Congress Gives Unlocking Bill Another Shot
Lawmakers on Monday agreed to a revised bill to make it legal for people to unlock their cell phones. Senator Patrick Leahy and Ranking Member Chuck Grassley introduced the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act last year in order to restore consumers' ability to unlock their phones. Unlocking phones became illegal when the Library of Congress allowed an exemption to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act to expire. Leahy and Grassley's bill reached the penultimate step, but was then modified by the House of Representatives at the last minute to prevent bulk unlocking of cell phones. This caused it to lose much of its support in the Senate. Leahy and Grassley have been working since then to reach a compromise to which both parties can agree. They reached that compromise yesterday. "Our laws should not prohibit consumers from carrying their cell phones to a new network, and we should promote and protect competition in the wireless marketplace. This is important to consumers in every state, and I look forward to beginning consideration of our bipartisan legislation this week," said Leahy. Despite agreeing to broad terms, the bill still falls under the DMCA and leaves the ultimate decision up to the Library of Congress. If enacted immediately, it will be legal to unlock cell phones only for a period of 14 months before the policy must be reviewed once again by the Library of Congress. The wording of the bill mandates the policy be reviewed once every three years, which opens up the possibility for it to be struck down once again. Separately, the NTIA and the FCC have mandated that wireless network operators make it easier for consumers to unlock their devices. Most of the largest carriers have already begun putting policies in place that allow customers to unlock their devices once terms of their agreement are met.
TracFone Settles with FCC Over Locked Phones
TracFone has reached an agreement with the FCC concerning its policies for unlocking handsets. In February of this year it became mandatory for all carriers to unlock customer handsets and to properly disclose their unlocking policies to customers.
Houses Passes Bill that Could Cripple FCC's Net Neutrality Rules
The U.S. House of Representatives today passed bill HR 2666, which could interfere with the FCC's ability to enforce net neutrality provisions.
AT&T Wants Congress to Pass Net Neutrality Laws
AT&T today claimed in full-page newspaper advertisements published around the country that it wants Congress to take charge of net neutrality. The company suggests an "internet bill of rights" is in order.
Verizon to Start Locking Its Phones Again to Fight Thieves
Verizon Wireless plans to lock its handsets in order to cut down on theft. Verizon claims its unlocked phones are a big target, often stolen when in transit to Verizon stores or to consumers.
You wont hit all the bands for data, but the phone will almost assuredly work.
The whole concept of locking unlocking is a cash grab by the carriers, if I am buying a device that isnt under contr...
When I worked for at&t, I unlocked 2-3 phones everyday, all I had to do is looked up the IMEI to make sure ...
and as long as you finish out the contract o pay off your phone (most companies after 30days) you can unlock the phone without a problem, sprint may be different but i know the other 3 ive never had a prob...
If the carrier doesn't want to play nice, you can usually find a way to unlock a phone elsewhere. But it doesn't always work and som...
Carriers still don't have to allow on their network
Just because it is not illegal to unlock a phone does not mean a carrier has to allow it to be used on their network.
And most will not.
They will tell you it is because the programming in the phone pr the channels are not compatible or you will have issues getting data because the Username in the phone is firstname.lastname@example.org (it defaults to this) and not email@example.com which is required to activate data.
my 2 pennies.
Compatibility CAN be an issue,...