June 24, 2014

COMPROMISE STRUCK on cellphone unlocking bill.

During a meeting on Thursday, the committee will consider the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act, the committee announced Monday.

The bill, which would allow users to take their mobile device from one wireless network to another, is backed by committee members including Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and ranking member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa).

“Consumers should be able to use their existing cell phones when they move their service to a new wireless provider,” Leahy said in a statement, pointing to work over the last few months to reach a compromise on this bill.

“Our laws should not prohibit consumers from carrying their cell phones to a new network, and we should promote and protect competition in the wireless marketplace,” he said.

Grassley called the bipartisan compromise announced Monday “an important step forward in ensuring that there is competition in the industry and in safeguarding options for consumers as they look at new cell phone contracts.”

At the very least, it shouldn’t be a felony.