I got a new iPhone this weekend! Its been been about 3 years since Apple released the original iPhone and we are now in the forth forth generation of the iPhone. I did a bit of research on all the models and decided on get the 3rd generation phone called the 3Gs. The four models of the phone, in order, are the 2G, 3G, 3Gs and now the 4.
3Gs model: I decided to stick with last year's 3Gs phone because it is the best bang of the buck. It performs faster the the previous two models and the cellular service works the best of any iPhone model. People have complained about the iPhone 4 reception and their have been plenty of drop call reports on the iPhone 4. The 2G and 3G were simply just to slow to be very useful for any heavy Internet surfing.
The craigslist price on the 3Gs is between $250-$350. For the 2G or 3G models you can purchase for $80-$220. If you want a an iPhone 4, the prices are $500-800. You can always get a new iPhone that works only on ATT's network for $99 and with a 2-year contract. The monthly fees can be as low as $55 for very limited services (450mins, 200MS data, no texting). Average user should expect to pay $90 (900mins, 2GB of Data, 200 texts). For a totally unlimited service expect to pay $135/monthly (unlimited calling, data, text and tethering included). This would end up costing an average user $2260 to $3340 over a 2-year contract.
Simple Mobile: I decided to use Simple Mobile's network. There plans are $40, $50, and $60/month. All the plans are prepaid and all prices include all taxes and fees, with unlimited talk and texting. For a two year period the cost would only be $960-$1440, plus the cost of a GSM phone. The $50 plan has 100MB of Web and the $60 plan has unlimited Web. There is no long term contract and you can switch plans every month. Simple Mobile resells the T-mobile network, so they have the same 3G coverage as T-mobile, but is about 25% cheaper. You can use any T-mobile phone or any unlocked GSM phone. All iPhone sold in the USA are locked to ATT's network. To use an iPhone on another GSM network, like T-mobile or Simple Mobile, you need to first jailbreak the phone and then unlock the phone.
Jailbreaking: In the course of my research, I found out that not all software version of the iPhone can be jail broken and unlocked. To jailbreak an iPhone it must be on software version 4.0.1 or less (as of this writing 9-21-2010). Basically, just take your iPhone to http://jailbreakme.com and execute the script, it can take 30-60 minutes to complete. When it is finished you will get a message saying that Cydia has been added to the home screen of your iPhone. You are now running a jailbroken iPhone.
Unlocking iPhone: From here you can install the unlock software and use your iPhone on any GSM network in the world! Just click on Cydia: Manage: Sources: Edit: Add type in http://repo666.ultrasn0w.com
Once the source is added you will be able to find ‘ultrasnow 0.93′ in cydia which you will have to install by tapping on the ‘Install’ button which will download 48kb around of data and install it by downloading Mobile Substrate and then preparing it followed by reboot of the device.
Other helpful hacks: One you phone is at this state their are plenty of other hacks that you can perform. Just search the Internet to find more or click on this link. Here are some of my most useful hacks!
- Get Push Gmail on your iPhone
- Enable tethering now (prior to AT&T allowing it)
- Sync your iPhone with multiple computers
- Add a 5th row of numbers on your QWERTY keyboard