iPhones are expensive and often after paying for it on a two-year contract, it would be nice to unlock it from a carrier and use it with another carrier or plan. Currently, Apple defers all requests for unlocking iPhones to the carriers. Getting an unlocking code from a carrier for an iPhone can be difficult. Policies can require jumping through lots of hoops. After pressure from the FCC, carriers today officially confirmed to the FCC and through the CTIA that they have reached an agreement for industry wide cell phone unlocking protocols.
Chairman Tom Wheeler at the FCC sent an open letter to the wireless industry, last month encouraging them to adopt voluntary guidelines.