Mirroring an iPhone program kicked off by Rogers and subsidiary Fido not long ago, Canada's Telus Mobility is going to start offering to unlock "most" of its branded iDEN and HSPA devices for CAD $50 (about $50) -- the only catch is that you will have had to own the device for at least 90 days before pulling the trigger. For the record, T-Mobile USA has a storied reputation for doing this gratis if you ask nicely -- but businesses are businesses, and a new revenue stream is a new revenue stream. The move makes it easy for you to use a foreign SIM if you're traveling internationally, or -- if you're willing to eat an ETF -- take the phone to another domestic carrier well before your contract (which may be as long as three years in Canada) expires. Follow the break for the release.

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TELUS starts unlocking wireless devices on February 15

TELUS customers enjoy more more flexibility and freedom

TORONTO, Feb. 7 /CNW/ - TELUS today announced that starting February 15, "unlocking" will be available for most SIM-based devices (IDEN and HSPA) for TELUS postpaid customers. This new service is the latest in a series of initiatives to enhance the customer experience at TELUS by providing more flexibility and freedom in the way customers use their wireless devices.

"Wireless devices are far more sophisticated and powerful than they were even five years ago and our customers are asking us now to give them the freedom and flexibility to use these devices as they wish. We are listening and responding to their needs, through services like device unlocking," said David Fuller, Chief Marketing Officer at TELUS. "It's all part of our commitment to continue to drive flexibility, simplicity and transparency within our offerings. Over the last few years, we've eliminated system access and carrier 911 fees, designed simpler family plans, created proactive alerts that notify customers going over their data allotments, and created options for our customers to upgrade to a new device faster. Helping our customers to unlock their device is just one more step in this overall service evolution."

Customers subscribing to a monthly plan (postpaid) and using an active and eligible SIM-based device for a minimum of 90 days will be eligible to have their device unlocked for a fee of $50.

TELUS is commited to offering the best overall customer experience in the industry. As a part of our quality mandate, TELUS works closely with leading manufacturers to ensure that their devices are built and tested for optimal performance on TELUS' network. During that process, TELUS locks the devices in order to maintain TELUS-specific configuration settings such that customers are getting the best possible experience when using applications and services on TELUS' network.

About TELUS
TELUS (TSX: T, T.A; NYSE: TU) is a leading national telecommunications company in Canada, with $9.7 billion of annual revenue and 12.1 million customer connections including 6.9 million wireless subscribers, 3.8 million wireline network access lines and 1.2 million Internet subscribers and 266,000 TELUS TV customers. Led since 2000 by President and CEO, Darren Entwistle, TELUS provides a wide range of communications products and services including data, Internet protocol (IP), voice, entertainment and video.

In support of our philosophy to give where we live, TELUS, our team members and retirees have contributed $185 million to charitable and not-for-profit organizations and volunteered 3.5 million hours of service to local communities since 2000. Nine TELUS Community Boards across Canada lead TELUS' local philanthropic initiatives. TELUS was honoured to be named the most outstanding philanthropic corporation globally for 2010 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals, becoming the first Canadian company to receive this prestigious international recognition.

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Telus to start unlocking phones for $50