iPhone

Video on iPhone unlocking released amid fear of legal reprecussions


Hot on the heels of our report on iPhoneSimFree.com's software unlocking of the iPhone -- and witnessed by an editor of Engadget -- comes the news of another successful software unlocking solution.

In the just-released video, John McLaughlin, the founder of Uniquephones, is seen unlocking the iPhone using software from his company. According to a report by Network World, it would appear that both parties actually claimed to have developed a software-only unlocking method on the same day, but that is probably just so much academic news by now.

It seems that McLaughlin is still undecided whether he will distribute the software, given that he received a phone call from a representative of O'Melveny & Myers, an international law firm calling on AT&T's behalf. In it, the caller said Uniquephones.com would be in violation of copyright infringement and of distributing Apple's intellectual property if he began selling the software to iPhone subscribers.

Still, McLaughlin created the video -- shot at his house using a Nokia N95 -- to silence naysayers that his company has unlocked the iPhone. McLaughlin's concern about legal repercussions, as expressed in his iphoneunlocking.com blog, appears to mirror that of the team from iPhoneSimFree.com. Do you think that AT&T and Apple will really take legal action?

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

4 comments
paulmah
paulmah

Do you think that AT&T and Apple will really take legal action?

dglenn2
dglenn2

I believe they would take legal action, because they have a temporary monopoly on the market. It's the hottest phone to come out in a long time, at least for those who have to say I can search the web on my phone and strain my eyes in the process. I think the phone is only for the attention seekers just to say I have one. You have laptops for surfing the web on the go, smart phones for getting email,(and laptops). There was no need to combine the two in a compact pocket sized reason to get glasses in a few years. It's not like the competition isn't going to create their own IPhone clones in a year or so, and the market will be flooded with them and we can all have one for $50 with a 2 year contract agreement.

JPRuiz
JPRuiz

The more you squeeze, the more they slip through your fingers. If either Apple or AT&T expected to make a killing by monopolizing the phone service that people have to use with the iPhone, now they see that it will be an up hill battle. It would have been much smarter to pair up the thing with an OPTIONAL, complimentary service for a short time, or something more benevolent than what they are doing. By the time the 30 day trial is over, people would have gotten used to having a separate line on the iPhone and the majority would probably not switch. Now, the challenge is to have an operational iPhone without AT&T. Bad marketing, bad PR, bad idea.

blissb
blissb

I can see why AT&T might threaten legal action, but not why Apple would. If I can take an iPhone and use it with the service-provider of my choice, that only enhances Apple's position. It's no different, in my mind, than buying a Mac and installing Linux on it.

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