A recent ruling by the Library of Congress states that any device purchased after the 26th of January will not be legally permitted to be unlocked without the permission from the carrier. This new ruling is only applicable for devices purchased after the 26th of January. Any device that was purchased previous to this date can still be legally unlocked without needing any permission. This can be a little disturbing for the US citizens that used to unlock their devices. Now the go-around measure to have an unlocked device is to get it full-priced, without a contract. The reason why people get branded locked devices is because contractors usually subsidize a large amount from the total price, in exchange for a 1,2 or 3 year subscription to their services. Once you get your phone from a carrier, you don't actually own the software, but more like license it. Therefore, the software is not covered by the fair-use rules. There are some carriers that will unlock your device after the contract period ended and some carriers accept sim cards from other carriers. But still it's not a good news. However the ruling is more likely going to affect those that offer unlocking services for money, rather than individuals that unlock their devices at home.
What's my model number?
There are several ways to locate your model number:
- Option 1
- On your device, go to Settings, then "About device" and scroll down to "Model number"
- Option 2
- Often times you can view the model number inside the device, by removing the battery
- Option 3
- Using Samsung's model/serial number location tool