Unlocked iPhone 3G or turbo SIM?

jmido8

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Nov 8, 2008
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#1
I'm buying an iPhone 3G and I'm wondering if I should buy an unlocked iPhone or buy a locked one and use it with a turbo sim. With a turbo sim, the phone is fully functional and you don't void the warranty, whereas an unlocked phone voids the warranty and can possibly lock back up. So why would I buy an unlocked one? Does anyone have any input? I'm planning to use it on t-mobile if that makes a difference.

Also, if I buy an unlocked iPhone, is there a chance it will lock back up if I upgrade the firmwear or jailbreak it?
 

Saverino

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Jun 1, 2008
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#2
If you buy a factory unlocked iPhone 3G, you will have to buy it from another country (assuming you're in the USA) and that will get pretty costly.

If it's factory unlocked, the warranty is not voided, and it will not lock up if you have to upgrade the firmware or anything.
 

jmido8

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Nov 8, 2008
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#3
Well i'm looking to spend around 600-700$. Could that pay for a factory unlocked and if so, where can I purchase one at? Also, is there any difference if it's made out of country?
 

Saverino

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#4
Well i'm looking to spend around 600-700$. Could that pay for a factory unlocked and if so, where can I purchase one at? Also, is there any difference if it's made out of country?
Well even if you were to buy one, it would still be "made out of the country"

They're all made in the same place.

And I think for an unlocked one, runs around $900?
The moderator, macgirl, has an unlocked one. I think she paid somewhere around there...
 

Rip

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Oct 23, 2007
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#5
Yes, I paid $950 for mine.

As for warranty, from my investigations there's nowhere that you can buy one legit so whether the warranty is still good I don't know.

Even though they are unlocked, Singapore, Australia and Italy require that you buy one with a contract from the airtime provider. It may be that buying one from a non-Apple authorised dealer means no warranty.

I met a guy in a shopping mall in Singapore and handed over the cash to get mine!

Nothing wrong with it though.

I registered it with Apple when I got back to the UK so maybe the warranty will be good.

My concern is that they would only replace it with a locked one.
 

jmido8

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Nov 8, 2008
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#6
hmm alright thanks. I'v been looking on ebay and I can buy a new 16gb locked iPhone with a warrant for about 600-800$. If I get one of those, I would have to use the turbo sim to keep the warranty. Does anyone know what the difference between having it unlocked and using a turbo sim though?


Also, why can't you buy just an unlimited data plan with AT&T and then buy an unlocked iPhone / turbo sim so you get the 3G network and all the features without the iPhone plan cost?
 

Rip

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Oct 23, 2007
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#7
If it's unlocked it will work.

With Turbo SIM it might work, sometimes, most times all of the time - who knows. I certainly wouldn't rely on one. There are also reports of their use resulting in blocked IMEIs.

My advice would be to steer clear if you depend on being able to use your iPhone, though some others are happy with them.
 

Marianne

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Jul 16, 2007
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marianneschultz.com
#8
Well even if you were to buy one, it would still be "made out of the country"

They're all made in the same place.

And I think for an unlocked one, runs around $900?
The moderator, macgirl, has an unlocked one. I think she paid somewhere around there...
Absolutely correct - they're all made in the same place.

The unlocked iPhones are a little cheaper if you can get one from New Zealand - about US $700 after the currency conversion. I got lucky with a co-worker who has a brother there who got one for me - he just walked into a Vodafone store, bought one, and shipped it to me.
 

jmido8

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Nov 8, 2008
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#9
Absolutely correct - they're all made in the same place.

The unlocked iPhones are a little cheaper if you can get one from New Zealand - about US $700 after the currency conversion. I got lucky with a co-worker who has a brother there who got one for me - he just walked into a Vodafone store, bought one, and shipped it to me.

There's no way I can order one online? I don't know anyone or have any plans on going to another country any time soon. 700 US$ sounds perfect for me though which is nice. I thought Rid was talking about US $'s at first lol.
 

Marianne

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#10
There's no way I can order one online? I don't know anyone or have any plans on going to another country any time soon. 700 US$ sounds perfect for me though which is nice. I thought Rid was talking about US $'s at first lol.
I don't think you can order one online. You could try contacting a Vodafone store in NZ, but my guess is that they won't ship it to you unless you have an address in New Zealand.

The prices of unlocked phones do vary from country to country - I think they're officially sold for over $1000 in Russia, and around $800 in Hong Kong, and New Zealand just happens to have them cheaper. I've seen them go for $1,000 on eBay - most of those seem to come from Italy.

Good luck finding one! I racked my brain thinking of anyone I knew going to or in one of the countries where they're sold. :p
 

jmido8

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Nov 8, 2008
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#11
hmm okay, so what's your advice for me? I need to get a phone to use on t-mobile and I don't want to break the phone or have it lock back up on me. Should I buy one locked and use a turbo sim, try and unlock it using jailbreak, or try and find a factory unlocked on ebay for a decent price (if that's possible lol).