In a move the US State Department says proves they “care deeply about the Iranian people and their day-to-day lives,” the US has ended a multi-decade ban on technology exports to the nation, including bans on mobile phones and advanced software.
State Department officials suggested the access to communications devices was intended to allow Iranian civilians to circumvent government efforts to “silence” them, and will reverse a lot of long-standing bans on everyday goods.
Last month Samsung shut down its Farsi-language app store for cell phone users, citing US sanctions. Today’s move should allow them to reverse that decision, though there is no indication yet that they will.
It will also hopefully put to rest a lot of long-time misunderstandings about the scope of US sanctions, like the belief of some Apple Store employees last year that they banned selling Apple products to ethnic Iranians who are living in the United States.