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Posted

[url=http://news.msn.com/science-technology/unlocking-your-cellphone-will-be-illegal-starting-saturday]Source.[/url][quote]Users will not be able to alter their cellphones to access different networks starting Saturday. But advocacy groups are questioning the law.

Starting Jan. 26, buying and unlocking a phone will no longer be legal in the United States.

The term "unlocking" a phone means to remove the security feature that prevents the phone being used on a different network. Once a phone is unlocked, it can work on more than one carrier's network. Unlocking phones is useful for those traveling internationally because it allows phones to work on different networks.

The Librarian of Congress, who determines any exemptions to a strict anti-hacking law called the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), decided in October 2012 that unlocking cellphones would no longer be allowed. A 90-day window was provided during which people could still buy phones and unlock them.

Currently Apple sells an unlocked iPhone 5 starting at $649 and Google sells Nexus 4 unlocked for $300.

Mashable reports that the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is questioning DMCA's right to determine who can unlock a phone.

EFF attorney Mitch Stoltz said in a letter to TechNewsDaily.com: "Arguably, locking phone users into one carrier is not at all what the DMCA was meant to do. It's up to the courts to decide."
[/quote]

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Posted

'MURICA!

Seriously. Retards.
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Posted

But...why? Who got scared by unlocked phones enough to say, "maybe the DMCA can stop this"?

Oh well, at least it's only in the U.S. A move like that wouldn't stand a chance in Europe, but I'm imagining that is due to the number of people who cross borders on a regular basis compared to in the U.S.

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Posted

It should be illegal for them to lock our phones. Dumb **********ers.
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Posted

For a country that says they believe in the free market as if it were a religion; every time I hear about the mobile phone companies they're restricting consumer options.
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Posted

[quote name='AngelGraves13' timestamp='1359101847' post='595477998']
It should be illegal for them to lock our phones. Dumb **********ers.
[/quote]
Just what I was thinking. How does this help anyone or solve anything?
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Posted

How can they make a law against the way you use your phone? It's your phone isn't it ?

At least non contract phones, maybe the law is only going up against contract phones?
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Posted

[quote name='-T-' timestamp='1359102476' post='595478014']
Just what I was thinking. How does this help anyone or solve anything?
[/quote]
Helps the lobbyists that foot the campaign bills for sure...
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Posted

[img]http://riendoconmemes.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/eye-twitch.png[/img]


This. Every time I read about a new law in the States. Seriously it makes my brain hurt already.
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Posted

[quote name='Detection' timestamp='1359103414' post='595478028']
How can they make a law against the way you use your phone? It's your phone isn't it ?

At least non contract phones, maybe the law is only going up against contract phones?
[/quote]
Even if the law is for contract phones only, normally the cost of the phone is part of the contract, i.e. a SIM only contract is cheaper than one that comes with a phone and the difference subsidises the cost of the phone. If you are locked into a contract then at the end of this contract you own the phone so there should be no issue with unlocking it.

This is how it works in the UK but I have no idea about the US.

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Posted

[quote name='StrikedOut' timestamp='1359104194' post='595478040']
Even if the law is for contract phones only, normally the cost of the phone is part of the contract, i.e. a SIM only contract is cheaper than one that comes with a phone and the difference subsidises the cost of the phone. If you are locked into a contract then at the end of this contract you own the phone so there should be no issue with unlocking it.

This is how it works in the UK but I have no idea about the US.
[/quote]

As you can't get out of the contract without paying the termination costs (usually the remaining balance of the contract), the phone is yours to do with as you will from the moment you get it. There are NO laws in the UK that limit when you can unlock your phone, and you can even get the unlock code from your telco most of the time.

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Posted

[quote name='StrikedOut' timestamp='1359104194' post='595478040']
Even if the law is for contract phones only, normally the cost of the phone is part of the contract, i.e. a SIM only contract is cheaper than one that comes with a phone and the difference subsidises the cost of the phone. If you are locked into a contract then at the end of this contract you own the phone so there should be no issue with unlocking it.

This is how it works in the UK but I have no idea about the US.
[/quote]

Yep true, but doesn't the phone only become legally your own after a certain length of the contract?

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Posted

Sometimes I'm glad I live in Europe, where every manufacturer has to give 2 years warranty (yes you too apple) and unlocking phones will never be illegal.

PS: not saying that everything over here is better :p

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Posted

You can tell who is really in charge of the country, all your representatives in the pocket of the corporations.
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Posted

[quote name='FloatingFatMan' timestamp='1359104687' post='595478050']
As you can't get out of the contract without paying the termination costs (usually the remaining balance of the contract), the phone is yours to do with as you will from the moment you get it. There are NO laws in the UK that limit when you can unlock your phone, and you can even get the unlock code from your telco most of the time.
[/quote]
Agree, this law is just absurd and a waste of tax payers money in even bring this to concept let alone getting this far.

Always unlocked my phones from my provider (Vodafone), never paid someone else to do it.

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Posted

[quote name='Detection' timestamp='1359104746' post='595478052']
Yep true, but doesn't the phone only become legally your own after a certain length of the contract?
[/quote]
Not sure. I have only unlocked my phone once I have the new one in my hand but as you would need to pay the remainder of the contract should you want to cancel early I suspect that you would be able to unlock fairly early on.

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Posted

[quote name='Detection' timestamp='1359104746' post='595478052']
Yep true, but doesn't the phone only become legally your own after a certain length of the contract?
[/quote]

If you don't want to be in the contract, you pay out the contract costs.

At least that's how it works here in Australia. Legally they are owed the money even if you don't stay.

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Posted

[quote name='StrikedOut' timestamp='1359105345' post='595478062']
Not sure. I have only unlocked my phone once I have the new one in my hand but as you would need to pay the remainder of the contract should you want to cancel early I suspect that you would be able to unlock fairly early on.
[/quote]

I never get contract phones, I find PnG deals have better value even though you have to pay for the phone there and then, which actually works out cheaper than paying for 2 years on a contract most of the time

I unlocked my Lumia 710 a couple of months ago just for the heck of it and it was just a hack from XDA, haven't changed operators though but always nice to know you can help someone out if their battery dies


[quote name='Nashy' timestamp='1359105429' post='595478068']
If you don't want to be in the contract, you pay out the contract costs.

At least that's how it works here in Australia. Legally they are owed the money even if you don't stay.
[/quote]

Yea same here, if you want out early you pay the rest of the contract off

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Posted

i'm gonna unlock my phone saturday just for the hell of it
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Posted

[quote name='Detection' timestamp='1359106615' post='595478086']
I never get contract phones, I find PnG deals have better value even though you have to pay for the phone there and then, which actually works out cheaper than paying for 2 years on a contract most of the time
[/quote]
Of course it does, but the point of a contract is to spread the cost of a new phone over a long period of time. Not everyone can afford to drop

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Posted

[quote name='Matt B' timestamp='1359102467' post='595478012']
For a country that says they believe in the free market as if it were a religion; every time I hear about the mobile phone companies they're restricting consumer options.
[/quote]

Were you even reading the same story? The decision may have been influenced by lobbying on the part of the phone companies, but the decision was made by the government.

You also may want to review the definition of free market:

[quote]An economic system in which prices are determined by unrestricted competition between privately owned businesses.[/quote]

Keyword there being unrestricted. Government regulation and intervention is restriction.

As to the story, it's ironic that the same government body determined that Jailbreaking was legal now says unlocking is not. So we can break the manufacturer's lock on the software, but not the service provider's lock on the baseband?

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Posted

[quote name='Belazor' timestamp='1359113014' post='595478200']
Of course it does, but the point of a contract is to spread the cost of a new phone over a long period of time. Not everyone can afford to drop

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Posted

[quote name='Detection' timestamp='1359106615' post='595478086']
I never get contract phones, I find PnG deals have better value even though you have to pay for the phone there and then, which actually works out cheaper than paying for 2 years on a contract most of the time
[/quote]
I get a reasonable discount for myself and partner and we also get a no quibble exchange if the phones develop a fault or gets lost, phone issue on a Monday, new phone delivered on a Tuesday. As she always drives our kids around I prefer to know that she should almost always have a working phone.
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Posted

[quote name='TheLegendOfMart' timestamp='1359104949' post='595478056']
You can tell who is really in charge of the country, all your representatives in the pocket of the corporations.
[/quote][Sarcasm]You are just now telling us this. man i had no idea[\Sarcasm]

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Posted

Give guns to school officers = good idea

Allowing unlocking of phones = bad idea


Wtf America?!?!
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