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Saturday, September 29, 2007

Say hello to the iBrick

To begin with, I’m already not that big of a fan of Apple. I never have been, and never will be. I love the iPod, but their computers and other devices are worthless to me.

When Apple began running ads for the iPhone, I was intrigued. Its feature list is amazing to say the least. And really, it’s pretty; most stuff put out by Apple is. I thought they might have a winner on their hands.

But then out came the prices. 4GB of storage was going to run a costly $499; 8 GB would set you back $599. In other words, they were way too much money for me. However, I knew some people would be willing to pay these prices.

What really made me not like the iPhone was that it could only be used on AT&T’s network. Not only does this suck if, for instance, AT&T gets terrible reception at your place of residence, it is really a monopoly. If you get the iPhone you are forced to use AT&T.

Or so I thought.

Enter the world of iPhone unlocking. Since the phone was released, people wanted to figure out how to run it on other carriers’ services. Thanks to George Hotz, the iPhone was successfully unlocked on August 24. Though his method involved physically modifying the internals of the phone, many software only solutions (such as iPhoneSimFree) have been released since.

Thursday, Apple released an update to the iPhone that rendered the “hacked” units useless. In addition, units that had unsupported software and some perfectly normal phones were effectively turned into an expensive “iBrick”. Apple will not fix units that were hacked.

Although Apple has reasons to do such a thing (for example, fulfilling their agreement with AT&T), I’m of the opinion that they should fix the modified phones affected by the new software. It is absolutely wrong to tie users to just one carrier. If they paid $399+ for their phones, shouldn’t they have a right to use them however they choose? Unlocked phones from other companies work across carriers, why can’t the iPhone?

Apple has taken this approach far too many times throughout its product lines. Let the hardware be interchangeable! It can only help consumers by driving down cost and help you by increasing your market share.

3 comments:

Katy said...

If they paid $399+ for their phones, shouldn’t they have a right to use them however they choose?

Actually, they paid $499+

Just thought I'd help out.

-katy*

Cody said...

Apple cut the prices a little while ago. That's why it is referred to $399+.

Katy said...

Oh, fine. Don't explain that in the article, make Katy look stupid. Thanks. No Halloween costume viewing for you! lol.