Unconfirmed Leak: AT&T Will Lock In iOS 4 Phones With OTA Updates

AddictiveTips sources this leak from a supposed Apple informant, which goes into detail AT&T using iOS 4 to prevent users from unlocking their phones, lest they be completely locked out. We're not sure if it's legit, but it is interesting.

There are four points their tipster made, some of which are overblown, some of which seem like coming up with reasoning after the fact. But AddictiveTips seems confident, so we're publishing, to see if anyone has any more information one way or the other.

Point one: AT&T is going to send an OTA update every 7-14 days as a mandatory update, which if you don't install, will essentially brick your phone. The tipster says they have six months of these OTA updates available now for iOS 4.

My opinion: This sounds very ludicrous, because there are a good number of people out there still running 2.x software, because they never bother to connect their phones to their computers after the initial setup. Forcing them to do this every other week (at best), sounds like a very bad decision that neither AT&T or Apple would do.

Point two: AT&T shipped those iPhones early (that were delivered yesterday, and today) to verify the OTA system.

My opinion: Why does AT&T need to have these in end-users' hands to test this? They have their own phones, they can test their own OTA system in-house. Sounds like someone came up with a reason to explain why phones made it out early, after phones already went out early.

Point three: Apple "[steals]user information via FaceTime" by sending the two FaceTime participants' location to Apple's servers, as well as who those people are. Also, because FaceTime uses Wi-Fi, and FaceTime chats are unencrypted, if you're video-chatting on an open Wi-Fi hotspot, other people can snoop in and see your conversation.

My opinion: FaceTime uses Apple's servers, but sending the location seems interesting. Not sure why Apple needs that info, but there might be a legit reason. Having FaceTime be unencrypted is a bad idea though, since users have a valid expectation that their conversations, whether they're over the mobile network, or over FaceTime, be private. This point can be confirmed by seeing whether or not FaceTime is encrypted or not.

Point four: Apple employees aren't updating their phones to iOS 4 because of these privacy concerns, and most people in his department uses jailbroken iPhones.

My opinion: Hard to say. Maybe they are, maybe they aren't. This point mostly depends on the validity of the previous three points.

All interesting, but unconfirmed for now. If you have any insight into whether or not these rumoured leaks are true, let us know. [AddictiveTips]