CRTC Calls for Cheaper Data-Only Plans from National Carriers

Customers who are seeking low-cost alternatives from Canada’s large wireless carriers might not have to wait much longer. The CRTC has ordered the Big Three to offer cheaper data-only plans to consumers.

On Thursday the CRTC asked Rogers, Bell, and Telus to submit their initial proposals for data-only plans by April 23rd.

The regulator also lowered the maximum rate that these carriers can charge other carriers to use their networks. In a statement, CRTC Chairman Ian Scott said:

“Taking these things collectively, we’re confident that today’s decisions will ensure that Canadians have access to a range of affordable and innovative wireless services while fostering continued investments in high-quality networks.”

The CRTC did not go as far as to enforce agreements with mobile virtual networks (MVOs). These are types of competitors that would avoid the expense of having their own infrastructure.

The federal cabinet ordered the CRTC to reconsider a position it took last year when it issued a part of rulings against Sugar Mobile’s attempt to piggy-back their MVO solution onto the Rogers network. Canada’s telecommunications minister Navdeep Bains said that these decisions would prevent healthy competition and lower-cost options for consumers.

[via Financial Post]