Industry Canada Announces AWS-4 Spectrum Consultation for Rural Wireless Expansion

Industry canada

Industry Minister James Moore has just announced the Federal Government will hold public consultations on AWS-4 spectrum, which aims to improve mobile network coverage to rural and remote areas of Canada, including companies working in the resource sector in isolated areas.

Moore said in a statement today:

“Spectrum is a critical public resource, and it is our job as a government to ensure it is allocated in a way that encourages robust competition and choice in our wireless market. Canadian consumers have been clear that they want more choice, lower prices and better service. This consultation will allow Canadians to have a say on how to improve mobile services in rural and remote communities.”

The AWS-4 spectrum, which runs the the 2GHz band, can support mobile services on both satellite and terrestrial-based networks nationwide. This consultation will investigate changes to allow licensees to launch new wireless services and “create new competition in the Canadian wireless market.”

One satellite has already been launched for this band to enable extended rural coverage for voice and data services to smartphones across Canada.

Industry Canada says this licensing framework for the AWS-4 spectrum will “generally align with that of the United States”, therefore provide access to affordable equipment and enable the spectrum to be used for the benefit of Canadian wireless users.