Step right up and buy an unlocked Lumia 1020 from Microsoft

Nokia Lumia 1020
SIM-free, baby!

Never mind the fact that it's rumored to hit End of Life status this fall: Microsoft is now offering an unlocked model of one of the best Lumia smartphones to date direct from its online store.

The Microsoft Store added a welcome new product listing today in the form of an unlocked Nokia Lumia 1020, ready to work on AT&T, T-Mobile or any GSM-based network abroad that works with traditional SIM cards.

Priced at $549 with free shipping and free returns, this is the same Lumia 1020 you already know and love, complete with 4.5-inch PureMotion HD+ display, 41-megapixel camera and 32GB of onboard storage. However, it's available only in black rather than the stunning yellow shown above.

Aside from being carrier unlocked to work on any GSM network around the globe, the Nokia Lumia 1020 is also ready for Windows Phone 8.1, which just started rolling out to additional Lumia-branded devices today.

Same as it ever was

"The popular Nokia Lumia 1020 now comes unlocked to give you the flexibility you need. It's the perfect solution whether you're an international traveler looking for reliable coverage in-country or someone who doesn't want to be tied to a contract," the Microsoft Store product description reads.

TechRadar awarded the Nokia Lumia 1020 three and a half stars in our review, touting the great camera, slim design and good battery life despite the then-$299 asking price with a two-year agreement.

Although it's nearly double the upfront cost, the unlocked Lumia 1020 is a good candidate for international travelers, assuming you can live with the traditionally weak selection of Windows Phone apps.

The only potential downside for this offer is a tweet from famed leaker @evleaks earlier this week claiming the Nokia Lumia 1020 will hit End of Life status on September 14 - which is only two short months away.