if you cannot do it yourself, everyone knows a tinkerer who is willing.

Apple would've been bothered by these unlocks if the supply of iPhone was constrained and unlockers prevented AT&T customers from buying the phone. The extra revenue would've been lost. But there is enough for everyone and Apple definitely won't complain if some thousands go to people not wanting to go with ATT.

Fast Shadow
Sep 20, 2007, 09:36 AM
Just read this whole thread with great interest.

Apparently, I am the devil because I went and bought an iPhone for the specific purpose of running it through the unlocking process, as a technical exercise. I unlocked it successfully following the published instructions, tried it with a T-Mobile SIM, and it worked great. I ended up activating it legitimately and then unlocking it again, so I can use the SIM from my Treo 750w (work phone) in my iPhone, as the iPhone is a lot nicer to carry around when I'm on call.

I feel no particular loyalty to any wireless carrier, but I have been an Apple customer in some shape or form for over 25 years.

I do think the high-and-mighty stance taken by the anti-unlockers is somewhat amusing, because the sort of culture that unlockers and hackers exist within is the culture that Apple was built on. Hating them is hating your roots. This is the same Steve Jobs who used to show up at work barefoot and went out of his way to embarrass and harass IBM people because of how corporate they were.

PDE
Sep 20, 2007, 10:22 AM
Just read this whole thread with great interest.

Apparently, I am the devil because I went and bought an iPhone for the specific purpose of running it through the unlocking process, as a technical exercise. I unlocked it successfully following the published instructions, tried it with a T-Mobile SIM, and it worked great. I ended up activating it legitimately and then unlocking it again, so I can use the SIM from my Treo 750w (work phone) in my iPhone, as the iPhone is a lot nicer to carry around when I'm on call.

I feel no particular loyalty to any wireless carrier, but I have been an Apple customer in some shape or form for over 25 years.

I do think the high-and-mighty stance taken by the anti-unlockers is somewhat amusing, because the sort of culture that unlockers and hackers exist within is the culture that Apple was built on. Hating them is hating your roots. This is the same Steve Jobs who used to show up at work barefoot and went out of his way to embarrass and harass IBM people because of how corporate they were.

Yes!

cliffjumper68
Sep 20, 2007, 10:30 AM
looks like all the unlocking people are screwed... :eek:

wouldn't be a problem if they had chosen a better network.

cliffjumper68
Sep 20, 2007, 10:33 AM
Just read this whole thread with great interest.

Apparently, I am the devil because I went and bought an iPhone for the specific purpose of running it through the unlocking process, as a technical exercise. I unlocked it successfully following the published instructions, tried it with a T-Mobile SIM, and it worked great. I ended up activating it legitimately and then unlocking it again, so I can use the SIM from my Treo 750w (work phone) in my iPhone, as the iPhone is a lot nicer to carry around when I'm on call.

I feel no particular loyalty to any wireless carrier, but I have been an Apple customer in some shape or form for over 25 years.

I do think the high-and-mighty stance taken by the anti-unlockers is somewhat amusing, because the sort of culture that unlockers and hackers exist within is the culture that Apple was built on. Hating them is hating your roots. This is the same Steve Jobs who used to show up at work barefoot and went out of his way to embarrass and harass IBM people because of how corporate they were.

You are exactly right! Compare and contrast with the open letter from Steve about DRM and consumer choice. Wish that applied to carriers too.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 10:36 AM
Finally, on a philosophical note, if the talented people behind these unlocks -- some of them formally educated with advanced degrees -- would put half the effort into solving real problems they put into breaking into a proprietary mobile phone that many may want but absolutely no one needs, we might get something of value accomplished in this world. The fact that they focus their energies on the damn iPhone is testament to why messes in this world indefinitely remain messes.

Allow me to call a g******n load of total, complete, and ultimate hypocritical b******t. Hackers aren't the reason there isn't positive change in the world. Apple, AT&T, Microsoft, and every other tech corporation are. If leaders of corporations and their investors, people with SO FRICKIN MUCH MONEY and in command of absolutely as much talent as the hackers you defame, invested their companies in system and policies that gave customers freedom rather than locking them into one specific way of doing things, That would actually BE something of value in this world--imagine that, a commercial atmosphere where customers were empowered.

Hackers are no one. How many people do you think do what these people have done with the iPhone? Not one one hundred-thousandth of a percent of the people who could JUST AS WELL enact positive change in the world, but would rather make money being monkeys for corporation/business x, not to even mention the government (which I work for :D). Get off their backs, I think they are better for the world than most, whatever you think of what they do.

PDE
Sep 20, 2007, 10:38 AM
You are exactly right! Compare and contrast with the open letter from Steve about DRM and consumer choice. Wish that applied to carriers too.

Let's face it, for all his genius, Mr. Jobs is not a very pleasant individual and, it seems he's also a hypocrite. Using rhetoric to attract, but consistently applying policies and methods that go against the rhetoric is a recipe for a backlash among customers. If Apple wants to stay ahead, I think it's important to genuinely think different - not just in terms of design, but also in corporate policies and attitudes.

PDE
Sep 20, 2007, 10:40 AM
Allow me to call a g******n load of total, complete, and ultimate hypocritical b******t. Hackers aren't the reason there isn't positive change in the world. Apple, AT&T, Microsoft, and every other tech corporation are. If leaders of corporations and their investors, people with SO FRICKIN MUCH MONEY and in command of absolutely as much talent as the hackers you defame, invested their companies in system and policies that gave customers freedom rather than locking them into one specific way of doing things, That would actually BE something of value in this world--imagine that, a commercial atmosphere where customers were empowered.

Hackers are no one. How many people do you think do what these people have done with the iPhone? Not one one hundred-thousandth of a percent of the people who could JUST AS WELL enact positive change in the world, but would rather make money being monkeys for corporation/business x, not to even mention the government (which I work for :D). Get off their backs, I think they are better for the world than most, whatever you think of what they do.


Again: yes! Agreed 100%.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 10:49 AM
Let's face it, for all his genius, Mr. Jobs is not a very pleasant individual and, it seems he's also a hypocrite. Using rhetoric to attract, but consistently applying policies and methods that go against the rhetoric is a recipe for a backlash among customers. If Apple wants to stay ahead, I think it's important to genuinely think different - not just in terms of design, but also in corporate policies and attitudes.

You're probably right, but I tend to think of Jobs as this guy with a vision--a vision for this awesome system of selling music and a totally different cell phone world. But he doesn't own rights to music, and he doesn't own a cell phone company, so he has to get them on board with what he's doing. I am consistently impressed with how he domineers his way through industries that he is new to, but he's not invincible, and he has to make his company money--lots of money. I think he's honest about DRM free, and I think he would prefer not to be carrier locked, but it's something that has to happen for them to take up a position of power in the industry. I think that Jobs and Apple are biding their time.

At least, that's the optimist in me. I realize that they are mostly just out to make a buck.

Clive At Five
Sep 20, 2007, 10:49 AM
My final word on this subject, a fact which I'm sure will make many of you ecstatic: It matters not whether Apple will lose no money to unlocks, or even if they'll make more money selling more iPhones with easy unlocks available. Apple has a contractual obligation to AT&T to keep the iPhone locked to AT&T in the States for the period of time set forth in the contract -- I've heard as long as five years. Should Apple not apply due diligence in maintaining this exclusivity (doing anything and everything to break the unlocks and keep them broken) AT&T almost certainly -- I haven't actually read the contract between Apple and AT&T, but I can make an educated guess -- has a valid legal claim against Apple. Not only could this result in an expensive settlement or significant award at trial to AT&T, it will cost a fortune to defend, and destroying their partnership with the only stateside carrier committed to supporting existing special iPhone features and any futures ones they should care to release would be disastrous for Apple.

My your story has changed from the beginning of this thread... I quote:

You are most likely quite free to buy an iPhone without accepting the contract terms. You can hang it on the wall. Use it as a coaster. Whatever. But activating it by any other means than the exclusive carrier method, or activating it and then installing software that breaks the lock to the exclusive carrier, that violates the SLA, so that you may not do.

Here you accuse users of breaking SLA. Now you're accusing Apple of breaking contract with AT&T. It sort of sounds you're just fighting to fight.

As for the argument itself, you'd have to read the exact terms of the contract to determine whether or not Apple is charged with the task of maintaining a lock. Let's assume you're right and they are obligated to keep the iPhone closed up tight. I think it's been made obvious that it's in Apple's best interest NOT to be locked into AT&T. They'll sell way more iPhones, and the hardware sales will far outshine the cut they get from AT&T. For this reason, it's obvious that Apple is just saying this to keep up pretences.

However, let's assume Apple does pursue relocking and, moreso, to the best of the ability. No amount of software or firmware updates will ever prevent the iPhone from be unlockable. To the end-users who unlock, there will be no difference if the GUI unlock has 30 steps internally or 1000. All they do is install it on their phone and hit go. Apple is essentially only affecting the hackers.

The real problem is with hardware. All hardware has one thing in common: it can be hacked. Period. There's nothing Apple can do within its power to change that. The best they can do is give unlockers a minor inconvenience. This is precisely what they will do, and it will have little to no impact of the unlocking "industry." Period. And they'll only do it to pacify AT&T.

Those of you saying it's not worth it for Apple to put much effort into breaking these unlocks are either woefully naive or merely hopeful because you've unlocked an iPhone and don't want it magically turned into a paperweight overnight.

False. Read above. I'm neither naive on the subject nor do I own an iPhone. Let's not make an ass out of you and me, now.

Finally, on a philosophical note, if the talented people behind these unlocks -- some of them formally educated with advanced degrees -- would put half the effort into solving real problems they put into breaking into a proprietary mobile phone that many may want but absolutely no one needs, we might get something of value accomplished in this world. The fact that they focus their energies on the damn iPhone is testament to why messes in this world indefinitely remain messes.

This is not philosophical. This a social commentary, and it's in error. Technological prowess of Computer Science gurus does not imply prowess in any other field, nor does it imply the capability of such.

Besides, what could a few CSci geniuses add to the leagues of Sociology, Psychology, Philosophy and Physics geniuses who HAVE been working on solving the world's problems since the beginning of time? You think added a few computer gurus to the equation will make the world a better place. While there's no doubt he's a young genius with much potential, I doubt anyone would elect George Hotz (Geohot) for president. Hacking an iPhone is one thing. Having the skills and knowledge required to run a nation is another.

In summary, let's drop the holier-than-thou attitude and accept that unlocking is legal, constitutional, and unpreventable by Apple, nevermind the fact that it's in their best interest to do so.

-Clive

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 11:02 AM
Well I thought I was through with this, but I want to address this as it pertains to me (I should really turn off e-mail notifications for these forums).

The foregoing assumes unlocking and/or hacking is holding up this next firmware update and possibly future updates.

I do not think you are the devil. I question the ethical prudence of information technology professionals and academics releasing these unlocks to the general public, but not particularly the people who use the unlocks.

It is this simple: I write long, long documents requiring lots of revisions. For years I wrote drafts on a manual typewriter or longhand, even though I already had a Mac for final typescripts. I finally determined that my process of using manual instruments before the Mac was merely keeping tradition for the sake of keeping it; I was not improving my work and indeed I was only holding it up. So for hours on end I sit in front of a Mac. I'm not a computer hobbyist. Beyond the fact I enjoy my career, I don't enjoy sitting in front of a computer all day long. I'm glad some people do or we wouldn't have these tools available to us in such refined form.

I bought an iPhone so that I could take care of things that are either necessary to my work, or extremely convenient for work or personal reasons, without spending yet more time in front of my Mac. So that I could do these via an uncomplicated user experience, as is the reason I use a Mac (funny enough, my hard drive died yesterday and although it cost me a lot of time to fix things, once I had installed everything again and restored my backed up information, I restarted my Mac and it was like the failure never even happened, again proving for me the value of a Mac). Checking e-mail, paying bills, checking reference material, those sorts of things are my primary iPhone use, along with the phone and the calendar.

I want this firmware update for the WiFi Music Store because I use the iTunes Store quite a bit due to the dismal selection in local record stores -- there's only one decent shop left, and it's hit or miss -- when I don't want to wait a few days to receive new music in the mail from an online store. I want the ability to preview and buy new music while sitting on my sofa in comfort, not balancing a laptop on my knees, or parked at my desk, not staring into that one big bright eye of my Mac even more. That's it.

Therefore end-user unlockers are not devils, they are serious annoyances -- again assuming that attempts to stop the unlocking are holding up the release of the firmware that includes the WiFi Music Store, which I can't prove but it is not an unreasonable supposition. (Also, potentially, Apple trying to make sure that iPhone hackers will not find a way to fool the iPhone into thinking it is on WiFi when it is on EDGE, so that the WiFi Store will function ever EDGE.)

I am not upset that you didn't have to enter into a contract with AT&T as I did. Or that you perhaps pay less for similar services. I don't care. I don't care that you do with your iPhone as you see fit according to the guidance of your own ethics and desires. But I care when the fulfillment of your desires interferes with the fulfillment of my desires, as I own my iPhone, too, and have as much right to the enjoyment of it as you do -- including access to timely feature updates from Apple, updates which may be artificially delayed due to what you are doing with your iPhone. Because what I am doing with my iPhone affects you not at all.

And that is it. It's that simple. If you were starving and needed food, I'd feel ethically bound to look out for you if I at all had the means. But I in no way feel I should have any care to look out for your interests in using a *mobile phone* in a manner not intended by the phone's manufacturer and contracted carrier.

Just read this whole thread with great interest.

Apparently, I am the devil because I went and bought an iPhone for the specific purpose of running it through the unlocking process, as a technical exercise. I unlocked it successfully following the published instructions, tried it with a T-Mobile SIM, and it worked great. I ended up activating it legitimately and then unlocking it again, so I can use the SIM from my Treo 750w (work phone) in my iPhone, as the iPhone is a lot nicer to carry around when I'm on call.

I feel no particular loyalty to any wireless carrier, but I have been an Apple customer in some shape or form for over 25 years.

I do think the high-and-mighty stance taken by the anti-unlockers is somewhat amusing, because the sort of culture that unlockers and hackers exist within is the culture that Apple was built on. Hating them is hating your roots. This is the same Steve Jobs who used to show up at work barefoot and went out of his way to embarrass and harass IBM people because of how corporate they were.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 11:45 AM
sanford, to be a little tongue in cheek (at a certain member of this board who is not you)--you should have known that when Apple announced the most popular, talked about phone in history, and then said it would be locked to one carrier in each country it was sold in, that it was inevitable--INEVITABLE like poor people in China stealing windows, and iPod rip-offs all over East Asia, that PEOPLE WOULD TRY to unlock it. It's been in the news since day one, maybe even before that.

So why get upset about something that you know is going to happen? You shouldn't have bought the phone if you couldn't deal with things that you KNEW were the case before you bought it!

Ok, that's stupid ;).

But seriously, I am in the same boat as you (except that I use AppTapp to have MobileFinder and an IM client installed on my phone). I signed a contract with AT&T, and I am sticking with them, and have no interest in unlocking my phone till my contract ends or I go overseas, whichever happens first. And I am ALSO greatly looking forward to firmware update 1.1.1, more for double-clicking support on the home button than anything else.

But gosh, it's really kind of silly to hear you keep going ON AND ON about that stupid bullcrap of "you can do anything you want as long as it doesn't keep me from getting what I want." You sound like John Galt in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. I could sort of understand "you can do anything you want as long as you aren't hurting me," but good lord, the former statement reflects a really skewed sense of entitlement IMHO.

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 12:10 PM
Okay, first off I am not at all for Apple locking out native application hackers, except I think it's reasonable they lock out any native app that uses the AT&T network. This for practical reasons. The iPhone is essentially just a Mac OS X-based little computer. You can do some crazy things with it. And I believe AT&T has the entire Blackberry (on EDGE) contract for the DoD. So imagine a native iPhone application that uses the EDGE network that brings down AT&T's entire EDGE network. Even if they don't have the DoD, it's still an issue for a huge number of customers, not just iPhone users. Otherwise, I'm all for your freedom to install native applications. They won't support them. You might cause yourself usage problems or even potentially permanently brick your iPhone. But you know that and if you accept that risk, that's okay. (Note, also, that before the deluge of unlocks, Apple's Joswiak -- I think I spell his name differently ever time I write it -- stated that Apple might with updates break native third-party programs but would not do so intentionally in most cases. Of course that's changed now due to unlocking. I think they intend to clamp it down as best they can, period.)

It's interesting you mention Rand because this is essentially a philosophical argument: whose benefit supersedes another's? In this case "hurt" and "want" are essentially synonymous since we are talking about phone features, not discharging firearms in public areas. But, yes, I admit I do feel a sense of entitlement about getting full, timely benefit from current and future features of something for which I paid at retail and for carrier service. (It's a phone. I'm not saying I'm entitled to eat seven-course meals while others starve.) Can you say that unlockers feel no sense of entitlement to unlock? Sure they do. From my perspective, my entitlement supersedes theirs and I'm sure they feel just the other way round. I mentioned previously that because of this, we have a circular argument. So I say they annoy me and they are annoyed that I am annoyed by them. Who really should out? I have no idea. There are no good criteria to triage iPhone users' desires.

So I'll stand pat on my notion that I deserve my desired benefits over the desired benefits of unlockers. I mean, there's really no good ethical yardstick here.

Perhaps the most equitable solution is to freeze unlockers at the feature set they already have, not break their phone because of the unlock. But I doubt unlockers will think that's reasonable.

sanford, to be a little tongue in cheek (at a certain member of this board who is not you)--you should have known that when Apple announced the most popular, talked about phone in history, and then said it would be locked to one carrier in each country it was sold in, that it was inevitable--INEVITABLE like poor people in China stealing windows, and iPod rip-offs all over East Asia, that PEOPLE WOULD TRY to unlock it. It's been in the news since day one, maybe even before that.

So why get upset about something that you know is going to happen? You shouldn't have bought the phone if you couldn't deal with things that you KNEW were the case before you bought it!

Ok, that's stupid ;).

But seriously, I am in the same boat as you (except that I use AppTapp to have MobileFinder and an IM client installed on my phone). I signed a contract with AT&T, and I am sticking with them, and have no interest in unlocking my phone till my contract ends or I go overseas, whichever happens first. And I am ALSO greatly looking forward to firmware update 1.1.1, more for double-clicking support on the home button than anything else.

But gosh, it's really kind of silly to hear you keep going ON AND ON about that stupid bullcrap of "you can do anything you want as long as it doesn't keep me from getting what I want." You sound like John Galt in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. I could sort of understand "you can do anything you want as long as you aren't hurting me," but good lord, the former statement reflects a really skewed sense of entitlement IMHO.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 12:29 PM
Okay, first off I am not at all for Apple locking out native application hackers, except I think it's reasonable they lock out any native app that uses the AT&T network. This for practical reasons. The iPhone is essentially just a Mac OS X-based little computer. You can do some crazy things with it. And I believe AT&T has the entire Blackberry (on EDGE) contract for the DoD. So imagine a native iPhone application that uses the EDGE network that brings down AT&T's entire EDGE network. Even if they don't have the DoD, it's still an issue for a huge number of customers, not just iPhone users. Otherwise, I'm all for your freedom to install native applications. They won't support them. You might cause yourself usage problems or even potentially permanently brick your iPhone. But you know that and if you accept that risk, that's okay. (Note, also, that before the deluge of unlocks, Apple's Joswiak -- I think I spell his name differently ever time I write it -- stated that Apple might with updates break native third-party programs but would not do so intentionally in most cases. Of course that's changed now due to unlocking. I think they intend to clamp it down as best they can, period.)

It's interesting you mention Rand because this is essentially a philosophical argument: whose benefit supersedes another's? In this case "hurt" and "want" are essentially synonymous since we are talking about phone features, not discharging firearms in public areas. But, yes, I admit I do feel a sense of entitlement about getting full, timely benefit from current and future features of something for which I paid at retail and for carrier service. (It's a phone. I'm not saying I'm entitled to eat seven-course meals while others starve.) Can you say that unlockers feel no sense of entitlement to unlock? Sure they do. From my perspective, my entitlement supersedes theirs and I'm sure they feel just the other way round. I mentioned previously that because of this, we have a circular argument. So I say they annoy me and they are annoyed that I am annoyed by them. Who really should out? I have no idea. There are no good criteria to triage iPhone users' desires.

So I'll stand pat on my notion that I deserve my desired benefits over the desired benefits of unlockers. I mean, there's really no good ethical yardstick here.

Perhaps the most equitable solution is to freeze unlockers at the feature set they already have, not break their phone because of the unlock. But I doubt unlockers will think that's reasonable.

I have little respect for unlockers that think they're entitled to unlock. That's the thing about entitlement, I think it's generally a load of bollocks, certainly to the degree we're taking it--talking about your entitlement to a timely update on a phone that's being ruined by hackers. That's stupid. I can appreciate a hacker that says, "Oh, I'm not allowed to unlock, my phone? guess which finger I'm holding up right now. I'm doing it anyway, and prepared to face the lack of support I get for it." That has nothing to do with entitlement, that's taking what you want regardless of entitlement, which is, surprise enough, how the world actually works. Free speech (for example) is not a right you intrinsically have, it's something you have to stand up for, whether or not your government thinks it's your right. Or you could let them walk on you.

GFLPraxis
Sep 20, 2007, 12:34 PM
I for one hope they do.Things have never been so screwed up.
The U.S. isn't Europe either.

Unlocking a phone is legal in the US.

If Apple deliberately bricks phones that are unlocked...I'm not sure the legal status.

Clive At Five
Sep 20, 2007, 12:35 PM
It's interesting you mention Rand because this is essentially a philosophical argument: whose benefit supersedes another's? In this case "hurt" and "want" are essentially synonymous since we are talking about phone features, not discharging firearms in public areas. But, yes, I admit I do feel a sense of entitlement about getting full, timely benefit from current and future features of something for which I paid at retail and for carrier service. (It's a phone. I'm not saying I'm entitled to eat seven-course meals while others starve.) Can you say that unlockers feel no sense of entitlement to unlock? Sure they do. From my perspective, my entitlement supersedes theirs and I'm sure they feel just the other way round. I mentioned previously that because of this, we have a circular argument. So I say they annoy me and they are annoyed that I am annoyed by them. Who really should out? I have no idea. There are no good criteria to triage iPhone users' desires.

Wow, you are so not a philosopher, so stop trying.

You don't have a circular argument. You have mutually-exclusive resolutions. In fact you don't even have that. If their hacking has a time-delay effect on Firmware updates, it's nothing more than that: a delay. Therefore it has nothing to do with you NOT getting an update. It's about you being impatient. Besides, there's no evidence to support that Firmware 1.1.1 is delayed due to blocking hackers. You're inventing that as a scapegoat for your "entitlist" attitude.

So I'll stand pat on my notion that I deserve my desired benefits over the desired benefits of unlockers. I mean, there's really no good ethical yardstick here.

No eithical yardstick? It's man versus corporate entity. Who do you want to win?

Perhaps the most equitable solution is to freeze unlockers at the feature set they already have, not break their phone because of the unlock. But I doubt unlockers will think that's reasonable.

They most certainly would not. Plus there's no way to enforce it. Hackers will triumph because of hardware's limitations. End of story.

-Clive

matticus008
Sep 20, 2007, 12:36 PM
I did know that, but only because I read about this online. I do NOT think that it is clear on the box that it cannot be used abroad without ATT service, nor did any Apple rep along the way mention anything that another SIM could not be used when abroad.
It was all over the news, for one thing, but more to the point, it is your responsibility to know about products when you buy them.
The requirement of ATT activation and contract does not, automatically, preclude using other sims for other services, does it?
No, but it was widely disclosed that it was carrier locked. It was disclosed by Apple and AT&T and either one would have told you so had you asked.
I'm sorry, but there are people out there who would have no idea that by signing a contract with ATT, they are not allowed to put another sim card in their phones when abroad.
They are allowed to do it, and it has nothing to do with signing a contract or not. It is specifically that they're buying a phone which is released exclusively for AT&T customers. Customers remain free to unlock the devices themselves. They're just not supported in that endeavor by Apple or AT&T, and there's no guarantee that their solution will continue to work. International travelers know to ask about SIM locks on phones. If you're clueless about a particular purchase, you should find a knowledgeable friend or do research beforehand.
Apple is somehow in between and is happy to sell you the iphone as if you're buying directly, but then have lots of conditions and restrictions that are not really disclosed.
How are they not disclosed? It's all over the Apple websites, the AT&T website, the news, and the Internet in general. Even if it weren't, it would still be in the materials enclosed with the product, which are available to review before purchase.

Customers are responsible for knowing. Short of strapping you to a chair and reading the entire terms and conditions to you, there's little else that could be done to inform you.

GFLPraxis
Sep 20, 2007, 12:38 PM
I have little respect for unlockers that think they're entitled to unlock. That's the thing about entitlement, I think it's generally a load of bollocks, certainly to the degree we're taking it--talking about your entitlement to a timely update on a phone that's being ruined by hackers. That's stupid. I can appreciate a hacker that says, "Oh, I'm not allowed to unlock, my phone? guess which finger I'm holding up right now. I'm doing it anyway, and prepared to face the lack of support I get for it." That has nothing to do with entitlement, that's taking what you want regardless of entitlement, which is, surprise enough, how the world actually works. Free speech (for example) is not a right you intrinsically have, it's something you have to stand up for, whether or not your government thinks it's your right. Or you could let them walk on you.

Oh please; it's perfectly legal to unlock your phone in the US. I'm willing to accept the lack of support bit, and once I get an iPhone and unlock it I won't download firmware updates until I get confirmation it won't brick the phone, etc.

But it's not breaking a law; it's not even breaking a moral grey zone. Legally, you DO have the right to do with that phone what you will. Of course, you'll just have to deal with the resulting lack of support from Apple.

PDE
Sep 20, 2007, 12:58 PM
It was all over the news, for one thing, but more to the point, it is your responsibility to know about products when you buy them.

No, but it was widely disclosed that it was carrier locked. It was disclosed by Apple and AT&T and either one would have told you so had you asked.

They are allowed to do it, and it has nothing to do with signing a contract or not. It is specifically that they're buying a phone which is released exclusively for AT&T customers. Customers remain free to unlock the devices themselves. They're just not supported in that endeavor by Apple or AT&T, and there's no guarantee that their solution will continue to work. International travelers know to ask about SIM locks on phones. If you're clueless about a particular purchase, you should find a knowledgeable friend or do research beforehand.

How are they not disclosed? It's all over the Apple websites, the AT&T website, the news, and the Internet in general. Even if it weren't, it would still be in the materials enclosed with the product, which are available to review before purchase.

Customers are responsible for knowing. Short of strapping you to a chair and reading the entire terms and conditions to you, there's little else that could be done to inform you.


Customers are responsible for being reasonably informed and companies are responsible to inform reasonably. The former is always used as an escape clause for many companies' refusal to do the latter. There should not be an implicit pre-condition that you watch news coverage, access computer-related sites or really anything else on your right to get clear and comprehensive information. Many people don't. The only thing it says on the package is that ATT activation is required. There is nothing about that the phone will not work with other providers abroad after you have signed your contract with ATT. It would make sense to many people, I'm sure, that once you've signed up with ATT and are committed to paying the monthly fees, that ATT wouldn't mind you putting in another sim when abroad or anywhere. And, if you consider that all other phones in the industry are unlocked when purchased directly from the manufacturer, it would not be far-fetched for a customer to assume that that would be the case here too.

Either way, of course there's a two-week return policy in place, albeit with a fee attached. It's not really a problem, but I would understand if people make reasonable assumptions based on past experience with other phone purchases. I've overheard quite a few visitors in the Apple Store ask/talk about putting their foreign sim cards in it. The fact that people ask this questions shows that not everybody is as clued in to these things as the people around here , and U.S. customers in general. In many places of the world, locked phones are no longer as common.

pezza
Sep 20, 2007, 01:07 PM
Right, go easy on me 1st post, but here is a question, In europe apple have announced o2(UK) T-Mobile (Germany) and Orange (France), well in the UK we have all three of those operators.

What are the chances of an iphone purchased in France locked to orange working in the UK on the orange network, or perhaps a T mobile German version working on T Mobile in the UK?

gkarris
Sep 20, 2007, 01:11 PM
Unlocking a phone is legal in the US.

If Apple deliberately bricks phones that are unlocked...I'm not sure the legal status.


Steve is out to change the mobile phone world. Revenue sharing with the handset manufacturer and "bricking them if not on the proper network" is a couple of them...

matticus008
Sep 20, 2007, 01:12 PM
Customers are responsible for being reasonably informed and companies are responsible to inform reasonably.
Yes, but 'reasonably' does not mean 'actually'. Companies inform reasonably by publishing information on their websites and in the materials packaged with the product. These materials are available upon request prior to purchase. That is reasonably informed under any color of law.

All they have to do is make the information available. It's out there, it's easy to ask for. Customers are responsible for reading it. If a customer refuses to take an initiative to inform himself, it's no one's responsibility to chase him down and force-feed him information.
There should not be an implicit pre-condition that you watch news coverage, access computer-related sites or really anything else on your right to get clear and comprehensive information.
There isn't. All you had to do was walk into a store and ask or look at either Apple or AT&T's website. The other sources are merely supplemental.
There is nothing about that the phone will not work with other providers abroad after you have signed your contract with ATT.
How would a reasonable person know this? If they weren't aware that the phone is locked, they certainly wouldn't know of carrier portability. They would look at the iPhone "for AT&T exclusively" and take it at face value.

It's only people with that dangerous level of a little knowledge that walk into this little trap of yours. People who think they know more than they know, and arrogantly refuse to research or ask, and then they get screwed over by their own actions.
all other phones in the industry are unlocked when purchased directly from the manufacturer, it would not be far-fetched for a customer to assume that that would be the case here too.
You'd have to be a fairly unusual and well-informed customer to have ever purchased a phone directly from a manufacturer. In fact, by choosing to do so, it indicates that you know of particular limitations (in software and SIM locks) of purchasing a vendor-branded handset. You're disproving your own point.
The fact that people ask this questions shows that not everybody is as clued in to these things as the people around here , and U.S. customers in general.
And? They're doing their duty and asking about products and doing research. That's exactly how it's supposed to work.

w0by
Sep 20, 2007, 01:17 PM
I have tmobile and my phone is unlocked. You couldn't pay me to have at&t, their service sucks in the chicagoland area and they don't even have customer support after 8pm. How stupid is that??

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 01:30 PM
Unlocking a phone is legal in the US.

If Apple deliberately bricks phones that are unlocked...I'm not sure the legal status.

I think legal, because there isn't any law that specifically protects unlocking, there's just law that states it's not actionable -- except under circumstances of reverse engineering, etc.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 01:31 PM
Oh please; it's perfectly legal to unlock your phone in the US. I'm willing to accept the lack of support bit, and once I get an iPhone and unlock it I won't download firmware updates until I get confirmation it won't brick the phone, etc.

But it's not breaking a law; it's not even breaking a moral grey zone. Legally, you DO have the right to do with that phone what you will. Of course, you'll just have to deal with the resulting lack of support from Apple.

Man, there's no reason to "Oh please" me. I never said it wasn't legal, but it's obvious to those that have eyes that Apple and AT&T are not allowing it via contract terms and via software updates. Right? And what do you do? Show them one of your ten fingers. Whether it's legal or not, though I really think it is, as you do. But you are sure as heck wrong about it being a grey zone. The only law I know of that allows unlocking is the DMCA, and from what I have read it's more than a little convoluted.

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 01:32 PM
I have tmobile and my phone is unlocked. You couldn't pay me to have at&t, their service sucks in the chicagoland area and they don't even have customer support after 8pm. How stupid is that??

You know what, I ran into the no support after hours, holidays and limited on weekends, too. But then I had to remember that I'm a big proponent of the idea that people deserve reasonable schedules and shifts, and holidays off, so I had to just deal with it because it actually follows my own labor philosophy. Even if it's not just because AT&T is nice to their employees.

smacman
Sep 20, 2007, 01:32 PM
I can understand Apple's motives for re-locking the phone in the next major update. After all, they do have an obligation to the providers they have struck deals with. What I will say though is this...

If the re-lock is something that can be avoided by not upgrading iTunes / iPhone firmware, then fine. I won't upgrade and I'll live with an iPhone that is slightly degraded in functionality. I guess that is the price one pays for using an unlocked phone.

On the other hand, if Apple somehow renders our phones useless by way of an invisible behind the scenes update (which I have heard is their plan), I am finished. I will sell my iPhone, along with all four of my Macs. The arrogance of Apple and Jobs seems to be infinite. I did nothing illegal by buying an iPhone and unlocking for use outside of the US. If they offered it in my country at the same time as the US, I probably would have signed a contract and bought one. Furthermore this move would demonstrate just how much Apple has it's customers by the "balls". I have been looking for a reason for a long time to give Linux another try, and this might be just the push I need.

Either way, interesting times are ahead.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 01:36 PM
Right, go easy on me 1st post, but here is a question, In europe apple have announced o2(UK) T-Mobile (Germany) and Orange (France), well in the UK we have all three of those operators.

What are the chances of an iphone purchased in France locked to orange working in the UK on the orange network, or perhaps a T mobile German version working on T Mobile in the UK?
I think you will still have to unlock. The iPhone/iTunes setup will know when you register that you are in the UK trying to get a French iPhone to unlock, and it either won't let you or it will make you use O2, probably based on your billing address or something. I would presume that even if you got it activated it for Orange/TMo in the UK, probably by setting up billing from an address in France/Germany, you would be paying whatever roaming charges apply for those companies for making calls from the UK.

sanford
Sep 20, 2007, 01:42 PM
Well, I'm out. I'm sick of it, really, the whole debate. I don't think ultimately you and I disagree so much. I'm just saying that in this case I feel just as much as I should have my update now as unlockers feel they should be able to unlock now. That's the extent of my entitlement.

If you get a chance, explain to Clive At Five down there what a circular argument is and how the debate of who has more right to what in this case fits the definition of a circular argument, one in which each point of debate has an opposite number that brings us right back round the same loop, same issues, all over again; never proceeds forward but only back around on itself to the same points in the same order. Because I'm too freaking tired of the whole thing to bother.

At this point, I'll just be pleasantly surprised if the update shows up by Christmas no matter what Jobs said about later in September. Have a good one, shadow.

I have little respect for unlockers that think they're entitled to unlock. That's the thing about entitlement, I think it's generally a load of bollocks, certainly to the degree we're taking it--talking about your entitlement to a timely update on a phone that's being ruined by hackers. That's stupid. I can appreciate a hacker that says, "Oh, I'm not allowed to unlock, my phone? guess which finger I'm holding up right now. I'm doing it anyway, and prepared to face the lack of support I get for it." That has nothing to do with entitlement, that's taking what you want regardless of entitlement, which is, surprise enough, how the world actually works. Free speech (for example) is not a right you intrinsically have, it's something you have to stand up for, whether or not your government thinks it's your right. Or you could let them walk on you.

matticus008
Sep 20, 2007, 01:45 PM
On the other hand, if Apple somehow renders our phones useless by way of an invisible behind the scenes update (which I have heard is their plan), I am finished.
The only way Apple can do it is to update iTunes or release new firmware. If you decline either of these, there's no "silent" update they can push on you.

If you're not on one of the iPhone networks anyway, it doesn't matter if the carriers blacklist your IMEI.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 01:46 PM
On the other hand, if Apple somehow renders our phones useless by way of an invisible behind the scenes update (which I have heard is their plan), I am finished. I will sell my iPhone, along with all four of my Macs. The arrogance of Apple and Jobs seems to be infinite.Where did you hear that? AFAIK, that's just FUD from this thread. There's no indication OF ANY KIND from any real source that Apple is going to brick phones by subterfuge. That would be walking into the Sony RootKit BS with their CDs. They would be on shaky grounds, probably subject to a class action suit. Look at MS and Windows XP. they couldn't brick people's PCs with pirated copies of Windows, much as they wanted to. So they just refused updates to all users that didn't want to install the "Validation Tool" that checks that you have a valid copy. There are boundaries you cannot cross in the software industry, and altering your customers' devices without their consent is 100% one of those things.

Count on this: if you unlock your phone, you will not be able to update to the latest firmware when it comes out. However, you will be able to wait 2-3 weeks, maybe a bit more, maybe a bit less, before someone hacks THE NEXT update, just as they hacked this one, and then you will be able, by some means, to get that update. But Apple and AT&T will not be able to update your software without your permission.

shadowfax
Sep 20, 2007, 01:53 PM
Well, I'm out. I'm sick of it, really, the whole debate. I don't think ultimately you and I disagree so much. I'm just saying that in this case I feel just as much as I should have my update now as unlockers feel they should be able to unlock now. That's the extent of my entitlement.

You have a good one, too. :) no hard feelings, and I think we mostly agree, except at the most fundamental level that I don't think this is about rights. we don't have a right to a firmware update, and they don't have a right to unlock their phones, but they're doing it anyway, and I think that's how it ought to work. If we really can't wait for the firmware update, we should be writing it ourselves--that's what hackers and third-party developers are doing. And that's awesome. It'll be cool if some other people with initiative ALSO establish that consumers have the right to get their phones unlocked, and someone files a class action suit against Apple & AT&T over that. But it has to be clarified in the law before it's established that anyone is doing anything wrong in this whole issue, and it's certainly clear to me that entitlement doesn't enter into it on your side or theirs.

I can sort of understand being upset that we don't have the update. I am certainly complaining about it in private, and I hope they get it rolled out ASAP, but I don't have any idea why that is, and even if it's because of the hackers, I don't see why that's any reason to get upset at them.

ScottDrummer
Sep 20, 2007, 02:03 PM
hackers and "home made" programmers are what make the IT industry interesting, it provides prospects for programmers to create useful applications that can aid everyday things.
I personally feel apple should leave this wide open, and for apple to be the instigator of a revolution where programmers are developing apps for the phone and other apple products in order to make it a multi purpose and useful device to its users beyond what apple have already provided.
lock the thing down and you just get what apple give you, people dont write software for it and the whole 'scene' which is quickly developing will become a very boring place, this wouldnt be good for sales.
im not sure why apple went with a carrier, rather than just releasing the device worldwide sim free, maybe there are reasons for this, i guess we will see further down the line.

ericsthename
Sep 20, 2007, 02:07 PM
I have an iPhone and it's unloacked and the reason is simple - I live in Canada. I did the Windows/Blackberry thing for a long time and last year made the move to a Mac. It has been a whole new computing experience and a very welcome change. When the iPhone was announced I was ecstatic - an Apple device to replace the Blackberry! But no iPhone for Canada......

When it comes to GSM in Canada, there is only one game in town - Rogers and they have shown absolutely no indication that they are planning to release it in Canada so I got one (thanks SC) and unlocked it. It has been everything the Mac switch was and there is one huge benefit to me. Data rates in Canada are hugely expensive so the WiFi capability of the iPhone is a major benefit to me. My data usage has gone down about 75% since I started using the iPhone mainly because I can check my email at the office when away from my desk and at the airport where there is a hotspot ( I work in airline security so I spend about 30% of my time at the airport). Also at home I can do a quick check of email without having to fire up my computer.

So while I have an unlocked iPhone, it is not because I am trying to screw Apple or AT&T or anyone else. If and when Rogers releases the iPhone I will be first in line, but until then I will use it unlocked. The rotten part is with Apple actively trying to stop the unlocks, I can't get the new features and my big question is will leopard be a problem (i.e. will I "have" to update the firmware for it to talk to my Mac).

The iPhone is not just a phone to me, it is a better way to communicate just as the Mac is a better way to compute.

So I'm unlocked and "feature-locked" until Rogers gets off their asses and/or Apple realizes the world doesn't end at the 48th parallel.........

Exactly where I'm at in this picture - but don't forget its actually the 49th parallel ;)

bbarnhart
Sep 20, 2007, 02:14 PM
With the iPhone so successful, I wonder in hindsight if Apple would have been in a better position if they had just sold unlocked phones and not relied on a partnership with AT&T or any other carrier. Since US T-Mobile doesn't mind that you're running with an iPhone (or any other phone), why would AT&T care either? You're paying a monthly fee and they didn't have to subsidize the phone.

But, with Apple's revenue sharing plan with AT&T and European partners, they must feel, ultimately, that they can be more profitable using a partner. These relationships seem incompatible with unlocked phones. I wonder what percentage of phones Apple is willing to concede to unlocks. My guess is about 5%. In the US, T-Mobile is the only nationwide compatible carrier. There are many regional, but smaller carriers.

I'm betting the way Apple will beat the unlock crowd is to sell the iPhone for US$199 before middle of November. But, to get the phone at that price, you must sign a 2-year contact with purchase of the phone. By subsidizing the phone, you "lock" the buyer into the monthly contract.

jdechko
Sep 20, 2007, 02:23 PM
Just Steves RDF to keep the corps happy...they aren't trying that hard.

That's what I think. I really think Steve's just saying that to keep AT&T pacified for the time being.

big_malk
Sep 20, 2007, 02:31 PM
I can think of one reason Apple would want to be partnered with one carrier; they were able to force the unlimited data into the monthly plan, (that and they get a cut of the monthly bills).

Using the full, un-watered-down web will surely use a lot more bandwidth than the crummy wap, mobile, whatever-its-called version of the web. And Apple will want people showing of their iPhones and the browser when people ask about them.

If people had to pay to show of the browser, or didn't want to use the web as much because of the higher bandwidth and higher cost, it would put people of the iPhone.

I have ordered me an iPhone, and plan to unlock it and use it with my Vodafone contract in the UK. It will cost me 1 a day for between 0.5MB and 15MB a day. Plus, there's no EDGE coverage with Vodafone, so its GPRS for me :( So (in this case at-least) there really would be a benefit to using the carrier Apple choses, not just because of the unlocked/update danger.

Stella
Sep 20, 2007, 04:47 PM
Oh dear me, you've been infected by SJ's RDF.

No application EVER on a smartphone, be it, Symbian, Palm, Blackberry etc has EVER crashed a cell network, NOR is it possible!

Applications on mobile-OSX are no different than that of applications on any other smartphone platform.

The reason why there is no third party applications is down to the following possible reasons:
1. Application want ( as usual ) to control the platform
2. Mobile OSX isn't mature enough ( security / stability / other ).

An application that makes use of EDGE uses the internet, so it would be no different than having to use 3G, GPRS - it would be totally transparent to the application. The application would request to open a data connection and the phone OS will take care of the rest. There are plenty of internet-enabled applications on all smartphone platforms.

So imagine a native iPhone application that uses the EDGE network that brings down AT&T's entire EDGE network.

megfilmworks
Sep 20, 2007, 08:36 PM
whatever...

Give it an hour and there will be a fix after each update.

What a hassel. Looks like I'm through with hacking. Better things to do with my time.

Fast Shadow
Sep 21, 2007, 02:44 AM
Very unlikely they would deliberately brick phones that are unlocked. Too much risk of accidentally bricking a few legit phones and having a huge PR blunder to deal with.

megfilmworks
Sep 21, 2007, 08:30 PM
It's a great argument, forget the morality issue or entitlement issue. Is it legal or illegal to hack your iPhone and use a carrier other than ATT?
If you say yes or no, then support the claim with a regulation, user agreement, code or court decision. No more opinions on this one. Does anyone have the FACTS?

PDE
Sep 21, 2007, 08:44 PM
It's a great argument, forget the morality issue or entitlement issue. Is it legal or illegal to hack your iPhone and use a carrier other than ATT??
If you say yes or no, then support the claim with a regulation, user agreement, code or court decision. No more opinions on this one. Does anyone have the FACTS?

And what about those who are using ATT with an unlocked phone but not the iphone plan??? Like me... ;-) Am I going to be arrested?

megfilmworks
Sep 22, 2007, 12:44 AM
And what about those who are using ATT with an unlocked phone but not the iphone plan??? Like me... ;-) Am I going to be arrested?
Who knows...does anyone out there have the facts?

capoditutti
Sep 22, 2007, 07:07 AM
In the UK, the consumer has the right to have the mobile phone lock removed for a fee. The when and where of it depends on what the user's situation is.. Contract phone users can have the network lock removed after varying periods as per user agreement and T&Cs, and PAYG phone can be released from the supplying network the day they're bought - as long as the user is willing to pay the fee.

Can someone take a look at the below-listed probabilities, compare them with the iPhone locking scenario and tell me how on earth they can justify locking the phone that someone has paid full price for? Are people renting the thing or buying it outright, because this needs to be made clear.


If Apple made an active effort (secure, pre-installed & active EFI-based tech for example) to somehow prevent Mac users from running other OSes or virtual machines on Macs, would people be happy with that?
If iPods could only EVER be filled with DRMed music from the iTunes store, would people be buying them to the tune of 100 million units?
If, for example Mercedes Benz or Toyota found a way of restricting it's cars to a special fuelling nozzle only found at filling stations run by BP, Esso, Texaco or Shell for example, would it sell as many as it does now?


Would any of these actions be considered legal, because if not, Apple have a case to answer for in my view, and they may need to clearly state at point of sale (and before the ACTUAL sale) that the device and associated/marketed features can only successfully be used on one network. Then we'll see how many they end up selling. I understand that they don't aim to change the mobile market entirely in this case versus e.g. the iPod based on the percentages SJ said he's going after.

It does hurt to be told your choice is to accept whats on offer this time or leave it, but i'm leaving it. The device is top-knotch, and unusually for Apple they've gone even further than the iPod DRM situation with the iPhone. I'll pass on this one - the same way i've had to leave a few other Apple products because they didn't fit my purpose. Freedom of choice is all you can throw at Apple right now - feel free to use it :o

scunky
Sep 22, 2007, 02:37 PM
Did you know that steve jobs and and his old mate wozniak used to hack public
telephones to get free phone calls ??? this was when they were a poor students.

go here to watch the documentary http://chime.tv/#doc/9zxd

acrafton
Sep 22, 2007, 03:37 PM
I can understand Apple's motives for re-locking the phone in the next major update. After all, they do have an obligation to the providers they have struck deals with. What I will say though is this...

If the re-lock is something that can be avoided by not upgrading iTunes / iPhone firmware, then fine. I won't upgrade and I'll live with an iPhone that is slightly degraded in functionality. I guess that is the price one pays for using an unlocked phone.

On the other hand, if Apple somehow renders our phones useless by way of an invisible behind the scenes update (which I have heard is their plan), I am finished. I will sell my iPhone, along with all four of my Macs. The arrogance of Apple and Jobs seems to be infinite. I did nothing illegal by buying an iPhone and unlocking for use outside of the US. If they offered it in my country at the same time as the US, I probably would have signed a contract and bought one. Furthermore this move would demonstrate just how much Apple has it's customers by the "balls". I have been looking for a reason for a long time to give Linux another try, and this might be just the push I need.

Either way, interesting times are ahead.

Legally, Apple would be in a world of trouble if they somehow figured out how to unilaterally (ie, without your consent) "render your phone useless", they would be sued by individuals and problem some state AGs and they would lose.

We need to keep in mind these things:
1. If you buy an IPhone from Apple you have not agreed to ANYTHING either explicit or implicit relative to who you will get your service from. Sign posted in a store don't contractually bind me.
1B. Apple's agreement with ATT does not obligate me in any way. I am a third party and Apple can't impose terms (other than those I explicitly agree to).
2. IF you hack your IPhone you may invalidate your warranty (this will need to be legally resolved as well). For example, if the screen has dead pixels. . .a hack is not the cause.
3. Nobody is STEALING anything. If you use another carrier you are paying that carrier. The oft mentioned DirecTV ref is not valid - people were STEALING a service by design.
4. There is some level of safe harbor under the DMCA rulings/opinions for unlocking phones.
5. Steve's goal is 10M IPhones by 2008, not increasing profit by making $ off of the contracts (that is gravy but NOT his goal).
6. MSFT got in antitrust trouble for making IE the default and difficult to remove browser (pretty mild in retrospect). Apple bricking phones is much worse.

So, what do I think will happen?
1. Apple will provide updates that close known loopholes in the security system.
2. ATT will make you activate in their stores when you buy them there.
3. Apple will purposely 'haze over' what their intention is re hacks.

Fast Shadow
Sep 22, 2007, 06:29 PM
Did you know that steve jobs and and his old mate wozniak used to hack public
telephones to get free phone calls ??? this was when they were a poor students.

go here to watch the documentary http://chime.tv/#doc/9zxd

Yes, this is the kind of thing that makes me smile when I hear people talk about how "Apple is a business and exists to make money", because it's so far removed from the core values that Apple was founded on. Apple's thrived as a company because they've always followed a different set of rules and values than their competitors. Has everybody forgotten "Think different?" - it's not just a marketing slogan, it's the company's most important asset. And the further Apple drifts away from those founding values, the more vulnerable they become to losing their edge and being just another Microsoft. Which is fine by me, I'll be happy to take anything Apple leaves behind and use it to my own advantage. Just like Jobs did versus the big guys in the early 1980's.

drater
Sep 22, 2007, 06:51 PM
Yes, this is the kind of thing that makes me smile when I hear people talk about how "Apple is a business and exists to make money", because it's so far removed from the core values that Apple was founded on. Apple's thrived as a company because they've always followed a different set of rules and values than their competitors. Has everybody forgotten "Think different?" - it's not just a marketing slogan, it's the company's most important asset. And the further Apple drifts away from those founding values, the more vulnerable they become to losing their edge and being just another Microsoft. Which is fine by me, I'll be happy to take anything Apple leaves behind and use it to my own advantage. Just like Jobs did versus the big guys in the early 1980's.


You guys are ridiculous. If I did the things I did in college at work, I'd be fired in a heart beat. What they've done is matured, that's all. Just because they don't hack things, doesn't mean they don't "think different?".

Further they drift? Why, cause they won't let you unlock your iPhone? They didn't unlock their OSX to run on other computers and I'm glad they didn't, and I'm glad their doing the same here. Apple doesn't care what you guys think, because if they did, they would have turned into M$ a long time ago. You guys are like fans on the sideline of a NFL football game screaming at the coach telling him what to do because you played high school football. Unless you're a Jets fan, let the professional handle it.

Abstract
Sep 22, 2007, 08:21 PM
The terms of iPhone ownership include a phone locked to a contract with a specific carrier. Accept those terms or don't. The ethical route to taking a stand against such terms is *not to buy the product and not to support the company with your money*. It is not to provide profit for the company, anyway, and think you don't have to accept the terms that have been set forth. Sorry. Your ethics are awash in self-justification of want, want, want. If you don't like the terms, don't buy the damn thing. There are plenty of competitors with more liberal policies just waiting for your money.

Agreed.

TurboSC
Sep 22, 2007, 08:43 PM
Well I mean what do you expect him to say... , " Yes, good job with the unlocking guys, I encourage you to continue."

Of course he's going to have to back the companies that invest in Apple... I don't think they're going to make it that much harder to unlock... but we'll see.

PDE
Sep 22, 2007, 10:02 PM
Legally, Apple would be in a world of trouble if they somehow figured out how to unilaterally (ie, without your consent) "render your phone useless", they would be sued by individuals and problem some state AGs and they would lose.

We need to keep in mind these things:
1. If you buy an IPhone from Apple you have not agreed to ANYTHING either explicit or implicit relative to who you will get your service from. Sign posted in a store don't contractually bind me.
1B. Apple's agreement with ATT does not obligate me in any way. I am a third party and Apple can't impose terms (other than those I explicitly agree to).
2. IF you hack your IPhone you may invalidate your warranty (this will need to be legally resolved as well). For example, if the screen has dead pixels. . .a hack is not the cause.
3. Nobody is STEALING anything. If you use another carrier you are paying that carrier. The oft mentioned DirecTV ref is not valid - people were STEALING a service by design.
4. There is some level of safe harbor under the DMCA rulings/opinions for unlocking phones.
5. Steve's goal is 10M IPhones by 2008, not increasing profit by making $ off of the contracts (that is gravy but NOT his goal).
6. MSFT got in antitrust trouble for making IE the default and difficult to remove browser (pretty mild in retrospect). Apple bricking phones is much worse.

So, what do I think will happen?
1. Apple will provide updates that close known loopholes in the security system.
2. ATT will make you activate in their stores when you buy them there.
3. Apple will purposely 'haze over' what their intention is re hacks.

I was in the Apple Store 5th Ave this evening and there were literally hundreds of tourists buying iphones. And that was just one evening - I'm sure they sell thousands every week to people who are just visiting. Now, of course it's their responsibility to know that an ATT contract is required, but Apple does nothing to stop the sales or at least inform them that warranties will not be honored if they unlock them, even though they know full well that these iphones are going to get unlocked when they get to whatever country they're going.

I think it would incredibly poor of Apple to decide to brick all these iphones it has sold under these circumstances. It would also alienate a lot of its customers - the ones that bought the iphones. Keeping these people happy will almost certainly guarantee more business in the future and that is also worth something. Apple should really be careful how it handles this.

megfilmworks
Sep 23, 2007, 12:05 AM
Everyone still seems to be speculating. Does anyone know the codes, legal decisions, software agreements and end user agreement specifics? It sure would be helpful to hear more than opinions. Aren't there any lawyers out there?

fourthtunz
Sep 23, 2007, 05:36 PM
Maybe stopping it completely is impossible. But they don't have to let unlocked phones play nice with iTunes, I'd imagine. And if they cut it off at that level it'd be pretty devastating since iTunes is the way most people would get all their media onto it, right?

If it doesn't play nice with itunes it hurts apple more than att.

matticus008
Sep 24, 2007, 01:18 AM
And what about those who are using ATT with an unlocked phone but not the iphone plan??? Like me... ;-) Am I going to be arrested?
No, of course not. You've not done anything against the law if we're to assume that you didn't make any binding agreement not to and the unlocking process doesn't require you to misappropriate any proprietary and restricted information.
Who knows...does anyone out there have the facts?
Sure. The exemption to the anti-circumvention law is as follows:
"5. Computer programs in the form of firmware that enable wireless telephone handsets to connect to a wireless telephone communication network, when circumvention is accomplished for the sole purpose of lawfully connecting to a wireless telephone communication network."
Source: United States Copyright Office (http://www.copyright.gov/1201/).

This does not invalidate other claims against the locking process, per se, so people that make the unlocking software can still be liable for damages and even criminal penalties, depending on how they go about creating the unlocking tool.

Also note that this exception to the copyright rule does not require that the handset maker or network operator actually help you unlock the device. It does not require that they keep any exploits or vulnerabilities open. It simply requires that they not sue you for copyright infringement and that if you are "lawfully connected" to your network, that they not arbitrarily lock the phone (by expressly changing the SIM lock code--since none of the iPhone activation techniques thus far use a "lock code" technique [if they did, you would not need to flash your firmware], this is not applicable here).

The rule also does not mean that carriers can't put language into their contracts about refusing to support phones with modified firmware or that they can't lock out phones using said unauthorized firmware. For instance, the "sole purpose" of most activation hacks is not just a SIM unlock--it's a modification allowing third-party development, so that use is not protected by the exception--only the unlocking is. If you have violated copyright with some other hack, you're still certainly liable. But Apple isn't going to find out or do anything about it to you personally. They're just going to release firmware that breaks what you've done.

So again, they can't simply lock the phones by broadcast, but they don't have to support your efforts, and they don't have to support modified-firmware devices, and they don't have to keep the back doors open.
If Apple made an active effort (secure, pre-installed & active EFI-based tech for example) to somehow prevent Mac users from running other OSes or virtual machines on Macs, would people be happy with that?
That's not a parallel situation--adding your own software is very different from modifying theirs. There is no prohibition on installing your own software on the iPhone. You can wipe the memory and install Linux if you want to. Unfortunately it would no longer function as a cell phone at that point, since the baseband firmware is proprietary and includes the necessary security measures and connectivity to a particular cellular network.

Your problem here is not with Apple, but with AT&T. Cellular networks are not "open access" technologies--they're not the Internet. They are closed, proprietary services to which admission is granted by those who own them. You have no issues whatsoever doing anything you want to your iPhone until you try to connect it to a private network without authorization.

It's your phone, and you can do mostly whatever you want with that phone. But it's AT&T's network and Apple's code, and they can do mostly whatever they want.
If iPods could only EVER be filled with DRMed music from the iTunes store, would people be buying them to the tune of 100 million units?
That's neither relevant nor illegal. They would be less successful, but that's entirely a business decision to be made by the company.
If, for example Mercedes Benz or Toyota found a way of restricting it's cars to a special fuelling nozzle only found at filling stations run by BP, Esso, Texaco or Shell for example, would it sell as many as it does now?

Again, it's not "how successful they would be in the marketplace." That point is moot. The iPhone is quite successful.
Would any of these actions be considered legal
All of them would be legal (not excepting any strange local statutes).

megfilmworks
Sep 24, 2007, 01:29 AM
Thanks Matticus, very interesting post.

MacsRgr8
Sep 24, 2007, 02:06 PM
I'll add my 2 cents....

We mustn't forget that AT&T does add a function to the iPhone: Visual Voicemail.
This does justify locking the iPhone to one carrier... a bit.
There are quite a few technologies around that are only, or only partly available to carriers. Take I-mode for instance. OK, not the most practical extra on a phone, but it does restrict you to one or just a few carriers and / or phones. If you specifically want a service, then you are restricted in your choices.

Same applies for Mac OS X.... you must buy a Mac to be able to use it :p

So, if you want an iPhone... you must use AT&T to be able to use it. ;)

Ted Witcher
Sep 24, 2007, 04:30 PM
I can only see one benefit to unlocking the phone, and that would be international travel. But hack the phone so I can use T-mobile? Nah, not for me.

Perhaps we should direct our hatred towards ATT, whose international roaming charges are insane (and the phone itself should have controls for disabling EDGE roaming and email, etc., which might come in the next update). They should offer some kind of competitive international pricing plan... make me want to use the phone instead of dread using the phone.

Should Apple have just made an open phone in the first place? Well, it wouldn't be as good in at least one way, because it wouldn't have Visual Voicemail. That feature alone is genius in my mind. But it's their phone with their provider; I am free not to buy it if it doesn't fit the way I roll.

TimmyDee
Sep 24, 2007, 06:31 PM
I can only see one benefit to unlocking the phone, and that would be international travel. But hack the phone so I can use T-mobile? Nah, not for me.

I understand you may not feel like T-Mobile suits you, but there are a lot of us out there for whom T-Mobile offers better customer service and excellent rates. Take myself, for example: I don't need coverage everywhere, just where I live, work, and travel 95% of the time. T-Mobile does this for me. Their rates are also far more competitive. I have 1000 minutes, free N/W, and unlimited EDGE internet access for $60 a month -- that's $20 less than AT&T with 100 more minutes (although I do sacrifice 200 free text messages, so the 100 minute difference could be a wash depending on who you are). Over the lifetime of the contract, that is a $480 difference. Pretty big if you ask me.

So for some people, there is another benefit to unlocking the iPhone. Yours isn't the only one.

Ted Witcher
Sep 24, 2007, 06:35 PM
Yeah, but in your example it seems a little of six-of-one/half-dozen-of-the-other, doesn't it?

TimmyDee
Sep 24, 2007, 06:41 PM
Which part, the minutes/SMS trade-off? That can be remedied by a $5 for 400 SMS package, still coming in at $15/mo cheaper. It may not be everyone's cup of tea, but it will be for others.

severe
Sep 25, 2007, 11:39 AM
hmm..

I'd think being that..you know.. dood's been in the game a while now:rolleyes:, he just may have the resources to keep up.

My bet's on Steve, care to wager?

(uh hem)

:)

GTiPhone
Sep 25, 2007, 11:52 AM
I don't understand the hysteria that this is causing.

The title of this thread is something that absolutely 100% has been known all along. Anyone who has unlocked their phone (first of all is an idiot) should have and would have known and considered this long before buying and unlocking the phone.

The phone was not meant to be unlocked. Period. If you chose to do so and you DO suffer permanant damage, you have absolutely no one to blame but your own geeky self.

I would still say the same thing if Apple hadn't bothered to warn people, and had just released an update that bricked any and all SIM unlocked phones. Answer is, thats what you get. Don't do with a device what is not meant to be done. Else you pay for it.

You wanna play with SIM cards and pick the carrier of your choice (which makes no difference because they ALL suck equally), then get a Razor, or Razr, or Razer, however the hell they spell it this week.

shadowfax
Sep 25, 2007, 12:05 PM
(uh hem)

:)

him, or them?

Wireless carriers are going down. It will be 5-10 years, but they will adapt or die.

severe
Sep 25, 2007, 12:12 PM
him, or them?

I say +1 for Steve, at this juncture. Proven by the panic.

*How to relock your iPhone before the firmware update (http://www.tuaw.com/2007/09/24/how-to-relock-your-iphone-before-the-firmware-update/)
*Relocking your iPhone (Not working?) (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2007/09/24/relocking-your-iphone/)
*SIM Relocking Tool to Come (http://www.macrumors.com/iphone/2007/09/25/sim-relocking-tool-to-come/)

etc.

megfilmworks
Sep 26, 2007, 09:54 PM
Worried about the new update and unlocked iPhones? Vote:
http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=359966

ldhilljr
Sep 27, 2007, 11:05 AM
Everyone still seems to be speculating. Does anyone know the codes, legal decisions, software agreements and end user agreement specifics? It sure would be helpful to hear more than opinions. Aren't there any lawyers out there?

I'm a lawyer, but it would be unethical for me to render a legal opinion on a forum like this. Having said that, analzye this yourself: Under what basis could Apple or ATT claim that by purchasing the iPhone you are obligated to use ATT's service?

1. Contract law. I have seen nothing in any of the terms of service that require me to use ATT. I certainly did not sign anything saying I would agree to use ATT when I bought my iPhone. The fact that I KNOW that Apple expects me to use ATT when I activate my iPhone does not legally obligate me to use my iPhone with ATT.

2. Codes. There is no statute or code that requires you to use your cell phone with a particular carrier. There ARE statutes that provide protection against copyright infringement or trade secrets theft. The DMCA was passed in the US to try and prevent people from modifying certain digital items that might be covered by a copyright. The Library of Congress has issued an exemption to the DMCA that allows cell phone owners protection if they modify their cell phone to unlock it. While that exemption provides some protection to cell phone owners, it might not provide protection to someone selling or offering a service to unlock other people's phones. But since the exemption was directed towards the end-user, it would be hard to see Apple or ATT bringing a legal action against end-users (i.e., iPhone owners) to prevent them from unlocking their iPhone. Of course, the DMCA is a US law. There are a whole bunch of other countries out there, and in some of them, people have the right to have their cell phone unlocked under certain circumstances. Since you could always then buy such an unlocked iPhone and take it with you wherever you wanted (e.g., the US), owning or using an unlocked iPhone can't be illegal per se, under any statute or code.

3. Legal decisions/caselaw. To my knowlege there haven't been any yet with respect to the iPhone. It's too soon, and it's hard to see when such a dispute would ripen to a full-blown legal decision. It is MUCH easier for Apple/ATT to try and close the loopholes that allow unlocking (they have the right to do this), and then entice unlocked users to re-lock their iPhones with stunning new features (that's just an exercise of free choice by the iPhone user). If Apple/ATT are going to spend good money on addressing this issue, they will probably spend it there. BUT, they will also take steps to protect what copyright rights they clearly do have. One person who is looking to hack the iPod Touch was planning on posting some of Apple's code on a secure portion of his website to allow select others to access it. Apparently Apple hit the ISP with a cease and desist request, and the code was taken down, since it may not be legal under the DMCA to distribute Apple's proprietary code like this.

Possible conclusions: Is unlocking the iPhone a slightly grey area? Yes. Not because the end user has signed away or waived his/her right to use their iPhone on another network, but because the process of discovering an unlock might run afoul of the DMCA, and because the practical life of an unlock solution might not be satisfactory to many people. Still, it would be hard to see end users being prosecuted or legally challenged for using hacked or unlocked iPhones. The DMCA exemption is there and it was intended to protect them. Prosecuting the hackers themselves is difficult, because if they're hacking to unlock their own iPhone, they are probably protected by the DMCA exemption, too. If the hackers share and exchange data that is protected by the DMCA they might run into trouble, but finding and prosecuting that, in my humble opinion, would be difficult if not impossible (going after someone hacking in the US is one thing, doing so for someone outside the US would be practically impossible in many situations).

This is why I think you see Apple taking the exact route they appear to be doing -- trying to close up known loopholes and trying to entice unlockers to re-lock.

bitslap47
Sep 27, 2007, 11:44 AM
I'm a lawyer, .........

[Removed for ease of quote]

This is why I think you see Apple taking the exact route they appear to be doing -- trying to close up known loopholes and trying to entice unlockers to re-lock.

Is it legal for Apple to void warranty and/or refuse warranty service on an unlocked device that was never physically modified (software unlock, not hardware?)

Fast Shadow
Sep 27, 2007, 02:09 PM
Is it legal for Apple to void warranty and/or refuse warranty service on an unlocked device that was never physically modified (software unlock, not hardware?)

Yes, absolutely. They're not expected to warranty modified code. You might have room to argue if it's a physical defect, but even then you should expect resistance.