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Ottawa’s Throne Speech Targets High Wireless Rates, Aims to Lower Roaming Costs

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The Federal government’s Throne Speech this afternoon has been published and as expected, a common theme is Ottawa will defend Canadian consumers when it comes to their wallets, in particular when it comes to the wireless sector.

Governor General David Johnston delivered the speech, which opens the second session of the 41st Parliament and outlines Ottawa’s agenda.

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The speech noted the Federal government will “take steps to reduce roaming costs on networks within Canada,” as Canadians pay some of the most expensive wireless rates globally. Unfortunately, the speech unfairly targeted teenagers as one of the culprits behind high monthly wireless bills, but goes on to say competition is coming:

For example, although Canadians are among the most digitally connected in the world, we also pay some of the highest wireless rates in the developed world. As families know—especially families with teenagers—the monthly bills add up.

Our Government has already taken action to achieve greater competition. Canadians know that competition is good for everyone. Competition lowers prices and keeps businesses from becoming complacent. As a result, wireless rates have fallen nearly 20 per cent since 2008.

Earlier this afternoon we reported how Ottawa’s ConsumersFirst.ca website was recently updated to reflect talking points from the Throne Speech. You can read the entire speech here.

Do you think the Federal government will be able to defend Canadian consumers with their new policies when it comes to wireless competition?

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  • FoolMeOnce

    Pledging to lower or remove roaming charges within Canada for most users is a real crock of #$%^#$%^. If you are a customer of one of the big 3, the network you are on covers most if not all of the country. If you get extra charges if you’re out of your home area, those are for long distance, not roaming. Roaming is an agreement between service providers to allow you to make a call on a different network and pay that network for the privilege, so cutting those charges won’t affect many people.
    Now if the government wants to cut roaming charges to other countries, then that’s attractive…

  • wah_gee

    Off topic, but how about lower cable costs and lower credit card interest rates, as well?

  • Matt

    Lol wow way to discriminate against teenagers, Canada haha

  • crosseyed_mofo

    i didnt read the full speech but, when most people say roaming, they mean outside of the country

  • Al

    I think the speech writer needs to check the Interwebz to see how many gigabits of broad fidelity occurs at rush hour during a full moon.

  • FoolMeOnce

    I think what you say is accurate but the text from the speech says “Our Government will take steps to reduce roaming costs on networks within Canada.” This is pretty clear. What the Harper Government is doing is playing a shell game with consumers.

  • Al

    Or it’s just an idiot speachwriter pretending they know what they’re talking about. You know… Like when Gore claimed he invented the Internet.

  • Salvador

    I’m not defending Harper, but the term the government used is right: In wireless telecommunications, roaming is a general term referring to the extension of connectivity service in a location that is different from the home location where the service was registered.

    One thing is being in Montreal and calling from a Montreal’s number (514) to a Toronto number (416) and another thing is being in Toronto and calling from a Montreal’s number (514) to another Montreal’s number (514). The first case is “long distance” the second case is “roaming”

  • hub2

    To make things murkier, with many plans from Big 3 or subsidiaries, being in Toronto and calling from a Montreal number to a Toronto number is considered a local call, even though you’re technically roaming (outside home location).

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