No more being roped to just one telco
Congress officially approved House Bill 5790, also known as the Consumer Protection on Mobile Communication Service Contract, on its third and final reading yesterday.
The bill, authored by Rep. Francis Gerald A. Abaya (first district of Cavite) allows consumers to unlock devices provided by their telco in their mobile subscriptions for a fee. Until the introduction of the bill, consumers needed to go to unaccredited repair shops to get their devices unlocked, and the process usually voided the warranty of their device.
“Device locking makes it difficult for consumers to take advantage of the competitive offers available in the market,” Abaya said.
Under the proposed law, consumers now have an option to unlock their devices for a fee, and for free after their contract expires. This will allow them to take advantage of the dual-SIM capabilities of newer handsets being offered by global companies, which are sometimes locked to a single telco even though they have two SIM slots. The regular, dual-SIM version of the Samsung Galaxy S6 for example, is locked to either Smart or Globe, depending on who you go with.
The bill imposes a fine of Php 5,000 to Php 500,000 on violators and allows for the suspension of non-compliant dealers, retailers and sellers.
What do you think of the new bill? Sound off in the comments below.