Belgian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced this week the federal government’s approval of a bill preventing electronics manufacturers from blocking the 4G on compatible devices.
The bill in question was proposed by the Minister of the Economy Johan Vande Lanotte in response to consumer complaints. As a result, Apple may be forced to allow 4G connectivity on all iPhone handsets compatible with this network sold in Belgium, regardless of the reseller.
The decision marks a great victory for Belgian consumers complaining of favoritism fromApple which allows 4G access only to customers buying iPhones from its business partner Mobistar. Mobistar which recently launched its 4G network and whose coverage is still expanding.
Other resellers like Proximus and Based have active 4G networks but have not obtained approval from Apple to activate it. Customers who buy an iPhone 5 / 5s / 5c compatible with the fourth generation network from these other operators are therefore limited to a 3G service…
The problem only concerns iPhone owners, since owners of 4G-compatible Android devices can access very high speed services from the country’s three main mobile operators. Apple could face severe penalties if it fails to comply with the terms of this bill.