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iPhone 3G Software Unlock: Coming Soon?

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For all you first gen iPhone veterans out there, remember how we couldn’t even use our iPhones without jailbreaking and unlocking? The continuous game of jailbreaking and unlocking came to a bit of a snag up once firmware 1.1.2 came along. During this time, the only way to unlock your iPhone for use in Canada was through the purchase of a “SIM solution” ($99US). It wasn’t until ZiPhone was unleashed that made it easy to unlock and jailbreak the iPhone.

The state of today’s iPhone 3G baseband unlock is at a similar standstill. The iPhone 3G was released on July 11th and it’s been almost three months of the Dev Team working on the unlock. Yesterday they updated their blog to explain that the following:


We’ve been exploring different ideas with the 3G unlock, but this past weekend one of us hit a big snag. For whatever reason, all of our poking and prodding of the 3G baseband caused it to finally have a breakdown. After one specific exploit run, all of a sudden our baseband stopped responding to the OS

What does this mean? Essentially, the software unlock for the iPhone 3G could very well be coming soon. It’s just a matter of time before the Dev Team will come up with a full out software unlock. I have complete faith in them that they will succeed. Given that most of these guys have day jobs you can’t expect something to come over night.

If you’ve been waiting for the software unlock for your iPhone 3G (and the ability to use any GSM SIM from around the world), it could very well be around the corner. Until then, I would patiently wait for its release! However, since I have my first gen iPhone still it will come in handy when I go travel overseas. As for living here in Canada, I don’t mind my iPhone 3G being locked to Rogers since having a legit unit is worth it for warranty purposes.

Does anyone out there still care about the software unlock? I think it would be very handy once future GSM carriers get setup here. Let me know your thoughts!

[Dev Team]

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  • Sunny

    Thanks for the news as always! And I agree it would be very handy to be able to unlock the 3g once new GSM companies set up in Canada. Especially considering they’re expected next year and all of us will still be only a year into our contracts and if these new companies have new plans that are really good atleast cancelling our contract will be the only thing we’ll have to worry about.

  • Sunny

    Thanks for the news as always! And I agree it would be very handy to be able to unlock the 3g once new GSM companies set up in Canada. Especially considering they’re expected next year and all of us will still be only a year into our contracts and if these new companies have new plans that are really good atleast cancelling our contract will be the only thing we’ll have to worry about.

  • techbliss

    This is what I’ve been anxiously waiting for.. the unlocking of the iPhone 3G. it would be fantastic to be able to use it when I travel especially next year. I’m thinking of buying another unlocked phone just for that reason but now I guess I’ll just have to be patient and hope that the Dev Team will succeed in doing that..soon. This is too excited!

  • techbliss

    This is what I’ve been anxiously waiting for.. the unlocking of the iPhone 3G. it would be fantastic to be able to use it when I travel especially next year. I’m thinking of buying another unlocked phone just for that reason but now I guess I’ll just have to be patient and hope that the Dev Team will succeed in doing that..soon. This is too excited!

  • I must be “out of the loop”! Why would I need a software unlock as opposed to a jailbreak? I can use my 3G when I travel, can’t I? I hear things about purchasing local SIM cards while traveling, but have never seen them for sale where I travel (usually in the Caribbean). I don’t think I really see the “big picture” here!! 🙂

  • I must be “out of the loop”! Why would I need a software unlock as opposed to a jailbreak? I can use my 3G when I travel, can’t I? I hear things about purchasing local SIM cards while traveling, but have never seen them for sale where I travel (usually in the Caribbean). I don’t think I really see the “big picture” here!! 🙂

  • Tony

    Right now your phone is locked to either rogers or fido. If you travel you can buy local sim cards (from any GSM cell company) so that you can avoid enormous roaming charges. The only way to use these sims are to unlock your phone.

  • Tony

    Right now your phone is locked to either rogers or fido. If you travel you can buy local sim cards (from any GSM cell company) so that you can avoid enormous roaming charges. The only way to use these sims are to unlock your phone.

  • Tony

    I also read that on the dev blog yesterday. They went on to say that once they tried to reproduce that “snag” that they weren’t able to. So I guess it depends on how you look at it, whether or not they are close.

  • Tony

    I also read that on the dev blog yesterday. They went on to say that once they tried to reproduce that “snag” that they weren’t able to. So I guess it depends on how you look at it, whether or not they are close.

  • SSK13

    This would be awesome for us travellers! Hope they make it happen. I’m in no hurry since I’m ok with mine being locked to fido. I have a sweet plan so I can’t complain.

  • SSK13

    This would be awesome for us travellers! Hope they make it happen. I’m in no hurry since I’m ok with mine being locked to fido. I have a sweet plan so I can’t complain.

  • thatgadgetgirl

    The minute that’s out I will definitely unlock my 3g iphone. I travel to Europe at least once per yer….it would be nice to swap in a mobileworld sim card and only pay 5 pence per minute to call back to Canada

  • thatgadgetgirl

    The minute that’s out I will definitely unlock my 3g iphone. I travel to Europe at least once per yer….it would be nice to swap in a mobileworld sim card and only pay 5 pence per minute to call back to Canada

  • Larry

    Another solution is to use the “sim-unlock” card. They are pretty cheap these days (~$20 for Gevey-3G card), and work w/o any problem (I tried at least in N.Y. and multiple ASIA cities). This way, you also don’t have warranty issue too.

  • Larry

    Another solution is to use the “sim-unlock” card. They are pretty cheap these days (~$20 for Gevey-3G card), and work w/o any problem (I tried at least in N.Y. and multiple ASIA cities). This way, you also don’t have warranty issue too.

  • shirley

    you mentioned the warranty for iPhones with Rogers/Fido.
    Does the jailbreaking you did void the warranty at all?

  • shirley

    you mentioned the warranty for iPhones with Rogers/Fido.
    Does the jailbreaking you did void the warranty at all?

  • Rick

    Hmm, you must be reading a different Dev Team blog than I was (although, you did quote from it). It seems that they hit “a big snag” and are unable to overcome it. I’m not sure I read this as an unlock coming soon, and I’m not sure blogging as such is a good idea (starting the rumor mill is always a bit dangerous, and you’re the first and only blogger I’ve seen who keeps saying an unlock is coming soon).

    For me, I don’t think an unlock is important, unless the iPhone 3G is only usable in th country you purchased it, and not another legitimate iPhone service provider in another country. For example, I’m from Canada bit work in Mexico. With my iPhone 2G I simply use a Fido SIM in Canada and Telcel SIM in Mexico. If I could still so that with a locked 3G, then that’s totally okay with me.

  • Rick

    Hmm, you must be reading a different Dev Team blog than I was (although, you did quote from it). It seems that they hit “a big snag” and are unable to overcome it. I’m not sure I read this as an unlock coming soon, and I’m not sure blogging as such is a good idea (starting the rumor mill is always a bit dangerous, and you’re the first and only blogger I’ve seen who keeps saying an unlock is coming soon).

    For me, I don’t think an unlock is important, unless the iPhone 3G is only usable in th country you purchased it, and not another legitimate iPhone service provider in another country. For example, I’m from Canada bit work in Mexico. With my iPhone 2G I simply use a Fido SIM in Canada and Telcel SIM in Mexico. If I could still so that with a locked 3G, then that’s totally okay with me.

  • Tony

    Ya like i wrote earlier I don’t think they’re close simply because they were writing about their struggles with the unlock.

    @ Rick except you can’t pop a TELCEL sim into your locked 3G because it is just that, locked, it simply won’t work. The whole point of the unlock is so that you can use any sim you want.

  • Tony

    Ya like i wrote earlier I don’t think they’re close simply because they were writing about their struggles with the unlock.

    @ Rick except you can’t pop a TELCEL sim into your locked 3G because it is just that, locked, it simply won’t work. The whole point of the unlock is so that you can use any sim you want.

  • Tony

    Ya like i wrote earlier I don’t think they’re close simply because they were writing about their struggles with the unlock.

    @ Rick except you can’t pop a TELCEL sim into your locked 3G because it is just that, locked, it simply won’t work. The whole point of the unlock is so that you can use any sim you want.

  • Geo

    Hi, Well, if you go to any cellphone company in the Caribbean (DigiCell, C&W, etc) you can purchase a ‘pay as you go’ SIM card add some money and save by using a local number for the calls where you are. Otherwise, you’ll be paying roaming charges which can get very expensive!
    Unlocked is a great help, but to get one on the 3G will be a continuous ‘hit and miss’ at this point.

  • Geo

    Hi, Well, if you go to any cellphone company in the Caribbean (DigiCell, C&W, etc) you can purchase a ‘pay as you go’ SIM card add some money and save by using a local number for the calls where you are. Otherwise, you’ll be paying roaming charges which can get very expensive!
    Unlocked is a great help, but to get one on the 3G will be a continuous ‘hit and miss’ at this point.

  • Geo

    I am doubtful that a breakthrough will come anytime soon. maybe Steve Jobs did add a special lock to the 3G so that it would not be unlocked? More and more, I am looking at a Euro iPhone which is unlocked by Apple and still retains the warranty. You’ll pay a bit more, but its all legit …and working.
    if I get to Europe next month I will spend time in the cellphone stores there.

  • Geo

    I am doubtful that a breakthrough will come anytime soon. maybe Steve Jobs did add a special lock to the 3G so that it would not be unlocked? More and more, I am looking at a Euro iPhone which is unlocked by Apple and still retains the warranty. You’ll pay a bit more, but its all legit …and working.
    if I get to Europe next month I will spend time in the cellphone stores there.

  • John

    Umm, am I missing something. They said “BIG SNAG” and “STOPPED RESPONDING”. How on earth did you extrapolate that to “Coming Soon”? Just because they’re working on it doesn’t give it any higher chance of success. Wishful thinking I guess, but come on man!

  • John

    Umm, am I missing something. They said “BIG SNAG” and “STOPPED RESPONDING”. How on earth did you extrapolate that to “Coming Soon”? Just because they’re working on it doesn’t give it any higher chance of success. Wishful thinking I guess, but come on man!

  • John

    Umm, am I missing something. They said “BIG SNAG” and “STOPPED RESPONDING”. How on earth did you extrapolate that to “Coming Soon”? Just because they’re working on it doesn’t give it any higher chance of success. Wishful thinking I guess, but come on man!

  • I find that having an unlocked iPhone is rather useless as there are few countries in the world that have pre-paid plans with reasonably priced data. Using a data plan is pretty much what you want an iPhone for anyways. The only benefit to having an unlocked on is pretty much to not have to carry another phone when you’re traveling abroad.

  • I find that having an unlocked iPhone is rather useless as there are few countries in the world that have pre-paid plans with reasonably priced data. Using a data plan is pretty much what you want an iPhone for anyways. The only benefit to having an unlocked on is pretty much to not have to carry another phone when you’re traveling abroad.

  • I find that having an unlocked iPhone is rather useless as there are few countries in the world that have pre-paid plans with reasonably priced data. Using a data plan is pretty much what you want an iPhone for anyways. The only benefit to having an unlocked on is pretty much to not have to carry another phone when you’re traveling abroad.

  • Jan

    Agreed. Unlocking is somewhat of a waste of time. I don’t travel though, so I guess that speaks for itself. Now, the question I have, is this. People keep talking about just “swapping” out SIM cards. Does the card you swap to, have to be activated/have a plan? I’ve got an AT&T one from the states, and I want to know if I go down there, will I be able to use it? Or will I get service, but be unable to make calls? It would seem to me, that I would be unable to make calls unless the card was registered with the company…

  • Jan

    Agreed. Unlocking is somewhat of a waste of time. I don’t travel though, so I guess that speaks for itself. Now, the question I have, is this. People keep talking about just “swapping” out SIM cards. Does the card you swap to, have to be activated/have a plan? I’ve got an AT&T one from the states, and I want to know if I go down there, will I be able to use it? Or will I get service, but be unable to make calls? It would seem to me, that I would be unable to make calls unless the card was registered with the company…

  • Well I would like to think that the Dev Team doesn’t post news updated in real time, and that we obviously know less than what is published on the net. But in all seriousness, I have a feeling the unlock could be coming very soon. 😉

  • Well I would like to think that the Dev Team doesn’t post news updated in real time, and that we obviously know less than what is published on the net. But in all seriousness, I have a feeling the unlock could be coming very soon. 😉

  • Well I would like to think that the Dev Team doesn’t post news updated in real time, and that we obviously know less than what is published on the net. But in all seriousness, I have a feeling the unlock could be coming very soon. 😉

  • Geo

    The SIM you have has to be activated (working), so that you can use. Although only in an unlocked phone! Prepaid service has one small fault with it. They do not work (usually) outside their country of origin. But at least for travelers it helps keep the cost down! There are some exceptions. Rogers prepaid will work in the USA. That is cool, but also expensive with a roaming charge added. Until the cell phone companies get their act together and provide a real sense of service, we will continue to be at their mercy.

  • Geo

    The SIM you have has to be activated (working), so that you can use. Although only in an unlocked phone! Prepaid service has one small fault with it. They do not work (usually) outside their country of origin. But at least for travelers it helps keep the cost down! There are some exceptions. Rogers prepaid will work in the USA. That is cool, but also expensive with a roaming charge added. Until the cell phone companies get their act together and provide a real sense of service, we will continue to be at their mercy.

  • Geo

    The SIM you have has to be activated (working), so that you can use. Although only in an unlocked phone! Prepaid service has one small fault with it. They do not work (usually) outside their country of origin. But at least for travelers it helps keep the cost down! There are some exceptions. Rogers prepaid will work in the USA. That is cool, but also expensive with a roaming charge added. Until the cell phone companies get their act together and provide a real sense of service, we will continue to be at their mercy.

  • Geo

    you are right about the data plans. but I did find an interesting one in Italy two years ago. 25 Lire a month and all the data you can use from 5pm to 6am. that was quite good.

  • Geo

    you are right about the data plans. but I did find an interesting one in Italy two years ago. 25 Lire a month and all the data you can use from 5pm to 6am. that was quite good.

  • Geo

    you are right about the data plans. but I did find an interesting one in Italy two years ago. 25 Lire a month and all the data you can use from 5pm to 6am. that was quite good.

  • Having an unlocked cellphone in Europe is essential, and especially in Asia too. I love to travel so having an unlocked iPhone will be very handy.

  • Having an unlocked cellphone in Europe is essential, and especially in Asia too. I love to travel so having an unlocked iPhone will be very handy.

  • Having an unlocked cellphone in Europe is essential, and especially in Asia too. I love to travel so having an unlocked iPhone will be very handy.

  • leopod

    …maybe a detail and maybe irrelevent, but devteam stated at some point in the last few months, that the 3G unlock would be available, in the beginning, only to those who never updated 2.0 firmware, or who always used pwnage tool with baseband update disabled…
    But there’s a paragraph where they say, in their last blog entry, that they ran baseband 01.45, then updated to 01.46, and went back to 01.45 to make something work…does this mean, you think, that we wouldn’t have to worry about updating our baseband, even if we’d like to get the unlock as fast as possible…?

  • leopod

    …maybe a detail and maybe irrelevent, but devteam stated at some point in the last few months, that the 3G unlock would be available, in the beginning, only to those who never updated 2.0 firmware, or who always used pwnage tool with baseband update disabled…
    But there’s a paragraph where they say, in their last blog entry, that they ran baseband 01.45, then updated to 01.46, and went back to 01.45 to make something work…does this mean, you think, that we wouldn’t have to worry about updating our baseband, even if we’d like to get the unlock as fast as possible…?

  • leopod

    …maybe a detail and maybe irrelevent, but devteam stated at some point in the last few months, that the 3G unlock would be available, in the beginning, only to those who never updated 2.0 firmware, or who always used pwnage tool with baseband update disabled…
    But there’s a paragraph where they say, in their last blog entry, that they ran baseband 01.45, then updated to 01.46, and went back to 01.45 to make something work…does this mean, you think, that we wouldn’t have to worry about updating our baseband, even if we’d like to get the unlock as fast as possible…?

  • joost

    Or… It could be the way I read it in that they’ve hit a snag and still aren’t closer. As someone that only knows enough programming to be dangerous I’d like more of an explaination as to how what looks to be a major snag is a good thing. 🙂

  • joost

    Or… It could be the way I read it in that they’ve hit a snag and still aren’t closer. As someone that only knows enough programming to be dangerous I’d like more of an explaination as to how what looks to be a major snag is a good thing. 🙂

  • Geo

    iphone fan gave us a wink 😉 in the last comment on this subject, so he may know something that we do not.

  • Geo

    iphone fan gave us a wink 😉 in the last comment on this subject, so he may know something that we do not.

  • Nasir

    I am excited to know that Unlock 3G is on the corner. that is a great news. I would luv to have unlock iPhone 3Gl. :):):):)

  • Nasir

    I am excited to know that Unlock 3G is on the corner. that is a great news. I would luv to have unlock iPhone 3Gl. :):):):)

  • Nasir

    I am excited to know that Unlock 3G is on the corner. that is a great news. I would luv to have unlock iPhone 3Gl. :):):):)

  • Ryan

    Are you dumb or just stupid? A big snag != “we’re almost there”!

  • Ryan

    Are you dumb or just stupid? A big snag != “we’re almost there”!

  • Ryan

    Are you dumb or just stupid? A big snag != “we’re almost there”!

  • Ryan

    Are you dumb or just stupid? A big snag != “we’re almost there”!

  • neo

    hi guys, its good news that iphone 3g soft unlock is coming soon. can someone tell that would it b possible to unlock 3g which was upgraded to firmware 2.2 and then downgraded to firmware 2.1?

  • neo

    hi guys, its good news that iphone 3g soft unlock is coming soon. can someone tell that would it b possible to unlock 3g which was upgraded to firmware 2.2 and then downgraded to firmware 2.1?

  • neo

    hi guys, its good news that iphone 3g soft unlock is coming soon. can someone tell that would it b possible to unlock 3g which was upgraded to firmware 2.2 and then downgraded to firmware 2.1?

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