Rogers CEO Invites Bell and Telus to ‘Step Up and Join’ TTC Cell Service
- Rogers won’t stop its rivals from offering cell services on Toronto’s subway system.
- Rogers will upgrade the subway’s wireless network to provide 5G capacity over nine months and build a 5G network for the entire subway system in two years.
- Rogers CEO hopes to improve consumers’ perception of the industry by emphasizing its value.
Rogers CEO Tony Staffieri reiterated the company will not prevent rivals from offering cellphone services to their customers on Toronto’s subway system once Rogers oversees the network.
Speaking at a lunch hosted by Canadian Club Toronto on Wednesday, Staffieri said, “it doesn’t matter who you’re on. It could be us, Bell, Telus, Videotron – it doesn’t matter,” according to The Globe and Mail.
After Rogers acquired BAI Canada, which has held the rights to the Toronto Transit Commission’s wireless network since 2012, Bell and Telus raised concerns about whether their customers would be able to use wireless service on the transit system.
Staffieri also revealed negotiations with BAI started over a year ago and ramped up amid violence on the TTC and calls for carriers to add cellphone service.
Rogers will upgrade the existing network to 5G within the next nine months, coming online in “bits and pieces” with 911 calling first, followed by text messages, voice calling, and video streaming.
The Rogers CEO also said it would be ready to take on Videotron as Canada’s fourth national carrier. “We will not be undersold just because of the price. You can expect us to be very aggressive in our value propositions on that,” he said.
Regarding the company’s outlook for the next five years, Staffieri said he hoped to improve the “consumer value perception” by driving home better the value perception of the industry. “I’m not sure all consumers feel like they’re getting that kind of value,” he said, comparing the cost and value of connectivity to less than the price of a cup of coffee per day.