Originally published: May 25, 2010
Last updated: May 25, 2010 - 2:49pm
According to the terms of a proposed class action settlement, AT&T Mobility will be required to provide the codes to unlock just about any of the phones it has sold during the past decade--except for the Apple iPhone.
The issue centers on software locks that wireless carriers routinely apply to the mobile phones they subsidize, locks that prevent subscribers from using the phones on the networks of other carriers. Locking phones down to a particular network ensures that carriers can recoup the subsidy they apply to those devices. However, the lawsuit against AT&T centers on whether the carrier "properly disclosed" that restriction to consumers. Under the terms of the settlement, AT&T denied any wrongdoing but agreed to provide unlock codes for most of the phone it sells.
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