December 12, 2013 Last Updated 2:16 pm

Carriers reach voluntary agreement with FCC on device unlocking principals

The CTIA, which represents major cellphone carriers, today said that AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular and Verizon Wireless have agreed to some principals for unlocking of mobile phones and devices with the FCC.

“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,” the CTIA said in this statement.

The six principals involve disclosure of policy, postpaid unlocking policies, prepaid unlocking policies, notice to consumers that their devices can be unlocked, two day response time, and unlocking devices for deployed military personnel.

The principals are just that, principals not rules, so each carrier remains free to have their own rules and pricing policies.

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