The news that the AT&T were unlocking iPhone 4S before their contract had finished sparked confusion amongst the Apple community. The reason for their generosity may have become clear now the iPhone 5 has been released and Apple themselves are selling their phones as factory unlocked (not tethered to a specific network).
Many iPhone fans as will welcome the move as before now they have had to rely on unofficial third parties, or jailbreaking to unlock their phones if they decided to swap provider. People have claimed that the unlocked phones are expected to be announced after the locked, contract version has been released, although the UK Apple Store, amongst others, is already advertising the unlocked version and it appears that all handsets will be unlocked from the word go.
US Buyers of iPhone 5 get carrier locked phones only :
The customers in the US, however, seem to have got the worst deal with the Apple Store currently only displaying the locked version of the phone for pre-order. The release date of the unlocked version has been rumored to be several weeks after the initial contract phones have been released and the customers waiting for this version are bound to face another backlog, yet again increasing the wait for the new iPhone.
Why the USA store is not allowing the purchase of the unlocked phones is, as of yet, unknown, but there must be some reason for Apple to be keeping the unlocked version back.
The prices from the Apple USA store for the unlocked version (no longer available on site) are :
As the Apple Store states, if you don’t want the ties of a long-term contract or use a local sim while traveling a lot then the unlocked version is going to be the best buy.
Buy Unlocked iPhone 5 for Cheap Overseas :
Buying the iPhone from an international Apple site could be the answer for those who are dying to get their hands on the new iPhone, although with the pre-order rush they could be looking at the same amount of time once the delivery times have been factored in. The extra cost may make it an unprofitable pursuit as well considering it may only be a month’s extra wait for the US customers.
Price of iPhone 5 : Around the World
Important Note for iPhone 5 Buyers :
Before making the purchase make sure your carrier provides Nano-SIM cards, without which you won’t be able to activate your iPhone 5. Another, interesting, point is that the unlocked iPhone 5 is rumored to NOT come with international warranty. This will be bad news for those who are getting the unlocked iPhone because of their traveling. However, an insurance policy will not be too hard to pick up.
LTE Providers for iPhone 5 Worldwide
- AT&T (GSM)
- Sprint (CDMA)
- Verizon (CDMA)
- Bell (including Virgin)
- Rogers (including Fido)
- Telus (including Koodo)
Germany: Deutsche Telekom (GSM)
UK (United Kingdom): (GSM)
- Everything Everywhere
- Optus (including Virgin)
Japan: Softbank (GSM)
- SK Telecom
HongKong (GSM): SmarTone