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Unlocking an iPhone for real

After some false starts, unlocking an iPhone now seems to be a reality.

Free your iPhone Corinne Schulze/CNET Networks

One of the biggest gripes we've heard about Apple's iPhone has nothing to do with the headset itself; rather it's over the AT&T carrier exclusivity. While phone locking (and unlocking for that matter) is nothing new in the cell phone world, the iPhone is a special case considering how much hype still surrounds it.

That's why it was inevitable that someone would figure out how to unlock the iPhone and free it from its AT&T shackles. Though we've heard a lot of promises, mostly unfulfilled, a real, workable solution now seems to be a reality. A group calling themselves iPhoneSIMfree is touting a solution that Engadget has verified as legitimate. The tech blog site was able to unlock an iPhone and make calls with T-Mobile service. Moreover, all features except the visual voice mail, which is dependent on AT&T's network, were usable. Apparently the process is quick and painless and not nearly as complicated as the labor-intensive solution from a New Jersey teen that requires soldering.

Now before you get too excited, the group is not putting licenses to the solution up for sale until next week. And according to its Web site, they'll only consider purchase inquiries of 500 or more licenses. But even more importantly, we have no word on a price.