I also go there frequently, but I used a service to get my visa, and it was effortless. I just had to FedEx my passport to New York, and they had it turned around in a week or so.
First, they don't care if they change it or not. The US can change it or not, and Brazil will maintain reciprocity. Reciprocity is about fairness, not about forcing change.
Second, it does not reduce the number of Americans traveling to Brazil because, believe it or don't, most Americans who have the means to travel don't have trouble meeting the financial criteria to get a visa to the US (which is the chief problem poor foreigners run into when trying to come here).
With this move, they are now beholden to shareholders (i.e. the Venture Capitalists) and profit is the #1 priority, despite the flowery, rainbow-colored unicorn fantasy they are promoting.
I'd bet dollars to donuts that CM is going to become payware and possibly even supported by ads integrated directly into the O/S, with underlying information snooping software that gives them your private info so they can sell it to marketing firms.
So, no, I don't like it one bit.
Brazil has a policy of absolute reciprocity when it comes to immigration. Brazil requires the same of US Residents applying for a Brazilian visa as the US requires of Brazilian Residents applying for a US Visa.
Any requirement imposed upon Brazilian citizens by any other country is reciprocated toward that country's citizens. It makes perfect sense to do it that way.
Yes, in fact, they are. Brazil has enormous import duties and generally it is not profitable or feasible to manufacture goods outside of Brazil for sale in Brazil.
The guy at the store said it stopped being Verizon's company policy back in May.
I did this just this week with a new Lenovo laptop I bought. I took it to the Verizon store and they put a Verizon SIM card in it for their LTE data network and added it to my account, no problem.
Does anyone know?
You can't have that many antennas in the phone without it being too big. There are half a dozen frequency bands ranging from 700Mhz all the way up to 2100MHz, and one antenna will not do it all.
Sure, it's easy enough to have a software defined radio like they do, but the amplifiers, LNAs, matching networks, and antennas are all cut for one or maybe two bands.
Nobody is holding a gun to your head and making you sign that contract. All of the carriers will give you a no-contract plan or sell you an unsubsidized, unlocked phone.
... at least I am convinced of that every time I try to sneak up on one and kill it...
Boulder is not a high tech incubation region. Denver's high-tech region is south and east of the city.
Boulder is an incubation region for dirty hippies, far-leftists, organic Rastafarians, and art history majors.
All of that typing just to say "this is Bush's fault."
At these prices, I lose money -- but I make it up in volume. -- Peter G. Alaquon