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A serious squeeze

flowIt seems like LIME is in for a serious squeeze [No pun intended — who am I kidding? Pun intended!] with the launch of The Columbus Group’s local arm, Flow. It seems that Flow, unlike other competitors isn’t here to simply compete with the telecoms company, but to fight for every bit of market share it can take.

The first hint of this came with the group purchasing LIME’s two major non-cellular service competitors, Telebarbados and Karib Cable, effectively purchasing who would have been their competition as well. At the launch event they welcomed all to a “Flow World” and have left a resounding impression on at least one of the visitors.

So what is on offer here? Let’s start with the obvious big seller, a new provider of broadband Internet service, and while they offer other very good packages, the one which caught my eye was the whopper – a 100MB package which comes in at the same price of LIME’s 8MB package, and that’s a no brainer really. On offer are also 2, 10, 25 and 50 MB download speed packages all very competitively priced.

Flow is also offering a wide range cable channels and quite a few High Definition ones as well, a lot more than I was expecting. But what impressed me was the “Start Over” feature which basically allows you to start a live show over from the beginning so you no longer need to rush home to catch your favourite show. And on top of that, with the offering of up to 24 hours of personal video recording a month, you definitely won’t miss a show again. And don’t think you have to watch it back on your TV alone.

Oh no, with the Flow to Go app you can watch your recordings on you Apple or Andriod powered device, even watch live TV on them. In fact the App goes one step further and integrates with your Flow voice package. This allows you to receive and makes call on your mobile device using either mobile Data or WiFi using your home number. This works out pretty cool while you’re here in Barbados, but think of the roaming rates saved while you are on vacation. Cant beat that really.

All in all, with the introduction of more service providers, we the customers stand to benefit tremendously and thus far at least on paper, the saving are there to be had in a big way. Although the coverage area for Flow is right now relatively small, I expect that by year end we will see great improvements.

The roll out starts May 1, so stay tuned for an update on this and how it compares with our current service providers as I will be doing a review sooner rather than later.

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