Cellular Thoughts
Two quick thoughts after new competition
Phillip Hong
January 18, 2010
WINDs of Change
For the first time in a very long time, a new cell phone company is being launched in this country, and it has ruffled feathers even before service has actually commenced. This development could be great news for the average consumer, or the end of an era in "homegrown telecommunications ownership".
Critics, which obviously include the organizations' competitors, have cried foul over the ownership structure with their new nemesis; they say that an Egyptian is the financial backer, and they should be banned from providing service in Canada as a result of that fact. It seems that they're more worried about the impact on their own revenues.
Who cares if this corporation is "fully Canadian" if we have been gouged for years? The patriotism of Bell, Telus and Rogers can be questioned from their outsourcing and treatment of the average consumer, so this is not a matter of citizenship.
Consumers are joyful because there is a competitor that wants to be entirely different, and although I won't name this company directly, I bid them good luck in their continuing battle.
Small world, big telcos
So what if Canada's cellular phone companies aren't fully and completely Canadian owned? That is the excuse that the incumbent companies have used to prevent the establishment of new competition in their industry.
In making that argument Rogers, Bell and Telus have become a bunch of school bullies who seem to be distracting curious citizens from questioning their own "commitment to Canada". Apparently, this will be the end of our cultural identity in the telecommunications sector if the new companies weren't entirely locally owned, but what does that have to do with the poor consumer?
Australians, for example, have been debating about foreign ownership for years, yet the second largest telecom company is owned by Singaporeans for quite a few years.
If "citizenship" had to do with Canadian values, then we are living in a third world country. For years, the "size of our map" was an excuse for charging outrageous rates, and these same companies can be accused of outsourcing to other countries.
Considering that cellular technology is now mostly manufactured in South Korea or China, I highly doubt that operators who are "fully Canadian" could stick to such a flimsy campaign to thwart off one company.
Aren't we in a small world after all?
Phillip Hong, a Woodbridge resident, is a an endless tourist. Check out the interesting experiences of his journeys on The Travelling Briefcase.
Editor: Phillip Hong
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