Globalive slams cellular contracts, promotes Wind Mobile with paper airplanes

Globalive Wireless Management Corp, which started its Wind Mobile service last December, is using among other things, paper airplanes and paper mache to tout its cellular offering.


It held a recent event in Toronto, dubbed the Contract Carnival, where kids were invited to take sample wireless contracts and fold them into paper airplanes.



Network World Canada interviewed some prospective and current Wind Mobile customers at the carnival, and found they had one thing in common. They had some unpleasant surprises on their last bills.


Tammy Flores decided to bring her family to the carnival so her kids could make some crafts. She has been a Wind Mobile customer for a few months and claimed one of her monthly bills from her former provider, Bell Mobility, was $800. Assuming this was an exaggeration, we wanted to know how much it really was, and Flores said it was no exaggeration. $800. Yikes.


Flores was not the only person attending the carnival who said she got a nasty surprise from her former, or current provider. We also interviewed Samantha Zimmer, a Rogers Wireless customer with six months left on her contract. She’s looking forward to getting out of it.


Before starting its service, Globalive talked to Canadians, asking them what the didn’t like about current cellular plans. As a result, Wind Mobile does not require customers to sign up for one, two or three years. Its pre-paid service is the same as post-paid.


Anthony Lacavera, who holds most of Globalive’s voting shares and is chairman of the company’s board of directors, would not say how many customers have signed up for Wind Mobile since it started in December. Earlier this month, Montreal-based SeaBoard Group estimated Wind Mobile signed up about 30,000 customers so far.


Globalive is the first of the new wireless entrants that bought spectrum from Industry Canada in 2008 to start service.


Other new entrants that intend to start service this year include DAVE Wireless, Public Mobile and Videotron.


Most of Globalive’s debt is held by Egypt-based Orascom Telecom Holdings S.A.E., which also operates cellular service in Greece and Italy using the Wind brand name.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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