Some of us hate signing away two years of our mobile lives to a carrier simply for a subsidized phone, so the solution is to buy an unlocked device at full retail price. Sure, it costs more, but think about the freedom! Today Apple took a little freedom away from the iPhone 4, as they now only sell the device online with a two-year AT&T contract. Previously the device was available from Apple contract-free, with the 16 GB model costing $599 and the 32 GB model costing $699. Now Apple's iPhone 4 FAQ states that "iPhone requires a two-year AT&T wireless service contract.” The good folks at 9 to 5 Mac spoke with AT&T and Apple, and both companies stated that you can still buy a contract-free iPhone, but you must do so at either an AT&T or Apple store.
It is pretty disappointing that you can no longer purchase an off-contract iPhone 4 from Apple online, especially if you don't have an Apple store nearby. This is all especially confusing because Apple and AT&T are both selling the device contract-free in their brick and mortar stores. Why not just offer it online, too? I'm sure Apple has some sort of reasoning, but I definitely don't get it.
Via 9 To 5 Mac