Ottawa Promises to Increase Wireless Competition for More Choice, Better Prices

The Federal Government has released a statement today to announce the start date for the coveted 700MHz wireless spectrum auction, set to take place on November 19, 2013. Christian Paradis, the Minister of Industry, announced Ottawa plans to increase wireless competition to provide Canadians with more choices and better prices:

“Canadian families work hard for their money, and our government wants them to keep more of it,” said Minister Paradis. “Through better use of existing cellphone towers and by taking action to promote at least four wireless providers in every region of the country, our government is making it possible for all Canadians to have access to world-class wireless service they can afford, no matter where they live.”

The Feds aim to achieve further competition throughout all regions in Canada by doing the following:

  • reviewing the policy on spectrum licence transfer requests with the objective of promoting a competitive environment
  • expanding and extending the requirement for companies to provide roaming to competitors, thereby increasing competition
  • strengthening cell tower sharing rules to further reduce proliferation and deliver better services
  • ensuring at least four providers in every region can acquire spectrum in the upcoming 700 MHz spectrum auction, to start on November 19, 2013, as part of the Licensing Framework for this spectrum.

The 700MHz spectrum auction is seen as very valuable because of its extended range for both voice and data. The 2500 MHz spectrum auction set for next year.

Minister Paradis reiterated Ottawa’s priority is to “provide greater wireless coverage at better rates for consumers.” What do you think about this announcement and the state of our current wireless environment?

[via The Globe and Mail]