Canada Says No To Locked Phones

This month, mobile phone users has had some good news to celebrate. After Europe outlawed roaming charges across the union, now Canadian regulators barred carriers from locking mobile phones and demanding unlocking fees from their customers.

Starting Dec. 1, all handsets sold in Canada must be unlocked. Also, telecoms will be no longer allowed to charge customers for unlocking services. Locking phones to keep people glued to a specific career is a common practice worldwide. So, you may ask yourself: Why Canada?

The country’s major wireless regulator CRTC conducted a study and found that Canadian mobile phone users pay some of the highest fees for mobile services in the world. The CRTC was the agency that issued the ban.

The study also revealed that 150 minutes of mobile service cost an average Canadian $41 per month. In Europe, the similar service would cost just $17.15. What’s more, customers must shell out $50 for every handset they want unlocked. Unlocking services have brought the industry $28.5 million in 2016.

Telecoms’ Reaction

Canada’s wireless telecommunications service providers criticized the government’s decision. Rogers Wireless’s director Howard Slawner recently told reporters that it would be more appropriate for customers to bear the cost of having their devices unlocked.

“We think it’s a lot more appropriate that people who actually have their device unlocked bear the cost of the unlocking,”

Slawner said.

The businessman, however, forgets to mention that it is carriers that lock the phones in the first place.

The European Union has recently put an end to the heavy holidays bills by forcing telecoms to ditch roaming charges across the union. Users can call, text, and use data within the union without the additional charges.

However, there is catch to that. Heavy data users could see unexpected bills, as operators are allowed to charge customers that don’t comply with a “fair use” policy.
Image Source: Pexels