So what does all this mean for you? Most phones only work on specific networks. If you want to use your phone on another network, it needs to be unlocked. As it stands now, you need to get your carrier's permission (to do something with a device you already bought). This bill protects customers as well as third-party professionals who provide unlocking services, so you can purchase a smartphone from one carrier and be able to use it on another carrier if needed. So that you own that device you bought, and can do what you want with it. This bill also extends to not only smartphones, but tablets and other carrier-dependent devices.
The vote has been praised by the Competitive Carriers Association, a Washington-based advocacy group. "This is a good day for consumers and wireless carriers, especially smaller carriers who still have trouble accessing the most advanced devices," says CAA president and CEO Steven K. Berry. Now, the bill just needs to swing by the Oval Office and then into law.
source: gizmodo.com by Darren Orf