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7/29/2008
01:56 PM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
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An Open Letter To Apple And AT&T: Why Did You Brick My First-Generation iPhone?

Anyone who upgraded from a first-generation iPhone to the iPhone 3G had to sync the new hardware with iTunes in order to finalize the activation process. By so doing, you effectively killed the cellular radio in the first-generation iPhone. Sure, the 1G iPhone can play media, browse the Web via Wi-Fi and access the Apps Store, but it can't make phone calls. What gave Apple and AT&T the right to disable my $600 piece of property?

Anyone who upgraded from a first-generation iPhone to the iPhone 3G had to sync the new hardware with iTunes in order to finalize the activation process. By so doing, you effectively killed the cellular radio in the first-generation iPhone. Sure, the 1G iPhone can play media, browse the Web via Wi-Fi and access the Apps Store, but it can't make phone calls. What gave Apple and AT&T the right to disable my $600 piece of property?At the time I purchased the original iPhone back in June 2007, I was using a BlackBerry Pearl as my main phone. After I upgraded, I was able to take the SIM card out of my iPhone, put it in the BlackBerry, and still use the Pearl to access the Internet, send text messages and make phone calls. In other words, I had a spare phone.

People who upgraded from the first generation iPhone to the 3G iPhone do not. Why? Because Apple and AT&T deactivated the cellular radio inside the first-generation iPhone. You can't just pop your SIM card out of the 3G iPhone and stick it back into the old one. iTunes forces you to reactivate the original iPhone, and things get murky if you already have one activated on that SIM card.

Having a back-up phone is important to me. I'd like for my back-up phone to be my first-generation iPhone. After all, I did pay full retail price for it. But I can't use it because Apple and AT&T bricked it.

Right now, my only option is to unlock and jailbreak my first-generation iPhone to get the cellular radio working again. I shouldn't have to take that step.

So I have to ask, why?

Why are first-generation iPhones bricked? How is it acceptable that you can disable a piece of my property? No other manufacturers do this. Apple, AT&T, I want my first-generation iPhone to be available as a back-up phone. Fix it.

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