Feeds

In the Land of the Free, Home of the Brave ... you can legally carrier unlock your own phone

Once Obama signs law passed today by House of Reps

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Here at Vulture West, we're looking out for porcine aviators: the usually divided US House of Representatives unanimously passed a law allowing people who've bought phones to actually unlock the things from their carriers.

It comes just a week after the Senate showed a similarly united stance.

"With today's House passage of the bipartisan Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act, this important legislation is headed to the President for his signature," said the bill's sponsor Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-FL).

"This law will protect consumer choice by allowing flexibility when it comes to choosing a wireless carrier. This is something that Americans have been asking for and I am pleased that we were able to work together to ensure the swift passage of legislation restoring the exemption that allowed consumers to unlock their cell phones."

More than 100,000 of those Americans signed a petition to the White House demanding the unlocking after the Librarian of Congress decided unilaterally to reverse his earlier position. Up until last January unlocking phones from a carrier network was legal, and the decision to change stance was unpopular with both the public and the White House.

However, getting a law passed has been a slow and tortuous process. Although the House passed a bill on the matter last year it took until last week for the Senate to stir itself into action. Even then the House had to vote again on Friday because of differing language in the legislation over the rights of third-party firms to unlock handsets and sell them on.

The House bill does also have some extra good news for consumers. The amended legislation also allows the unlocking of tablets and any other electronic device that comes from a carrier.

Given President Obama's stated preference for unlocking he should be expected to sign off on the legislation as soon as possible. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Spies, avert eyes! Tim Berners-Lee demands a UK digital bill of rights
Lobbies tetchy MPs 'to end indiscriminate online surveillance'
How the FLAC do I tell MP3s from lossless audio?
Can you hear the difference? Can anyone?
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
prev story

Whitepapers

A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.