updated 06:10 pm EDT, Thu August 30, 2007
Puremobile to sell iPhones
Canadian reseller Puremobile, a firm that specializes in selling iPhones not available for sale in Canada, has announced plans to peddle unlocked iPhones in that will work on the Rogers Wireless network, apparently with the full, welcome blessing of the latter. The company says it has partnered with George Hotz, the 17-year-old hacker who initially posted an unlock process for the device, so that it works natively on Rogers Wireless and Fido cellular networks. Puremobile seems to have already tested demonstration unlocked phones on the Canadian networks, claiming that all of the features work on Fido, with the exception of visual voice mail. In fact, the company already has two unlocked iPhones and will be giving one away in a lottery. [corrected]
The Ottawa Citizen reports "Rogers is the only network in Canada that can support the GSM device. Odette Coleman, a spokeswoman for Roger's Wireless said yesterday that Rogers will activate any unlocked iPhones that people bring in. However, the company will not offer any guarantees that the iPhone will work the same way it is suppose to on the AT&T network."
Hotz, the soon-to-be college student from New Jersey who unlocked the iPhone for use on wireless carriers other than AT&T via a complex hardware method that involves soldering internal components and using a number of command line utilities, has traded the unlocked device for a Nissan 350Z and three 8GB iPhones.
Separately, hackers claim to have successfully unlocked Apple's iPhone without modifying any hardware. The iPhoneSIMfree.com team say they have cracked Apple's iPhone SIM lock system with a working unlocked handset. The unlocked phone used a T-Mobile SIM card in place of AT&T's default card, allowing the users to make calls, send text messages, and check email on an iPhone using their chosen T-Mobile service provider.
Apple has also been slapped with a class-action lawsuit alleging that the company did not properly inform purchasers of iPhones that they would be tethered to AT&T's network for the duration of their contract, and separately complaining that using the device internationally can result in excessive data roaming charges. The 9-page suit claims that Apple misled iPhone buyers, not fullly disclosing the locked-in nature of the device, and the fact that unlock codes would not be provided.