Apple's new iPhone 5 has a secret feature. It is unexpectedly unlocked. At least, Verizon's iPhone 5 is. As a result, it will also work on AT&T's network.
Since the iPhone 5 was made available to the public on Friday, buyers have been ecstatic of what all new features it can offer. Most features are expected, but one in particular that is unexpected seems to be a bonus for Verizon Wireless iPhone 5 owners, which is the unlocked feature.
Discovering that Verizon's iPhone 5 actively works when inserted an AT&T Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card will also mean that a complicated hacking operation is no longer necessary.
Unfortunately, according to a Huffington Post report, Verizon's 2-year contract agreement will only demean its unlocked feature, because such feature can only be useful when switching to other network carriers upon completing the contract. In addition, it is still unclear if the feature will also work with T-mobile, which is a GSM network carrier that requires a SIM card in all of its subscribers' cellphones and smartphones.
If the Verizon iPhone 5 feature is proven to be completely capable with other carriers, that can be a valuable opportunity for abroad travelers who own an iPhone 5 with Verizon network. For instance, instead of opting for costly international roaming service, one can purchase a prepaid world SIM card prior to traveling outside the United States. Also, getting a prepaid SIM card that is available in the country of destination is a sensible notion.
Have in mind that iPhone 5 uses nano-SIM type cards. So iPhone 5 owners who wish to insert a SIM card from a different carrier network may need to customize a regular-sized SIM and a micro-sized SIM card by physically cutting its edges in conformity to the correct nano-sized card. That is an important consideration in order to use the iPhone 5 with SIM cards from other networks. Luckily, SIM cutters can be purchased online.
Indeed, free GSM international roaming using an unlocked iPhone is one feature that cannot be ignored. Verizon Wireless spokeswoman Brenda Raney has confirmed that the iPhone 5 models that the carrier company is selling are unlocked.
Sprint network's iPhone 4S gadgets were also shipped as unlocked units initially last year, but a software update disabled that feature. Let us hope that Verizon will let this be a permanent feature.