Well, not exactly, but pretty darn close. Number portability officially went live today in Canada, meaning that you can now go ahead and switch cell phone providers while keeping your phone number. As such, the mobile operators are frantically trying to prevent their current clientele from jumping ship, and at the same time, they’re trying to attract customers from other operators to come on in. Rogers, Fido, and Bell Mobility haven’t made a huge deal about the change, but Telus Mobility, man alive, have they taken this idea and ran with it.
Chances are that the 300 Adsense box that you see in this article is showing the Telus Mobility video ad featuring those quirky monkeys. If you scroll through to a post where I have a 468 mini banner, it’s probably telling you to switch, reminding you that you can keep your phone number. They’re really aggressively targeting every Canadian IP, hogging up the Adsense space on just about every website out there. I see it on Mobile Magazine, Stephen Fung’s blog, and even Digg.com (please use that link and Digg the story I wrote for Mobile Mag).
I’m not a big fan of Telus Mobility myself — I prefer unlocked GSM phones from Asia and Europe, so I’m stuck with either Fido or Rogers (which is really one and the same) — but they’re really doing a good job in the marketing department, even picking up some rather attractive phones. Too bad they all come with crippled features.
Number portability. Potentially great for Canadian consumers, but I’d imagine that the providers may bump the “System Access Fee” to counter the costs involved with importing phone numbers.