WP7 update frustrations... solutions?

Hey everyone, Samsung Focus on ATT checking in here. First of all, let me just say that I really enjoy the WP7 experience in general. The OS is a fresh look at how to use your mobile phone while still providing a lot of the functionality offered on other platforms, as well as some unique features as well.

My issue today is the complete and utter lack of ATT's support of updates. I personally prefer to wait until updates are official to prevent and sort of bricking, but I'm almost tearing my hair out about the horrible update experience so far. I'm on a rev. 1.4 Focus, so I experienced the whole debacle that was NoDo, the frustration of Mango, then the lack of anything thereafter.

I was wondering what solutions there are to this update problem. Does unlocking the phone allow the stock updates to come directly to me without having to wait for ATT to get off their lazy butts? Is my only solution to "jailbreak" to get the updates flowing? Am I up sh*t creek with a dookie paddle that has feces on the part where you put your hands?

TL,DR - I want updates as they roll out. Thanks for the help, everyone. Hoping for a solution.