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Posted Oct 12, 2011
12:28:53 AM
Now that AT&T no longer has exclusivity, will AT&T offer official iPhone unlocks?

If I recall correctly, in the past, AT&T's excuse for not unlocking the iPhone was that their policy was to not unlock any phone for which they have an exclulsivity contract. I was hoping this would've changed when Verizon got the iPhone 4, but it didn't... I assume because technically the CDMA iPhone 4 isn't the same as the GSM model.

 

But now all 3 carriers are getting the exact same hardware.Sprint has even confirmed that the GSM side of their iPhone 4S will come unlocked, and Verizon confirmed that they'll unlock the GSM side of their 4S after 60 days of service. So will AT&T start offering unlocks to remain competitive? As it stands now, Sprint and Verizon have the competitive advantage for international users, since their customers won't be forced to sell a kidney to get service in other countries.I've always stuck with AT&T mostly because GSM is a world standard, but it seems like they're doing everything in their power to make that a disadvantage instead of a competitive edge.

If I recall correctly, in the past, AT&T's excuse for not unlocking the iPhone was that their policy was to not unlock any phone for which they have an exclulsivity contract. I was hoping this would've changed when Verizon got the iPhone 4, but it didn't... I assume because technically the CDMA iPhone 4 isn't the same as the GSM model.

 

But now all 3 carriers are getting the exact same hardware.Sprint has even confirmed that the GSM side of their iPhone 4S will come unlocked, and Verizon confirmed that they'll unlock the GSM side of their 4S after 60 days of service. So will AT&T start offering unlocks to remain competitive? As it stands now, Sprint and Verizon have the competitive advantage for international users, since their customers won't be forced to sell a kidney to get service in other countries.I've always stuck with AT&T mostly because GSM is a world standard, but it seems like they're doing everything in their power to make that a disadvantage instead of a competitive edge.

Now that AT&T no longer has exclusivity, will AT&T offer official iPhone unlocks?

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Oct 12, 2011 12:41:13 AM
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Scholar

Unless I'm mistaken, what they are talking about is unlocking for international roaming, not SIM unlocking.

 

That doesn't imply that you can pop a Vodafone or Orange SIM into the phone and get presto instant local service in the UK, for example. It means that your handy Verizon CDMA phone can access Vodafone's or Orange's GSM network in Britain.

 

You still pay Verizon's or Sprint's declared rates for international roaming, which are ridiculously expensive. It's usually far cheaper to just get a prepaid cell at the airport once you land.

Unless I'm mistaken, what they are talking about is unlocking for international roaming, not SIM unlocking.

 

That doesn't imply that you can pop a Vodafone or Orange SIM into the phone and get presto instant local service in the UK, for example. It means that your handy Verizon CDMA phone can access Vodafone's or Orange's GSM network in Britain.

 

You still pay Verizon's or Sprint's declared rates for international roaming, which are ridiculously expensive. It's usually far cheaper to just get a prepaid cell at the airport once you land.

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Oct 12, 2011 12:50:43 AM
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Scholar

Did a little research and I stand corrected. They will allow you to purchase a local micro-SIM. Not bad ...

 

You still lose your home number while it's switched though, which can be annoying. I've always just used my prepaid cell (got it from Orange in London) when in Europe.

Did a little research and I stand corrected. They will allow you to purchase a local micro-SIM. Not bad ...

 

You still lose your home number while it's switched though, which can be annoying. I've always just used my prepaid cell (got it from Orange in London) when in Europe.

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Oct 12, 2011 2:44:58 AM
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Edited by dwill05 on Oct 12, 2011 at 2:49:00 AM

I'm not sure what Verizon and Sprint are actually doing are the same thing you want.  They are unlocking the GSM side, which isn't their technology.  You want AT&T to unlock the GSM side, which is AT&T's technology.  The equivalent of AT&T doing what Sprint and Verizon are doing is if they unlock the CDMA side so that you can roam with CDMA carriers internationally.

 

Do Verizon and Sprint phones currently allow a person to roam with international CDMA carriers?  Do Sprint and Verizon offer international roaming rates that they would lose money on if a customer went with a local CDMA carrier instead of paying their international roaming rates?

I'm not sure what Verizon and Sprint are actually doing are the same thing you want.  They are unlocking the GSM side, which isn't their technology.  You want AT&T to unlock the GSM side, which is AT&T's technology.  The equivalent of AT&T doing what Sprint and Verizon are doing is if they unlock the CDMA side so that you can roam with CDMA carriers internationally.

 

Do Verizon and Sprint phones currently allow a person to roam with international CDMA carriers?  Do Sprint and Verizon offer international roaming rates that they would lose money on if a customer went with a local CDMA carrier instead of paying their international roaming rates?

Re: Now that AT&T no longer has exclusivity, will AT&T offer official iPhone unlocks?

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Oct 12, 2011 6:04:53 AM
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dwill05 wrote:

Do Verizon and Sprint phones currently allow a person to roam with international CDMA carriers?


Do those even exist? As far as I'm aware, most of the world (bar Japan) is on GSM.


dwill05 wrote:

Do Verizon and Sprint phones currently allow a person to roam with international CDMA carriers?


Do those even exist? As far as I'm aware, most of the world (bar Japan) is on GSM.

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Oct 12, 2011 6:36:14 AM
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Actually Sprint and Verizon take more risks here. Once GSM unlock, one can use his unlocked iPhone on AT&T, though not on Sprint or Verizon. I have already ordered an AT&T 4S. Had I know this, I would order Sprint or Verizon iPhone. After contract expired, I am free to use iPhone wherever I want. But AT&T iPhone, it will be forever locked into AT&T.
Actually Sprint and Verizon take more risks here. Once GSM unlock, one can use his unlocked iPhone on AT&T, though not on Sprint or Verizon. I have already ordered an AT&T 4S. Had I know this, I would order Sprint or Verizon iPhone. After contract expired, I am free to use iPhone wherever I want. But AT&T iPhone, it will be forever locked into AT&T.

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Oct 12, 2011 6:52:40 AM
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Well, maybe ATT will unlock the CDMA side so people can go to Sprint or Verizon after ATT.
Well, maybe ATT will unlock the CDMA side so people can go to Sprint or Verizon after ATT.

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Oct 12, 2011 6:59:26 AM
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To be fair to AT&T, I don't think AT&T lock CDMA side at all from the beginning. What I don't like is AT&T still locking you even after two years.
To be fair to AT&T, I don't think AT&T lock CDMA side at all from the beginning. What I don't like is AT&T still locking you even after two years.

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Oct 12, 2011 7:03:46 AM
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If the ATT phones come with the CDMA side unlocked, then there is nothing to do. They are already doing what Sprint and Verizon are doing, then. People are free to take their phones to a CDMA carrier whenever they want.
If the ATT phones come with the CDMA side unlocked, then there is nothing to do. They are already doing what Sprint and Verizon are doing, then. People are free to take their phones to a CDMA carrier whenever they want.

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Oct 12, 2011 7:09:29 AM
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Edited by wingrider01 on Oct 12, 2011 at 7:15:51 AM

dwill05 wrote:
Well, maybe ATT will unlock the CDMA side so people can go to Sprint or Verizon after ATT.


The majority of CDMA carriers will not import foreign phones into their databases for use.

 

The article specificly states international travelers, so not sure if that is a requirement or not. In any respect it is not a major issue for Sprint or Verizon in the US to unlock GSM, the people who purchased the phone from them are still locked to their services in the US by a 2 year contract unless they are willing to pay the ETF or full price of the phone. Verizon's ETF is 350 - 10.00 per active month,  Sprints is 350.00 minus their prorate. Kind of expensive just to go to ATT or a limited access for the hpne on T-Mobile

 

http://gizmodo.com/5848931/sprint-and-verizon-to-unlock-the-iphone-4s-for-international-travelers


dwill05 wrote:
Well, maybe ATT will unlock the CDMA side so people can go to Sprint or Verizon after ATT.


The majority of CDMA carriers will not import foreign phones into their databases for use.

 

The article specificly states international travelers, so not sure if that is a requirement or not. In any respect it is not a major issue for Sprint or Verizon in the US to unlock GSM, the people who purchased the phone from them are still locked to their services in the US by a 2 year contract unless they are willing to pay the ETF or full price of the phone. Verizon's ETF is 350 - 10.00 per active month,  Sprints is 350.00 minus their prorate. Kind of expensive just to go to ATT or a limited access for the hpne on T-Mobile

 

http://gizmodo.com/5848931/sprint-and-verizon-to-unlock-the-iphone-4s-for-international-travelers

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Oct 12, 2011 7:09:57 AM
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You missed the point here. GSM has wider coverage worldwide. An unlock GSM iPhone is more useful than an unlocked CDMA iPhone. So for customer, he will use Verizon iPhone here locked into Verizon, but have freedom rest of world. If he uses AT&T iPhone, he will be locked into AT&T no matter where he goes.
You missed the point here. GSM has wider coverage worldwide. An unlock GSM iPhone is more useful than an unlocked CDMA iPhone. So for customer, he will use Verizon iPhone here locked into Verizon, but have freedom rest of world. If he uses AT&T iPhone, he will be locked into AT&T no matter where he goes.

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Oct 12, 2011 7:19:06 AM
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OpenMinde wrote:
You missed the point here. GSM has wider coverage worldwide. An unlock GSM iPhone is more useful than an unlocked CDMA iPhone. So for customer, he will use Verizon iPhone here locked into Verizon, but have freedom rest of world. If he uses AT&T iPhone, he will be locked into AT&T no matter where he goes.


That only benefits international travelers, foreign exchange students / visitors  that want a iphone at a better cost or military. Domestic users are still locked to Verizon or Sprint.

 

Still not a major reason for att to unlock the subsidized phones, You can already purchase a unlocked ATT phone, just not at a carrier subsidized cost


OpenMinde wrote:
You missed the point here. GSM has wider coverage worldwide. An unlock GSM iPhone is more useful than an unlocked CDMA iPhone. So for customer, he will use Verizon iPhone here locked into Verizon, but have freedom rest of world. If he uses AT&T iPhone, he will be locked into AT&T no matter where he goes.


That only benefits international travelers, foreign exchange students / visitors  that want a iphone at a better cost or military. Domestic users are still locked to Verizon or Sprint.

 

Still not a major reason for att to unlock the subsidized phones, You can already purchase a unlocked ATT phone, just not at a carrier subsidized cost

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Oct 12, 2011 7:24:32 AM
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Agree. For subsided price, I pay Verizon and Sprint for two years. Then I got a worldwide unlocked iPhone. But for AT&T, even after two years, I am still locked into AT&T. To average customer, which one will he chose? I feel sorry that I have already ordered a 4S AT&T. Had I know this, I would definitely order a Sprint or Verizon 4S.
Agree. For subsided price, I pay Verizon and Sprint for two years. Then I got a worldwide unlocked iPhone. But for AT&T, even after two years, I am still locked into AT&T. To average customer, which one will he chose? I feel sorry that I have already ordered a 4S AT&T. Had I know this, I would definitely order a Sprint or Verizon 4S.

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Oct 12, 2011 7:33:01 AM
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OpenMinde wrote:
Agree. For subsided price, I pay Verizon and Sprint for two years. Then I got a worldwide unlocked iPhone. But for AT&T, even after two years, I am still locked into AT&T. To average customer, which one will he chose? I feel sorry that I have already ordered a 4S AT&T. Had I know this, I would definitely order a Sprint or Verizon 4S.


If that is so important - go for it. If you just ordered the Iphone 4S you have 30 days to return the phone, you can still go to Sprint or Verizon - just investigate the limitations of the CDMA technology. You still have the choice. Who knows maybe in two years the option wil be avaialbel for ATT to do so, but for right now it is not, so you need to make your decision now or wait and see what happens

 

 


OpenMinde wrote:
Agree. For subsided price, I pay Verizon and Sprint for two years. Then I got a worldwide unlocked iPhone. But for AT&T, even after two years, I am still locked into AT&T. To average customer, which one will he chose? I feel sorry that I have already ordered a 4S AT&T. Had I know this, I would definitely order a Sprint or Verizon 4S.


If that is so important - go for it. If you just ordered the Iphone 4S you have 30 days to return the phone, you can still go to Sprint or Verizon - just investigate the limitations of the CDMA technology. You still have the choice. Who knows maybe in two years the option wil be avaialbel for ATT to do so, but for right now it is not, so you need to make your decision now or wait and see what happens

 

 

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Oct 12, 2011 7:43:16 AM
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I like AT&T service. I want a win-win solution here. I want AT&T to unlock my iPhone after two years to have freedom to do whatever I want. Sprint/Verizon give me that freedom now. If I moved away from AT&T, I lose the features you mentioned. And AT&T lose a customer. Lose-lose. That is not what I want. I have iPhone 2G, 3GS, 4, all on AT&T. I want AT&T to unlock them after two years, not at the beginning of contract, but at tail end of contract.
I like AT&T service. I want a win-win solution here. I want AT&T to unlock my iPhone after two years to have freedom to do whatever I want. Sprint/Verizon give me that freedom now. If I moved away from AT&T, I lose the features you mentioned. And AT&T lose a customer. Lose-lose. That is not what I want. I have iPhone 2G, 3GS, 4, all on AT&T. I want AT&T to unlock them after two years, not at the beginning of contract, but at tail end of contract.

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Oct 12, 2011 7:47:52 AM
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OpenMinde wrote:
I like AT&T service. I want a win-win solution here. I want AT&T to unlock my iPhone after two years to have freedom to do whatever I want. Sprint/Verizon give me that freedom now. If I moved away from AT&T, I lose the features you mentioned. And AT&T lose a customer. Lose-lose. That is not what I want. I have iPhone 2G, 3GS, 4, all on AT&T. I want AT&T to unlock them after two years, not at the beginning of contract, but at tail end of contract.


At this time, nor in the forseeable future the feature is not available. I have a fully paid for Iphone 4 from verizon - I can;t take it to any other carrier, GSM or CDMA. Again there is no difference. Who knows maybe over the next two years it may change, but nothing has at the moment, nor is they any indication it will change.  Right now your win-win solution is another carrier.

 

 

 


OpenMinde wrote:
I like AT&T service. I want a win-win solution here. I want AT&T to unlock my iPhone after two years to have freedom to do whatever I want. Sprint/Verizon give me that freedom now. If I moved away from AT&T, I lose the features you mentioned. And AT&T lose a customer. Lose-lose. That is not what I want. I have iPhone 2G, 3GS, 4, all on AT&T. I want AT&T to unlock them after two years, not at the beginning of contract, but at tail end of contract.


At this time, nor in the forseeable future the feature is not available. I have a fully paid for Iphone 4 from verizon - I can;t take it to any other carrier, GSM or CDMA. Again there is no difference. Who knows maybe over the next two years it may change, but nothing has at the moment, nor is they any indication it will change.  Right now your win-win solution is another carrier.

 

 

 

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Oct 12, 2011 7:54:04 AM
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Teacher
Verizon iPhone 4 is limited by its hardware limitation. There is no GSM radio in CDMA iPhone 4. I don't want to defend Verizon here, but it is a hardware limitation. iPhone 4 is a either CDMA or GSM, not like iPhone 4S which is both CDMA and GSM.
Verizon iPhone 4 is limited by its hardware limitation. There is no GSM radio in CDMA iPhone 4. I don't want to defend Verizon here, but it is a hardware limitation. iPhone 4 is a either CDMA or GSM, not like iPhone 4S which is both CDMA and GSM.

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Oct 12, 2011 10:00:32 AM
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OpenMinde wrote:
Verizon iPhone 4 is limited by its hardware limitation. There is no GSM radio in CDMA iPhone 4. I don't want to defend Verizon here, but it is a hardware limitation. iPhone 4 is a either CDMA or GSM, not like iPhone 4S which is both CDMA and GSM.


And the only companies that have a "win-win" situation is Verizon and Sprint, they can unlock the GSM portion and still gather in the cash for the locked CDMA portion - so how does ATT get the win-win situation?

 

Bottom line - at this time there is zero indication that att will relent in their policy becasue, so as before this is a dead horse, maybe in the future, but maybe not. Please don;t assume this is defenindg ATT's polciy, but defending a copanies right to handle business the way that they feel is best for them - happens all the time in the real world


OpenMinde wrote:
Verizon iPhone 4 is limited by its hardware limitation. There is no GSM radio in CDMA iPhone 4. I don't want to defend Verizon here, but it is a hardware limitation. iPhone 4 is a either CDMA or GSM, not like iPhone 4S which is both CDMA and GSM.


And the only companies that have a "win-win" situation is Verizon and Sprint, they can unlock the GSM portion and still gather in the cash for the locked CDMA portion - so how does ATT get the win-win situation?

 

Bottom line - at this time there is zero indication that att will relent in their policy becasue, so as before this is a dead horse, maybe in the future, but maybe not. Please don;t assume this is defenindg ATT's polciy, but defending a copanies right to handle business the way that they feel is best for them - happens all the time in the real world

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Oct 12, 2011 11:27:48 AM
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wingrider01 wrote:


And the only companies that have a "win-win" situation is Verizon and Sprint, they can unlock the GSM portion and still gather in the cash for the locked CDMA portion - so how does ATT get the win-win situation?

 

Bottom line - at this time there is zero indication that att will relent in their policy becasue, so as before this is a dead horse, maybe in the future, but maybe not. Please don;t assume this is defenindg ATT's polciy, but defending a copanies right to handle business the way that they feel is best for them - happens all the time in the real world


Yeah, they're locked for the CDMA portion. However, I do wonder if unlocking the GSM portion would allow users to use the Verizon/Sprint iPhones on AT&T or T-Mobile. If Verizon/Sprint can selectively block AT&T and T-Mobile, what's preventing AT&T from selectively blocking T-Mobile but allowing use in foreign countries (usually GSM 900/1800MHz band)? Granted, the fact that T-Mobile uses the same 850/1900MHz band at AT&T might be a reason.

 

Right now, AT&T GSM customers would have the option of switching to T-Mobile if their phone is unlocked. That's pretty much the only route. If the AT&T/T-Mobile merger goes through, you effectively have AT&T for GSM and no one else. When that happens, you'd only have AT&T, Verizon and Sprint (if it's still around) to choose from. Verizon and Sprint can lock you in due to device ID. AT&T will be able to lock you in because there's simply no other choice for GSM.

 

You mention a "win-win" situation but right now, it's a win for carriers and a lose for consumers (and no, it's not just AT&T that's at fault). Normally, service providers would try to compete against each other by giving customers better service at a lower price. Unfortunately, that's not what's happening here. Instead, carriers are trying to get exclusivity deals for devices so they can lock in consumers to their service and nickel and dime them to death.


wingrider01 wrote:


And the only companies that have a "win-win" situation is Verizon and Sprint, they can unlock the GSM portion and still gather in the cash for the locked CDMA portion - so how does ATT get the win-win situation?

 

Bottom line - at this time there is zero indication that att will relent in their policy becasue, so as before this is a dead horse, maybe in the future, but maybe not. Please don;t assume this is defenindg ATT's polciy, but defending a copanies right to handle business the way that they feel is best for them - happens all the time in the real world


Yeah, they're locked for the CDMA portion. However, I do wonder if unlocking the GSM portion would allow users to use the Verizon/Sprint iPhones on AT&T or T-Mobile. If Verizon/Sprint can selectively block AT&T and T-Mobile, what's preventing AT&T from selectively blocking T-Mobile but allowing use in foreign countries (usually GSM 900/1800MHz band)? Granted, the fact that T-Mobile uses the same 850/1900MHz band at AT&T might be a reason.

 

Right now, AT&T GSM customers would have the option of switching to T-Mobile if their phone is unlocked. That's pretty much the only route. If the AT&T/T-Mobile merger goes through, you effectively have AT&T for GSM and no one else. When that happens, you'd only have AT&T, Verizon and Sprint (if it's still around) to choose from. Verizon and Sprint can lock you in due to device ID. AT&T will be able to lock you in because there's simply no other choice for GSM.

 

You mention a "win-win" situation but right now, it's a win for carriers and a lose for consumers (and no, it's not just AT&T that's at fault). Normally, service providers would try to compete against each other by giving customers better service at a lower price. Unfortunately, that's not what's happening here. Instead, carriers are trying to get exclusivity deals for devices so they can lock in consumers to their service and nickel and dime them to death.

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Oct 12, 2011 4:03:01 PM
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Voyager

I have mixed feelings on the sim lock. I believe they have the right to lock it when they sell it to you subsidized, but they should be willing to unlock it after the contract is up or if you are willing to pay a fee. If they unlock it and you leave you still have to pay them the early termination fee so why not unlock it. If their argument is that an unlocked phone can be purchased for full price, then I am willing to do that, but then I also deserve a cheaper rate for owning my own phone since they are not subsidizing my phone. T-mobile has been doing this for a while. I called Verizon today to verify if they will unlock the GSM portion of their phone and they confirmed that they will after 60-90 days of service. That alone is a good enough reason for me to leave ATT. Verizon will also give you $210 for your working ATT  iPhone 4. That should help with the early termination fee. Apple will give you $200 for the same. So most people can ditch ATT if ATT does not want to cooperate and unlock our phones.

I have mixed feelings on the sim lock. I believe they have the right to lock it when they sell it to you subsidized, but they should be willing to unlock it after the contract is up or if you are willing to pay a fee. If they unlock it and you leave you still have to pay them the early termination fee so why not unlock it. If their argument is that an unlocked phone can be purchased for full price, then I am willing to do that, but then I also deserve a cheaper rate for owning my own phone since they are not subsidizing my phone. T-mobile has been doing this for a while. I called Verizon today to verify if they will unlock the GSM portion of their phone and they confirmed that they will after 60-90 days of service. That alone is a good enough reason for me to leave ATT. Verizon will also give you $210 for your working ATT  iPhone 4. That should help with the early termination fee. Apple will give you $200 for the same. So most people can ditch ATT if ATT does not want to cooperate and unlock our phones.

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Oct 13, 2011 1:43:43 AM
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Tutor

I honestly don't understand why AT&T won't unlock the phone.  It has no financial justification other than customer lock-in.  Unlocking the phone does not release me from my contract and ETF.  And given that they unlock EVERY OTHER PHONE I'm really looking for a honest and realistic justifcation from AT&T.

 

Furthermore, AT&Ts support site says they "cannot" unlock it, which we know to be a lie.  I wish AT&T would be honest and fair.  

 

At this point the cost of the ETF + a VZW iPhone is less than the cost of an unlocked iPhone from Apple directly.  I may have to go that route.  It seems like AT&T really wants to drive customers away.

I honestly don't understand why AT&T won't unlock the phone.  It has no financial justification other than customer lock-in.  Unlocking the phone does not release me from my contract and ETF.  And given that they unlock EVERY OTHER PHONE I'm really looking for a honest and realistic justifcation from AT&T.

 

Furthermore, AT&Ts support site says they "cannot" unlock it, which we know to be a lie.  I wish AT&T would be honest and fair.  

 

At this point the cost of the ETF + a VZW iPhone is less than the cost of an unlocked iPhone from Apple directly.  I may have to go that route.  It seems like AT&T really wants to drive customers away.

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Oct 13, 2011 5:27:39 AM
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Frylock wrote:

I honestly don't understand why AT&T won't unlock the phone.  It has no financial justification other than customer lock-in.  Unlocking the phone does not release me from my contract and ETF.  And given that they unlock EVERY OTHER PHONE I'm really looking for a honest and realistic justifcation from AT&T.

 

Furthermore, AT&Ts support site says they "cannot" unlock it, which we know to be a lie.  I wish AT&T would be honest and fair.  

 

At this point the cost of the ETF + a VZW iPhone is less than the cost of an unlocked iPhone from Apple directly.  I may have to go that route.  It seems like AT&T really wants to drive customers away.



The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.

 

Have still not seen a statement from a Verizon Executive that they will truely unlock the Iphone 4S, just 5th estate statements and a comment from someone that said a tier 1 CSR said they will. This unlock rumor also included Sprint in the statement, that has since been debunked by a Sprint executive.  Would suggest that you actually try a CDMA iphone before you make a decision, abilities that you take for granted on the GSM version do not work the same way on the CDMA model.


Frylock wrote:

I honestly don't understand why AT&T won't unlock the phone.  It has no financial justification other than customer lock-in.  Unlocking the phone does not release me from my contract and ETF.  And given that they unlock EVERY OTHER PHONE I'm really looking for a honest and realistic justifcation from AT&T.

 

Furthermore, AT&Ts support site says they "cannot" unlock it, which we know to be a lie.  I wish AT&T would be honest and fair.  

 

At this point the cost of the ETF + a VZW iPhone is less than the cost of an unlocked iPhone from Apple directly.  I may have to go that route.  It seems like AT&T really wants to drive customers away.



The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.

 

Have still not seen a statement from a Verizon Executive that they will truely unlock the Iphone 4S, just 5th estate statements and a comment from someone that said a tier 1 CSR said they will. This unlock rumor also included Sprint in the statement, that has since been debunked by a Sprint executive.  Would suggest that you actually try a CDMA iphone before you make a decision, abilities that you take for granted on the GSM version do not work the same way on the CDMA model.

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Edited by hnzw_rui on Oct 13, 2011 at 6:42:58 AM

wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.


wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.

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hnzw_rui wrote:

wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.



No idea either, although the apple site has a interesting note that the unlocked Iphone 4S that they are selling will NOT go on Sprint or Verizon services.. I linked the policy in one of the other threads on this


hnzw_rui wrote:

wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.



No idea either, although the apple site has a interesting note that the unlocked Iphone 4S that they are selling will NOT go on Sprint or Verizon services.. I linked the policy in one of the other threads on this

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Edited by TerraPhantm on Oct 13, 2011 at 6:30:06 PM

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 

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Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 




Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 




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dww0311 wrote:

Did a little research and I stand corrected. They will allow you to purchase a local micro-SIM. Not bad ...

 

You still lose your home number while it's switched though, which can be annoying. I've always just used my prepaid cell (got it from Orange in London) when in Europe.


I've traveled internationally before, I'm well aware of losing my local number - I am perfectly fine with that. It's not much different than my current situation (jailbroken iPhone 4... I don't give a crap about warranty before anyone says anything). It'd just be nice not to have to worry about finding an exploit in the baseband, hoping an update doesn't break it, etc....


dww0311 wrote:

Did a little research and I stand corrected. They will allow you to purchase a local micro-SIM. Not bad ...

 

You still lose your home number while it's switched though, which can be annoying. I've always just used my prepaid cell (got it from Orange in London) when in Europe.


I've traveled internationally before, I'm well aware of losing my local number - I am perfectly fine with that. It's not much different than my current situation (jailbroken iPhone 4... I don't give a crap about warranty before anyone says anything). It'd just be nice not to have to worry about finding an exploit in the baseband, hoping an update doesn't break it, etc....

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BadBadLeroyBrown wrote:

Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 





I don't have any particular attachment to AT&T - I want an unlock so I can travel internationally without having to spend my life savings to make phone calls. If Verizon offers me that, then I'll gladly switch over. They have better coverage here anyway. 

 

I'll give AT&T a couple months, but if they want to keep me as a customer long term, they're going to have to change their unlock policy.


BadBadLeroyBrown wrote:

Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 





I don't have any particular attachment to AT&T - I want an unlock so I can travel internationally without having to spend my life savings to make phone calls. If Verizon offers me that, then I'll gladly switch over. They have better coverage here anyway. 

 

I'll give AT&T a couple months, but if they want to keep me as a customer long term, they're going to have to change their unlock policy.

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I'd wait and see how Verizon comes to define customers "in good standing". AT&T used to require that customers have 6 months of on-time payments before being considered for phone unlocks, international roaming, etc.

 

So you're saying essentially that you're too cheap to buy a SIM-unlocked phone at the full retail price? You want AT&T to subsidize it, but then don't want to use AT&T's network when traveling internationally. I think AT&T may come around on eventually unlocking out-of-contract phones, but I wouldn't hold my breath on them unlocking still in-contract phones. They don't really want to make it easier for grey market salesmen to port these to countries where the iPhone hasn't officially been launched.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

BadBadLeroyBrown wrote:

Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 





I don't have any particular attachment to AT&T - I want an unlock so I can travel internationally without having to spend my life savings to make phone calls. If Verizon offers me that, then I'll gladly switch over. They have better coverage here anyway. 

 

I'll give AT&T a couple months, but if they want to keep me as a customer long term, they're going to have to change their unlock policy.




I'd wait and see how Verizon comes to define customers "in good standing". AT&T used to require that customers have 6 months of on-time payments before being considered for phone unlocks, international roaming, etc.

 

So you're saying essentially that you're too cheap to buy a SIM-unlocked phone at the full retail price? You want AT&T to subsidize it, but then don't want to use AT&T's network when traveling internationally. I think AT&T may come around on eventually unlocking out-of-contract phones, but I wouldn't hold my breath on them unlocking still in-contract phones. They don't really want to make it easier for grey market salesmen to port these to countries where the iPhone hasn't officially been launched.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

BadBadLeroyBrown wrote:

Right, but at that point you'd pay whatever you paid for the phone + a likely $325-$350 termination fee to take the phone from Verizon or Sprint to AT&T or any other GSM carrier. If you absolutely, positively have to have a SIM-unlocked phone, why not wait for Apple to release 1 in November? Then you're not beholden to anyone.

 

And while I think AT&T should unlock out-of-contract iPhones, I don't make the rules.

 


TerraPhantm wrote:

CDMA is different than GSM in that regard. From what I understand, there is no subsidy lock per se, but Sprint and Verizon have the discretion to only activate phones that were sold by them. Unlike with GSM, there's no FCC regulation requiring CDMA carriers to allow unlocked devices to be used on their network. If you can find a carrier that's willing to activate any MEID, you could probably even use an AT&T iPhone 4S on a CDMA carrier... unless Apple artificially limits that capability

 

Those who are saying that AT&T will be the only one with a GSM iPhone are wrong. The hardware is identical between all 3 carriers. If Verizon and Sprint fully unlock their phones (which seems to be what they'll do) there's no reason those phones can't work on AT&Ts network. 





I don't have any particular attachment to AT&T - I want an unlock so I can travel internationally without having to spend my life savings to make phone calls. If Verizon offers me that, then I'll gladly switch over. They have better coverage here anyway. 

 

I'll give AT&T a couple months, but if they want to keep me as a customer long term, they're going to have to change their unlock policy.




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hnzw_rui wrote:

wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.


CDMA carriers like Verizon and Sprint use what is called an ESN (electronic serial number) which is hardcoded into the phone and has nothing to do with the SIM. That ESN gets locked to a carrier's database when the phone is activated, and all the other CDMA carriers know about it. This is why you can't take a CDMA phone that is registered on one carrier's database and activate it on another carrier. The ESN comes back as locked when they check.It's a function of the carrier's data systems, in which the phone is just a passive participant.

 

Contrast that to GSM carriers like AT&T, in which the software in the phone itself prevents use. A GSM phone is an active participant in the registration process. In order to change that, the software in the phone itself has to be changed.

 

For CDMA carriers, it's just a matter of some keystrokes to delete the ESN record from their database. Very diffferent animals.


hnzw_rui wrote:

wingrider01 wrote:


The gsm iphone is still exclusive to ATT. What I would find interesting is that when and if ATTdecides to offer a unlock service for the iphone, that they would only offer it for the Iphone 4S and not any of the previous units or they just offer to unlock the CDMA portion of the phone, like the other carrier is supposed to do.


I don't think AT&T can "unlock" the CDMA portion of the phone. Actually, I don't think it's even locked in the first place. If even the unlocked iPhone 4S is limited to GSM, I reckon the AT&T iPhone would be similarly limited. I know both Verizon and Sprint work by ID on the device itself. What device ID is actually used, I have no idea.


CDMA carriers like Verizon and Sprint use what is called an ESN (electronic serial number) which is hardcoded into the phone and has nothing to do with the SIM. That ESN gets locked to a carrier's database when the phone is activated, and all the other CDMA carriers know about it. This is why you can't take a CDMA phone that is registered on one carrier's database and activate it on another carrier. The ESN comes back as locked when they check.It's a function of the carrier's data systems, in which the phone is just a passive participant.

 

Contrast that to GSM carriers like AT&T, in which the software in the phone itself prevents use. A GSM phone is an active participant in the registration process. In order to change that, the software in the phone itself has to be changed.

 

For CDMA carriers, it's just a matter of some keystrokes to delete the ESN record from their database. Very diffferent animals.

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