When the ChevronWP7 team returns to start unlocking Windows Phone 7 handsets again, things are going to be very different. Now that the group is no longer working outside of Microsoft’s sphere of influence, it’s gone legit and, as we learned last month, will be charging users for the phone unlock service. Chris Walsh has tweeted some additional details of what we can expect, including what the service will cost.
If you’re in a country not supported by Microsoft’s development program, or see the $100 fee as unreasonable, Walsh and crew will unlock your WP7 handset for development for $9. The group’s ChevronWP7 Labs project aims to bolster WP7 app development by giving these users, who would otherwise not be working on Windows Phone, the tools to do so affordably.
Walsh also points out that this unlocking tool will be of no use to those attempting to use it for pirating WP7 apps. That marks the very large difference between this and a jailbroken iPhone or a rooted Android; even after this “unlock”, your WP7 handset is still very much under Microsoft’s control. Will we ever see WP7 fully-hacked (presumably, at this point, by a different group than ChevronWP7), is Microsoft’s security just too robust, or is there even enough interest in such a thing?