Congress Makes Phone Unlocking Legal in the U.S.

Smartphones Consumers in the US should soon be able to legally unlock their phones for use on other wireless networks. The House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill this afternoon legalizing cell phone unlocking, following the lead of the US Senate earlier this summer. President Obama came out in support of the policy over a year ago, spurring this activity in Congress, and now all that's left is for him to sign this bill into law. The bill, known as the "Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act," directs the Library of Congress to allow consumers and third-parties to legally unlock phones that were received through a carrier. Carriers have always been able to unlock these phones on their own, but until recently they often had convoluted and arbitrary rules governing if and when they would actually unlock one. Friday's legislation will not permanently allow legal phone unlocking, however.

Read the full story at The Verge.