Rogers, Telus and Bell Explain $5/month Wireless Price Hikes


This past weekend Canada’s incumbent wireless carriers increased monthly plan prices by $5/month across the board, specifically Rogers and Bell. Telus first hiked their prices in January and Rogers and Bell to their nationwide voice and shareable data plans, with prices starting at $80/month for 500MB from all three carriers. Shareable voice and data plans ranging from 500MB to 15GB per month are priced the same across the board.

Fido, Koodo and Virgin Mobile also revamped their price plans resulting in some plans having less data and minutes along with a price increase.

When asked to comment on their price increases, Rogers explained to CBC News the “needs of our customers are changing as they’re doing more than ever before with their connected device.”

As for Telus, the company said despite raising their monthly prices in January, it lowered the price of its ‘most widely used’ data add-ons last week. With its recent acquisition of startup wireless carrier Public Mobile, the former has similar plans to increase monthly rate by $5/month on March 19, reports MobileSyrup.

Bell did not comment to inquiries from CBC News.

Journalist and wireless industry watcher Peter Nowak explains his thoughts on why we’re seeing these simultaneous price hikes:

Why is this happening? It’s very simple, really: the new entrants are dead, and so is competition. Public Mobile has been bought by Telus, Mobilicity is under creditor protection and Wind is being left to wither on the vine by its Russian owner Vimpelcom (neither of those last two companies bought all-important new spectrum in the recently concluded auction).

The one potential challenger that did buy spectrum in that auction, Quebecor, isn’t just being coy about whether it will actually use it, the company is also now in a state of flux since its chief executive Pierre Karl Peladeau just declared himself a separatist.

With Ottawa declaring victory in the wireless competition front in its recent 700MHz spectrum auction results, what are your thoughts on the state of wireless today in Canada?


  • Geoff

    “Remember when we created all those ads to fight Verizon and keep it from coming into Canada? You don’t expect us to foot the bill for that, do you?”

  • But…but…but…

  • Gordo70

    Why are the prairie prices never discussed. We pay $65 for 5gb data and unlimited talk and text.

  • Fireeast

    Even with the Québec issues I hope videotron buys up and combines the entrants. This will create a fourth player and combine the spectrum and towers to hopefully increase the reliability of there service. But as it stands it will either be wind or no phone. I just can’t justify these prices anymore.

  • WatDah

    So….. where’s the explaination?

  • Ari

    Robellus are thieves. If you are paying 90 dollars per month, you should be getting 10 GB of data included (if not unlimited) instead of 500MB.

  • Steve

    Because the “hick towns” are insignificant. Big city = big money.

  • Z S

    That’s why they fought so hard against Verizon… to keep out competition. The big 3 all basically work together to keep their prices around the same.

  • MleB1

    Yeah, no criminal collusion here…

  • Russell

    Your area has competition so the Big 3 are forced to have their rates at a reasonable price just to compete. To bad the rest of Canada has no competition.

  • Ph03n1x

    I just hope one day a “Free”-like company will shake the tree in this sector. Just what Free as done in France.

  • dgsuzuki

    And don’t forget Gary… the little known small print no one reads.. they have also increased (which will be huge profit for them) their data overages.. what used to be a standard $10/1gig across the board on plans is now (even with FIDO the “cheaper” alternative) is now an insane $5/100 megs ($50 a gig now!!) unless you get top package which is still $5/250megs ($20/gig) .. basically they’re saying, “people are using their phones more than ever and we need to meet that”.. basically by lowering data on packages, raising the package price and creating insane overage fees as who has a smart phone and uses less than 2gigs of data! Come on… i miss the days Fido was owned by Mircocell… their CSR and pricing were second to none…

  • Kenny

    reminds me of a youtube video i saw “The First Honest Cable Company” pretty spot on with whats going on with our media. and i agree with peter nowak, with the only companies what actually had unlimited everything for around $40/m are bleeding out with no help. competition is dead so the big3 are in full control again.

  • Erik Weimer

    How convenient. Industry Canada’s Results of 700MHz auction: 8 winners, 97 licences, $5.27B for taxpayers. Little did they know the $5.27 Billion would have to be paid somehow, and the big 3 thought, “let’s make the taxpayers pay for it.”

  • Tim

    Maybe they can explain how they decided to all do it at the same time.

  • Jake

    “needs of our customers are changing as they’re doing more than ever before with their connected device.” ….. translated into…. “our customers are using more data, so we will give them less data and charge more for it”

  • Geoff

    So far, those of us from “hick towns” have come across as much more eloquent than you. But sure—perpetuate your stereotypes.

  • HateTheBig3

    these a-holes.. they do charge extra if people go over the amount of data inlcuded in their plans don’t they? so if the users’ needs are changing and people need more data, they will voluntarily sign up for a more expensive plan to get more data because the extra charge for going over is ridiculously expensive…

  • reformcanada

    The competition bureau in this country is a joke!

  • Blueman186

    Because Sasktel and MTS are provincially owned and subsidized. The Big 3 are not interested in trying to compete for the small markets of both Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

  • Gordo70

    MTS is a publicly trade private company

  • Gordo70

    So more big money american corporations are going to bring the price down, I think not. We have lots of international gas companies and that does not affect gas prices

  • Brett Charles Pilon

    Explain ? lol it’s a bunch of BullS**t, money grab and thats it thats all.

  • Had enough

    It is a crime. Collusion and they are doing it because they can. I may go back to a simpler phone and
    text and talk plan and say screw the iphones. People are “too’ connected anyway to enjoy their lives. Supply and Demand. The only way to stop it is just say no!

  • sean

    There is nothing i hate more in this world then Rogers, bell and telus. The mere thought of handing money over to them makes me puke.