Ask (enough times) and ye shall receive. AT&T has kept the iPhone under lock and key since day one, but we’re hearing that a pretty dramatic policy shift will go into effect starting this Sunday. Once April 8 rolls around AT&T will unlock your iPhone should you so choose, at which point it’ll play nicely with a microSIM from any GSM carrier.
Of course, there are a few conditions you have to meet before AT&T will swoop in and unlock your iPhone. First and foremost, your device has to be completely out of contract and your account must be in good standing — that means no history of missed payments or disconnections. AT&T will also unlock your device if you’ve gotten sick of your contract and decided to shell out the early termination fee, or if you spent full price on it, rather than purchase it subsidized with a contract. Not bad AT&T, not bad at all.
Alright, fine, not everyone actually needs a globetrotting phone, isn’t it better to be safe than sorry? Just don’t expect every SIM card to grant you magical access to high speed data — T-Mobile USA’s pre-cut microSIMs will fit just fine for example, but you’ll be stuck cruising the web at EDGE speeds.
Long time AT&T customers may know that the company’s policy has been to unlock a user’s device after 90 days of continued service, but the iPhone has always been a special case. Then again, we’ve been hearing that Apple CEO Tim Cook has been getting more than his share of iPhone unlock requests lately (mostly because looping him in actually gets things done), so maybe Mr. Cook just didn’t feel like dealing with the masses any more.