AT&T will allow iPhone subscribers who are off contract with the carrier to unlock their handsets starting Sunday. That means they can opt to use their Apple smartphones on other carriers with similar GSM networks, such as T-Mobile.
This is good news for early iPhone users in the United States. Most of them own multiple iPhone units purchased from AT&T but they can’t be used on other GSM networks. This would be good for customers with older phones because the announcement would increase the handset’s resale value and boost their flexibility when selecting a future carrier.
AT&T used to be the exclusive carrier of the iPhone in the United States from 2007 to February 2011. It issued a statement to announce that it would offer qualified customers the ability to unlock their AT&T iPhones. The customer’s account must be in good standing, the iPhone should not be connected to a current AT&T contract, and they must already fulfill the contract term, upgraded under one of its upgrade policies, or paid an early termination fee.
In the past, the ability to unlock an iPhone has been possible for the past few years but the methods were unofficial and unsupported by Apple and major carriers. Jailbroken iPhones void their warranties.