Cell Phone Unlocking now legal in the US, President Obama signs bill

The US President Barack Obama has signed the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act into law. This essentially means that it is now legal to unlock a cell phone in the United States.

Unlocking phone

Previously, unlocking your phone was considered as a violation of federal copyright law, although it was rarely enforced. The US made carrier unlocking illegal in January 2013. The Digital Millenium Copyright Act is currently the reason that unlocking cell phones is illegal. Technically, unlocking your phone to use on other carriers without permission constitutes “circumventing technological measures” that protect software copyrights. However, every three years, the Library of Congress can make specific exemptions to this law. In other words, they can decide that it’s legal to unlock your smartphone, even if the original law said it’s not.

Cell phone unlocking is particularly beneficial for customers who are frequent travelers and  wish to take their cell phones with them to another carrier to other countries and prefer to use the services of a local network instead of paying a premium for roaming charges.

Though the law makes unlocking legal, it does not direct wireless carriers to provide unlock codes without a valid reason. Consumers who are still under a previously-signed service contract with their wireless provider will still need to satisfy the terms of that contract before being allowed to unlock their device.

via:Android Community

Author: Sneha Bokil

Sneha Bokil is a tech enthusiast and is currently using OnePlus 3T but she still treasures her Nokia N70 (M). You can follow her on Twitter @snehabokil and on Google+