While the issue is not universal, some users are reporting a problem in which the iPhone OS 2.2 update locks legally unlocked iPhones (sold in Hong Kong, certain countries in Europe and elsewhere). The issue may occur if a legally unlocked phone is bought in one country then updated to OS 2.2 in another country. Among the user reports from this Apple Discussions thread:"Bought legally unlocked iPhone in Hong Kong. Updated to 2.2 in Germany. No my iPhone seems to be locked." "I bought my iPhone 3G legally unlocked from HK, and I … Read more
Editor's note: CNET editor and Crave contributor Dong Ngo is spending the next month in his homeland of Vietnam, and plans to file occasional dispatches chronicling his impressions of how technology has permeated the culture there. Click here for more of Dong's stories from abroad.
HANOI, Vietnam--Every obstacle presents an opportunity. I saw this firsthand in Hanoi.
The obstacle in question: the iPhone 3G. Since its launch, it has proven a much tougher nut to crack than the original iPhone. Without a viable software-based unlock solution, the only way to make the phone work with any GSM carrier has been the use of a proxy SIM. Put this piece of very thin circuitboard in the iPhone 3G atop the carrier's SIM, and you can make calls and text on a new network.
(I did experience some problems using the proxy SIM, including short battery life, instability, and, most seriously, incompatibility with iTunes.)
Unfortunately, the recently released 2.2 software update, for now, has made the iPhone 3G impossible to unlock--unless you happen to be in Hanoi. Here, I met a man who takes the job quite seriously and gets it done the hard way, literally.
His name is Tuan Anh Do, and he's a 29-year-old businessman who owns five cell phone repair shops. A big part of his business is servicing the iPhone and iPhone 3G, and that often involves getting those devices unlocked at the hardware level.
One of his shops is on Nguyen Du street, a relatively small, quiet block in Hanoi. It's located in a typically narrow four-story house, with one floor serving as a reception area, and another holding the accounting department. The top floor is the workshop, where the magic happens.
Here I witnessed a brand new iPhone 3G getting its hardware unlocked and was really impressed. This is how it happened. … Read more
The iPhone Dev Team, which has been at the forefront of every jailbreak and unlock procedure for each new iPhone model and OS iteration, is apparently very close to the elusive unlock for the iPhone 3G. A recent post to the team's blog states that the following tasks have now been accomplished:Unsigned code execution on 3G baseband Reverting 01.45 baseband to previous versions Patching of static text (the AT&V demo) Injection of AT routines (the task list demo) Injection of background tasks (this demo)
The team also warns against updating to the forthcoming iPhone OS … Read more
Italian systems engineer Piergiorgio Zambrini, developer of Ziphone, one of the first, easy-to-use applications for jailbreaking and unlock the iPhone, has released a new video purportedly delivering proof that a flaw can crash any iPod and iPhone. The bug allegedly resides in in the audio portion of Apple's video subsystem.
His blog post titled, "Boom!," states:
"Here we are again! When Steve says something it usually happens... So what do we have here? A video. Yes a stupid nasty video which can crash ANY iPod/iPhone. A different version of this video can even crash many … Read more
An unlocked iPhone 3G is a little closer to becoming reality, according to the iPhone Dev Team.
Gizmodo picked up on a video produced by the iPhone Dev Team demonstrating that it has gained access to the baseband processor used by Apple in the iPhone 3G. The baseband chip is what controls the connection between the phone and the mobile phone network, meaning that a software download that could let you use your iPhone 3G on a carrier network other than the ones officially designated by Apple could be released soon.
I'm sure you remember the fuss about the original iPhone and those who sought to unlock it … Read more
The original iPhone was released with limited availability; the iPhone 3G was released with a wide distribution that has expanded since the rollout. The iPhone 3G can now be bought from a sanctioned carrier in most major world markets.
Given the device's broad availability, are baseband unlocks still important? The iphone-Dev Team seems to think so, having recently announced via video that the crack of the iPhone 3G baseband is close.
In the U.S., the iPhone 3G is tied to AT&T's network. According to activation terms you have to return your iPhone 3G within a … Read more
Despite the best efforts of Apple and AT&T, it appears that the latest version of the iPhone has been unlocked via the same method as used on the original iPhone.
A Brazilian blog, TechGuru, posted the first report of it. Gizmodo checked it out, and said the method involves using a special SIM card adapter. It tricks the phone into thinking it's on an approved network.
"This method forges the International Mobile Subscriber Identity, making the phone believe it's working in the network in which it's supposed to work," Gizmodo writes.
If you … Read more
The release of a tool capable of unlocking first-generation iPhones for use on unofficial carriers as well as allowing full read/write access to the filesystem--thereby enabling installation of unofficial, "jailbreak" applications--is imminent.
The iPhone Dev team has posted a screenshot, seen below, of an iPhone running OS 2.0 with both the App Store (Apple's third-party application solution) and Installer.app (the unofficial third-party application solution) running side-by-side. The iPhone is also unlocked, per the MTS carrier logo -- MTS is an unsupported wireless carrier.
Another screenshot shows the tool "BootNeuter" loaded under iPhone … Read more
Though there's no shortage of places to buy an unlocked iPhone, I haven't seen many wireless stores that specialize in selling them. But last weekend, I came across a store in San Francisco's Civic Center (corner of Larkin and Golden Gate) that does just that. Not only will the store sell you an unlocked iPhone with the activation of a new T-Mobile account--all for just $299--but also it will unlock your current AT&T iPhone for you. Since it was Saturday and the day after Independence Day the store was closed, so I didn't get … Read more