New York, NY
If you go contract that is all they should need I don't think locking a phone should be legal in the first place. If the customer agrees to a contract that is what should be binding not the phone itself.
If a phone is misappropriated (stolen) or lost it shouldn't be hard to track down if it goes back into use so again there is no need to lock it.
Even if a phone is locked IMO it shouldn't be permanent. In other words it should have to be re-locked on a monthly or weekly bases for the period of a contract rather than having to go through any effort to unlock.
That is what will bring this to a head. If a carrier will not unlock a phone at the end of a contract. They have their contract to hold you too why does it matter if you go to another carrier and don't use their network.
Has anybody heard if any carrier is refusing to unlock the phone when the contract is up?
The only people that may need to unlock it before is if they go overseas.