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Topic # 113854 30-Jan-2013 09:44 Send private message

http://bgr.com/2013/01/29/smartphone-unlocking-petition-310663/

Excerpt:

first-time offenders can be fined up to $500,000 or be imprisoned for up to five years for unlocking a subsidized wireless phone without a carrier’s consent.



We are actually pretty fortunate in New Zealand, we have a LOT of flexibility that other countries may have, and even though in SOME cases rates are less, at least we don't have to worry about this kind of thing.

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  Reply # 753118 30-Jan-2013 10:37 Send private message

Hi,

I don't think US has ever been a great example of amazing cellphone deals. If you turn to Europe, then it is another story. My only first hand example would be France. I went there last year for 6 week. I signed up with one of the carriers (called Free) and got Unlimited calls + TXT + PXT, and 3GB of Data for 19.90 EUR. And the reason I was able to do that: They have a no-contract policy when you can leave when you want.

Now, if you referring to handsets being locked by carriers, I say why not. We have to bear in mind that the subsidies in New Zealand are pretty rubbish (although a lot better than they used to be) compared to other countries. Before I moved here from France, I never paid more than 1EUR for a phone just for signing up to 12/24 month. I might not have been the latest and flashest phone but my point is that carriers tend to make a real effort to give their new customers a massive discount in exchange for their commitment. It is understandable that they want to make sure they can get a return on their money...

Guillaume



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  Reply # 753123 30-Jan-2013 10:40 Send private message

gcorgnet: Hi,

I don't think US has ever been a great example of amazing cellphone deals. If you turn to Europe, then it is another story. My only first hand example would be France. I went there last year for 6 week. I signed up with one of the carriers (called Free) and got Unlimited calls + TXT + PXT, and 3GB of Data for 19.90 EUR. And the reason I was able to do that: They have a no-contract policy when you can leave when you want.

Now, if you referring to handsets being locked by carriers, I say why not. We have to bear in mind that the subsidies in New Zealand are pretty rubbish (although a lot better than they used to be) compared to other countries. Before I moved here from France, I never paid more than 1EUR for a phone just for signing up to 12/24 month. I might not have been the latest and flashest phone but my point is that carriers tend to make a real effort to give their new customers a massive discount in exchange for their commitment. It is understandable that they want to make sure they can get a return on their money...

Guillaume


Well to be fair, I've been with Vodafone for 15+ years, since Bellsouth, and I have never paid for a cellphone in exchange for a 24 or 36 month old phone and some of the hardware I got was the most expensive stuff in the market. I recall getting a N95 with a bluetooth carkit (Proper installed one) in exchange for a 36 month contract, and the rrp on what they gave me was > $1600 so I have no complaints. 

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  Reply # 753159 30-Jan-2013 11:18 Send private message

It does indeed sound like a very good deal although 36 month sounds like a pretty long time especially in that area. Things move fast these days and competition constantly comes up with better deals. I personally wouldn't want to commit for more than 12 months for mobile provider or ISP...



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  Reply # 753161 30-Jan-2013 11:22 Send private message

gcorgnet: It does indeed sound like a very good deal although 36 month sounds like a pretty long time especially in that area. Things move fast these days and competition constantly comes up with better deals. I personally wouldn't want to commit for more than 12 months for mobile provider or ISP...


This was years and years ago and things didn't move as quickly then.

Having said that, 2 years on a $100 plan for a $900 phone is actually really good too, and I got that recently. 

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  Reply # 753171 30-Jan-2013 11:30 Send private message

Wow, this is a good deal. I think you made me realise that I hadn't really checked the deals that were on offer in the last couple of years and is sound like they are much better than they used to!

Sorry about this digression, then. Let's go back to the original topic: These US carriers are evil!

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  Reply # 753227 30-Jan-2013 13:03 Send private message

gcorgnet: Wow, this is a good deal. I think you made me realise that I hadn't really checked the deals that were on offer in the last couple of years and is sound like they are much better than they used to!

Sorry about this digression, then. Let's go back to the original topic: These US carriers are evil!


Yep a pack of money grabbers.  This should only be a  business thing not a legal thing over there.  I suspect that  some of the push for this has come from AT&T to stop people migrating to T-Mo on their new 1900 band  on prepay and killing their AT&T contract by paying the ETF.. 

Prepay in the US is become more attractive every day from what I hear but it will be hard  to ween users of heavily subsidized any time soon.  It's like a drug 




Regards,

Old3eyes

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  Reply # 758730 9-Feb-2013 17:22 Send private message

Im in two minds about this, on one hand you are agreeing to a contract that stipulates a locked phone and a term, so unlocking shouldn't be allowed during the contract without the consent of the other party, which IMO should have the costs and terms clearly spelt out at the start. I understand that is not the case over there in all instances, but at least it is here with skinny.

On the other hand, the penalties are absurd. The only losses to the telco is the cost of the handset, so base the penalty on that, not some BS figure.




Richard rich.ms

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