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Buying An Unlocked iPhone From iPhoneNow.ca

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Invisible Shield for iPhone

Update (Feb.1/08): Authorities ask for help: http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=39bd6190-0ce8-49b7-ad04-cf2e5f0313ba&k=14629

Consumers can report their dealings with iPhoneNow.ca at 1-888-564-9963 or by e-mail at info@bpcpa.ca

Update: iPhoneNow.ca is in the news: http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/story.html?id=cf51ae03-de31-46fb-a632-725dc8809508&k=53201

For those on the Westcoast of BC, particularly those in the Lower Mainland, you might have seen the television ads running on the TV listings channel. What kind of ads am I talking about? iPhones of course! There’s this company called iPhoneNow.ca that is advertising “unlocked iPhones” in Canada, and for Canadians to place their orders ASAP because quantities are limited. But wait, it doesn’t stop there–you can qualify for “EasyPay” payments of $69/month! If you order with Interact Online, you’ll save 2% on your purchase, but you’ll lack the “charge back” security provided by credit cards.

Okay, so what’s the deal with iPhoneNow.ca? The new iPhones with version 1.1.2 firmware cannot be unlocked at the moment. So how is iPhoneNow.ca unlocking their phones? Well, after a small investigation, it was confirmed that they are indeed using a TurboSIM-like solution.

iPhoneNow.ca has priced their phones at $699CDN…after checking their website, prices are now at $649CDN. I had a couple readers ask me about purchasing from them. That seems pretty pricey to me, especially ordering online from a start up company that hasn’t been around for a long time. You could just buy an iPhone from the US for $399, then spend $125-150CDN for a TurboSIM chip (eBay), and you will still “save” $100CDN or so.

Are they legit? Should you buy from iPhoneNow.ca? A look at their “About Us” page reveals the site is run by a company that has business interests in both the USA and Canada. They list two dealers as service centers. The one in the United States, lists:

CIPC Worldwide Holdings Corporation
108 West 13th Street, Suite 200
Wilmington DE 19801

In Canada, they offer service through:

Jiffy Wireless
555 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, British Columbia
Canada V6B 1M1

Thanks to one our readers at iPhone in Canada, we were able to get a transcript of a “live chat”…here are parts 1 and 2:

iphonenowchat.PNGiphonenowchat2.PNG

If you were too lazy to read the chat, it explains that the phones are indeed unlocked using a TurboSIM method, and they ship via FedEx or Purolator. Also, the chip solution is “so easy” the CSR’s 8 year old was able to perform it! Wow, I’m sold! 😉

iPhoneNow.ca looks really pretty on their website–they’ve spent a lot of time ripping Apple’s images to place on their site. If there are happy iPhoneNow.ca customers out there, please let us know, as we’d love to hear from you about their service! In the meantime, if you really really really really NEED an iPhone, I would suggest following my list of Top 5 Ways to Buy an iPhone in Canada first before approaching iPhoneNow.ca — you might save some money!

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