A group of 'hackers' said they will soon sell software allowing Apple's iPhone to be used with any cellphone carrier, skirting AT&T's exclusive deal in the United States.
The consumer frenzy over Apple's sensational phone was, for some, dampened by the fact that AT&T was the device's only service provider in the country.
But a group of anonymous hackers promised on a website, iPhoneSIMfree.com, that they would sell software that can opens the iPhone to other carriers in the next few days. They did not indicate a price.
"To silence any doubters out there, we are welcoming publications from around the world to apply to receive their iPhones(tm) unlocked free of charge. If interested,submit an application via our Contact Us form. The top three applications will receive a free un-lock within the next 48 hours, which will be soon followed by the commercial launch of the software for public consumption," reads the group's announcement.
On the weekend, they presented their program to an expert working for CNN television, who announced the iPhone was freed from AT&T's monopoly in "two minutes."
"A core group of six people on three continents worked to unlock the iPhone as a hobby," according to the group.
They said they are fans of Apple products who thought the iPhone should be made accessible to people who cannot use AT&T.
Their website also brags that the 500 to 600-dollar device -- which works as a cellphone, music and video player, and web browser -- can be tweaked without prying it open or soldering.
Hackers around the world have set about unlocking iPhone codes since it was launched in the United States this year.
Last week a 17-year-old unblocked an iPhone, but did so by opening the unit. The new method apparently takes advantage of the iPhone's ability to connect to iTunes and receive downloads and updates from Apple.
Last week, Lithuanian hackers launched a website offering to allow customers to unlock the iPhone AT&T for about 990 litas ($390).