Buying network-locked phones is not such a great deal. Although this has become a trend in the mobile phone industry, it doesn’t mean consumers are happy about it. However, operators have done it for a long time anyway. Things are now shifting in the UK as the regulator is banning operators from selling network-locked phones, which means future consumers will be able to use their products on any other network.
The information comes from Ofcom, and although it was announced recently, it will come into effect from December 2021. According to a BBC report, the new regulation will affect EE, Vodafone, and Tesco Mobile. So far, O2, Sky, Three, and Virgin already comply with the new change.
“We know that lots of people can be put off from switching because their handset is locked. So we’re banning mobile companies from selling locked phones, which will save people time, money, and effort — and help them unlock better deals,” said Selina Chadha, Ofcom’s connectivity director.
The reason operators want to sell locked mobile phones is in order to protect the user from being robbed or scammed. However, it doesn’t look that; it looks like they just want to make it harder for people to change the network. On the other hand, most of those smartphones come at a lower price on a contract, which means you have to pay for unlocking the network.
However, the process of unlocking your device takes a lot of time. Not to say that after all the waiting, it might not even work. Consumers have to pay about £10 in order to unlock their mobile phones. The way it goes is that you will receive a code that should allow you to unlock the smartphone. However, often time, the code doesn’t work.
Lastly, even if it does work, your smartphone might not work as well after you unlock it. Not all consumers are aware that their devices are network-locked, which can result in a bad signal when changing networks.