Thanks to a Macedonian hacker and the iPhone hacking team at Hackint0sh, the Apple iPhone is now usable across the pond.
All you need to unlock the iPhone for use with a European carrier is a SIM reader/writer, V1Comp SIM card, and a blank SilverCard smart card (with PIC16F877+24LC64 eeprom).
You’ll need to download some software and go through a relatively lengthy modification process that’ll probably void your warranty, but you don’t have to crack open the phone. It’s all software and SIM card related.
The Hackint0sh forum tutorial provides the details, but basically using a SIM reader/writer, a blank SilverCard sim, and a couple of free downloadable utilities, the tutorial outlines how to make your own “SuperSim” card using the AT&T card that comes with the iPhone, and your new carrier’s sim card (HackintOsh used a card from V1).
Be aware that if you do try to “do this at home” you do so entirely at your own risk.
Because the instructions are fairly complex, and because you do require specialized equipment to create the ”SuperSim” card, this hack is probably beyond the average European iPhone fan. And besides it’s entirely possible that Apple will release an OS update that will render hacked iPhones inoperable.
What’s interesting is how quickly hackers have moved to free the iPhone from its default carrier. A development that no doubt is causing much angst for both Apple and AT&T.