Skip to Content

CTIA Announces Voluntary Principles on Unlocking Wireless Devices

I issued the following statement after submitting a letter to the FCC on the voluntary set of six principles for unlocking of consumers’ mobile phones and tabletsPDF:

“We are pleased to announce AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular and Verizon Wireless agreed to adopt a voluntary set of six principles for unlocking of consumers’ mobile phones and tabletsPDF. We will recommend that this set of principles be included in the CTIA Consumer Code for Wireless Service, in accordance with CTIA’s bylaws. Once they have been adopted, the companies will  move quickly to implement these principles.

“We believe this agreement will continue to foster the world-leading range of devices and offerings that Americans enjoy today. The robust and differentiated technological ecosystem has brought unparalleled and world-leading benefits to American wireless users, in the form of high-end and affordable devices, post- and pre-paid options, and with the world’s most advanced devices being launched first in the United States.

“It is important that consumers know that unlocking devices may not necessarily mean full interoperability since devices that work on one provider’s network may not be technologically compatible with another  wireless provider’s network. Additionally, unlocking a device may enable some functionality of the device but not all (e.g., an unlocked device may support voice services but not data services when activated on a different network).

“We look forward to working with the FCC and the participating wireless providers to educate consumers on the technical aspects of unlocking.”

46 Responses to “CTIA Announces Voluntary Principles on Unlocking Wireless Devices” Leave a reply ›

  • avatar

    About stinking time!

  • avatar

    Per the voluntary agreement, 3 of the principles will be deployed within 3 months of adoption and the remainder principles deployed in 12 months.

    Did the CTIA outline for the carriers which of the principles will be deployed at the 3 and 6 month intervals? Will each carrier deploy the same principles at the same time?

    Without an agreed upon standard, consumers may be still be bound to a specific carrier if the principles are deployed at the carriers' discretion.

    • avatar

      It will be up to the participating providers to determine the three out of the six they choose to execute within 3 months (just like the wireless usage alerts).

  • avatar

    OK I read the letter and I am concerned that the 6 principles are unfavorable to postpaid customers who buy phones at a subsidized price and sign a contract
    1) Phone Carries currently do not disclose to the customer that the new phone CANNOT be unlocked during the contract term and this point becomes more critical since a lot of cost-minded customers take advantage of the trade-in programs by turning in their old phone which leaves them high and dry when they want to travel internationally.

    2) Locking an under contract phone is so unnecessary since the customer can not cancel the phone number (without huge penalties) anyways during the contract term.

    In my humble opinion layman who have to travel for family reasons will still we severely inconvenienced even after these changes and I don't think the carriers have made any significant steps to support and help their loyal customers.

    If they want ideas I would suggest 'Temporary Unlocking' allowing the customers to unlock their phones for a specific duration.

  • avatar

    Has the CTIA Consumer Code for Wireless Service adopted this agreement yet? Wondering when the clock will start ticking for the carries to start adopting these principles?

Leave a Reply

Show Allowed HTML

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Posts linking here

  1. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=chicagogeek.wordpress.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices | chicagogeek
  2. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=blog.aivanet.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices | AIVAnet
  3. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.jailbreaking4you.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices ← Jailbreaking 4 You
  4. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=techies.com Apple News
  5. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.acs-company.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices
  6. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.politicalpearls.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking |
  7. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=iosaddict.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices - iOS Addict - iOS Addict
  8. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.digitaltrends.com Top 5 US Wireless Carriers Agree to Let You Unlock Your Cell Phone | Digital Trends
  9. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.gsmlover.com U.S. Carriers Agree to Adopt Voluntary Set of Principles for Unlocking Phones and Tablets
  10. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=theobamacrat.com Barack After Dark™: Ketchuping At 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue | The ObamaCrat™
  11. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=technewsdb.com CTIA, FCC come to agreement on cellphone unlocking terms | TechNewsDB
  12. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=itsobamasfault.org Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking - It's Obama's Fault
  13. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=ninjahangout.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices | Ninja Hangout
  14. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.goaclc.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking - Advanced Computer Learning Company
  15. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=obama2013.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking | Obama 2013
  16. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=dailyscene.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices : DailyScene.com
  17. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=obamavideonews.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking | Barack Obama Video
  18. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=smartphonesland.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking – The White House (blog) | Smart Phones Land
  19. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=theusualsources.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking | The Usual Sources
  20. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=newgadgetsstore.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking – The White House (blog) | New Gadgets Store
  21. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.whasapp.org Whasapp Android News CTIA, FCC come to agreement on cellphone unlocking terms | Whasapp Android News
  22. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=politicstrending.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking | PoliticsTrending.com
  23. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=bestlaptopplace.com Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking – The White House (blog) | Best Laptop Place
  24. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.androidpolice.com Rant: The CTIA And FCC's New "Phone Unlocking Principles" Are 95% Empty Pandering And You Should Demand More
  25. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=myandroidvilla.com Rant: The CTIA And FCC's New "Phone Unlocking Principles" Are 95% Empty Pandering And You Should Demand More - myandroidvilla.com
  26. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.mediabistro.com Cellular Carriers Agree to Simplified Standard for Unlocking Phone - AppNewser
  27. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.whasapp.org Whasapp Android News FCC and Carriers Reach Agreement on “Unlocking” Phones | Whasapp Android News
  28. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.goodnewseaglepass.net Answering the Call on Cell Phone Unlocking | GoodNewsEaglePass.net
  29. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=ipad5launch.com U.S. Carriers and FCC Come to Agreement Over Consumer Unlocking of Mobile Devices | Ipad 5 launch.com
  30. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=techno-magazine.com Carriers Agree to Unlocking Principles
  31. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.mobilesitekickup.com FCC and carriers agree to make it easier to unlock phones | MobileSiteKickup.com
  32. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=ifixit.org A Win for Consumers on Cellphone Unlocking | iFixit
  33. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.pocketmeta.com Cellphone Unlocking May Become Easier for the U.S. Consumers
  34. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.bargainteers.com Sprint Plans to Unlock All Devices by February 2015 - Bargainteers
  35. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=www.berryreview.com Top US Carriers Agree to Six Cellphone Unlocking “Principles” - BerryReview
  36. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=topcomputersoutlet.com Here’s How Cell Phone Unlocking Became Legal – The White House (blog) | Top Computers Outlet
  37. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=phonestuffmart.com Here’s How Cell Phone Unlocking Became Legal – The White House (blog) | Phone Stuff Mart
  38. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=smartphonesland.com Here’s How Cell Phone Unlocking Became Legal – The White House (blog) | Smart Phones Land
  39. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=easyphonemarket.com Here’s How Cell Phone Unlocking Became Legal – The White House (blog) | Easy Phone Market
  40. Favicon for http://www.google.com/s2/favicons?domain=e-pluribusunum.com Congress passes bill to make unlocking cellphones legal, shining new sunlight on White House e-petitions | E Pluribus Unum