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The bill follows a promising response from the White House to a petition for cell phone unlocking

Well, that was fast: a bill to once again make it legal for consumers to unlock their cell phones was introduced yesterday, after the White House sided with a petition just earlier this week.

Democrats and Republicans alike have backed the new measure. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) have joined Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) in pushing the Wireless Consumer Choice Act, which would make sure users have the option to unlock their cell phones and switch carriers if they please.

“Consumers who have purchased a mobile device, and aren’t bound by a service contract, should be able to use it on another network,” said Blumenthal. “This legislation is common sense, crucial for protecting consumer choice, and important for ensuring healthy competition in the market.”


Earlier this week, the White House addressed a petition called "It's Time to Legalize Cell Phone Unlocking" on its We the People site. The petition collected 114,000+ signatures, and received a promising answer from the White House.

"The White House agrees with the 114,000+ of you who believe that consumers should be able to unlock their cell phones without risking criminal or other penalties," said the official White House response.

"In fact, we believe the same principle should also apply to tablets, which are increasingly similar to smart phones. And if you have paid for your mobile device, and aren't bound by a service agreement or other obligation, you should be able to use it on another network. It's common sense, crucial for protecting consumer choice, and important for ensuring we continue to have the vibrant, competitive wireless market that delivers innovative products and solid service to meet consumers' needs."

Source: All Things D



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Occasionally...
By rudolphna on 3/8/2013 12:02:25 PM , Rating: 2
The government does smart things. Occasionally. This will probably be the last time for a few years. Still, it's a positive move to help break the strangleholder cell providers have on their customers




RE: Occasionally...
By abraxas1 on 3/8/2013 12:09:28 PM , Rating: 5
I wouldn't be surprised if someone tried to piggyback something completely unrelated and ruin the original intent of the legislation.


RE: Occasionally...
By wookie1 on 3/9/2013 4:47:45 PM , Rating: 3
The government does smart things to help themselves. The only reason cell providers had a "stranglehold" in the first place was laws the government put in place to help the providers have that stranglehold. Now everyone is all happy when one small provision of the law is held back, rather than just scrapping the whole law. I don't like having some big, intrusive law, modified by smaller laws to carve out special exceptions. Get rid of the big intrusive law! Why does the unelected librarian of congress have so much power to decide if we can unlock a cell phone in the first place?!


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