Why did Apple take longer to release the Unlocked iPhone 4s ?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by GadgetGeek407, Nov 19, 2011.

  1. GadgetGeek407 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 26, 2009
    I have a hunch on this cause essentially this time around all the 4s are hardware identical same exact radios in them too. It is indeed just software which allows them to know which carrier to activate on probably done by the IMEI loaded into that carrier.

    Is it possible that I am hearing people say that they are buying iPhones that are att at full outright prices and they already unlocked out of the box?

    is it possible the only reason apple took longer to release them is they were short on iPhones to begin with and it would throw people off to think its a different phone when in reality its the same exact phone but they probably load those IMEI's into some special system on the back end that knows these are factory unlocked?

    I have 5 Sprint iphone 4s brand new and i hate sprint right now cause the reception and data speeds suck and now I'm outside of 30 days and wanting to go to att but jeez between 5 new phones i bought and having to buy 5 more plus etf!!! there has to be an easier way to just get these existing phones to work on att? lol wishful i know
  2. nraudigy2 macrumors member

    Oct 17, 2011
    Apple have had unlocked iphone 4s on sale since first day of launch.
  3. SomeonePlzHelp macrumors regular

    Aug 31, 2011
    Not for every carrier they didn't.
  4. GadgetGeek407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 26, 2009
    Apple did not have a fully factory unlocked iPhone that you can use a tmobile sim card or att in the US on sale since day one
  5. B777Forevar macrumors 6502a


    Jul 25, 2011
    Chicago, IL
  6. bob616 macrumors 6502

    Jul 12, 2008
    That's a lot of iPhones.
  7. cpucrash0 macrumors regular

    May 25, 2010
    that's a lot of ETF fees he's going have to pay if he terminates his contract.
  8. andyprit macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2011
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

    In the UK, apple sell unlocked, sim-free iPhones from the day of release, or at least I'm pretty sure they do.
  9. thewitt macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2011
    The delay in the US was due to contracts with the carriers. Each carrier committed to a certain number of phones for the year, and Apple gave them exclusive sales for about 6 weeks in exchange for their commitment.

    These phones are GSM carrier locked by IMEI number.

    The factory unlocked phones are the exact same hardware, just not factory locked.
  10. Seamaster macrumors 65816


    Feb 24, 2003
    US-centric issue. SIM-free iPhones have been available elsewhere from launch.
  11. youknome macrumors 6502


    Nov 22, 2010
    Sim free iPhone 4S' have been on sale at the Apple store since it launched here in the UK.
  12. daveathall macrumors 68000


    Aug 6, 2010
    North Yorkshire
    Agreed. It must have something to do with contracts with the carriers in the US.
  13. TM WAZZA macrumors 68000

    Sep 18, 2010
    Hamilton, New Zealand
    Apple started selling unlocked iPhones since day one for countries outside US.
  14. GadgetGeek407 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Mar 26, 2009
    yeah i basically have an iPhone for everyone in my house on a family plan, we have always had sprint but it kinda sucks now cause no reception at my office or dads restaurant and its a huge deal breaker, tons of money on iPhones plus new iPhones

    Im thinking to give apple a call today and see if they can exchange all of them for me and i wonder if they would give me unlocked ones in exchange since its the same full price as contract free ones??
  15. ShionoyaTamaki macrumors 6502

    Oct 9, 2011
    you can wait for the dev team to release software unlocks prob bit after they figure out jailbreaking
  16. LapsangSouchong macrumors 65816


    Jul 15, 2010
    the burrows
    I'd assume it was simply a part of their contracts with the carriers. That they'd get a month to lure folks into contracts first.

    And, probably to avoid resellers buying them in bulk, making them unavailable to the carriers.


    When was the last time the dev team was able to unlock a previously un-jailbroken device? Do you really think they'll be able to easily do it again?
  17. ConnorTurnbull macrumors 6502

    Aug 18, 2010
    United Kingdom
    Well yes, there's nothing in the hardware that locks them. It's just software.

    By the way, it's only the US that didn't get unlocked. Pretty much everyone got unlocked on day 1. In the UK, my unlocked one arrived launch day.
  18. vonWachtstain macrumors regular

    Nov 20, 2011
    Not necessarily, if I remember correctly there was an error in Apple store and they were selling them for $199 but you didn't have to sign contract. Buddy of mine got 4 but another friend's order was cancelled.

Share This Page