Monday, September 09, 2013

A Tale Of Two Countries

After a year of living in France I can finally put my finger on why anyone who has made any money in the UK moved to France to live and why anyone who wants to make money in France moves to the UK to do so.

So much for a single European market.

The UK is full of cookie cutter retailers in horrible modern red brick buildings whereas France has a huge diversity in uts retail anywhere from the Marais in Paris to villages in the Auvergne.

At the same time, France miers its entrepreneurs in costs and red tape, forcing them out of the country before they make any money. And if thy do, they get to keep almost none of it.

But the TV and broadband providers are certainly better in the UK. In France, getting any kind of account for anything is like achieving a degree. And when you do so, the service is dreadful.

Orange's fibre and IPTV service which we lived with for a year was a joke. The fibre often gave 6Mbps against a promised 100Mbps and cut out for very often.

The TV was basic, with additional charges for things like recording or time shifting. The 3G wxperience was similar.

So, I left the UK thinking our providers were awful, but I come back from France realising that they put up with a virtual monopoly of Soviet proportions.

Where is the EU on TV, mobiles, broadband ? Why do we bother with this European conceit that seems to have no real effect for citizens apart from being contrary to real entrepreneurship.