updated 09:40 am EST, Mon November 26, 2007
German iPhone unlock
The ability to officially unlock German iPhones is already in effect, accounts say. The option reportedly first became available on November 21st, the same day T-Mobile announced that unlocked iPhones would be coming. Instead of buying a pre-unlocked device however, shoppers simply pick up a regular one for €399, and then pay T-Mobile the extra €600 premium. A phone's particular IMEI number is then forwarded to Apple, which updates its database such that the next time the device is synched, iTunes will unlock it automatically within a matter of seconds. A SIM card from any carrier can then be inserted.
No new firmware is required or installed for the unlocking process, which may suggest the potential for new exploits for American and UK iPhones. Traditionally, unlocking these has required methods used outside of iTunes, even to the extent of physically modifying the default SIM card to be used in tandem with another. Apple has so far resisted any attempts to unlock English-language iPhones, despite the fact that laws should permit the process; this is likely because it receives a portion of the carrier revenue for each phone's two-year contract.