Contract Free iPhone 4: Apple and AT&T Seem to Differ

Starting today, Apple has started accepting preorder for iPhone 4.  With two year AT&T contract 16GB iPhone 4 costs $199 and 32GB iPhone 4 costs $ 299.   However, Apple and AT&T seem to have different views on selling iPhone 4 with no two year contract with AT&T.

Apple Says No

In the frequently asked questions for iPhone 4, For the question

Can I buy an iPhone without an AT&T contract?

Apple says that

No. iPhone requires a two-year AT&T wireless service contract.

iPhoneFAQs Contract Free iPhone 4:  Apple and AT&T Seem to DifferHowever, AT&T is contradicting Apple’s answer.

AT&T Says Yes

AT&T says that one can buy iPhone 4 ( as well as iPhone 3GS) with no commitment. With no commitment one can buy 16GB iPhone 4 for $599 and 32GB iPhone 4 for $699.  AT&T says that

Any customer who wants to purchase iPhone 4 without signing a new 2-year agreement may do so at the no commitment price. An eligible voice and data plan are required.

iphone4ATT Contract Free iPhone 4:  Apple and AT&T Seem to Differ

What does it mean? It does look like the both mean different things, but that it is confusing. Will Apple & AT&T make it easier for the users?

No Contract Vs Unlocked iPhone (Updated)

Contract free does not mean unlocked iPhone 4. AT&T has been selling contract free iPhone locked to AT&T network for sometime.  Here is what AT&T had to say for contract free iPhone 3GS before.

Q. It sounds like I don’t need a contract to buy iPhone 3GS. Can I buy it and use it on another carrier?
A. We do offer no-commitment pricing, however, iPhones sold in the United States are configured to work only with the wireless services provided by AT&T.

Contract Free iPhone Pricings from AT&T

Contract Free iPhone 3Gs

  • 8GB iPhone 3GS: $499
  • 16GB iPhone 3GS: $549
  • 32GB iPhone 3GS: $599

Contract Free iPhone 4

  • 16GB iPhone 4: $599
  • 32GB iPhone 4: $699


  1. Will says

    Does the “No commitment” price include an “unlocked” iPhone4? If not, then you’re still “committed” to AT&T and just paid them and extra $400 in addition to the same service fees you would have paid them over the next couple of years anyway!

    Why is it that neither Apple or AT&T will unlock your phone when the 2-year contract is up? It effectively keeps you chained to AT&T beyond the 2-year contractual agreement. Very greedy….


  2. says

    The “no commitment” price does include the iPhone 4 but you will have to call customer services to get it unlocked. Depending on who you speak to, you may be able to get this done for free!

  3. Tom says

    The iPhone lock information is kept on apple’s servers, there is no unlock code that can be entered into the phone to allow use with another carrier. Finally, even were there an unlock code available you may rest assured that NO AT&T customer service representative would provide you with that code prior to the end of their exclusivity agreement. Screwing around with the iPhone upgrade rules and procedures will result in immediate termination of employment, regardless of rank or seniority. You can believe that unlocking would be handled the same way, were it possible. This is how serious an issue the iPhone is for AT&T. SO QUIT ASKING ALREADY!!!

  4. Jack Boot says

    so we don’t have a right to ask. we just have to accept a potential illegal combination between apple and att and just shut up about it. buy what you tell us to buy. pay what you tell us to pay. is that what you mean?

  5. Jose says

    Hy…PLssss can somone confirm,that i can buy iPhone 4 without AT&T contract?! I dont live in USA but i will be there just a Couple of Days ..

  6. Jose says

    Can i buy locked iPhone4 at Apple store,without contract?!And whats the price?!
    Tnx a lot.

  7. says

    Hi, yeah i wud like to 2nd that on what Jose said.
    Can u buy a non-commitment iphone 4 (locked to at&t) with just a social security no. and a US Credit Card?
    I understand it wont be a factory unlocked iphone.
    All im asking is if i want the 32gb non-commitment iphone 4, do i just pay $699 with the CC and i can walk out with the iphone without any addtional contracts/subscriptions/fees?
    Thanx, in advance.

  8. Jose says

    Requires new two-year AT&T wireless service contract, sold separately to qualified customers; credit check required; must be 18 or older. Existing AT&T customers who want to upgrade from another phone or replace an iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS should check with AT&T or use For those who are not eligible for an early upgrade or who wish to buy iPhone as a gift, the prices are $499 (8GB), $599 (16GB), or $699 (32GB). In CA, MA, and RI, sales tax is collected on the unbundled price of iPhone. Service may not be available in all areas or at the signal strength, rates, speeds, or bandwidth as demonstrated. Wi-Fi Internet access required for some features; broadband recommended; fees may apply. Some applications, features, and services are not available in all areas. Visit to check AT&T network coverage in your area. iPhone is configured to work only with wireless service provided by AT&T. Warranty information available at When available, transferring your mobile number to a different service provider will terminate your service with your existing provider; termination fees and other charges may apply. Some features may require added fees. Contact your service provider for more details. Use constitutes acceptance of Apple’s software license agreement and third-party terms located in the iPhone box. Unauthorized modification of your iPhone software violates the software license agreement. Inability to use an iPhone due to unauthorized modifications is not covered under your warranty.

  9. fatela says

    yes you can go to apple store and buy no contract $699 for iphone 4
    i just did that last week.

  10. Jericho says

    U.S Friends.
    Drive north of the border. You can pick up Factory unlocked iPhone 4 from Apple directly for $659 -16Gb, $759- 32GB. You can use it on any carrier anywhere in the world. The tricky part is Apple don’t have any in stock but they get about 10-20 devices every day. You will have to line up outside the mall early in the morning before the mall open to get your open. I am talking about early as 5AM. Even so there is no gurantee you will get your device. By the time Shopping mall doors open people get in from various door so your chances of getting front of the line slim. Fairview mall, Eaton centre have Apple stores. Good Luck!

  11. Demonkin says

    guys, i dont have any credit card yet coz ijust got here in C.A. But I do have a regular job and I earn more than $250 per week.. And i do have a debit card. . Do you think they would let me purchase iphone4 wid 2yr. Contract?

  12. ketan says

    can anybody tell me if i want to purchase locked i ph.4 from usa on contracte then how much i hve 2 pay in 2 year contract.

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