Although your post is informative and accurate, I think you are slightly missing the whole picture of what the parent poster was trying to convey. As far as cellphone technology is concerned, the US is indeed in the 90's. Not just due to locking, but in many other different aspects as well.
call price model:
- the US is about the only country in the world where the recipient pays for incoming calls when not roaming. I leave it as an exercise to the read to think why this is plain ridiculous.
- the prices are plain crazy. In Europe you pay max 30-50 Euros per month for unlimited plan, with 1GB or data. Less if you don't need unlimited. I payed about 15 Euro/month for moderate calling and 1GB/month, with the option to purchase on-the-fly 1GB extra for additional 3 Euros if you run out.
- in the US, if you exceed your limit, you get a heavy bill. In Europe, your data speed simply decreases down to GPRS.
- the US has many many dead areas. I know, it is a big country. But the fact remains.
- incredibly intrusive branding, crapware, etc
- carriers are involved in certifying which phones are supported in their networks, the software update process, etc. which is none of their f*ing business.
- they use non-compatible networks.
- Their customer service is such crap that I don't know where to start.
All in all, this puts the US model of cellular communication really in the 90s. The unlock issue is just the cream on the top.