The Minister of Transport and Telecommunications, Pedro Pablo Errazuriz, shaking hands after the announcement. (SUBTEL site)

What would happen if our cell phone providers had to sell pre-unlocked devices?

Would this mean immediate chaos in the streets?

Chile, a country, in the continent of South America, has declared that all mobile cell phone providers all SIM cards had to be unlocked to its customers, as standard. This went into effect officially on January 2th.

This means, transfer of the phone and services are at the customers’ whim to change at anytime.

The announcement was made via Twitter feed by Subsecriteria de Telecomunicaciones (SUBTEL), the Chilean government body which directs that countries telecommunications policies.  The ministry’s reason for the ban on SIM card locking, is to help the consumer in cheaper methods for using cell phone services.

“We have prepared a decree has been published in the Official Gazette, under which every Chilean who is the victim of a theft of a cell phone will be able to call the company which has such phone, and not only block your phone number, but also the telephone, thus, cell phone stolen a device will be useless. Minister of Interior and Public Security, Rodrigo Hinzpeter explained.

This experiment isn’t new. Chile follows 3 others (Singapore, Greece, Israel) in this endeavor.

The experiment’s results are not conclusive yet, however, and will need time for the impact stats to be counted and analyzed.

Read more at: TheVerge.Com, SUBTEL release