Automatic unlocking of customers’ handsets at the end of their contracts will be an expectation of mobile firms, the Government has announced today.
This announcement comes as part of the Government's Better Deal plan, setting out steps to increase competition and improve living standards. The Government will consult in 2016 on ending the practice of mobile handset locking for customers outside of any initial contract period.
Consumers face costs of up to £20 to unlock their phones, with an estimated £48 million spent every year. As part of our campaign to Unlock Better Mobile Deals, we’ve been calling for providers to unlock handsets for free.
Commenting on today’s announcement, our executive director, Richard Lloyd said:
‘Hidden charges, confusing contracts, and complicated switching are still too common in markets we all rely on. By making it easier for consumers to save time and money, these reforms are good for people, businesses and growth in the economy.’
New proposals from the Government will protect consumers from huge bills run up on stolen mobiles.