Apple starts sales of unlocked iPhone 3Gs in Hong Kong

“The iPhone 3G is now on sale directly from Apple in the city of Hong Kong, despite no prior announcements, listings reveal,” MacNN reports.

“An 8GB phone is selling for $5,400 HK ($692), while a 16GB model costs $6,200 HK ($794),” MacNN reports.

“Notably, iPhones in the region can be ‘activated with any wireless carrier,’ according to Apple, and require only that a carrier’s SIM card be installed prior to sync with iTunes 8,” MacNN reports. “iPhones are already known to be on sale in Hong Kong through 3 HK, owned by Hutchinson.”

“Hong Kong’s iPhones may prove to be unique to China, as the South China Morning Post claims that a stripped-down iPhone without 3G or Wi-Fi is being prepared for the rest of the country,” MacNN reports.

Full article, with links, here.

15 Comments

  1. Well O2 is Pay-as-you-go iPhones in UK for £350 & £400 for 8GB/16GB models… dunno if its unlocked or not, but the steep price does includes a year of unlimited browsing & WiFi…

    Choices, choices, choices…

  2. This development is excellent if Apple really is somehow being “forced” to sell iPhones without Wifi in mainland China. (So go the rumors right now.)

    Along with the availability of normal iPhones everywhere else in Asia, WiFi-less iPhones should die a pretty quick death. Who in their right mind would buy a Wifi-less iPhone?

    Anyways, I hope the whole thing really is just a doofus rumor.

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-13579_3-10050939-37.html?part=rss&subj=news&tag=2547-1_3-0-20

  3. Brilliant Apple play here. I would bet Hong Kong has instantly become the iPhone capital of the world – Shipping to 100 other countries – Black market mania style. The China nonsense might have forced them to play a different hand. This cell business can get vicious.

  4. ‘Bout Time!

    Finally. Unfettered. The iPhone is finally coming out of the barn and there is no going back. AT&T;may have an exclusive for now, but the writing is on the wall: The iPhone will soon be available for use on all networks.

    It is then just a matter of time before all carriers are allowed to bundle/subsidize the iphone with the service plan of your choice. I can’t recall if AT&T;extended exclusivity with the iphone 3g launch, but I thought the original agreement was for 2 years – ending next summer.

    I’m pleased.

  5. I just bought one. They told me I was the first to do so in Hong Kong. Haha.

    By the way, I already have one, black market, but wanted a 100% legit iPhone. It is THAT GOOD people.

    Will see if I can sell the black market one later or give to a friend.

    AppleMeister

  6. The exclusivity agreement between Apple and AT&T;was only rumored to be five years. After the subsidized 3G model came out, updated leaked information said the exclusivity agreement was due to expire in 2009 but was extended one more year to 2010. So, it’s not too far away. It just seems that way.

  7. While rumors of a five-year, Apple-AT&T;contract certainly have been circulated on blogs, to my knowledge, no evidence has ever been published to support this. AT&T;has a history of entering into exclusive two-year agreements to tie up hot new cell phones, so I’ve always believed two years probably was the initial agreement period. This summer (around the time of the release of the iPhone 3G), unverified news reports surfaced that the companies had extended the exclusive contract by one year. Since the original iPhone was released in July 2007 and the original contract likely runs through 2009, it seems likely that AT&T;needed one more year of exclusivity to entice new iPhone 3G customers to sign up for new two-year agreements. Therefore, it seems likely that AT&T;’s exclusive U.S. contract will run through July, 2010.

  8. All this AT&T;stuff is moot.

    You can immediately buy a fully legit iPhone 3G from Hong Kong, or any of these other “phase 3” locations, and use it on any network anywhere.

    NOW, watch for deep discounts on the black market units (if you really are desperate to save cash at the risk of no support, no warranty).

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