Apple's iPhone 4S has pricing that starts at $199 for the 16 GB version, no matter which wireless carrier you pick from. But you also get stuck with a two year contract when you purchase the iPhone 4S at those prices. What if you don't want to be shackled to that kind of commitment? Well, if you are willing to wait another month, and don't mind being stuck with using just one of the three US wireless carriers for the phone, you can get an unlocked iPhone 4S with no two year contract needed.
Apple's online store revealed this morning that starting sometime in November, it will begin shipping unlocked iPhone 4S devices to the public. Pricing begins at $649 for the 16 GB version, an increase of about $450 compared to the iPhone 4S with a two year contract. The 32 GB version will sell for $749 and the 64 GB version will be available unlocked for $849.
This version of the iPhone 4S will only work with wireless networks that support the GSM standard. That means that if you purchase this version you will have to use AT&T's network here in the US. It won't be able to connect to Verizon Wireless or Sprint's networks, which use the CDMA standard. If you want to travel abroad with the phone, you can get a micro-SIM card from whatever GSM-based wireless network you will need to use and install it in the iPhone 4S to use it on their networks. It's way more expensive and it limits you to just one wireless carrier here in this country, but if you don't want to deal with a long contract at least Apple is giving you an option.