“Unlocked” Phones Will Soon Be Legal in America
Congress unanimously passed the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act, which will allow consumers to easily switch carriers after their two-year contract is over or if the phone is completely paid off.
President Obama looks forward to signing this bill into law, stating, “The bill Congress passed today is another step toward giving ordinary Americans more flexibility and choice, so that they can find a cell phone carrier that meets their needs and their budget.”
Terminating a contract early is expensive and the process of using the same phone with a different carrier can get extremely complicated, but this new bill hopes to streamline this experience.
What’s The Catch?
You won’t be able to unlock your phone mid-contract and switch carriers. Legal unlocking can only happen after the carrier contract has been fulfilled and you completely own the phone.
To clarify, unlocking a phone while still in a contract is still illegal, although some third-party services will do it without technically breaking the law.