Buying a 3GS as a gift, no contract?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Orlics, Dec 1, 2009.

  1. Orlics macrumors newbie

    Aug 24, 2009
    Hey all,

    I don't know about the legality of this, but my father is asking me to buy my mom and my sister each an iPhone, and I'm willing to pay an unsubsidized price so they don't have to switch to AT&T (they are out of the country). Apple's website says this is possible (16gig for $599) but I can't seem to find that $599 3GS anywhere. Must I go through ebay/craigslist/etc?
  2. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    I think you can walk into an Apple store and buy one full price.
    At AT&T they'd probably want you to sign a contract and might not want to sell you one.
  3. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Do they live outside the country? If they do, it might not be a good idea to buy the iPhone in the United States seeing that it's locked to AT&T.
  4. neonbright macrumors member

    Jul 23, 2009
    20 years later and I am done moving...
    You can buy full price at AT&T store without getting a contract, I have.
  5. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    My impression too is that the no-contract iPhones are still carrier locked. You can use Blackra1n or whatever, but it'll never be as simple as having one that's officially unlocked.
  6. thelatinist macrumors 603


    Aug 15, 2009
    Connecticut, USA
    I believe this is true. You also have to be aware that unlocking a new 3GS is no longer as simple as it was. The newest 3GS plugged the hole in iBoot that allowed an untethered jailbreak, so it is likely that soft unlocking any new 3GS you buy will result in a phone that cannot boot on its own without the help of a computer.
  7. ouimetnick macrumors 68020


    Aug 28, 2008
    Beverly, Massachusetts
    When you pay full price for an iphone in the US, You get the same phone that regular people paying $99, $199, and $299 do. You just pay more to get it w/o a contract with AT&T. Too bad its still locked to AT&T.
  8. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

    Jul 17, 2008
    Also, Apple's warranty is only good in the country where the device is purchased. So if you buy an iPhone in US and give it to somebody who lives outside the US, and something were to go wrong, they would have to send it back to US for repair/replacement.

Share This Page