FCC To Investigate Ban On Unlocking Cell Phones

FCC

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will be investigating if the recent ban on unlocking mobile phones to economic competitiveness, FCC Commissioner Julius Genachowski said in a recent interview with TechCrunch.

You probably know by now that unlocking a cell phone is illegal in the U.S. as it would be a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

TechCrunch reports:

The “ban raises competition concerns; it raises innovation concerns,” FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski told me last night at a TechCrunch CrunchGov event at our San Francisco headquarters. [..]

[..] Genachowski isn’t sure what authority he has, but if he finds any, given the tone of the conversation, it’s likely he will exert his influence to reverse the decision. “It’s something that we will look at at the FCC to see if we can and should enable consumers to use unlocked phones.”

We’re also expecting an official response from the White House on the issue after the “Make Unlocking Cell Phones Legal” petition has crossed the 100,000 signatures.

It’s unclear what authority the FCC has to reverse the unlocking ban, but there has to be a more pragmatic solution. What do you think? Tell us in the comments.

Via: TechCrunch

Like this post? Share it!

  • http://twitter.com/geekinit geekinit

    The whole locking your phone is stupid anyway. When you enter into a cell phone contact, the carrier does not really own your phone. It’s not like they can repossess it like a bank does with vehicles. Sure, if you terminate early, you may have to return the phone to them or pay a price. If you don’t, you end up in collections, but they don’t report the phone was stolen. This is just carriers being the anticompetitive jerks that they are and the government needs to realize this. Altering firmware isn’t copying it is it? That’s like saying if I scribble some words out in a text book that I somehow violated the copyright.

  • Anon

    Carriers locking phones is a great way to lock in money business wise, and what a great plan to get the law behind it. But, the people have spoken, it’s unethical. If they really want to get and keep customers how about they lower those prices and fix their network. I shouldn’t be paying for 4G if I don’t have 4G in my area. The problem isn’t the people, it’s the companies terrible network.

  • dir

    that is stupid, if the phone not in contract but still ill legal if unlocked?