Can you walk into an Apple store and buy an iPhone 3G w/o contract?

I've been getting different answers from different people(mainly online, not with an Apple guy). Some say, there is no way at this time (of the iphone launch) to walk out with an iphone at the $199/$299 price without a contract with AT&T, some say you can, but it can't be activated. So, naturally, I'm really confused on WHAT exactly you can do.

and I live in west Los Angeles, it would be helpful to know about the apple stores' policies here.

also, i know of ziphone and its unlock software, does it do the same for the new 3G iphones as it does for the 1st gen. iphone?

THANKS A LOT!!!

13 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    yes you can get one without the contract but it will not be available until later this year to earlier of next year. the 8GB will be 599 and the 16GB will be 699...ouch i know they are high price but at least you wont have to pay for the 2-yr contract

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  • 4 years ago

    $199. for 8 gb and 299. for 16gb. If you sign up a 2 year contract. Which after the 2 years contract, You would have paid a little over 2k. It is not actually cheaper than the first iPhone. It is almost the same price wise. You will be paying more than what they charge for the data plan for the 1st gen iPhone. But if you buy them at the Apple store, It would cost you at least $500. without the contract. The good thing about it is if you are an existing customer, You can just call AT&T and activate your phone, You are still paying more since they jack up the price for the data plan, At least you are not tied up for 2 years. I am surprise Apple has not announce its price yet. It's their marketing strategy, and they are somehow trying to trick consumers. Think of it, Why would they sell it at the same price at AT&T (w/ contract) and Apple store without contract? If that is the case, then people would just get it at the Apple store, But that is not the case.

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  • 1 decade ago

    You cannot. Why would you be able to?

    Everytime AT&T sells a iPhone 3G, they pay Apple $425 (so the iPhone 3G is actually more expensive than the original). So think of Apple selling the iPhone 3G to AT&T for $425 and AT&T is selling it to us for $199.

    AT&T cut the price to draw more customers.

    To make up for the huge price difference, they're making the iPhone 3G in-store activated (like all the smart phones), raise the data plan to $30 per month (instead of $20), and Apple is no longer taking a portion of the iPhone's monthly bill from AT&T.

    However, AT&T is going to allow non-contract iPhone 3Gs later in the year for $599/$699. Of course this definitely surpasses the $425 and $525.

    On July 11th, however, you need a contract.

    Source(s): iPhone/iPod Touch developer
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  • Jay
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    The $199/$299 price is a discount that you are given specifically because you are signing up to a contract. You most definitely will not be able to have one for that price if you don't sign up to an AT&T contract.

    There is some talk about offering you the phone, without contract, for $500-$600.

    But there is no way that you'll get the $200 price without also signing up for a contract. Of course, you COULD sign up for the contract and then pay AT&T's ETF. Might be cheaper than buying the phone outright.

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  • 1 decade ago

    AT&T will not sale you an iPhone w/o a contract at the moment. The $199/$299 is a subsidized price which means to make back the lost money by not charging you the full price, they require a contract. However, in the future they will at $599 for 8GB and $699 for 16GB.

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  • 1 decade ago

    When you purchase the 3G iPhone, you HAVE to sign a 2 year contract and have the phone activated before you can leave the store with it. Apple does not want this phone to be unlocked and jailbroken so they are taking steps to ensure it can not be.

    Later this year, you will be able to purchase the iPhone without a contract for $499 for the 8GB version and $599 for the 16, but you will still have to activate it in the store.

    Ziphone will not work with the 3G iPhone.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Without a contract, it will cost more, just like they are saying. They are probably advertising the low costs only with a contract. That's how most of these places do business...you start a contract, they give you a lower price. So you can pay full price for a phone without contract or a discount price with the contract. Those are your choices.

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  • Axel C
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago

    If you buy the $199 one, you have to take the contract obligately there, if not, you can't take the phone. If you want an unlocked one, you'll have to pay $599.

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  • 1 decade ago

    You have to get a plan, so I suggest a prepaid credit card with your name on it to get the phone out of the store, and then do what you will with it......att will cancel the contract once the card is depleated and you have cancelled it. Since its prepaid, they really have no way (they need a SS#) to send you to collections so they are SOL....

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  • 1 decade ago

    Well, I'm pretty sure you COULD, but it would cost a lot MORE.

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