Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 4th Mar 2013 19:28 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless "The White House agrees with the 114.000+ of you who believe that consumers should be able to unlock their cell phones without risking criminal or other penalties. In fact, we believe the same principle should also apply to tablets, which are increasingly similar to smart phones. And if you have paid for your mobile device, and aren't bound by a service agreement or other obligation, you should be able to use it on another network. It's common sense, crucial for protecting consumer choice, and important for ensuring we continue to have the vibrant, competitive wireless market that delivers innovative products and solid service to meet consumers' needs."
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RE: Unlocking Phones
by unclefester on Mon 4th Mar 2013 22:55 UTC in reply to "Unlocking Phones"
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I've heard some people claim that the phone has to be locked in order to pay back the phone subsidy, but that's a silly claim because the customer is still liable for the contract payments regardless of whatever other SIMs the customer might want to use. I still have to pay my contractual phone bill whether I use the phone or not.

If you look at the wording of the contract you will find that you are actually paying for data. The phone is provided for free or minimal cost to access that data. If you allow a customer to unlock the phone they can make a legal argument that they are no longer required to pay for the data. They can then get a free handset.

IMHO the carriers should be required to provide the phone at actual cost (eg $20/month for 24 months) and separately charge for data and calls. The result would be that many people would then buy cheap handsets an make a lot fewer calls - bad for both the handset makers and the telcos.

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