iPhone unlocker trades phone for 'sweet' car

A hacker who figured out how to unlock the iPhone traded an unlocked phone for a car.

A hacker who figured out how to unlock the iPhone has traded an unlocked phone for a new car.

After facing problems trying to auction the phone on eBay, George Hotz received a call from CertiCell, a company that refurbishes mobile phones. "Terry Daidone, the founder of CertiCell, contacted me this morning, and offered to make a trade for the iPhone," Hotz wrote on his blog. "I traded it for a sweet Nissan 350Z and 3 8GB iPhones."

Hotz shared the method he discovered for unlocking the phone on his blog, so the phone he traded doesn't hold any secrets. But he put the phone up for auction because he thought someone might want the phone, the second one that he unlocked, for its historical value. "If you are only bidding on this to get an unlocked iPhone, don't. There are much cheaper and easier ways to get one. This is a piece of cell phone history," he wrote on his blog.

Hotz, who arrived at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York for his first days of college on Sunday, closed the eBay auction after receiving too many fraudulent bids. He then invited legitimately interested buyers to contact him directly.

He plans to give the three iPhones from CertiCell to people who helped him as he worked on unlocking the phone.

Besides accepting the gifts, Hotz agreed to do some consulting work for CertiCell, according to a statement from the company. While the statement says that CertiCell doesn't plan to commercialize Hotz's unlocking method, it also says that part of Hotz's consulting work will include training CertiCell staff on the unlocking process. CertiCell also hopes that Hotz will help its engineers develop new methods for updating software and reflashing refurbished phones.

Since the iPhone went on sale at the end of June, hackers have been working on ways to unlock it. The phones are built to work only on AT&T's wireless network. Unlocking the phone means that a customer can use it on another network and avoid signing a long contract with AT&T.

The process is controversial, however. One company, Uniquephones, says that it has developed a way to unlock the phones, but has delayed the release because of concerns of legal action from AT&T.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Struggling for Christmas presents this year? Check out our Christmas Gift Guide for some top tech suggestions and more.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nancy Gohring

IDG News Service

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?