unlocking policy. Effective immediately, a phone must have 180 days of paid service om MetroPCS to be eligible for a free SIM-unlock. Until yesterday, the requirement was 90 days. SIM-unlocking a phone allows it to be used on other compatible carriers like AT&T or most international mobile operators.
I believe the change was driven by the aggressive free phone offers that MetroPCS and other prepaid operators have been offering recently. Giving a customer a free or deeply discounted phone in return for porting a phone number to a carrier is a customer acquisition tactic that's been around for years. But the free and discounted phones used to be low end devices. Not any more, you can get a free Samsung Galaxy J7 or an iPhone 6 for porting to Boost Mobile and until recently Cricket was offering its J7 version, the Samsung Galaxy Halo, to switchers for $19. But leave it to MetroPCS to come up with one of the best free phone offers, a free iPhone SE or $150 off any other iPhone when you port a number to MetroPCS and activate on the $50 plan. Increasing the time required for an unlock, encourages switchers to stick around longer bringing in more revenue for the carrier to recover the cost of the free phones.
Metro's 90 day unlock policy was the most lenient of all the US prepaid carriers. Boost and all the TracFone brands require a year's service for a free unlock, AT&T and Cricket require six months service.
Source: MetroPCS via Howard Forums