updated 10:35 am EST, Mon December 15, 2008
Unlocked iPhone carriers
(Updated with Taiwan information) Apple is now listing which countries and carriers around the world are carrying unlocked versions of the iPhone, the company's website reveals. Recently added to the support page for activating an iPhone 3G is a "Carrier offers authorized unlocking" column, with a simple checkmark for each company. The page also lists whether or not a carrier offers a locked phone, which, while eliminating freedom, may reduce the cost of the hardware and/or monthly fees.
A number of countries -- such as Argentina, Australia, Chile and Poland -- offer the phone unlocked on all carriers, while other countries like Austria and Brazil may only offer unlocked devices on one carrier. Across the world the majority of carriers are still limited to locked phones, likely a necessary condition of Apple and/or carrier demands. Notably, while Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom has insisted that its iPhone would be locked, practical experience shows that the variant is fully unlocked.