Charge for unlock AFTER contract expiry

Charge for unlock AFTER contract expiry

Charge for unlock AFTER contract expiry

mikefranklet
I'm a Contributor Level 1

Charge for unlock AFTER contract expiry

As some of you may be aware, Rogers and its subsidiaries now allow you to unlock your phone 90 days into a contract for $50.

 

However, they also charge $50 to unlock a phone AFTER the contract has expired.

I have an LG Xenon, which isn't worth anywhere near $50, since it's several years old and obsolete, however I want to have it unlocked so I can use international sim cards in it.

Now, the reason why we sign contracts for a term is to subsidize the cost of the phone. Having completed my contract entirely almost 6 months ago, that phone has been completely paid for. Legally speaking, by not providing me with the unlock code, FIDO is engaging in anti-competitive behaviour. Morally, they're trying to charge me more than the value of the phone to keep using it, even though I NOW OWN THE PHONE! This is absolutely absurd.

Every time FIDO claims to be improving something, be it the way we sign contracts, the "added value" of new plans, etc. they take away a more fundamental flexibility and value and replace it with inflexibility. There are entire teams of statisticians that complie user data to determine how they can market in way that appears to give us added value, while simultaneously changing the way they do business to extract every additional charge possible with subterfuge and deceit.

 

 

10 REPLIES 10
Danijela1
I'm a Participant Level 1

You are right, and this is absolutely disgraceful. We are being blackmailed, and because of the monopoly we are paying too much for all the services, including this one that has to be free. In Sweden your phone automatically gets unlocked once the contract expires. We can "choose" between expensive and poor service and more expensive and even worse services. Only in Canada. I also read that they offered new laws against this ripping off for customers to be more protected few years ago but of course that ain't gonna happen. They can do whatever they think of. Shame on Rogers and Fido, and all of the rest!

mikefranklet
I'm a Contributor Level 1

Let me be clear: When changes happen, it's for *their* benefit, never for the *customer's* benefit. Don't ever let them convince you that they're altruists.

You want Fido to provide you a service that you don't want to pay for?  Good luck with that. 

 

I do agree though, locking a phone is not a user friendly idea.  It is up to our government and competition bureau to mandate that cell providers cannot lock phones to their networks.  The EU has such a law, and you can buy a phone from any carrier in Europe and are free to move your service as you see fit. 

mikefranklet
I'm a Contributor Level 1

Normally I would agree with you, but it's not a service they're doing. They're the ones who chose to lock the phone in the first place, that makes it their responsibility to unlock it afterward.

Also, they literally punch a number into their computer terminal and it spits out an 8 digit NCK unlock code, which they then tell me. It takes a grand total of about 1 minute, and is conducted during a routine customer service phone call. If you expect a fee to be charged for such a service, then why aren't they charging us for all customer service calls. I spent more time on the phone talking to the CSR about the legality of such a practice than it would have taken to give me the unlock number.

Is that really a service? Also, I got the code elsewhere for $2, literally 1/25th the cost FIDO expected me to pay, at what point does it become price gouging?
10yearfido
I'm an Expert Level 2

Well, many people consider a lock to be an intentional defect. As such, expecting to pay to repair it might not be acceptable, especially given when the reason always given for the lock is the subsidy/contract.
mikefranklet
I'm a Contributor Level 1

This is precisely the point. If they cripple a phone to keep you honest while on contract, then it's their responsibility to uncripple it after the contract.

Oddly, we only allow such behaviour with some consumer electronics. Could you imagine if a car manufacturer crippled a car while on lease, and then expected you to pay to have all the features once you've paid off your car in full? It would be absurd with most other products sold, even while on a particular term.
Wufai
I'm Qualified Level 3

I do agree with you, but please note this 'culture' we have is the result of ALL Canada carriers, not just Fido. I too believe locking a phone you already purchased and then double pay again to have it unlocked is criminal to us consumers. We comsumers however vote with our money and it seems the majority of us are still willing let mobile carriers get away with this scheme. Look at how many people buy the new S4 over the Nexus4, which is unlocked.

 

However, in the theme of locking phones, I will give praise where it is deserved.  Fido over the years has improved their phones' restrictions. Recently I purchased an Samsung S3 from Fido. The phone and box does not have any physical Fido brandings, There is no phone bootup sequence with Fido branding.  The OS does not incldue any Fido bloatware, Fido did not made any changes to the operation of the OS (My worst expereince was a Fido LG 'Chocolate' phone. The contact list phone number was limited to 20 digits to prevent me entering a calling card number, password and phone no# to one entry).

 

Overall I am happy with Fido offerings. The last mile in terms of 'unlocking', vote with your money by buying an unlocked phone or do your research. There is a reason I choose the Fido S3 over the newer S4 Tongue

Paolo
I'm an Expert Level 2

i understand but you have to understand fido phones are designed for the fido network, they are sold for fido service, you can turn around and give it to a family member and he can use it on his or her fido plan,
10yearfido
I'm an Expert Level 2


@Paolo wrote:
i understand but you have to understand fido phones are designed for the fido network, they are sold for fido service, you can turn around and give it to a family member and he can use it on his or her fido plan,

That's one option. The problem is that locks are designed to make that the only viable option. It's your property, you should have the freedom to do with it as you choose. Also, the phones are are at all designed for the Fido network. They might be tweaked or optimized for the Fido network, but they are not designed specifically for the Fido network in any way.

Paolo
I'm an Expert Level 2

The problem with the analogy "It's your property, you should have the freedom to do with it as you choose."  You did not make the hardware, you simply bought it from Fido.  Fido sells it and can do what ever they want.  There are other places that sell phones unlocked to people like you and me and they choose to do this because A) they can do what ever they want, and B) they are capturing a market that Fido does not cater to and its perfectly fine that they want to do this.  Unfortunately Big companies make the rules, not the consumers, we only vote with our wallets.