UK O2 users now able to unlock iPhones

O2 confirmed today that from November 10 all O2 customers in the UK will be able to unlock their iPhone devices for use on other networks.

The unlock will be free for pay monthly customers at any time during their contracts but O2 will charge a one-off £15 fee for Pay & Go unlocking at the end of 12 months after purchase. O2 customers can complete an unlocking form and O2 will unlock the device within 14 days. O2 were quick to stress that existing pay monthly customers will need to honour the remainder of their contracts despite the ability to unlock.

Unlocking is a process that allows users to place a non-O2 sim card into the iPhone device. Last week UK provider Orange confirmed that they will be offering the iPhone 3G and 3Gs tomorrow. According to Orange, stores will open at 7am on November 10th for those interested in picking up an iPhone 3G or 3GS; the handset will also be available through Orange HMV concessions, Apple Retail Stores, Carphone Warehouse, Phones4U and other "selected high street partners".

In September, both Orange and Vodafone announced that they would be offering the iPhone to their customers. Vodafone have said the phone would be available on its network from 2010 but has yet to confirm pricing details.

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Just recieved a Text from O2 confirming ithey have now unlocked my iPhone3GS (Less than a month old too). not tested as no need but not seen any other mention of O2s promise.

I registered earlier in the week.

G

Wow! I never saw this coming. I have to say that O2 are an excellent cell provider and frankly I hope they get a good line up of Android phones together over the coming months, as when my iPhone contract is up, I'd love to renew and pick up an Android handset with them!

While this is great new for the industry and other operators should follow suit, it doesnt seem right that Pay & Go customers must wait for 12 months, since we pay a heft price up front to more or less buy the phone outright, why should we be tied in for 12 months (Mobile Operators Dictating again). I have a Pay & Go iPhone and cant get it unlocked until after this period.

Yet we in the USA are stuck with AT&T ONLY. Apple should release a CDMA iPhone as the Sprint and Verizon users have had numerous petitions for it. Plus Verizon lacks any phones that are even half-decent. The only thing they got is the MotoDroid and Blackberry Tour. Same for Sprint but with the Palm Pre and Blackberry Tour.

Verizon has the BB Storm. I've got it - it's not bad. I'd prefer something better although I've been happy with their coverage and service.

thats good, this whole jailbreaking thing is just a waste of time really

Really...?? You obviously dont know much about this process, or its benefits... Unlocking the phone is only the tip of the iceberg after jailbreaking it....

Nice to know there is now an official route to unlock....

We're trying to get in touch with O2's press office to confirm whether it's just a carrier lock that's removed or a country lock (PLEASE!) too.

What's the process to unlock? Have to take it to an O2 store? I'm very suprsied they are letting us unlock while in the middle of our contract! (albeit have to honour it, obviously) I have no need to at the moment, but will definitely get it unlocked anyways

Yeh I've dont that. But can the iPhone be unlocked by entering a code or will it need physical access (the latter wouldn't suprise me with the way Apple is)

Neither: it's a backend change. When you put an unauthorised SIM into the phone usually, iTunes prompts you that activation isn't possible with this SIM. Once it's unlocked, it'll activate during that process.

If you really want to read your full contract and willing to "fight" o2 there are ways out of your contract without penalty (without having to return the handset or pay any remaining months). The most common reason is increases in call charges during your contract - which you have to prove to have "severely" affected you as a customer.

I have used this to get out of a contract (on O2) after less than half of the period. I was on a contract with free 0800 (and similar) calls, now all providers charge for these calls from mobiles. As I used to actually call these for sorting out utilities on my bill I had no minuted charges before and over £5 for the month afterwards.

They will usually notify you if they change anything that affects you - you have a certain period following notification (time period will be defined in the contract) to cancel without penalty. - Of course when they notified you is subjective and difficult for them to prove they ever did, in which case there is no time frame.

Maybe time for iPhone users to go read their contracts, and check what they originally agreed to what O2 expect now)

They haven't increased tariff prices or removed free calls to certain numbers so I don't think there is a way out of a contract,

That was just an example any amendment to a contract can be challenged - whilst its unlikely if you have just signed a contract if your contract is over a year old it might be worth a check if you have some free time and badly want to get out of it.

Interesting. I bought a pay + go iphone then went on the O2 Simplicity deal ( 1 month contract) so i wonder if i'll have to pay or not.

I'd like to know this too - I have an iPhone 3G on a simplicity contract, and it'd be nice to be able to use another sim every once in a while.

This is fantastic news and I'm truly amazed that they've done this. Surely, there must have been a pending lawsuit/offcom action?

I doubt it was something to do with OFCOM or any other legal requirement. Will Orange/Vodafone iPhones be unlocked? I doubt it!

Well done O2, though i'm stuck into a contract until 2011 so not really worth doing.

thats good, this whole jailbreaking thing is just a waste of time really, and i think all companies should go this way!... the device once you purchase it is YOURS not the providers.. I hope this comes to the US to!

dimithrak said,
thats good, this whole jailbreaking thing is just a waste of time really, and i think all companies should go this way!... the device once you purchase it is YOURS not the providers.. I hope this comes to the US to!

Actually not quite. Until you serve out your contract, you're not cut and dry in terms of the cost of the phone. You try cancelling your contract early. They'll force you to pay the remainder of the contract to recoup the remaining cost of the phone. The contract term IS the payment for phones on pay monthly contracts.

Jailbreaking is different to unlocking. Jailbreaking lets your run unapproved code and not use other carriers. Although when jailbreaking you get the option to unlock if your baseband is capable of it.

dimithrak said,
thats good, this whole jailbreaking thing is just a waste of time really, and i think all companies should go this way!... the device once you purchase it is YOURS not the providers.. I hope this comes to the US to!

Seriously? Jailbreaking allows you to do *so much more* with your device.