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admin | Category: Reverse Phone Lookup Usa | 29.07.2014
The House of Representatives passed the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act last Friday, which will allow consumers more flexibility with their phones than they have had in the past two years.
Before 2012, the Copyright Office granted short-term exemptions that legally allowed users to unlock mobile phones. The Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act will allow consumers to unlock their phones without punishment. Many people are asking: “What does it mean that a phone is ‘locked’ or ‘unlocked?’ Simply put, most phone contracts for mobile phone services lock the device into the service provider that sells the phone, forcing consumers to buy a new phone if they want to switch carriers. All kinds of mobile phones can be unlocked, however the process differs between different types, such as those that use subscriber identity module (SIM) cards or those that do not (usually called a CDMA phone).
Particularly with cloud computing and so many specialized mobile apps, Americans are becoming more and more dependent on their wireless devices.
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The bill, aimed at cell phone users who want to unlock their mobile phones, has made it all the way through Congress and is on its way to Obama’s desk.


Currently, those who perform the action on their own can be prosecuted with sentences that may include time in prison. One other provision in this legislation is the directive to the Librarian of Congress to decide if other devices like tablets could be legally unlocked. The president applauded both Houses for passing what he calls “pro-consumer” legislation, believing it will “allow ordinary Americans some flexibility in choosing a carrier that works for their budget and their needs.” The bill is aimed at allowing consumers to keep an existing phone as they move to new service providers without being forced into long-term contracts. Consumer groups have been clamoring for this flexibility ever since, as the expired extensions made mobile phone unlocking illegal without a provider’s permission, even when service contracts have expired. Earlier versions of the bill were held up by a “bulk unlocking” clause which impeded a user’s ability to unlock multiple phones.
For example if a T Mobile or an AT&T SIM card are inserted into that unlocked phone, it will make a call. More than 114 thousand people signed and sent a petition to the White House requesting the exemption be reinstated. CDMA phones, such as those issued by Sprint, usually need to be hooked up to a computer with programming software.


This law came about because when American consumers spoke up and said, “We want to unlock our mobile phones.” Congress and Obama listened and took action. If Obama approves the law, it will reinstate the exemption until the next Copyright Office review in 2016.
The version being sent to the president was unanimously agreed to by both Democrats and Republicans. There are third party companies who will unlock these phones remotely for a nominal fee if a user provides them with the necessary information on the phone, such as an IMEI on a Sprint phone. Wireless carriers accepted this change last December, voluntarily striking an agreement with the Federal Communications Commission.
Some carriers will provide their users with unlocking services after a certain period of time, or at the end of the contract period, usually for a fee.



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