January 18, 2012.
That was the day I first switched mobile operators (carriers for folks in North America). After 1.5 years, I’m right back where I started.
Rogers Wireless -> Fido -> Virgin Mobile -> Koodo -> Rogers.
Reasons for switching aside, none of these operators were bars above the rest. Note the words below are highly subjective and with no real concrete numbers. This is just from the perspective as a customer.
iPhone 4S (Factory unlocked) -> Qualcomm MD66xx series baseband.
14.4 HSDPA, 5.76 HSUPA. (3GPP Rel. 7 for the nerds).
1. Network Performance
Koodo win this hands down. While Bell (Virgin’s parent) and Telus (Koodo’s parent) have a UMTS network sharing agreement, I can consistently get better performance on the former. Regularly get < 20ms ping time and 7Mpbs+. Virgin is similar but always a bit behind.
Rogers seems limited to 3-4Mbps for down and 1Mbps up, ~120ms ping.
2. Customer Service (Online)
Everyone of them seems bad in this respect, just different levels.
Virgin’s online page is always slow, or just downright unresponsive. Logging in require a 2-page jump: account name and password on separate page.
Fido and Rogers are bit better, but still slow.
Koodo is much faster for certain screens that doesn’t show a lot of customer data, but some pages inescapably takes upward of 10s to load.
3. Customer Service (In-person)
Since I had never had non-working service or some noob technical question, this section is based on the initial setup / phone number porting (transfer from one carrier to another). In each case, I always lay out on the counter the items they’ll need, in the order they’ll ask for them:
Fido: Other than constantly asking me to go for a new contract for a phone, things went smooth.
Virgin Mobile: Slow. Kept telling me I could do the number porting over the phone. Helloooo, I am already here! Their porting didn’t take, end up having to call phone support and do it myself.
Koodo: Initially treated me like any other customer. But once he saw the stuff I was putting on the counter, didn’t even bother asking and just did it. Fastest of all (10mins from walking in to walking out).
Rogers: Confusion. The rep initially was confused by what I wanted (transfer number from another carrier to Rogers). Didn’t know what to do, end up calling phone support and they walked him through.
The spinning vortex of Saturn’s north polar storm resembles a deep red rose of giant proportions surrounded by green foliage in this false-color image from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft. Measurements have sized the eye at a staggering 1,250 miles (2,000 kilometers) across with cloud speeds as fast as 330 miles per hour (150 meters per second).
This image is among the first sunlit views of Saturn’s north pole captured by Cassini’s imaging cameras. When the spacecraft arrived in the Saturnian system in 2004, it was northern winter and the north pole was in darkness. Saturn’s north pole was last imaged under sunlight by NASA’s Voyager 2 in 1981; however, the observation geometry did not allow for detailed views of the poles. Consequently, it is not known how long this newly discovered north-polar hurricane has been active.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI
I just finished a course on project management, and the insight I got was: Project Management is complicated. Very complicated.
Building anything, or in PM lingo ’a temporary endeavour to undertaken to create a unique produce or service’, is hard. Project management is meant to help with managing the process, be it scope, time or cost. But it takes tremendous amount of work and effort. It made we wonder, is it really worth it?
I’m fervently believe managing a project should be less work than the project itself: You are undertaking an endeavour to build something awesome. The product should be the goal, not a side effect of the process.
Is it possible to build a great product involving dozens of people, not using any project management paradigms (PMP or similar)? PM is such a commonplace in the industry. There has been a lot of studies done on effectiveness of project management, but not on whether it’s worthwhile.