AT&T to Unlock Off-Contract iPhones From April 8th


Unlock iPhone

Couple of days back, we reported that best option to get your AT&T iPhone unlocked after the contract period was to send an email to Tim Cook.

At that time, we had mentioned that though it was nice to see Tim Cook going out of his way to ensure that the customer’s iPhone is unlocked, we couldn’t understand why users have to escalate matters to get their iPhones unlocked after they’ve completed their contractual obligation.

We’ve some great news for AT&T iPhone users. Engadget has just reported that AT&T has changed its policy for off-contract iPhones. It plans to start unlocking off-contract iPhone from April 8th.

We’ve just received word of a spicy strategy change, to be enacted this Sunday, that’s sure to please the AT&T iPhone-loving masses. On Easter, select Ma’ Bell customers with iPhones — those off-contract with accounts in good standing — will be able to request a carrier unlock for their device.  Once freed, any micro-SIM can be used — provided its carrier’s frequencies are supported — by the smartphone. An AT&T spokesperson was able to confirm that “a policy change concerning iPhones” would indeed be rolled-out on Sunday, but declined to elaborate further.

Engadget reports that AT&T spokesperson has also confirmed the change in policy. This means that after AT&T customers have finished their 24-months contract they will be get their iPhones unlocked so that it can be used with any other GSM carrier. Update: It turns into a factory unlocked iPhone, so you don’t need to be worried about locking it again when you update to the latest iOS software update.

AT&T has issued the following statement to MacRumors:

Beginning Sunday, April 8, we will offer qualifying customers the ability to unlock their AT&T iPhones. The only requirements are that a customer’s account must be in good standing, their device cannot be associated with a current and active term commitment on an AT&T customer account, and they need to have fulfilled their contract term, upgraded under one of our upgrade policies or paid an early termination fee.

We wonder if Tim Cook (or the flurry of emails he may have received) had anything to do with this policy. But anyways, it is good to see AT&T finally making a pro-customer policy change.

We expect the resale value of older iPhones to go up slightly as a side effect of this move and giving users one less reason to jailbreak their iPhone.

We would love to find out how this policy change affects you, so sounds off in the comments.