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  • China Unicom Advertising Jailbreaking Service


    A report of advertisements in a China Unicom outlet in southern China is raising questions about whether the carrier may be preparing to deliver pre-jailbroken new iPhone 4s and iPad 3Gs. A writer on the Chinese blog Weiphone spotted the poster in one of the sales centers for China Unicom - the only official iPhone/iPad carrier in mainland China - in Dongguan. Sources are translating some of the "Support Services" offered on the posters as "free SIM-trimming, jailbreak, installation of more than 10 hot apps." Prices for the devices - due to be released in China in upcoming weeks - are significantly but not outrageously higher than what iPhones go for in Hong Kong, so the added services may be a way to lure customers who would otherwise get phones on the grey market.

    My Chinese is pretty basic, and I definitely don't know much slang or colloquial tech terms. However, looking at my dictionary the word 越狱 on the bottom of the poster looks like it is made up of the two Chinese characters 越 (yue), meaning to get over or jump over and 狱 (yu), meaning jail. (If anybody out there knows Chinese and I'm getting this really wrong, please let me know.) On this basis, I'd say the reports are at least valid. Whether or not you will really be able walk into a China Unicom outlet and get yourself a JB'd, activated iPhone 4 or iPad with a trimmed-down SIM, though, remains to be seen.

    The 32GB model with no contract is advertised at 6,980 yuan (about $1025 US). This is compared to $5888 HK or about $756 US: still a brutal markup. The iPad 3Gs start at 5,680 yuan or $835. However, the legit iPhones will be able to use China's WAPI standard for wireless internet, and officially activated devices can use China Unicom's "Wo" 3G network. So it could be that the clever businesspeople in Dongguan - if not China Unicom executives - are choosing to offer "unauthorized" services that will make these expensive devices attractive to people in a country where the average monthly salary for professionals is only about 2,000 yuan.

    While this would be awesome if true, the absence of a jailbreak for iOS 4.0.2/3.3.2 makes the claims of free JBs hard to believe, not to mention the heat China Unicom could catch from Apple. However, again this could be store owners acting on their own, or at least with a blind eye from management; and as Cupertino's only legit representative in the Middle Kingdom, China Unicom might not be all that afraid of Apple. And the technical hurdles are minimal: any shop owner in southern China wouldn't have trouble finding a small army of modders to cut SIMs and downgrade iPhones and iPads before sale.

    Source: Cult of Mac
    This article was originally published in forum thread: China Unicom Advertising Jailbreaking Service started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 28 Comments
    1. KartRacer's Avatar
      KartRacer -
      Ha. That's awesome if true. The nightmares of supporting phones people 'accidentally' upgraded to a new firmware would hopefully dissuade them.
    1. CONVBMW's Avatar
      CONVBMW -
      Com on. There has to be something fishy about the info as there is no way that Apple would ever let this go down.

      Now it could be that they just slapped it up on the ad for as short of a time as it would be just to kinda sorta get the word out until Apple smacks the hell outta them.
    1. exNavy's Avatar
      exNavy -
      They may run over their own citizens with tanks, but their policy on tech is cool.
    1. akimoa's Avatar
      akimoa -
      Well there is nothing fishy about that i bought my very 1st iphone 2g in beijing in a offcial apple store and that one came jailbroken to me too FYI ..even if they would care they cant to anything against it ...if apple watches them the lil bazar next to applestore will do it for ya...
    1. knd775's Avatar
      knd775 -
      Yeah. You're right. 越狱 means prison break or jailbreak.
    1. Alpha Zero's Avatar
      Alpha Zero -
      Quote Originally Posted by exNavy View Post
      They may run over their own citizens with tanks, but their policy on tech is cool.
      lol the power of the animatrix.
      They didn't run anyone over with a tank. You are mixing up the footage from Tiananmen Square with the animatrix cartoon.
    1. Jahooba's Avatar
      Jahooba -
      Now that Jailbreaking is not-illegal, officially, perhaps there will be more than 5 people in the world trying to make jailbreak programs. Man, wouldn't that be great?

      I have no doubt that there will always be flaws in the iPhone for a jailbreak, but it would be nice if we had a 'small army' to work on finding them and exploiting them.
    1. eremeya's Avatar
      eremeya -
      One thing to keep in mind about the China Unicom shops is that many of them are not owned by China Unicom, they are franchised and the ones that are owned by them many times are not controlled by the corporate office but by the local provincial office. If this shop is indeed offering to jailbreak an iPhone they are probably not a store owned by China Unicom only one selling China Unicom's plans/services.

      I lived in China for a couple years and used both China Mobile and China Unicom.
    1. vedavis's Avatar
      vedavis -
      Quote Originally Posted by eremeya View Post
      One thing to keep in mind about the China Unicom shops is that many of them are not owned by China Unicom, they are franchised and the ones that are owned by them many times are not controlled by the corporate office but by the local provincial office. If this shop is indeed offering to jailbreak an iPhone they are probably not a store owned by China Unicom only one selling China Unicom's plans/services.

      I lived in China for a couple years and used both China Mobile and China Unicom.
      Very good info. Whereas Apple controls every aspect here in the US, no such control exists in CH.

      Apple (defiant): Follow the rules; no jailbreaking.
      Unicom Dealer (smugly): Well, we're not gonna.
    1. awesomeSlayer's Avatar
      awesomeSlayer -
      They advertised jailbreaking at the wrong time since the Dev Team isn't gonna make a jailbreak solution for 4.0.2.
    1. csglinux's Avatar
      csglinux -
      I had to return my JB iPhone 4 because of a hardware fault. Sadly, my replacement came with iOS 4.0.2. If anybody at Apple or China Unicom could send me that easy way of downgrading without having shsh blobs on file anywhere, that would be great ;-)
    1. macsoldier's Avatar
      macsoldier -
      This is great to see, Im sure contracts/rules between apple and whoever in china are way different due to there stringent laws and so on. Sad to see the iPhone is so much but hey its jailbroken!!
    1. lol_release's Avatar
      lol_release -
      Do they have a jailbreak for iphone 4 running 4.0.2? if not they are worthless people!
    1. CZroe's Avatar
      CZroe -
      Quote Originally Posted by Alpha Zero View Post
      lol the power of the animatrix.
      They didn't run anyone over with a tank. You are mixing up the footage from Tiananmen Square with the animatrix cartoon.
      It has nothing to do with The Animatrix. On June 4th, 1989, Eyewitness Reported Charlie Cole reportedly observed tanks crushing bodies. Whether they were alive or not at the time doesn't matter because everyone saw the footage of people laying and standing in front of the tanks, so assumptions were inevitable. The Animatrix did not create this perception and it very well may be true.
    1. coolguy742's Avatar
      coolguy742 -
      Maybe it's just me, but I don't think Apple will be all hunky dory about this...
    1. Alpha Zero's Avatar
      Alpha Zero -
      Quote Originally Posted by CZroe View Post
      It has nothing to do with The Animatrix. On June 4th, 1989, Eyewitness Reported Charlie Cole reportedly observed tanks crushing bodies. Whether they were alive or not at the time doesn't matter because everyone saw the footage of people laying and standing in front of the tanks, so assumptions were inevitable. The Animatrix did not create this perception and it very well may be true.
      There is no evidence that they ran anyone over with tanks. Charlie Cole reported that the tanks smashed walls and vehicles and possibly people, but all other accounts from other reporters were different. According to multiple reporters, no one was harmed nor killed at Tiananmen Square.
      Now if people were shot and killed around it, that's a different story. But as evidence shows, no one was run over with tanks. Only shot to death.
    1. tudtran's Avatar
      tudtran -
      I can't read that ad. Does that really said jailbreak service? Can anybody read that ad.
    1. zeroskater61's Avatar
      zeroskater61 -
      越狱 means prison break...
    1. giorgos_rou's Avatar
      giorgos_rou -
      Hilarious!
    1. lmk's Avatar
      lmk -
      officially, China Unicom has not launch iPhone 4.... йͨ
      They are still selling the iPhone 3GS as of 30August 2010