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The company’s revenue is also down from the same period last year. Shares dropped on the news in early trading on Tuesday, and were down almost one per cent at publication time. Revenue at its wireless division is up one per cent. (Toronto Star, MobileSyrup)

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Talking point: Rogers, Bell and Telus have faced increased competition from rivals like Shaw’s Freedom Mobile, which gained 37 per cent of all new postpaid subscribers between the four firms in the first quarter of 2019. In the same period, Rogers’ share of those new subscribers dropped from 35 per cent to 13 per cent. To compete, it added new wireless data pricing options that don’t charge overage fees, for which 365,000 subscribers have signed up, including two-thirds who opted for higher-priced plans then they had previously. Telus and Bell have since followed suit.

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The information technology ministry said the apps are “engaged in activities which [are] prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order.” (India Today)

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Talking point: Indian and Chinese troops are currently massed along the border in the Ladakh region of the Himalayas, and New Delhi claims a mid-June skirmish led to casualties on both sides. Indian business lobbies have called on consumers and celebrity endorsers to boycott Chinese products in response. India is TikTok’s biggest market—Douyin, ByteDance’s Chinese short-video app operates separately—but usage has suffered amid the bilateral tensions. The standoff is also providing an unexpected boost to the U.S. pressure campaign to exclude Huawei from 5G wireless networks. Earlier this month, the Indian government reportedly ordered state-run telecoms BSNL and MTNL to exclude Chinese firms from future equipment purchases, and plans to extend the ban to private carriers.

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Loon, a subsidiary of the U.S. tech giant, plans to provide mobile internet connections by flying network equipment on balloons, while Tokyo-based HAPSMobile will use drones. Carriers China Telecom, Germany’s Deutsche Telekom, Spanish firm Telefónica, and Bharti Airtel of India are joining the two firms in an alliance to get spectrum and create uniform regulation and standards for high-altitude vehicles. So are Airbus, Nokia and Ericsson. (Reuters)

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Talking point: The airborne efforts are designed to bring coverage to remote or sparsely populated areas where ground-bound network infrastructure would be difficult or uneconomical to install. But the carriers that have shown interest thus far typically operate in or across huge consumer markets. Despite the Alphabet unit’s Canadian icon-invoking name, Ottawa has chosen to look even higher in the sky to connect far-flung members of its smaller population. In July 2019, it made a $600-million deal with Ottawa-based Telesat for access to its low-Earth orbit satellite constellation, which will allow internet service providers to sell high-speed broadband in remote communities.

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China is demanding the immediate release of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou, who was arrested at the Vancouver airport on the request of U.S. officials who claim Wanzhou tried to skirt sanctions on Iran. Meng was taken into custody the same day Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S. President Donald Trump agreed to a 90-day negotiation to settle concerns over tariffs and IP theft. The Chinese government is demanding Meng be released immediately. (Globe and Mail)

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Talking point: The arrest places Canada firmly in the middle of a rapidly escalating conflict between the U.S. and China over trade and technology. Huawei is a deeply important company in China—it’s the country’s largest private firm, with over 180,000 people on payroll. The U.S., U.K., Australia, New Zealand and India have all limited Huawei’s access to 5G technology over the past year citing concerns that the company will spy on behalf of the Chinese government. Canada remains a holdout, with major telcos including Bell and Telus working with the company. This arrest further escalates the conflict—it’s already having major financial repercussions with stock markets in the U.K., Japan, and the U.S. all down on the news. The Dow Jones was down 1.7 per cent in mid-afternoon trading, but closed at 0.32 per cent down.