If you want to buy unlocked iphone, unless you are purchasing one that has been factory unlocked, you need to be aware of the risks involved: many web sites and online auctions sell iphones that claim to be unlocked, or what is also known “jail-broken,” but this isn’t always the case. You run a good chance to purchase a device that looks just like the iphone, but is a cheap imitation; then you might find a genuine unlocked iphone, which is sold by dishonest seller and overpay or simply not get the item delivered.

However, is it possible to buy unlocked iphone legally?

If you live in the US or in the UK, your iphone is locked and can only be used with certain network carriers, namely AT&T in the US and Orange, Tesco, Vodafone and O2 in the UK. Once you purchase your phone either in the US or in the UK, you will have to remain with the operator that you have signed in with. If you manage to buy unlocked iphone legally from the Internet or another country, then you can use whichever provider you like. However, is this really possible?

It turns out that you can legally buy unlocked iphone in no less than twenty four countries, fourteen of which in Europe and the rest in Asia and Latin America. And these are factory unlocked iphones, including the latest 3G and 3GS models. Well, it sounds pretty simple – all you have to do is visit one of these countries if you have a chance or ask a friend or relative that lives there to purchase one for you and send it over. That is one way to buy unlocked iphone, but it isn’t that simple: when you receive your phone, you might be required to pay duty or taxes and what is even worse is that in some of the countries, where you can buy unlocked iphone, the service is provided by the operator that sells it and not Apple. This means that whatever happens to your iphone, you will have to pay for the repairs yourself and you won’t be able to replace the iphone unless you send it back to the original country. However, since these are legally and factory unlocked smartphones, you can still enjoy firmware updates. If you visit any of the countries, where Apple allows the sale of factory unlocked iphones, keep in mind that the iphones might be locked by the provider that sells them and you can get charged for the unlocking code.

Whether you buy unlocked iphone online or from one of the countries that sell factory unlocked iphones, keep in mind that in most cases they do not carry international warranty. If you purchase the iphone from Hong Kong or Spain and take it back to the US, as soon as something goes wrong, you might have to send it back to Hong Kong or Spain to get it fixed, or pay for the repairs yourself.

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