Unlock the phone = screw the customer

I have had my phone with the carrier for over two years now, and have no device balance. Since the date of purchase, the two-year contract has expired. I figured its a good idea to unlock my phone so that I can use it on my trip abroad with a local SIM.

The call center agent tells me:

“Sir you need to pay $35 for us to unlock your phone.”

I am sorry! I don’t understand this.


Cnet says: The lock is really a software code that’s put on the phone by the manufacturer as per the requirement of the carrier that sells the device. And the lock is meant to ensure that the phone can’t be used on any other operator’s network until a different software code is entered to unlock the device.

Simply put — the lock is a mechanism used by carriers to retain the customer for the length of the contract. Lets call spade a spade — this is a business cost, not a customer request.

Your phone

The irony of the statement: “$35 to unlock your phone!”

It is my phone. I got it on a discount (compared to off the shelf rate), during the term of the contract I have paid off the device balance. Why should I pay you an additional $35 to unlock my phone?

The lock was put it by your business to protect your interests. The unlock would not be needed, if you hadn’t decided to lock it in the first place. In the ethical world, you clean up your mess — don’t demand someone else to clean your mess.

Dear telecommunications carrier, it is the customer’s phone and the lock was your requirement — the mess is yours. Either don’t create the mess in the first place, or if you do, then don’t screw the customer with its cost.

Like what you read? Give Ricky Chandarana a round of applause.

From a quick cheer to a standing ovation, clap to show how much you enjoyed this story.