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Rogers services restored for majority of customers after Canada-wide outage

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Rogers Telecommunication said on Saturday that it has restored services for the majority of its customers after a service outage at one of Canada’s biggest telecom operators shut banking, transport and government access for millions of people.

“As our services come back online and traffic volumes return to normal, some customers may experience a delay in regaining full service,” the company said in a statement posted on Twitter.

Canadians crowded into cafes and public libraries that still had internet access and hovered outside hotels to catch a signal. The country’s border services agency said the outage affected its mobile app for incoming travelers.

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Ericsson, Rogers’ network partner said on Saturday that it was aware of the outage and is in regular communication with the company to restore service.

Financial institutions and banks, including Toronto-Dominion Bank and Bank Of Montreal, said on Friday that the outage disrupted their services. Royal Bank of Canada said its ATMs and online banking services were affected.

Rogers has about 10 million wireless subscribers and 2.25 million retail internet subscribers and with Telus Corp, it controls 90% of the market share in Canada.

A number of critics said that the outage demonstrated a need for more competition in telecom adding to the criticism over the company’s industrial dominance.

Earlier this year, Canada’s competition bureau blocked Rogers’ attempt to take over rival Shaw Communications in a C$20 billion deal, saying it would hamper competition in a country where telecom rates are some of the world’s highest. The merger still awaits a final verdict.

Every facet of life was disrupted with the outage and the police across Canada said that some callers could not reach emergency services via 911 calls.

(Reporting by Akanksha Khushi in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Supantha Mukherjee in Stockholm; Editing by Alison Williams and Diane Craft)

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