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[21 Mar 2014 | Comments Off on Cell phone carriers coincidentally raise prices at the same time | 524 views]

Within the last few days, two of the “big three” cell phone companies in the uncompetitive Canadian cartel/oligopoly (Bell and Rogers) “coincidentally” raised their prices at exactly the same time by exactly the same amount! Telus jumped the gun by doing the same in January, apparently. Wow, what are the chances?! What an incredible coincidence — and I mean “incredible” 100% literally. Should Canadian consumers rush out and buy lottery tickets, or (more likely) look skyward and prepare to dodge lightning bolts?
Probably neither, actually. The proper response is to adopt the …

Opinion, Updated posts »

[29 Jul 2013 | Comments Off on Possible arrival of Verizon in Canada | 534 views]

I’m not a big fan of multinationals, and quite frankly I’m dubious about the possible entry of Verizon into the Canadian cell phone market — the market with the highest prices and least competition in the world. (Third World countries like Somalia and Zambia have better service and lower prices than Canada.) I’m also not happy about the way the scheme to encourage new entrants and more competition in the market has been co-opted by the Big Three (Bell, Telus and Rogers).
But if companies like Bell are willing to take …

IT, Opinion, Updated posts »

[14 Mar 2012 | Comments Off on Sticker shock on Canadian cell data rates | 593 views]

I had to do a double take after I put myself back into my chair and fastened my seatbelt when I saw the price of data transfer on the Virgin Mobile Canada website: $51 200 per gigabyte! Holy shit Batman! Are you kidding me? (See the “Canada Rates” tab at “Long Distance and Roaming“.) On a low-end high-speed Internet connection for a residential customer, that would translate into a bill of $6.4 million per month if you used your full bandwidth allotment! How is that justifiable when other packages on their …

Opinion »

[8 Dec 2011 | Comments Off on Bell Canada thievery | 550 views]

An open letter to Bell Canada:
Your charge for a one-minute phone call from Ottawa to Vancouver of $11.27 is nothing short of thievery. It’s no wonder that people despise the “big” phone companies like Bell. This level of daylight robbery is what colours one’s opinions of other services offered by your company, such as cellular telephone services. If you will use one of your services to rob customers blind, you’ll probably do it with other services too, and so I will ensure that I avoid doing any type of business …

IT, Opinion, Updated posts »

[13 Oct 2011 | Comments Off on BlackBerry/RIM. Going, going, gone? | 645 views]

A couple of years ago my company had a major server outage on a primary server that brought down websites and email for almost two and a half hours. Such outages are rare, but they happen, and they happen to small hosting companies like NinerNet as well as the giants. After that outage I wrote about the lessons learnt and, without trying to deflect attention or criticism away from us, I pointed out an extensive list of major service outages experienced by the likes of Google, Amazon, YouTube, Barclays Bank, …

Opinion »

[25 Nov 2010 | Comments Off on Bizarre Virgin Mobile Terms and Conditions of Service | 588 views]

Occasionally I feel that I really must address my insomnia by reading the mounds of legalese shoved in my face every time I want to do anything in this modern society of ours. This is particularly important where money is involved, of course, which means all of the mindless EULAs (end user licence agreements) that I’m presented with when installing software generally get skipped. Fortunately I have an old computer that I try out new software on first, so if I missed the part in an EULA that says the …