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Mobile Syrup: Canada's Unlocking Fee Ban

Deputy Mayor / Adjoint au Maire

A pretty comprehensive article by Mobile Syrup (typically most of there articles are short, redundant without substance) regarding the Unlocking Fee Ban which takes affect tomorrow with new Wireless Code.


Have a read:


It however is still not clear on people who own a second-hand locked device, if the carriers are being required to unlock devices for these people as well. 

  • What if they are using it on another carrier (eg. using on Fido but was purchased from Rogers), do they need to call the original carrier or, in this scenario, would Fido unlock the phone? 
  • Will each carrier have their own rules for how to proceed?


A little food for thought and discussion...


Mayor / Maire

Thanks for sharing this @Taekgun


I was wondering the same thing, what if you fall in one of the following categories:


- You got the phone from provider A under contract or bought it out right, once the contract was over you moved onto provider B but still have the phone from provider A sitting around locked. Will they unlock it for you even though you are not their customer anymore?


- you bought a used phone from someone. will they unlock it for you or will they only unlock for the original owner? Do they have a database which links the imei to the original owner?



Mayor / Maire

I just read the mobilesyrup article that @Taekgun shared in more detail and noticed that all carriers state the word "customers". 


They can play games and can say that they are only unlocking for current customers and if you are not a current customer they wouldn't unlock your phone. 

Deputy Mayor / Adjoint au Maire



.... which is exactly what I read and leads to some concern IMHO as carriers could play semantics with the term "customers".  It would be nice to have a clarification from the CRTC on the wording but it seems like there a bit bogged down with deciding whether to grant Rogers and Telus the requested extension of the full implementation of the updated Wireless Code.... I'm not hopeful.

Thanks @Taekgun


The request for extension and these games by carriers to unlock for "customers" are simply disgusting. 


Locked phone are locked phones regardless of who own them now. 

The carrier who looked them to make the profit in the first place should be forced to unlock them regardless of who own the phone now and regardless of if they are current "customers" or not. 


CRTC should really stop this half ass bs by carriers. 

People have been ripped off for a very long time now. Enough of this. Smiley Mad

Deputy Mayor / Adjoint au Maire

Interesting. I would think the carrier who originally sold  the phone is responsible to unlock it.

Model Citizen / Citoyen Modèle

Fortunately PM unlocked my wife's iphone originally from Koodo for free recently.  Admitedly that's all in the family but technically she is not a Koodo customer (although they are very nice too).

Of course now that PM has USA add-on's & we've tried them & they work just great - there's not much reason for us to use another SIM but nice to have that option.


It seems to me that if I had my paid out Rogers phone & had switched to PM I'm not sure how PM would be able to check that I am legit owner, whether i had in fact bought it out etc. Although if I have a pone that's stoen - presumably it could get balck listed & i hadn't paid out my contract,, the red corner would be chasing me down...

Model Citizen / Citoyen Modèle

I actually was unaware of the unlocking fee ban until I called up my old carrier (Rogers) and asked them to unlock my phone three days ago. I had purchased my plan and ported my number so I needed it unlocked in order to carry on with PM, but the very kind and personable CSR on the other end of the line recommended I wait until today to unlock it to avoid the $50 fee!


As it's a new legislation, I'm sure that there is going to be a lot of lawyering done with the wordplay until revisions can be made so that the practice of locking a phone someone paid for is done away with. I believe that was the initial reasoning for the ban -- we've paid for the phones in their entirety, why is it that we have to pay an additional fee to take it somewhere else?


It's great to hear about the ban, however, especially at a time where the American FCC is giving ISPs (and probably carriers) more power to charge ludicrous and criminal fees. Canada remains resolute in ensuring our Internet remains neutral and we don't pay ridiculous fees for using our phones.


Hopefully, the next legislation that passes is shock-free data becoming the norm.


Deputy Mayor / Adjoint au Maire

hopefully issues will get sorted out sooner rather than later.