CBC coverage of upcoming CRTC "Let's Talk TV" hearings

CBC radio in Calgary has been covering some of the topics that will be up for discussion when the CRTC's "Let's Talk TV" hearings begin in Gatineau QC on Monday September 8th.

CBC business reporter Tracy Johnson tried to get input from as many of the stakeholders as possible: the CRTC, artists, content producers, television channel operators, television distributors, and of course, consumers.

Tracy interviewed me via a Google Hangouts call back on August 20th, just a day before the CRTC released its "working document for discussion" intended to serve as a reference point in the hearings. As a cord cutter I realize that I'm not a typical TV consumer, but hopefully the points I made about ever increasing costs and lack of choice ring true.

The radio sessions are available on the CBC web site at the following URLs:

A print article on the topic of pick-and-pay was published on the CBC web site on September 2nd and an article about speciality channels on the 4th:

If you want to add your voice to the discussion, you have until September 19th to submit comments via the CRTC web site. Visit the page "Help Shape the Future of TV in Canada", register with the CRTC if you haven't already, then select one of the three categories and enter your thoughts.


"Quelle surprise" - NHL GameCenter LIVE is more expensive under Rogers

One of the interesting things about the $5.2B deal that Rogers signed with the NHL last November is that it included "all of its platforms in all languages."  Cord cutters like yours truly have been waiting to see what the impact would be on the NHL's GameCenter LIVE streaming package, fearing the worst given that a cable company like Rogers would prefer to keep as many people on expensive cable subscriptions as possible. Read on to see the 2014-2015 pricing from Rogers.


T-Mobile's free 200MB/month

I was in the US for the first time since T-Mobile announced their "Free Data for Life" offer for owners of 3G/4G-enabled tablets and laptops in the US, so I was anxious to check it out.

For those who haven't heard of it, if you buy a T-Mobile pre-paid SIM card, you can activate it for free and use 200MB of data per month without ever having to pay a cent or even provide T-Mobile with a credit card. Sometimes you can even get the SIM card for free, so it costs you nothing at all! It's their teaser to get you hooked on having a connected tablet, which they hope will lead you to either buy a monthly plan or purchase a bigger block of data for pre-paid use.

Read on to see how it worked and find out about the minor snags I ran into along the way.


VMedia Launches Cloud-Based PVR

VMedia announced the availability of their cloud PVR service today. The update to enable the feature is expected to hit VMedia TV customers by the weekend.

The new recording capability is available to existing VMedia customers at no additional cost. Read on for details.