T-Mobile says it now carries more than 1 million unlocked iPhones

Jun 23, 2011
Finance

With a little work, you really can get a T-Mobile iPhone – and lots of people are. Apple just released the unlocked iPhone 4 last week, which allows users to purchase just the phone, without a contract, and add it to whatever cellular service they like, provided the internal hardware can sync-up with the network […]

With a little work, you really can get a T-Mobile iPhone – and lots of people are.

Apple just released the unlocked iPhone 4 last week, which allows users to purchase just the phone, without a contract, and add it to whatever cellular service they like, provided the internal hardware can sync-up with the network you’re looking to jump onto. And already, T-Mobile is saying that 1 million iPhones have been added to its network.

The story from 9to5Mac comes from a meeting with T-Mobile spokespeople, apparently, and confirms that lots of iPhones are showing up on the network. The majority of these are older-generation iPhones, but there’s reportedly a significant number of iPhone 4s showing up on there too, despite the fact that users wouldn’t be able to access 3G or 4G data on account of the iPhone’s internal cellular radio not being compatible with the T-Mobile network.

There’s another wrinkle that unlocked iPhone 4 users have to deal with if they want T-Mobile service: they have to force their T-Mobile SIM cards to fit in the iPhone. T-Mobile currently doesn’t offer Micro-SIM cards that fit Apple’s phone, so users literally take scissors to their cards to modify them to fit.

AT&T, one of the primary U.S. carriers of the iPhone (Verizon recently became a second), is looking to buy T-Mobile in a massive deal that would greatly narrow the field of telecom providers in the country. That deal has to be approved by the Federal Communications Commission, and that could take some time. In the meantime, it seems users wish they could be a part of T-Mobile, which is actively working on Micro-SIMs, according to the 9to5Mac story.

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As for a T-Mobile USA iPhone in the future? “Nothing to announce at this time,” was the typically stalwart response.

Apple likely to lose ‘Appstore’ suit against Amazon

Meanwhile, a judge hearing Apple’s case that it owns the trademark on the words “app store” for its iTunes market seems unconvinced that Amazon is infringing on that trademark with its “Appstore.”

The case hinges on the idea that “app store” isn’t a generic term to describe all app-selling marketplaces, but one that Apple has defined as a brand. The case always seemed like a bit of a flimsy stretch, but Apple took it to court anyway.

According to a story from Ars Technica, U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton said she was “probably” going to rule against Apple’s motion for a preliminary injuction against Amazon to stop it using the Appstore name. It seems Judge Hamilton is unconvinced by Apple’s proof that there would be confusion between the two stores.

Apple won a trademark for the store name in 2010, after being refused one back in 2008. “Microsoft was the first to file an objection in July 2010 on the grounds that the term was too generic, and later asked the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board to issue a summary judgment denying Apple’s trademark application,” according to the Ars story.

The lawsuit against Amazon got filed anyway in March 2011, though, right after Amazon’s store became official. Seems to have been much ado about nothing at this point – we’ll have to wait for the official verdict to know for sure.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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