I have an iPhone 3G with a 2 year contract that began in Jan. 2009. When this contract expires, if I buy a new iPhone, will my old one essentially be an unlocked iPhone that I can use overseas by purchasing a SIM card?
Along those lines, how much would it cost to buy out this contract, and would that leave me with an unlocked phone?
A legally unlocked iPhone could be used with AT&T and T-Mobile. Verizon & Sprint have a different type of technology that is incompatible with the iPhone. An unlocked iPhone would be incompatible with T-Mobile's 3G (because it runs at 1700MHz and not 850/1900 MHz), meaning even a 3G or 3GS iPhone would be limited to 2G (EDGE) speeds on T-Mobile.
I did not know that about the frequency confliction. Interesting stuff.
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The t mobile in Germany uses a different frequency than the one in the US. So if you are in Germany then yes the iPhone will work with their 3G service which us the 2100 band. I would also recommend that once you discontinue your service is to seek T Mobile help along with Apple in Germany and see if yet can find a solution