June 28th, 2008 by admin
Before considering the question of whether it is a good move to update to the latest iPhone, you really need some background on two important options that iPhone owners face:
Most iPhoners, it seems, do not really know what these options are.
A jailbroken iPhone can, for example, bypass software restrictions (including DRMs) built in by Apple. There have been numerous jailbreak applications developed - for free - since iPhone was released.
AppleiPhoneReview, for example, reviewed this app back in Aug 2007
The hardworking hackers at ModMyiPhone.com discovered how to break free from the software restrictions that, until now, prevented you from modifying everything on your iPhone, including adding your own custom ringtones.
The developers created a free application that is aptly named Jailbreak, because it breaks open the iPhone’s file system so that you can modify the user interface.
There are obvious advantages from having an iPhone jailbroken (access to cheaper or even free downloads, for example) But there are several problems:
1) The fear that the software may do damage to the iPhone operating system (no cases reported that we know of but add a comment on this post if you have experienced this)
2) Needless to say, Apple is not that happy about the iPhone users getting their software from anywhere but Apple. So have worked to have those jailbreaks disabled by Apple updates. Though each update has been quickly followed by jailbreak updates that release the iPhone again.
3)There is a risk that warranties will be voided.
Unlocked iPhones free the owner to use the service provider they prefer. Unlocked iPhones has been hugely popular, because it gives iPhone owners more freedom to choose who their service provider will be. This has meant lost $millions for Apple, however! Both because it has meant that unlocked iPhones could be sold in countries where they had not yet been released and because Apple had profit sharing deal with AT&T - which it obviously could not collect on if people chose alternative providers.
The people at Apple have shown their superior design skills for some time now! and now they are showing they can be equally clever at marketing. If you want to own a 3G you will have to sign up for your three year AT&T contract before you leave the store with it! And according to the Baltimore Sun
Simply canceling the contract with AT&T after the iPhone purchase would seem a workable tactic……But according to a Computerworld article, AT&T will require the return of the iPhone before it cancels the contract.
And shoppers, it seems, have been quick to work out that the pluses of the 3G may not outweigh the disadvantages of a three year contract with AT&T (or any provider)
Currently new (non-3G) unlocked iPhones are selling on ebay for over $500.
The surprise in all this is Apple’s determination to ignore its customer’s preferences (as shown by their customers determination to get their hands on unlocked iphone’s) This has not been Apple’s style in the past.
Instead of listening to the clear message “We want to choose our own service provider” they have made it even more difficult for us to do this!
So, if you are dead keen to get the 3G - you now know the real cost - AND it might help to know that you can recover some of those costs by selling your secondhand iPhone on Ebay for upwards of $300 (to all those who would rather have a choice!)
By the way, now you know the difference between “unlocked” and “jailbroken” you won’t get confused when you read ebay sales like this one (he says “jailbroken” but means “unlocked”)