iPhone Firmware Update 1.1.1 unlocks iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store BUT seems to Partially Brick Unlocked iPhone

iPhone Firmware 1.1.1

iPhone Firmware update 1.1.1 is out, the third firmware update since iPhone’s launch. The firmware update as expected bring iTunes Wi-Fi Store Music to the iPhone along with some new features and shortcuts to make common tasks that much more simpler. However, more importantly initial reports are indicating that iPhone owners who had unlocked their iPhone are getting SIM errors partially bricking their iPhone while in case of those who had installed iPhone hacks have observed that they have been wiped out after the firmware update.

WARNING: You might already know this but if you want to continue using your unlocked iPhone, do NOT update your iPhone with firmware 1.1.1. More details available after the jump.

Update (29th Sept): Based on some reports it seems that iTunes 7.3.1.3 can restore a
bricked phone with the 1.1.1 update. No confirmation yet, but in case
it works for you do let us know in the comments.

In fact Mo, an
iPhone Hacks reader has commented below that he was able to restore
his bricked iPhone to 1.0.2 using iTunes 7.3.1 though it was not an
unlocked iPhone that he was trying it on.  I guess as Mo aptly puts it
worth a try if you can’t do anything else. Thanks Mo for the tip.

For iTunes 7.3.1.3 – Windows version (couldn’t find the link to the Mac version): Click here

Before I give you the details of the new features that were introduced with iPhone’s Firmware update 1.1.1 let me summarize the observations post the firmware update taking all categories of iPhone users:

Category 1:
If you have unlocked your iPhone using one of those GUI based software-only SIM unlock tools such as anySIM from iPhone Dev Team or iPhoneSIMFree.

Impact:
Here though the update will work fine it will return your iPhone
to the activation screen and activation will not be possible with
non-AT&T SIM nor with the legitimate AT&T SIM thus resulting in partial bricking the iPhone as feared after Apple’s press release earlier in the week. (Read iPhone Hacks, Apple says NO to iPhone Hacks and Unlocked iPhones; iPhone Dev Team condemns Apple; to respond with a Restore Tool.) Also take a look at Apple’s security
notice for the firmware update below.

Security notice:

WARNING: Apple has discovered
that some of the unauthorized unlocking programs available on the
Internet may cause irreparable damage to the iPhone’s software. IF YOU
HAVE MODIFIED YOUR IPHONE’S SOFTWARE, APPLYING THIS SOFTWARE UPDATE MAY
RESULT IN YOUR IPHONE BECOMING PERMANENTLY INOPERABLE. Making
unauthorized modifications to the software on your iPhone violates the
iPhone software license agreement, and the inability to use your iPhone
to unauthorized software modifications is not covered under your
iPhone’s warranty.

What are your options? 

Update:

iPhoneSIMFree is reporting that after testing the firmware 1.1.1 update on iPhones unlocked using their solution, they can confirm that the iPhone does not get partially bricked as reported earlier, and that though the firmware update does relock the iPhone, you can use the phone with the original activated AT&T SIM without any issues. Follow this link for more details.

So if you have unlocked the iPhone using iPhoneSIMFree then you have two options too:

Option 1:
If you want to use a non-AT&T SIM then do not update your iPhone. In case of international users too who won’t have a legal AT&T SIM should not update your iPhone if they want to continue to use their unlocked iPhone.

Option 2:
You should be able to update your iPhone with the latest firmware however you would then need to use AT&T SIM with a valid contract which defeats the purpose of having an unlocked iPhone but that is better than partially bricking the iPhone that has been observed with the other unlocking solution.

For all others in Category 1 but have not used iPhoneSIMFree:


Do NOT update
your iPhone as mentioned above as it could
partially brick your iPhone. I guess the best option now is to wait for the iPhone Dev Team to
figure out the way forward.

We are still waiting for an update from the iPhone Dev Team on their anySIM solution.

Category 2:
If you have hacked your iPhone to install some of the iPhone hacks or iPhone Applications on your iPhone.

Impact:
Though the update works fine it will wipe out all the iPhone hacks as expected. Third party applications or hacks won’t work after the firmware update.

What are your options?

Option 1:
Update your iPhone and lose all your cool iPhone hacks and iPhone applications and wait for wait until a new jailbreak is released, at the very least, to update to 1.1.1 to hack your iPhone all over again.

Option 2:
If you still want to enjoy those cool iPhone hacks or iPhone
applications that you have installed on your iPhone and are not excited
about the new features and shortcuts (details below) that have been
rolled out with firmware update 1.1.1; then do NOT update your iPhone  and wait until a new jailbreak is released, at the very least, to update to 1.1.1..

Category 3:
If you own an iPhone without any modifications.

Impact:
No impact, you have nothing to worry about, the update will work just fine.

New features rolled out with the firmware update:

Here are the details of the new features and shortcuts rolled out by Apple with the firmware update:

  • iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store
  • Louder speakerphone and receiver volume
  • Home Button double-click shortcut to phone favorites of music controls
  • Space bar double-tap shortcut to intelligently insert period and space
  • Mail attachments are viewable in portrait and landscape
  • Stocks and cities in Stocks and Waether can be re-ordered
  • Apple Bluetooth Headset battery status in the Status Bar
  • Support for TV Out
  • Preference to turn off EDGE/GPRS when roaming internationally
  • New Passcode lock time intervals
  • Adjustable alert volume

You can get the details of the security related bug fixes follow this link.

Update:

Apple has posted a video to showcase the new features in the latest iPhone firmware. Follow this link to watch the video.

 

Update (30th September):

Instructions on how to Unbrick iPhone – Downgrade from iPhone 1.1.1 to iPhone 1.0.2 for the Hacked iPhone

Update (29th September):

Based on some reports it seems that iTunes 7.3.1.3 can restore a bricked phone with the 1.1.1 update. No confirmation yet, but in case it works for you do let us know in the comments.

In fact Mo, a reader @ iPhone Hacks has commented below that he was able to restore his bricked iPhone to 1.0.2 using iTunes 7.3.1 though it was not an unlocked iPhone that he was trying it on.  I guess as Mo aptly puts it worth a try if you can’t do anything else.

Thanks Mo for the tip.

For iTunes 7.3.1.3 – Windows version (couldn’t find the link to the Mac version): Click here

Stay tuned @ iPhone Hacks for further updates on status of the iPhone Hacks or unlocked iPhone’s post firmware update.

[via some great commentary over @ Gizmodo]

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