Unlocking carrier phones in the United States got a whole lot easier today as the Cellular Telephone Industries Association’s new policies have gone into effect. All major carriers in the country will comply with CTIA’s new policies and let their customers unlock phones at no extra charge, provided that they don’t have any binding terms on their contracts.
Last August President Obama signed a bill into law that made it legal for mobile users to unlock their phones. Carriers who have committed to following CTIA’s policies will now unlock users’ phones at their request.
Users on Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and U.S. Cellular can take advantage of these new policies and get their devices unlocked for free.
Users who have prepaid devices will have to wait one full year before their devices can be unlocked. Those who have postpaid devices will have to wait until the applicable service contract has been fulfilled, the device installment plan has been paid off and have paid early termination fee if required.
The Federal Communications Commission has said that participating carriers have to notify prepaid customers of these policies at the time of purchase, while postpaid customers have to be notified once their devices are eligible for unlocking.
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