If you are looking to buy an unlocked iPhone in India legally, here’s some exciting news – Apple will officially launch iPhone in India this year itself.
Steve Jobs recently confirmed this saying that iPhone will become available in Asia in 2008 particularly India and China.
It is not known if Apple will follow the US model and stick to only one cellular service provider or sell unlocked phones like they do in France.
In a separate talk at Goldman Sachs Technology Investment Symposium 2008, Tim Cook did hint that AAPL may allow multiple carriers per geographic region for distributing the iPhone though there was no comment on iPhone pricing in Asia.
In any case, it clearly means that one should avoid buying unlocked iPhones from these unauthorized and underground iPhone resellers who smuggle iPhone sets from US and then unlock them for a price using the Jailbreak method.
While such hacked iPhones do work with any GSM networks like that of Airtel, Vodafone, Reliance, BSNL, Idea or Tata Indicom, the risk is that these phones may be rendered useless if someone tries to upgrade the firmware using the standard iTunes route. You also miss the warranty benefits.
And while the current iPhone runs on 2.5G networks (aka EDGE), there is speculation that Apple will also introduce a 3G version of iPhone in June 2008. That’s the same period when iPhone 2.0 is launched which is not a new iPhone model but a significant upgrade to the iPhone OS.
With iPhone 2.0, you will be able to download games, software and other third-party apps on your iPhone from the Apple iPhone Apps store much the same way as you download or buy music tracks from iTunes store wirelessly.
All this could translate into some very touch competition for BlackBerry, HTC Touch on Windows Mobile, Motorola-Q and other business mobile phones.
The iPhone was earlier expected to debut in India via Reliance Retail.