Unlocked GSM iPhone 5's have officially gone on sale on Apple's online store in the US. At a two-month wait time since the iPhone 5 launched, the unlocked iPhone 5 models took a slightly longer time to go on sale this year as opposed to last year's iPhone 4S models, which saw only a six-week wait time.
As you would expect, the unlocked iPhone 5 models are available in black or white configurations at the following capacities and prices:
- 16 GB -- US$649
- 32 GB -- $749
- 64 GB -- $849
All models currently list a one-week ship time.
Apple explains the benefits of unlocked iPhones on its website:
"The unlocked iPhone includes all the features of iPhone but without a wireless contract commitment. You can activate and use iPhone on the supported GSM wireless network of your choice, such as AT&T in the United States. The unlocked iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 will not work with CDMA-based carriers such as Verizon Wireless or Sprint. If you don't want a multiyear service contract, or if you prefer to use a local carrier when traveling abroad, the unlocked iPhone is the best choice. It does not come with a micro-SIM card for iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S, or a nano-SIM card for iPhone 5, so you'll need to get one from any supported GSM carrier worldwide. To start using it, simply insert the card into the slot on your iPhone and turn it on by pressing and holding the On/Off button for a few seconds. Then follow the onscreen instructions to set up your iPhone."