Legality surrounding selling unlocked iPhones

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by mrat93, Dec 27, 2007.

  1. mrat93 macrumors 65816


    Dec 30, 2006
    I'm trying to find a new way to make money, but my dad wants to make sure my idea is 100% legal. From what I've read, unlocking an iPhone for one's self is legal, however, selling an unlocked one is not. I've also read instructions on how to use the free unlocking service, AnySIM. The instructions look simple enough that nearly anyone can do it themselves. My question is: Is it legal to sell the phone with unlocking software (not unlocked) so someone else can unlock it for themselves (legal)?

    An additional note: I know there is currently no AnySIM for OTB 1.1.2 iPhones yet.
  2. bmb012 macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2006
    If you're selling just the software with the phone for more than the phone costs, you're charging for other people's work. If you're charging for anything more than your own time, you're basically stealing someone else's profit...

    I suppose you could always email the developers who created the software.

    Besides, though, if you unlock the iPhone, you're stealing the money AT&T is paying to subsidize the iPhone...

    I'm pretty sure that it's illegal, though who knows if you're actually going to be prosecuted, either way, I'd say it's an extremely dirty way to make a bit of cash...
  3. koobcamuk macrumors 68040


    Oct 23, 2006
    It's too much of a pain in the ass and you won't make enough for your time and effort.
  4. Arcus macrumors 6502a


    Dec 28, 2004
    of my hand will get me slapped.

    So doesnt that kill your business plan right there? What about then 1.1.3 comes out? This sounds like a bad idea , not from a leagl standpoint , but tform the point that you have no control over the firmware. Its hard enough getting sales of anything as it is, having to tell people "Sorry , cant help you" 20 times a day will kill your idea.
  5. kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    1) There is at least one legal case working its way through court right now about the legality of selling unlocked phones. So it's up in the air right now. Research is your friend. And I don't mean just a five minute search.

    2) You're too late. Look on eBay. There are gazillions of people doing what you're talking about, in one way or another.
  6. mrat93 thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 30, 2006
    Yesterday, there were about 900 listings on eBay, ending from $500-$700. There were about 100,000 listings for Wiis this holiday season, and i still made about $500 reselling them.
  7. mrat93 thread starter macrumors 65816


    Dec 30, 2006
    I said "yet." They are still working on a way to do it.
  8. thadoggfather macrumors G3


    Oct 1, 2007
    "arbitrage" is the economics term if you're gonna export them to countries dying for unlocked iPhones. I don't think you'd get into trouble with the law if you start selling them... Apple and AT&T probably won't fund you and be your best friends though.
  9. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    May 19, 2002
    Grey market importers is the term you are also looking for ... and it can get you into some hot water if you import items for resale.

    In the UK they seized the stock and shipping containers of a company importing game boxes before they went on sale in the UK.

    Get big enough doing it and you can lose quite a bit of money if they nail you and take all the stock you have and freeze your bank accounts.
  10. Dakotafan macrumors 6502

    Dec 3, 2007
    my thoughts excactly
  11. paulo999 macrumors member

    Oct 6, 2007
    Got a link for that?

Share This Page