In short, it looks like the administration agrees wholeheartedly! The author of the letter is R. David Edelman, Senior Advisor for Internet, Innovation and Privacy. Here's a summary of what he said:
It's Time to Legalize Cell Phone Unlocking.
"The White House agrees with the 114,000+ of you who believe that consumers should be able to unlock their cell phones without risking criminal or other penalties," Edelman writes.
"The Obama Administration would support a range of approaches to addressing this issue, including narrow legislative fixes in the telecommunications space that make it clear: neither criminal law nor technological locks should prevent consumers from switching carriers when they are no longer bound by a service agreement or other obligation."
So, while we're not going to see immediate change, it appears that a chain of events is now in motion in which the FCC and Congress will potentially play a huge role.
I would not trust the 'White House', it is in the new 'Trojan Horse'
Most likely there will be alot of fine print legalize way of doing it.
For one, it will be LEGAL UNLOCK FOR SIM ONLY, that means no third-party software, no jailbreak for apps, CARRIER UNLOCK only, and that will only by allowed to be performed by your original CARRIER!
IE: Your 3 year contract for your now old iPhone is over with AT&T, you have paid all your bills in full, and your contract buyout, and you now legally own your discounted iPhone, and you don't wish to trade it in for a newer model and sign another 3 year contract, so after filling out the all the legal paperwork, you give the phone to AT&T and then unlock the SIM TRAY only, and now your free to go to Versizon and signup with them.
That is the only way it will be written, no go down to your local pawn shop, pick up a locked phone for $50, run over to your nearby flea market pay some guy $10 to Jailbreak or run unlock program on it, and then drop by your local cell agent to get a cheap monthly plan of your choice. -- No way, Sir, you just broke the law, you must do it the LEGAL WAY.
Don't worry Uncle Sam is just finding a way to look good on paper, but still round up the baddies!
How about a better idea, let the Telcos' brand their Phones under the Plastic, and Glass (like they're so oft to do), and sell the Phones otherwise unlocked.
I never understood why they'd want to keep pushing this sh-- on Joe Public when Joe Public clearly doesn't want any of it. If Osamba really thinks giving "Lusers" the right to brick there Phones by attempting to unlock them is, given his own Words "Good for the Economy"...
Then what was the who point of looking it in the first place?
Yes its a rhetorical question. That answer should be as clear as mud as to why the Telcos don't want this.
But then I would want a Telco Branded Phone even less so...