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Should we Unlock or Jailbreak our iPhone?

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:

*Jail breaking

*Unlocking.

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.

iphone 1.1.3 jailbreak

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.

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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.

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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.

iphone on ebay

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!)

iphones on ebay

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”)

Where Do iPhone Users Get Their Downloads?

June 16th, 2008 by admin

iPhonegizmo recently conducted a survey to find out where iPhone users were getting their music, movie and game downloads from. The results surprised us for two reasons.

First, we discovered that nearly half (48%) of the respondents had jailbroken their iphone!

Secondly, we discovered that whilst nearly 52% of iphone owners got their downloads only from iTunes, a massive 88% of those admitted that they thought:

they could ONLY get downloads for my iPhone from iTunes.

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Of course, that means that more than half (52%) of respondents were getting at least some of their downloads from other sources .

itune alternatives

Overall, in fact, a surprising 1 in 3 iphone owners who answered the quiz said they

don’t use iTunes at all - for their downloads

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These results have inspired us to investigate further. We decided, for example, to look at the risks and gains from jail breaking your iPhone and will present our findings in the next post. We will also check out what alternative sources for downloads are being used, and report back. (In the meantime there is some info here)

Free 3G iPhones?

June 11th, 2008 by admin

The new 3G is here! Want one for free? Apple has caused a whole lot of new concepts to be born.The latest product release brings with it “ifree”. Check out the following headlines to see just what ifree means!

From June 10, 2008

3G iPhone ‘free’ on £45-per-month contract, says O2

Apple’s new 3G iPhone will be “free” to customers who sign up to a minimum £45 per month contract, it was announced this morning.

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From IntoMobile 10th June, 2008, at 3.44pm

free iPhone 3G replacements from IT&T

If you are a current iPhone customer, and you bought your first-generation iPhone on or after May 27th (despite widespread expectation that Apple was going to release a new iPhone in a couple weeks’ time), then you’re in luck. AT&T will trade-up your iPhone to an iPhone 3G ..gratis

The main stylistic change is the black plastic cover

BUT, according to ZDNet

AT&T’s iPhone rate plans are going up for 3G owners…..

Personal accounts will need pay $30 per month for unlimited 3G data, while business accounts will pay $45 per user.

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(That’s a 50% hike over current charges. … So not free… or is that iFree?)

And according to the New York Times, Mr. de la Vega, the CEO of IT&T believes:

AT&T’s experience is the $30-a-month data plan won’t scare off consumers.

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The New York Times goes on to observe that whilst existing iPhone subscribers can upgrade to the new iPhone:

there are catches. First, they will have to agree to the new $30-a-month data plan, replacing the $20-a-month plan associated with the first iPhone models. Also, they will then be locked into a two-year contract and, as with most subsidized cell phones, they won’t be able to upgrade to a new phone at a subsidized price until their contract nears expiration.

So if you think you may really want next year’s iPhone, you may not want to upgrade now…

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Like we said.. some can get the new 3G iphone the ifree way!

Free iPhone Themes

June 11th, 2008 by admin

Here is a free app that allows iPhone owners to custom-make their own themes, like this one (Or in whatever style you prefer).

Screenshot 3

Summerboard provide easy to follow steps. After installing the summerboard package there are just five easy steps to making your own tailor made iphone theme that no one else will have!

They do recommend saving the graphic files using the Adobe Photoshop’s (or similar software*) function - “Save for Web & Devices” in order to reduce icon sizes and so save bandwidth. If you don’t have photoshop you can download a free version.

(*Paint Net is another highly recommended ‘image and photo editing software’ program image that is regarded as the equal of adobe or corel) You can download this free.

paint net download

If you are proud of your creation just send us some pics and iPhonegizmo will showcase them.

Senuti now available for iPhones

June 6th, 2008 by admin

senuti-for-iphoneHere is a simple free app that lets you transfer songs from your iphone back to your computer. Originally developed for iPods, the latest update (as of two days ago) adds support for the iPhone.

You can get the latest version of Senuti hereDOWNLOAD

.Details of what you can do with this app can be found at Google Code

The Senuti gang (FadingRed community) not only provide this App for free they also provide free “driving lessons” along with easy to follow pics (though these have not yet been updated for iphone)

Last but not least, if you decide you appreciate this App enough to make a donation, they will donate a portion of the proceeds to medical research. They have so far donated to the following organizations:

  • American Cancer Society
  • The Global Fund
  • Komen Foundation
  • Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
  • Lupus Foundation of America

This App is only for Mac owners. There is a way to transfer songs from iPhone to your PC as well. iPhonegizmo will cover this in a later post.

Free iPhone Games Update

June 2nd, 2008 by admin

As promised some more free stuff for you iPhone.

As explained elsewhere, there are good reasons for playing iPhone games online rather than downloading the game to the iPhone.

These three games have been optimized for iPhone, are free and only require webapps.

Ninja Ropes Extreme:

Spiderman makes it look easy. But this first game will test you. Could you be Spiderman? Would you make it as a superhero or would you crash into the first obstacle you came to?

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If you find this too challenging then you can start with the more basic version of Ninja Ropes

Or you can play this mind bender: block2lock

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free-iphone-games

The object of the game is to pass the blue block through the gates moving the other blocks. If this is your speed then you will be delighted to know that there are a massive 400 levels to this game!! No-one at iphonegizmo could master this one. See how you go!