Unlock-in

“The US copyright office will permit mobile phone subscribers to unlock their phones, allowing them to be used by rival network providers.” – Andrew Orlowski, The Register

“The exemptions become effective on 27 November 2006 and will only remain in effect for three years.” – Tim Finn

“This is really only applicable to Cingular and T-Mobile customers” – Alex Zaltsman

This is really good news for handset makers and the geek set. Opens up a new world of higher-end handset options (the choices today are pretty bad).

If any of you Apple-geeks missed it, the rumored iPhone is rumored to be unlocked. Just as you supplied the keyboard, mouse, and monitor with the Mac Mini, this means you’ll bring your own mobile phone service provider for the iPhone.

Seems like a smart, customer-centric decision. Since not all providers have decent coverage where there are Apple Stores (US or worldwide) not tying the handset to a provider means Apple (or any other handset maker) can sell to the greatest number of customers.

UPDATE:

“An Apple phone wouldn’t do more than a Treo or a BlackBerry or a Razr — it would do less, and what it would do, it would do really well.” – John Gruber

Exactly. Today those are the options for decent voice + internet handset. As I wrote last April – we don’t need more of the same – we need the opposite. While my previous write up is pretty geeky – the underlying principle is valid – phone as peripheral. Not stand-alone device.

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