Starting Today, It's Illegal to Unlock Your Cellphone in US

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by W.G.Ewald, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

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    It's Now Illegal to Unlock Your Cellphone - ABC News
     
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  3. spikey360

    spikey360 Crusader Senior Member

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    This will be a failed attempt in a country with so many technical people.
     
  4. rock127

    rock127 Maulana Rockullah Senior Member

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    Lol.........
     
  5. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    this is good news.
     
  6. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Wow. From an extreme capitalist state, the US has been moving rapidly into becoming a fascist state. The government forcing telecom carrier monopolies down people's throats? This is a glimpse of the dystopian future folks...this is what unbridled capitalism will do. A future in which people are slaves of giant corporations, and only survive at their mercy. Already grandmothers and teenagers are being jailed in the US for 10 or 20 years for downloading a movie-now they will be jailed for unlocking their phones.

    Eventually everything you do will be illegal if it contravenes the interests of some giant corporation or another. Have fun while it lasts. Our future generations will consider us to be the biggest scum that ever lived.

    And for those considering moving to the US, read and make yourself aware of what you are getting yourself and your family into.
     
  7. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

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  8. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Big corporations make big investments for their inventions and along with their partners are entitled to profit for their business. I don't think you can call anti piracy laws as facsist. Or any laws that subvert legal business practices.

    Well that's the technical part.

    Laws or no laws, people will continue to do what they are doing. And anyways with apple feeling the heat from Samsung will stop bundling the product with any carrier and will come out with factory unlocked phone for anyone to use.
     
  9. Known_Unknown

    Known_Unknown Devil's Advocate Stars and Ambassadors

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    Unfortunately not. Let us leave aside the copyright laws as they apply for creative works (music, movies etc) aside for a moment as they are a slightly separate issue.

    In this particular case, telecom carriers are the ones that lock the phones. Keep in mind that they are not adding any "value" to the device itself. They do not manufacture, design or own any part of the hardware or software of these phones. The reason they are clamouring for these restrictions is because they offer a "subsidy" to the end-user when the phone is purchased through them instead of directly through the manufacturer. The purpose of the "subsidy" is to entice the end user to buy the phone and also sign up for a service contract, usually for two years.

    Now after the user has signed up with a particular provider, the handset is the property of the customer, and there are extraordinary penalties for breaking the service contract which run into hundreds of dollars. Now so far this is fair.

    What seems fascist to me is a carrier forcing the end user, through threat of jail or financial ruin (prison term ranges up to 10 years and monetary penalties up to $500,000), to stay a customer until the service contract expires and even beyond.

    Note that there is no obligation on the carrier to unlock the device even after the expiry of the service contract. Yet, there is a threat of criminal prosecution if the customer unlocks his own phone which he bought with his own money.

    These kind of laws smack of the arrogance of totalitarian or fascist regimes, and the US is fast becoming one.

    Unfortunately that will not be the case. Law enforcement in the US is not lax like it is in India. Also, this is not a question of one phone model or one manufacturer, this applies to all smartphones.

    In addition, if you are not aware, the phone distribution model in North America is very different from that in India or Europe. Here, carriers have a stranglehold over the distribution, sale and availability of phones. There's aren't phone shops a dime a dozen where you can just go and buy any phone and then activate it with any carrier. You have to buy the phones from the carriers themselves.
     
  10. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

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    I use a factory unlocked Android phone. No obligations.
     
  11. Daredevil

    Daredevil On Vacation! Administrator

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    I agree with KU, its an extreme step and a law made to serve the companies and not the people. The telephone companies have now formed a cartel of not allowing unlocked phones in the system and thus restricting your choice if a customer is unhappy with the service of the company.
     
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  12. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Just to avoid controversies, I won't use a cellphone when I am in the US.

    It is too complicated as it is! [​IMG]
     
  13. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Why the market price is $800-1000 and the carriers give at $199 then they are entitled to have a lock contract
     
  14. jackprince

    jackprince Turning into a frog Senior Member

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    Yes, true. But 10 year jail-term or $500,000 is extremely extreme don't you think?
     
  15. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    I am not commenting on the punishment part but on the legality of the process of unlocking a phone to break a contract. Harsh punishments serve as deterrent don't they? Something we keep harping on India that people are not scared of the law etc. with a 10 year jail sentence and $500,000 staring at you, people will bloody well no unlock.
     
  16. spikey360

    spikey360 Crusader Senior Member

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    No they aren't. They shouldn't be giving away locked phones at such dirt cheap prices then, in the first place.
    What you're saying is tantamount to, I sell you a phone at lower price but you can't charge the battery yourself, you've got to come to my shop and charge your phone cause that's a pretty expensive battery i'm giving you. Technology doesn't work like that. Once you sell something, it's sold. It's the customer's property, you are not entitled to it anymore.
     

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