Tag Archive for 'unlocking'

Don’t Buy an iPhone to Unlock it.

It has become easier than ever to buy an iPhone and unlock it for use on a non-AT&T GSM network, but I’ve got 3 good reasons you shouldn’t do it.

  1. Apple will break the unlock in the next update. Both the software and hardware unlocks appear to rely on hacks to firmware for the baseband, the chip that talks to the cellular network. This firmware has already been updated once, and there are strong hints that it will be updated in the next firmware release which will come before the end of the month when they roll out the the iTunes WiFi music store.
  2. Apple will break the unlock in the update after that. The software unlock relies on a buffer overrun bug in the main iPhone firmware. This kind of bug is often a security problem, and will likely be patched when they release features or fix other bugs. (Update: If the iPod Touch is any indication, Apple is going to make it more difficult to get 3rd party apps onto the iPhone, which will complicate any software unlock.)
  3. Apple will release cool new features. Sure, you can pass up software updates, but how long will you be able to hold out as Apple keeps on rolling out cool new features for your phone?
  4. Apple will keep breaking future unlocks with software updates. Chances are that the iPhone hackers will continue to unlock the iPhone each time Apple relocks it, at least for a while. The problem is, we don’t know how long it will take them to do it. More importantly, at some point the best of the iPhone hackers are going to get tired of playing cat & mouse with Apple and move on to work on something newer and cooler.
  5. Apple may be releasing a fully supported iPhone in your country soon. European’s may be able to buy iPhones as early as this coming Tuesday.

You may still decide the risks are worth it to have an unlocked iPhone, but my advice would be to wait and see what happens over the next couple of weeks. Will Apple relock phones? How long will it take the hackers to create a new unlock?

AnySim: Software Unlock your Apple iPhone with a GUI, the easier way

The iPhone Dev Team has released AnySim, their GUI application to unlock the iPhone. This should make the free software unlock practical for a wider audience than their original command-line solution.

If you are eager to buy a new iPhone and use this unlock hack because you are a T-mobile customer in the US and  still on contract, or because you are outside the US, I’d hold off for a little while.  It is very likely that Apple will release an iPhone update within the next few weeks when they roll out the mobile version of the iTunes store, it may even come as soon as this Tuesday, when they are expected to announce European iPhones.  That update, or any other could relock the iPhone and break existing unlock software.  What’s more, there is no telling how long it will take people to create new unlocks.  You may be in the position of either having an iPhone you can’t use at all, or an iPhone you can’t update with new features.  I’d suggest waiting a few weeks to see what happens.  Ok, you have been warned.  Have fun.

Download:

PXL Package:

Mirror:

You’ll need a tool like iBrickr (for Windows) or iFuntastic (for Mac) to install the app on your iPhone.

iPhoneSIMFree Software iPhone Unlock Due Monday

I have grown increasingly skeptical about iPhone SIM Free’s claims of having a software unlock for the iPhone once they started taking pre-payments and then started pushing back the release date.  However, they are promising they will start distributing the unlocks to wholesale customers tomorrow, so we’ll soon see if they are the real deal.

They are only selling the unlock through 3rd party retailers, not direct.

If you are going to be retailing selling the unlock software, or unlocked iPhones, send me an e-mail about getting a mention on this site.  We get a few thousand people a day on this site, and most of them have been Googling for an iPhone unlock.

iPhone software unlock

It looks like someone figured out a software unlock for the iPhone, engadget has the story. We’ll see if Apple breaks this this the next software update since they apparently get 10% of every new AT&T iPhone contract.

I’m not sure what the pricing is going to be when it is released to the public. I’m guessing they are going to try and make their money while the making is good, because it sounds like the team dedicated to releasing a free unlock is still at work. When that happens, the money will be made by people who offer to perform the unlocking as a service to people uncomfortable doing it themselves.

In the mean time, keep an eye on: http://iphonesimfree.com/

Another company, who claimed to be testing a successful unlock shortly after the phone was released, is again claiming they’ll have an iPhone unlock for sale shortly.

iPhone Unlocking Imminent?

Update 8/21: The iphone has been fully unlocked, but there is still some work to do before it becomes practical

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I just checked the iPhone dev wiki and saw this announcement:

We need help unlocking the radio. We can issue AT commands. Can you help? Join us on IRC!

This is pretty major. They’ve had to get through many layers of defenses to get to this point. It now remains to be seen what the defenses are like in the inner sanctum.

It already looks like it won’t be easy:

“We know how to unlock the phone. Unfortunately the commands needed gave “Permission Denied” errors. We did find a reference to a hardware register that causes “Permission Denied” error in the bootloader, but we cannot software patch the bootloader because it is signed. The only way I see around it is JTAG, which we currently know nothing about. Or possibly in DFU mode. I think we may just be better off accessing the radio through user mode.”

If they succeed, it will be possible to use the core phone features (ie not visual voicemail) with T- Mobile in the US, and other GSM carriers around the world. It remains to be seen whether you will be able to use it with other EDGE networks, and how quickly Apple plugs the holes.

If you think you can help, check this out:

<geohot[sleep]> first person to send me an ida db fully disasm of http://www.gofilego.com/?fileid=a812bf8b92dab591c29689aeba369e839acf5079 gets windows jailbreak w itunes working.

Join them on #iphone-dev on fusion.osx86.hu. Just don’t ask stupid questions, that’s what #iphone is for :) .

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