Originally Posted by PrHeloPilot
I'm glad I came here before I bought in on EBay. Over there EVERYBODY I have asked that sells IPhones has told me that I can just add my SIM card and it will work. If I have to activate it anyway, why are people buying the phone for $500 and $600 when they can get it for $399 in the store ?
Although it's very risky, some people will buy these phones with the hope of unlocking them. If successfully unlocked, then you would be able to add your own SIM card without signing up for a new plan. Of course, even if this works for you, you might never, ever be able to update your iPhone software again, or at least you might end up having to wait a long time for new hacks to allow new updates. You might not be able to update iTunes either, because later versions of iTunes might attempt to deactivate, report, and/or brick any unlocked iPhone that you try to sync.
If your current carrier is AT&T you might also run that risk that AT&T could detect that you were using an iPhone, via the phone's IMEI, without having gone through what they consider appropriate channels to do so.
And of course some people might simply be deceived into buying iPhones on eBay based on their own lack or knowledge or deliberate misinformation from dishonest sellers.
I'd never, ever consider buying a cell phone on eBay. I've had great experiences with eBay when it comes to selling used computers and some used audio equipment too, but when I tried to sell a used cell phone, that really brought the fraudulent side of eBay crawling out of the woodwork.Three times in a row
, over the course of about two months of trying to auction an unlocked GSM cellphone that I bought when I was at Heathrow (an expensive impulse purchase so that I'd have a cellphone I could use while traveling, something my then-Verizon CDMA phone wasn't much good for), my auctions all ended with a last-minute ridiculously high bid, from someone who obviously had no intention whatsoever of actually paying the outlandish price they bid. Each attempted to defraud me by e-mailing faked PayPal payment notices.
The fraud was easy to detect and I was never in danger of falling for it, but each incident locked out all honest buyers that I might have sold to, required a struggle with eBay to recover the auction fees, and led to a 15 day delay before I could re-list and attempt to sell again.
I gave up completely. That phone is still sitting in box, ready for shipment, stashed in a closet somewhere. I'll just treat it as a spare, I guess.