As you all know Absinthe jailbreak for iOS 5.1.1 was released for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch recently after which over a million iOS device users took advantage of the jailbreak. There were some issues with absinthe jailbreak initially but soon after an update was released absinthe 2.0.1 which took care of it.I too have a Sprint iPhone 4s 64gb running on iOS 5.0.1 jailbreaked and i was soo desperate to update it to 5.1.1 due to so many annoying bugs on the iOS 5.0.1. Like the double sms tone, battery drain and occasional signal loss. The reason i coudnt update my iPhone 4s to 5.1.1 was that there was no jailbreak untill now and most importantly my iPhone 4s was purchased and activated pre 11/11/11 so i feared that i could loose my iPhone 4s unlock.
The Sprint iPhone 4S pre 11/11/11 story
All the Sprint iPhone 4S sold before 11-Sept-2012 turned out to be carrier unlocked , i dont know why sprint did that but many iPhone 4s users were blessed. But the party ended soon when sprint issued an official statement changing the policy that all iPhone 4s sold after 11/11/11 will be carreir locked to sprint.
It was also informed that if customers account is in good standing, and has no past dues then he can request sprint to unlock iPhone 4s by simply calling customer care of visiting the store. But what about the previously sold handsets ?, sprint clarified on this that the sprint iPhone 4s which were already sold unlock will remain unlocked and will not be affected in any way by the new policy. That was a relief for many.
Is it safe to update pre 11/11/11 sprint iPhone 4s to new iOS version ?
You know many of us ask our relatives or friends to get iPhone for us , as iPhone 4s is way to expensive in our place. Then we use other methods to unlock iPhone like gevey sim, R-sim etc , so if your are in US then there is no issue, you can go ahead and update your iPhone 4S to latest iOS, but if your are residing outside US and got a Sprint iPhone 4s from US then it will most probably be locked and you will need gevey sim methods to unlock it but here the exception is the pre 11/11/11 iPhone 4s.
The pre 11/11/11 iPhone 4s are working just fine with any international carrier sim outside US as the new iPhone 4s is a world phone integrating both CDMA and GSM technologies in the same device. But what happens if your update that device to latest iOS version ?. Will it loose its unlock?. Lets find out.
Updating sprint iphone 4s iOS
Like i told in the beginning i have a sprint iPhone 4s which was purchased and activated before 11/11/11. So after doing a lot of research and browsing sprint community forums i decided to update mine though i even read that many were unsuccessful and got their phone locked. I connected my iPhone via data cable took a backup of data and apps with iTunes and selected restore with update since my phone was jailbroken on 5.0.1.
To be honest it was a mini heart attack moment since i could loose my precious with a conversion to iPod Touch. Eventually iphone rebooted with iOS updated to 5.1.1 and i could see the network and signal bars. A moment of relief and all my doubts were cleared. The question is why did other sprint iPhone 4s got locked even they were pre 11/11/11 ?
There might be a few reasons, and two of them which i know are:
- Your Sprint iPhone 4s might have bad esn, which means phone was either stolen or an account with dues so it was blocked, next time user tries to update or restore iphone iTunes wont activate it.
- Your Sprint iphone 4s phone might not be activated pre 11/11/11. You can verify iPhone 4s warranty status online.
So the conclusion is if your sprint iPhone 4s was activated before 11 september 2011 it will remain unlocked as of now.