It created a storm when it was launched in January 2007. Not just the iPhone but the fact that it was accessible only to AT&T and T-Mobile users in the US and the UK. But with any lock, there’s always a key. So it took only a few months before software developers discovered a way to beat the world’s smartest smart phone. It’s called unlocking in computer jargon. To the layperson, it simply means you can use the iPhone on any GSM network anywhere in the world with your local service provider.
Then came the “3G SIM” card. What you have to do is insert your SIM into a hardware SIM kit which vendors are selling, and then plug it into the iPhone 3G. Result? You iPhone’s permanently unlocked!
Hackers have found that unlocking the iPhone 3G is a tad more difficult than unlocking iPhone versions before this one, thanks to modifications by Apple. The original iPhone could be activated through iTunes, and getting around this system was a breeze for nimble-fingered hackers. But Apple has changed the way the iPhone needs to be activated, making it mandatory for customers to also purchase a service contract with AT&T.
But software experts have devised other solutions as well. Now, all it takes is a computer and, of course, your iPhone to unlock it so that it can be activated on any GSM network anywhere in the world. All you have to do is purchase the right software so that it does not damage your phone, download and install the application on the iPhone, which executes once you insert a new SIM card, and there you go, your iPhone opens a new window to your world.
Software can be purchased from resellers, who have licenses. But you can also get the perfect software – safe and at a nominal price. So what are the possible pitfalls? You would have to execute the software each time you insert a new SIM and nowadays hackers “guarantee” that the software will work even after further updates to the iPhone. You can use the software on both Windows or Mac computers.
So what does this unlocking software do? It works its way around the firmware Apple has installed, which restricts the phone to the AT&T and T-Mobile GSM networks. Firmware is a software program programmed on a hardware device. It provides the instructions needed for the device to communicate with other computer hardware.
After all, the smart phone is actually a mini-computer ultimately linking you to the worldwide web, doubling as an iPod and camera all rolled into one. But beware: unlocking your iPhone will invalidate its warranty, something you may not need considering that Apple’s latest invention is a sturdy piece of hardware.//
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