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It's been two years since the original iPhone's launch. And if you've stuck with the OG iPhone, and you're sick of AT&T, it's time for some unlocking.
There are two ways to unlock an iPhone. The call AT&T and hope that they give you the device code to unlock the iPhone way. One of our writers actually scored the unlock code from an AT&T rep, so it's a viable option. There's also the jailbreak and unlock the iPhone way. That's what we are going to teach you today.
If you're worried about AT&T or Apple getting on your case about the unlock, don't be. You are within your rights to unlock your iPhone, especially now that you've fulfilled your service agreement with AT&T.
If you're interested in unlocking your 3G iPhone, take note. T-Mobile doesn't support 3G on the iPhone.
Besides allowing you to choose a carrier, an unlocked iPhone is a great backup phone. Throw a pre-paid SIM card in there and you have a powerful backup and international traveling phone.
DISCLAIMER: Mac|Life takes absolutely no responsibility if you brick your iPhone while unlocking, jailbreaking, or replacing the original SIM card. Unlocking your iPhone via Redsn0w, or similar applications, will possibly void your warranty and is not sanctioned by Apple. It's a hack, treat it as so.
1. Before you start unlocking your iPhone, update it to iPhone OS 3.0. Whats the point of an unlock if you can't send emails in landscape mode.
2. Download redSn0w from the Dev-Team blog
Read the Dev-Team's posting carefully. When you are sure you're ready to go for it, be sure to use the official torrent. You never know what some jerk out there will release under the name of Redsn0w. Quit iTunes, unzip and launch Redsn0w.
3. Redsn0w will ask you to find the .ipsw file on your Mac. iTunes seems to delete the .ipsw file after updating your iPhone. So you'll have to download one from Apple.
Check Save File.
You can download the .ipsw for the 2G iPhone directly from Apple's servers here. If you are using Safari, be sure not to auto unzip the downloaded file. Make sure you're using the file named:
This file is for the original iPhone only. If you're unlocking a 3G or 3GS, you'll need to download the appropriate files from Apple's servers. You can do a Google search for the URLs.
Once you select the .ipsw you downloaded, Redsn0w will determine that it's legit. Press next and the app will begin creating a custom .ipsw.
4. You will be presented with options to Unlock and install Cydia and Icy. Since all we care about is unlocking, we unchecked Cydia and checked Unlock. If you're interested in the jailbreaking community and its app, you can leave Cydia checked. Click next.