Apple and its wireless partner in France, Orange, will sell an unlocked version of the iPhone, a spokeswoman for Orange confirmed to the
International Herald Tribune
. The unlocked iPhone will carry a premium price, although the companies did not say how much more it would be.
Apple is being forced to sell an unlocked iPhone in France because of a French law that forbids bundling the sale of a mobile phone and a mobile operator. As announced yesterday,
iPhones locked to the Orange network will cost €399
or about US$565.
iPhone users in the United States clearly want an unlocked iPhone — as soon as the device was released on June 29, work began to break into the device freeing it from the AT&T network.
Shortly after hackers were successful in unlocking the iPhone, Apple issued a
stern warning to customers saying that unlocked phones could become inoperable
when future updates were applied to the phone. Three days later, with
iPhone Update 1.1.1, that is
exactly what happened.
plans to enter the mobile market in the UK and Germany last month. iPhones will start selling in both of those countries on November 9, 2007 — neither will be able to sell an unlocked iPhone.