O2 to open early, may unlock iPhone 3G after one year

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
British carrier O2 plans a prompt morning launch for the iPhone 3G, AppleInsider has learned, and hints that it may unlock the iPhone for use on any carrier for Pay As You Go customers.



Appearing to confirm some recent rumors senior O2 retail sources in the Midlands region of the UK claim that all company stores will officially open at 7:05AM local time, well ahead of normal schedules. The real-world opening is expected to be 7:02AM (a take on the company name) in keeping with a young tradition started when the original iPhone launched at 6:02PM for its November launch.



The shift from evening to morning reflects rumors of an early American launch that is believed by some to be necessary to handle the long wait times for in-store activating plans, which are believed to take roughly 10 minutes or more per customer.



O2 is also said by the new sources to begin stocking up on iPhone 3G units the week before the launch rather than the just-in-time deliveries that were made in some areas with launches of the original Apple cellphone. Demo units may be in use shortly afterwards, according to the reports.



For some customers, though, the most important news may come a year later. Separate O2 staff are suggesting that the wireless carrier's usual policy of offering an unlock code for Pay As You Go phones after 12 months will remain true for iPhone 3G.



While the request for an unlock code costs £15, the gesture would at least theoretically allow iPhone customers in Britain to use their handsets on competing networks such as 3 or Vodafone or to swap SIM cards temporarily for local phone service while on vacation.



It's unknown as to whether or not this policy will hold. For the original iPhone, Apple is known to have taken extra steps in hardware to prevent unlocking , but now is relying primarily on the service signup requirement to guarantee use with official providers.



It would also represent one of the first instances where unlocked iPhones would be sanctioned as a matter of policy rather than law; unlocked iPhone 3G units will be sold in France, for example, but primarily because providers aren't allowed to offer an exclusive device without it also being available as a stand-alone unlocked version.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 26
    zeasarzeasar Posts: 91member
    Rite, gotta set my alarm clock at 6 o'clock then...



    Actually, Im not even sure the centre where the O2 shop is in opens at 7am. \
  • Reply 2 of 26
    eaieai Posts: 417member
    My local O2 store has a table for about 10 demo iPhones which has been empty for the last month or so. They also had a large iPhone for the window display that froze a few weeks ago then got removed and hasn't returned
  • Reply 3 of 26
    O2 + 3"G" = 05



    Opening is 7:05, the addition of the company (02) and the new iPhone version (3G)
  • Reply 4 of 26
    jb510jb510 Posts: 127member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    It would also represent one of the first instances where unlocked iPhones would be sanctioned as a matter of policy rather than law; unlocked iPhone 3G units will be sold in France, for example, but primarily because providers aren't allowed to offer an exclusive device without it also being available as a stand-alone unlocked version.



    What about the brief sale of unlocked phones in Germany? What ever happened with those phone anyway...
  • Reply 5 of 26
    dreyfus2dreyfus2 Posts: 1,072member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jb510 View Post


    What about the brief sale of unlocked phones in Germany? What ever happened with those phone anyway...



    Well, that one week was not "sanctioned" by policy, but enforced by an injunction - so the statement in the article seems correct. We have 18 of the officially unlocked phones sold that week in the company and they are doing fine. I privately bought one of the officially unlocked 16GB models in France and it's doing fine as well. All of them have worked with any SIM in any country. Just like any phone should.
  • Reply 6 of 26
    jasonfjjasonfj Posts: 547member
    I plan to buy into an AT&T iPhone/plan, but often travel to the UK. Will I be able to unlock it to temporarily use a local SIM, then go back to my AT&T service when I get back to the US?
  • Reply 7 of 26
    winterspanwinterspan Posts: 605member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    I plan to buy into an AT&T iPhone/plan, but often travel to the UK. Will I be able to unlock it to temporarily use a local SIM, then go back to my AT&T service when I get back to the US?



    NO. Your American iPhone will be locked to AT&T as far as we know, as was the iPhone 2G. There have been debates over unlocks since AT&T will unlock other subsidized phones after your original contract period has been completed, but they never applied this policy to the iPhone.



    Although I know the iPhone 3G will no doubt be unlocked by hackers, it really pisses me off that Apple refuses to provide a solution to this problem. I can't believe that people simply accepted this fact with the original. I can imagine that many (most?) people in this country hardly even leave their state, not to even mention the country, but for people who travel abroad regularly, this makes the iPhone a non-starter.
  • Reply 8 of 26
    jasonfjjasonfj Posts: 547member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by winterspan View Post


    NO. Your American iPhone will be locked to AT&T as far as we know, as was the iPhone 2G. There have been debates over unlocks since AT&T will unlock other subsidized phones after your original contract period has been completed, but they never applied this policy to the iPhone.



    Although I know the iPhone 3G will no doubt be unlocked by hackers, it really pisses me off that Apple refuses to provide a solution to this problem. I can't believe that people simply accepted this fact with the original. I can imagine that many (most?) people in this country hardly even leave their state, not to even mention the country, but for people who travel abroad regularly, this makes the iPhone a non-starter.





    I actually meant can I unlock it with a hack and then continue with AT&T after.
  • Reply 9 of 26
    In france Orange unlick it after 6 month.
  • Reply 10 of 26
    zeasarzeasar Posts: 91member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    I actually meant can I unlock it with a hack and then continue with AT&T after.



    After unlock you can use any sims in your iphone, any includes your AT&T sims.



    And apple will have to come up with an unlocking method as soon as next may/june, where the contracts of the locked iphones sold in the UK since last november runs out.
  • Reply 11 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by neckaros View Post


    In france Orange unlick it after 6 month.







    why were they licking it in the first place?



    enquiring minds need to know
  • Reply 12 of 26
    According to an assistant I spoke to yesterday lunch time in the O2 store on Cross Street, Manchester, pre-registration will be available from 4 July. From that date I was told that I could go into an O2 store, have my credit checked and set up my new O2 account in advance of the iPhone 3G launch a week later. I was told that it would be as well if I brought my PAC on that day as well (I will be porting across from T-Mobile).



    The account, once set up, would effectively lie dormant until I go in on 11 July and buy my iPhone, at which point there would be a two-part activation process, initiated by in-store activation and then completed with a one-off activation at home through iTunes.



    I asked if this pre-registration would "reserve" me an iPhone 3G on 11 July. She assumed it would, because the thought that they would be allocated their stock of iPhone 3Gs based on the number of pre-registrations. (I'm still not convinced that that means pre-registration will act as a "reservation". Unless they are limiting launch-day sales to people who have already pre-registered, which I can't see...)



    All of this pretty much confirms previous "unofficial" reports from other O2 locations, but I think the 4 July date is new?



    It's going to be a long two weeks!
  • Reply 13 of 26
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,949member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Walter Slocombe View Post






    why were they licking it in the first place?



    enquiring minds need to know



    That's a mental image that can't be unseen after it's there.
  • Reply 14 of 26
    jasonfjjasonfj Posts: 547member
    At the moment I'm on T-Mobile. I guess I need to cancel my contract with them now, but how do I make sure I can carry my existing number over to AT&T?
  • Reply 15 of 26
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,166member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    I actually meant can I unlock it with a hack and then continue with AT&T after.



    I am sure that the 3G iPhone will be unlocked by hackers. The only issue is whether Apple will be able to determine if it was unlocked if you need to take your iPhone to service. If the process is totally reversible then I will sign up!
  • Reply 16 of 26
    cameronjcameronj Posts: 2,357member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    At the moment I'm on T-Mobile. I guess I need to cancel my contract with them now, but how do I make sure I can carry my existing number over to AT&T?



    I would think the law requiring number portability would provide enough certainty for you.
  • Reply 17 of 26
    jasonfjjasonfj Posts: 547member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cameronj View Post


    I would think the law requiring number portability would provide enough certainty for you.



    I meant whether to cancel my contract now and hope it doesn't end before I get my iPhone or wait till the day I buy the iPhone and cancel then. Would T-Mobile pro-rate the bill, or would I end up paying for two contracts that month?
  • Reply 18 of 26
    winterspanwinterspan Posts: 605member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    I meant whether to cancel my contract now and hope it doesn't end before I get my iPhone or wait till the day I buy the iPhone and cancel then. Would T-Mobile pro-rate the bill, or would I end up paying for two contracts that month?



    "hope it doesn't end" <-- what do you mean by that? Anyways, it depends on T-mobile's policies. You should probably call them and ask about prorating July or if you can cancel your service (ending June) and still retain your number until the iPhone is launched - although I'm not sure how that second part might work. I believe it is the NEW provider that has to contact your existing provider and setup a number transfer. In that case, they might recycle your number if you cancel your contract BEFORE launching a new iPhone contract.
  • Reply 19 of 26
    johnwinjohnwin Posts: 2member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jasonfj View Post


    At the moment I'm on T-Mobile. I guess I need to cancel my contract with them now, but how do I make sure I can carry my existing number over to AT&T?



    You will need to give T-Mo one months notice. If your origional contract is not yet up then you will need to settle up with them (pay all remaining monthly payments) or keep paying monthly until the contract end.



    If the contract has not yet ended then it will also cost you £45 to port your number. If you are beyond the contract period they are required to do it for free (I think)



    I told them that I'd rather have a new number than pay them £45!
  • Reply 20 of 26
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by adamclark View Post


    According to an assistant I spoke to yesterday lunch time in the O2 store on Cross Street, Manchester, pre-registration will be available from 4 July. From that date I was told that I could go into an O2 store, have my credit checked and set up my new O2 account in advance of the iPhone 3G launch a week later. I was told that it would be as well if I brought my PAC on that day as well (I will be porting across from T-Mobile).



    The account, once set up, would effectively lie dormant until I go in on 11 July and buy my iPhone, at which point there would be a two-part activation process, initiated by in-store activation and then completed with a one-off activation at home through iTunes.



    I asked if this pre-registration would "reserve" me an iPhone 3G on 11 July. She assumed it would, because the thought that they would be allocated their stock of iPhone 3Gs based on the number of pre-registrations. (I'm still not convinced that that means pre-registration will act as a "reservation". Unless they are limiting launch-day sales to people who have already pre-registered, which I can't see...)



    All of this pretty much confirms previous "unofficial" reports from other O2 locations, but I think the 4 July date is new?



    It's going to be a long two weeks!



    I dont know where you got the date of 4th July from to pre-register. I did just that in my local o2 store in Maidstone yesterday and they said that they had taken loads of registrations already. Curiously though, most of them had been for the 8GB model and not the 16GB one, which i have registered for.
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