Shopping Discussion

Why do places like TBooth, WirelessWave and WowMobile exist?

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Jan 20, 2013
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Why do places like TBooth, WirelessWave and WowMobile exist?

I don't understand the purpose of these places, nor the benefit to companies like Bell/Telus/Rogers to allow them to sell plans from all 3 companies simultaneously - especially when there's a Bell, Rogers, Telus (and Virgin, Fido and Koodo) shops in the same shopping malls anyway.
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Aug 22, 2011
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More exposure, without any additional operating costs.
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Feb 28, 2005
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Same reason FutureShop created BestBuy years ago;
to create the illusion of competition.

WowMobile, Wirelesswave are just like a broker of services, they earn a commission.
And IIRC, TBooth/TheSource are owned by Bell.
Client at: Tangerine, VoIP.ms, Virgin Mobile
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Nov 4, 2004
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marc_t wrote: Same reason FutureShop created BestBuy years ago;
to create the illusion of competition.

WowMobile, Wirelesswave are just like a broker of services, they earn a commission.
And IIRC, TBooth/TheSource are owned by Bell.
WTF?

Futureshop didn't create Best Buy. They were separate entities. Best Buy bought Futureshop and eventually closed all Futureshop stores.
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Dec 27, 2011
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Do people get better deals at places like WirelessWave compared to dealing with the cell phone company directly?
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Jan 18, 2013
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I'm amazed they all exist.

I remember at one point counting all the places to buy cell phones in a mall and it was like 25+ if you included the places with prepaid phones for sale and this was in 2004!
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Jan 17, 2013
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onquest wrote: I don't understand the purpose of these places, nor the benefit to companies like Bell/Telus/Rogers to allow them to sell plans from all 3 companies simultaneously - especially when there's a Bell, Rogers, Telus (and Virgin, Fido and Koodo) shops in the same shopping malls anyway.
For the consumers and those who do not know what plan to get, those places are convenient as they can choose the best plan that matches their needs from all the providers.
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Dec 18, 2017
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marc_t wrote: Same reason FutureShop created BestBuy years ago;
to create the illusion of competition.

WowMobile, Wirelesswave are just like a broker of services, they earn a commission.
And IIRC, TBooth/TheSource are owned by Bell.
Bell owns the Source. WirelessWave, TBooth and Wireless Etc (Costco) are owned by Glentel, which in turn is 50-50 owned by Rogers and Bell. As someone else pointed out, Best Buy bought Future Shop.
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Jan 9, 2011
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onquest wrote: I don't understand the purpose of these places, nor the benefit to companies like Bell/Telus/Rogers to allow them to sell plans from all 3 companies simultaneously - especially when there's a Bell, Rogers, Telus (and Virgin, Fido and Koodo) shops in the same shopping malls anyway.
Same idea as travel agents. You could buy directly from the airline or you could go to a travel agent that will sell you tickets for any airline. And some agents sell so many tickets that the airlines give them a bulk rate, which is why the right agent may get you a better price than what you can get from the airline yourself. Not always, but maybe. With the right agent. So it’s worth checking.

Wow mobile and the like work exactly the same way.
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Mar 26, 2005
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These third party wireless retailers do offer instore credits (for accessories), free gift cards or free reward points (@ The Mobile Shop). From my personal experience, they are unable to offer significantly discounted rate plans which are equivalent to certain travel agents offering consolidator fares.
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Feb 22, 2016
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There's a more devious reason for the existence of these stores (and also Best Buy Mobile). Anybody notice they only sell the big 3 and their flanker brands. None of them sell Freedom Mobile (or Videotron for the Quebecers).

It's the big 3 teaming up to squeeze out what little competition is out there.

At the Pickering Town Centre, there's a Bell store, a Rogers store, a Telus store, a Fido store, a Virgin store, a Chatr store, a Koodo store, a T-Booth, a WirelessWave, a Best Buy Mobile, and a WOW Mobile. Conveniently these are all centrally located. Hidden next to the Hudson Bay department store, far from any of the parking lot entrances, is the lone Freedom Mobile shop...

But curiously, the Freedom store seems to get a lot of foot traffic despite its bad location, that store's always busy compared to any of the cartel agents listed above. So people are bypassing the cartel and at least considering the alternative (cue the Freedom haters/Robbers shills....)
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Aug 14, 2007
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doctorgonzo wrote: WTF?

Futureshop didn't create Best Buy. They were separate entities. Best Buy bought Futureshop and eventually closed all Futureshop stores.
I'm almost 100% sure BB owned FS the entire time it was around... I'm probably wrong but I thought they did...
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Feb 22, 2016
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XtremeModder wrote: I'm almost 100% sure BB owned FS the entire time it was around... I'm probably wrong but I thought they did...
No, they were separate companies originally. BB from Minneapolis and FS from Vancouver. BB bought FS in 2001:
https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/best-b ... n-1.285215

BB ran both banners until finally killing off the FS name in 2015. The parallel banners made no sense -- they sold the same stuff, the flyers had the same items on sale just on different pages, etc.
https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/future ... -1.3013534
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Dec 18, 2017
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XtremeModder wrote: I'm almost 100% sure BB owned FS the entire time it was around... I'm probably wrong but I thought they did...
Not unless it was a secret. FS was started in the 80's by an Iranian-Canadian and he sold it to BB in 2001.
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Jan 7, 2002
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marc_t wrote: Same reason FutureShop created BestBuy years ago;
to create the illusion of competition.
Also to create the illusion of lower prices, i.e. that getting a plan through an "independent" store is cheaper. This illusion can sometimes be true, i.e. that the indy can indeed offer discounts and bonuses (e.g. free accessories, gift cards, points, waived requirements, etc.) that the carrier won't. Since the sales agent works on commission they can sometimes take a smaller commission or use some loophole in the system in order to make the sale.

In a related vein, the big-3 also have flanker brands, e.g. Bhell/Virgin/Lucky, Robbers/Fido, Telus/Koodo, in order to capture customers who can't/won't pay full price. Better that a Robbers customer go with Fido at a lower price than go to Virgin or Koodo. Robbers may make less money but at least they retain the customer and the revenue stream.
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