All entries for Thursday 28 August 2008

August 28, 2008

Second–hand iPhones?

I’ve been trying out a few different phones recently, partly to try and figure out what kind of phone would be the best bet to offer people at Warwick who want mobile email and calendars. More on that topic another day, but what it’s left me feeling for myself personally is that the phone that would suit me best is an Apple iPhone.

Unfortunately for me, though, I’m also mean, and reluctant to shell out the thousand pounds-plus that an O2 contract would cost me. It would also be rather inefficient, because apart from my family, almost all my calls, texts and data usage are work related, so it makes sense for my phone to be a work phone, and for work to foot most of the bill, and for me to be on the same network as all my work colleagues. It also lets me take advantage of the fact that Warwick’s deal with Vodafone makes all my calls to any Vodafone number at all, not just to Warwick people, free.

But there’s the snag: Warwick’s network carrier is Vodafone, and you can’t buy an iPhone which will work on Voda. Or at least, not a brand new one. But what about a second-hand v1 iPhone? The only two significant hardware additions to the v2 iPhone were GPS, which I’m indifferent to, and 3G, which I concede is useful, but I consume data over the cellular network (as opposed to wifi) very infrequently – once or twice a month, perhaps – and when I do, it’s mostly email, which is not very data intensive. So maybe 3G wouldn’t matter that much to me. Everything else was a software change which can be pushed on to v1 phones just as well as v2 ones.

So can you get v1 iPhones which are SIM unlocked? There’s a place in the US which has them for about £260 which seems reasonable (apart from UK Customs, perhaps), though they don’t say explicitly whether the phone is SIM-unlocked or not. Anyone know any other good sources (within the EU, ideally) of v1 unlocked iPhones?


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