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Buying iPhone 4 in Japan - questions

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Member Since: Aug 11, 2010
Posts: 2
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I live in Beijing but I'm going over to Japan over the summer.

I took one look at iPhone 4 prices over there, and decided straight away, I'm getting one. JPY46,000 for 16GB is **** cheap (roughly CNY3650). Originally I wanted an unlocked one from UK/HK, but the huge savings may clinch this one for me (unlocked iPhone 4 is 500 in UK), not to mention I won't be going to HK or UK for a while and I don't want to wait!

I have a couple questions:
-To clarify some jargon, does "unlocking" mean that I get to use any SIM card in it, and "jailbreaking" means the same thing PLUS I get to download apps from places other than iTunes app store?
-Is it the case that "Unlocking" can be "legally" (if by a mobile carrier), but "jailbreaking" voids Apple warranty (although not strictly "illegal")?
-Will I definitely need to unlock/jailbreak my phone to use it anywhere OTHER than Japan?
-If I buy just an iPhone 4 (no contract) in Japan, jailbreak it for use abroad, then move to Japan eventually (I am hoping to move there in a year or so), will I be able to get a Softbank micro SIM without buying another handset (my question is, can you buy a standalone micro SIM from Softbank, seeing as they only offer micro-SIMs for iPhone 4 and not for any other handset)?
-Is it possible to jailbreak for free? I don't wish to have to pay some shady dealer to jailbreak every time the iOS is updated.

Is there anything else I should consider before making this decision?
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#1 Yes
#2 Both can now be legally done. See here Jailbreaking now permissible for discussion. And yes once done you have voided your warranty.
#3 No, if you can swallow the roaming changes.
#4 That depends if Japan sells SIM cards without a phone
#5 Jailbreaking should always be free, for now you can visit and do it with a swipe of a finger.

#6 jailbreaking is hugely overrated IMO, the main reason to jailbreak is to use other carriers.

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