Wireless shakeup in Canada

wireless picture in Canada isn’t so hot. A few incumbent parties seem to be keeping the prices high for everyone. That won’t be so for much longer. A chunk — 40 percent — of the 105 megahertz spectrum up there is set to be auctioned off. The good news: Rogers, Bell Canada, and Telus won’t be eligible to bid. This, of course, has them upset, but honestly, this is the best thing Canada can do with its wireless situation.

“When the new entrants get their gloves on the whip and start rolling out things, we’re going to see a lot more creativity in pricing options,” said Iain Grant, managing director of telecom consultant Seaboard Group.
While an initial fear is that these new companies will take years and years to get off the ground, rules have been established that allow these new entrants to roam on the incumbent networks for at least five years. This mandate will probably stick for as long as it takes to build the network — so long as there is a good faith effort to do so.
Eamon Hoey, senior partner with Hoey Associates Management Consultants Inc., says the new business models brought about by competition “will deal with the angst of consumers on contract issues.” Among those long-term agreements and additional monthly fees for network access and roaming. “The more nimble companies will be contractless, simple to understand and you have options to buy buckets of minutes for prepaid prices,” says Mr. Hoey.
Wireless in Canada is already super expensive, so you might as well justify the price by having more flexibility. One for the other, right? [National Post]]]>