500 hours was what it took to for the iPhone to be hacked to the point to where AT&T's hold is broken and all carriers can be supported on the iphone.
George Hotz is a 17 years old teenager who spent 8 hours a day since the iPhones release to perfect the hack. He destroyed the first attempt but on the second one he managed to succeed. It now takes him two hours to do the needed tweaks. Hotz traded his first one for ....
"I traded it for a sweet Nissan 350Z and 3 8GB iPhones."
Rumors also have it that the young man also managed to get a job out of the trade but I have not read that from him yet. To read about the troubles he had listing it on ebay, the energy drinks he lived on, and the trade of it read his blog Finding JTAG on the iPhone.
I would say this kid has very bright future in the IT field. I first heard about this on Friday but just now had time to check it out.