Changing cell phone service providers should continue to get easier as the Senate recently passed the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act which legalizes unlocking your phone. Of course, this only applies to phones on expired contracts. For some reason tablets were not included as part of this act, though their unlocking may become legalized later this year. All of this is still not as consumer friendly as it should be. There should be no special stipulations like needing the phone to be off contract. Isn't the early termination fee you get charged for leaving your provider enough? If not, shouldn't the ETF start a little higher or the carriers charge more for their phones?
After all, if you pay a "down payment" for a flagship at signup, then later pay an ETF you pretty much own the phone. You should be able to do whatever you want with it. Perhaps more pressure needs to be applied to congress to get that done as the Senate claims this new bill is a response to a petition with over 100,000 signatures. To top it all off, this bill isn't even permanent. In a few years it will need to be renewed, which is also total non sense and a waste of time.