Letters We welcome all readers' letters on any issues affecting the technology sector. Have your say by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or writing to the address below We would like to respond to Mr A. E. (Tony) James' letter headlined 'Penalties over ID cards are discriminatory' (Technology, November 18). The city-wide Smart Identity (ID) Card Replacement Exercise commenced in mid-August. All existing ID card holders, whether permanent or temporary residents taking up employment, investment, residence or study in Hong Kong, must apply for new ID cards at any Smart ID Card Centre (SIDCC) within specified periods. Public announcements in Chinese and English have been made through various channels such as press releases, TV and radio announcements and the smart ID card homepage www.smartid.gov.hk to alert eligible applicants to have their ID cards replaced. We have also urged employers to release their foreign domestic helpers to apply. We are confident the messages have reached every household in the community. For the sake of convenience, all SIDCCs are open from 8am to 9.15pm, Monday to Saturday. We appreciate that some eligible applicants may miss their turn for reasons beyond their control. They should approach any SIDCC in person for application immediately. Anyone who without reasonable excuse fails to apply for a new ID card within the specified period is liable to a maximum fine of $5,000. Rowena Woo For the Director of Immigration Loose connection over PCCW services You were kind enough to publish a letter from myself in the Technology section (October 21) headlined 'Customer cool to hotline support service'. This letter was highly critical of PCCW's Netvigator. In the same issue, another letter was published complaining about failures by the same company On October 28 yet another letter appeared complaining about PCCW's NOW Broadband TV services, and a further letter concerned with Netvigator e-mail failures also appeared. The provision of reliable broadband services and a decent cable TV service are both important to our international city. I took up these matters both with the Consumer Council and the Hong Kong government. Mr T.O. Chan of the Consumer Council, although paying lip service to the fact that we live in an international city, informed me that the only study carried out on broadband by his organisation is published in the Chinese language and appeared in Choice (Issue 317, March 14). Furthermore, as far as I was able to ascertain, the study was concerned only with the satisfaction of people using certain companies supplying broadband, and gave no indication as to the availability or otherwise of the service. Being retired and having time to do such things, I next tried to contact the relevant government departments. A staff member at the Office of the Telecommunications Authority informed me that the provision or otherwise of broadband by the companies licensed to provide this service was entirely up to the company concerned, and had nothing to do with her department. I also asked Rediffusion if, with its extensive cabling system, it could supply either broadband or cable TV, but its horizon still does not stretch beyond the four terrestrial TV stations. Surely, the provision of information cable TV channels and a reliable broadband service are fast becoming the sine qua non of an international city. Dr Brian Apthorp Shouson Hill O2 XDA smartphone winner announced The O2 XDA smartphone competition has been won by Manolo Chellaram of Queen's Road, Central. The winner has been notified.