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Bell, Telus provide new iPhone competition in Canada

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 
Rogers Wireless, Apple's exclusive iPhone partner in Canada, is gaining new competition from its formerly CDMA-only rivals in a move that could foreshadow changes in the US market affecting AT&T and Verizon.

Apple originally launched the iPhone 3G in Canada exclusive to Rogers and its Fido subsidiary because the company was the only GSM/UMTS provider in the country. As with the US, Canada's mobile service providers are split between GSM and CDMA service, with Rogers/Fido playing the part of AT&T while the other two major providers, Bell and Telus, sell CDMA/EVDO service like Sprint and Verizon Wireless.

However, Bell and Telus are now rolling out a new HSPA (high speed packet access) 3G overlay that will enable both providers to sell the iPhone. HSPA is included in the 3GPP UMTS standard. Both Bell and Telus are adopting the new overlay as in interim step towards new LTE networks planned for deployment beginning sometime in 2011. Neither company will supply GSM/EDGE 2G service.

Bell is already listed by Apple as an iPhone mobile partner; Telus' new HSPA service is set to launch tomorrow. The new competition will provide an alternative to Roger's exclusive lock on the iPhone, which has been criticized for its unusually high prices and poor service.

CDMA/EVDO Migration to 3GPP

The move follows a global trend away from Qualcomm CDMA/EVDO networks. Last year, Australia's Telstra shut down its CDMA network in favor of exclusive UMTS service. Other providers, like China Unicom and Canada's Bell and Telus, have added UMTS service to their existing CDMA networks and plan continue to operate both until next generation LTE becomes a reality.

As other providers made similar moves toward 3GPP standards (which include UMTS/HSPA and LTE), Qualcomm decided to drop its efforts to introduce its own "Ultra Mobile Broadband" competitor and join the 3GPP in supporting LTE. That has left the remaining CDMA operators to decide between incrementally adding support for UMTS/HSPA or jumping directly to LTE.



In the US, Verizon has announced plans to begin deploying LTE beginning next year in addition to operating its existing CDMA/EVOD network, while Sprint is backing the unique WiMAX for its next generation data network.

After a series of carrier-exclusive iPhone introductions in most countries worldwide, Apple has demonstrated a desire to make its phone as broadly available on as many partners as possible; subscribers in Australia and Canada now have four or five options, thanks to carrier defections from CDMA.

As mobile providers all make the transition to today's UMTS/HSPA and tomorrow's LTE, Apple's ability to sell a single iPhone model globally will continue to expand.

The company's existing contract to exclusively sell the iPhone in the US with AT&T ends next year, opening the possibility of a new iPhone 3G/LTE model capable of working both on today's GSM/UMTS existing providers as well as CDMA providers now making the shift to LTE, such as Verizon in the US.
post #2 of 40
Keep breaking the exclusive deals. Hope this will be a coming sign of the end of AT&T's exclusive deals.
80 million iPhones by 2012. That's only 15% of the market.

http://www.iphonethailand.net
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80 million iPhones by 2012. That's only 15% of the market.

http://www.iphonethailand.net
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post #3 of 40
Contrary to the article title, there is no competition here, at least not yet. Bell has not offered any better price on the iPhone or any better plans. In some cases, the plans are worse than Rogers.
post #4 of 40
Are you Canadians still stuck with ludicrous 36 month contracts?

It's an unbelievably long time given how much advancement there's been in mobile phones since 2006 which is when some Canadians would have signed contracts they are still locked in to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jabohn View Post

Contrary to the article title, there is no competition here, at least not yet. Bell has not offered any better price on the iPhone or any better plans. In some cases, the plans are worse than Rogers.
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post #5 of 40
Yes, three years!
I'm actually a year and a couple of months into a 3-year contract, and I don't even have the original phone anymore. I just bought a new one outright.
post #6 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jabohn View Post

Contrary to the article title, there is no competition here, at least not yet. Bell has not offered any better price on the iPhone or any better plans. In some cases, the plans are worse than Rogers.

Apple sets the phone prices, but you are right about the plans.
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post #7 of 40
iPhone will get HSUPA in the next revision. (2010)
Then it will go HSPA+, which has good carrier support worldwide. (2011)
post #8 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Rogers Wireless, Apple's exclusive iPhone partner in Canada, is gaining new competition from its formerly CDMA-only rivals .... The new competition will provide an alternative to Roger's exclusive lock on the iPhone, which has been criticized for its unusually high prices and poor service. ...

It's already been said, but yeah, not really competition and so far Telus and Bell are providing less service for quite a bit higher prices.

I pay about $70.00 a month for 6GB from fido and all the basic phone stuff. Telus is offering 1GB for $100.00 a month.
post #9 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Are you Canadians still stuck with ludicrous 36 month contracts?

It's an unbelievably long time given how much advancement there's been in mobile phones since 2006 which is when some Canadians would have signed contracts they are still locked in to.

36 month contracts didn't arrive in canada with the iphone. they've been around since before motorola's startec...
post #10 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by retroneo View Post

iPhone will get HSUPA in the next revision. (2010)
Then it will go HSPA+, which has good carrier support worldwide. (2011)

I wouldn’t count on that. So far, the iPhone has HSDPA in the form of 7.2Mbps down/384Kbps up. The next stop may be HSUPA which will give a faster uplink, which I hope, but it may even be 7.2Mbps again or the 14.4Mbps downlink. We’ll get into HSUPA long before we get to the maximum for HSDPA downlink so I’ll skip to it.

After we get into HSUPA we have a maximum of 84.4Mbps down/5.76Mbps up, with this spec even being increased by 3GPP. This is all before we even get to HSPA+/Evolved HSPA which now has lower maximum bandwidth over HSDPA on the downlink.

If we could double the 3G radio’s bandwidth while maintain ing chip size and power usage every year and have the internal HW and network scale accordingly it would still several years before we could even reach the current theoretical speeds. But history shows us that is not feasible, though I’m glad we have such a future-forward map to guide us.
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post #11 of 40
From how I read the article, it makes it seem that Telus and Bell's iPhone will only work in small pockets across Canada as it'll not be compatible with either Edge or CDMA networks. Can anyone confirm/deny/clarify my understanding?
post #12 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Are you Canadians still stuck with ludicrous 36 month contracts?

It's an unbelievably long time given how much advancement there's been in mobile phones since 2006 which is when some Canadians would have signed contracts they are still locked in to.

Meanwhile, we wacky Americans are stuck with 2 year contracts that are equally absurd.
post #13 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

Meanwhile, we wacky Americans are stuck with 2 year contracts that are equally absurd.

Id say its 33% less absurd.
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post #14 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I wouldnt count on that. So far, the iPhone has HSDPA in the form of 7.2Mbps down/384Kbps up. The next stop may be HSUPA which will give a faster uplink, which I hope, but it may even be 7.2Mbps again or the 14.4Mbps downlink. Well get into HSUPA long before we get to the maximum for HSDPA downlink so Ill skip to it.

After we get into HSUPA we have a maximum of 84.4Mbps down/5.76Mbps up, with this spec even being increased by 3GPP. This is all before we even get to HSPA+/Evolved HSPA which now has lower maximum bandwidth over HSDPA on the downlink.

HSDPA (3GPP Release 5) ends at 14.4Mbit/sec. The only devices out there that support it are HSPA+ devices, which support 21Mbit/sec anyway.

Like many countries, we have a 21Mbit/sec HSPA+ network (3GPP Release 7) network in operation. The carrier, Telstra says that 42Mbit/sec will be enabled on the network before years end and we can expect 58Mbit/sec next year before the final upgrade of 168Mbit/sec on HSPA+.

HSPA+ will be supported by many more carriers at any given stage than LTE. LTE still at this late stage has no proven voice capability - and there are two options for it which carriers are undecided on. LTE won't offer handsets any advantages until 2012-2013 timeframe.

Of course these speed figures are irrelevant for handheld devices, however they do increase the capacity of the air interface.
post #15 of 40
Bell Mobility, in my experience, is perhaps the worst company in the history of the world in customer service, innovation and technology. Apple will ultimately be embarrassed by this relationship. buyer beware
post #16 of 40
It's good news for Bell and Telus customers who until now had to switch to Rogers if they wanted to get raped. Now they can experience the magic of rape right from their original providers as the big 3 continue to "compete"!
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post #17 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecking View Post

It's good news for Bell and Telus customers who until now had to switch to Rogers if they wanted to get raped. Now they can experience the magic of rape right from their original providers as the big 3 continue to "compete"!

Exactly. I love the way telus include the 'Voicemail 10' feature FOR FREE in the smart phone package. Normally with Telus you get to receive three - yes 3 - voicemails (you have to delete to receive another). For an additional $7 per month you get the magic 'voicemail 10' which allows you ten - yes, that's right - 10, voice mails. 7 dollars per month for up to 10 voice mails! When I questioned this the Telus sales guy guessed it was a data storage fee by which reckoning I should be paying several thousand (wild guess) dollars per month for my Google account.
post #18 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Id say its 33% less absurd.

It's absurd that you complain about a 2 year contract when you had a choice not get a contract and just pay list price for the device.
post #19 of 40
And by competition, you mean multiple carriers all charging pretty much the same price, with the same length contracts (3 Years!), with fairly similar data caps and E.T.F's?

The only thing this makes 'better' is that Bell/Telus are putting up new towers (that they are sharing) so Roger's is less likely to be overloaded (and I'm sure lots of people in the US wishes this would happen just to lessen the overload on AT&T's network).

The carriers up here only 'compete' using the very loosest definition...
post #20 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Id say its 33% less absurd.

post #21 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Are you Canadians still stuck with ludicrous 36 month contracts?

It's an unbelievably long time given how much advancement there's been in mobile phones since 2006 which is when some Canadians would have signed contracts they are still locked in to.

Yup, and they're strict about it. I went to Bell today to try and get in iPhone. When I was in the States I was with Sprint, and they would usually let you trade up for a new phone if you signed a new plan. You wouldn't get the phone like a new customer would if you were still in a contract, but you wouldn't have to pay full price.

On the other hand, I'm halfway through my 3 year plan, so I either had to drop $800 for the phone, I could get a new 3 year contract and get the iPhone for the intro cost, but have to pay $340 to cancel my current contract, or get the new phone and keep my old plan until it runs out. Crazy. I know I'm in a contract, but I've never heard of a carrier setting up obstacles that would make it hard for someone to buy a phone and get on a higher cost plan. For a company that charges for basic features like voicemail, texting and nationwide long distance, I thought this would be rather simple.
post #22 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post

It's already been said, but yeah, not really competition and so far Telus and Bell are providing less service for quite a bit higher prices.

I pay about $70.00 a month for 6GB from fido and all the basic phone stuff. Telus is offering 1GB for $100.00 a month.

There's no info for the plan pricing on the Telus site. They're only launching the iPhone tomorrow.
post #23 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by noexpectations View Post

It's absurd that you complain about a 2 year contract when you had a choice not get a contract and just pay list price for the device.

A little reading comprehension is in order on your part. Nothing I said was a complaint. It was a joke. On top of that, Ive stated many times that you pay for the handset either way and the cheaper method is to sign a contract than to not to.
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post #24 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

A little reading comprehension is in order on your part. Nothing I said was a complaint. It was a joke. On top of that, Ive stated many times that you pay for the handset either way and the cheaper method is to sign a contract than to not to.

How come everyone on here has a reading disorder except yourself? Have you ever asked yourself that question?
post #25 of 40
Canadian carriers are the ONLY reason I don't have an iPhone...it's ludicrous. Rogers won't even let an iPhone plan be part of their bundle discounts when you have cable and internet with them. It's robbery and it stinks.
post #26 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by JavaCowboy View Post

There's no info for the plan pricing on the Telus site. They're only launching the iPhone tomorrow.

So far what I've found out what their rates could be is at this link:

http://www.iphoneincanada.ca/iphone-...ices-revealed/

Guess we'll all know tomorrow.

Btw, I've been with Telus for years and have had great service over that time.
post #27 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by VisualZone View Post

Btw, I've been with Telus for years and have had great service over the that time.

Cool! Yours is the first post (ever) I can recall from a Canadian that actually says something non-negative about service providers up North!

Maybe you should duck.....
post #28 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCloud View Post

From how I read the article, it makes it seem that Telus and Bell's iPhone will only work in small pockets across Canada as it'll not be compatible with either Edge or CDMA networks. Can anyone confirm/deny/clarify my understanding?

Yes. Telus has confirmed this for me directly: I'm in Manitoba, and I will not be able to get/use a Telus iPhone here until Q3 2010 because the network simply will not work with the device until then.

Even Rogers has virtually no service to speak of outside of the city here. CDMA covers 97% of the province, GSM less than 3%. Even Rogers' own maps make it look like they have significantly more coverage than they really do.
post #29 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

Cool! Yours is the first post (ever) I can recall from a Canadian that actually says something non-negative about service providers up North!

Maybe you should duck.....

Maybe I should post more often. Must be my upbringing. Treat others as you want yourself to be treated.
post #30 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by VisualZone View Post

Treat others as you want yourself to be treated......

.....regardless of how they treat you!
post #31 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

.....regardless of how they treat you!

Yuppers! Especially if they're pointing a weapon at you.
post #32 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by whatisgoingon View Post

And by competition, you mean multiple carriers all charging pretty much the same price, with the same length contracts (3 Years!), with fairly similar data caps and E.T.F's?


.....The carriers up here only 'compete' using the very loosest definition...


Don't forget to add the mandatory S.A.F..... Funny how they've all settled on $6.95 per month. "Nope. No collusion here, folks. Nothing to see, please keep traffic moving."
post #33 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by bsenka View Post

Yes. Telus has confirmed this for me directly: I'm in Manitoba, and I will not be able to get/use a Telus iPhone here until Q3 2010 because the network simply will not work with the device until then.

Even Rogers has virtually no service to speak of outside of the city here. CDMA covers 97% of the province, GSM less than 3%. Even Rogers' own maps make it look like they have significantly more coverage than they really do.

Well, Roger's is probably going by line of site for their map. If you can see the tower from where you are standing, they just assume you can get a signal. And Manitoba is FLAT!

post #34 of 40
I'm glad there's some competition in the UK now. I can save up to 63p (about $1) if I swap to Orange!
post #35 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by hill60 View Post

Are you Canadians still stuck with ludicrous 36 month contracts?

It's an unbelievably long time given how much advancement there's been in mobile phones since 2006 which is when some Canadians would have signed contracts they are still locked in to.

Yes. I think Canada is the ONLY country to have 3-year contracts. Oh, and when I got my 3G s, the three years started over from day 1.
post #36 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by iCloud View Post

From how I read the article, it makes it seem that Telus and Bell's iPhone will only work in small pockets across Canada as it'll not be compatible with either Edge or CDMA networks. Can anyone confirm/deny/clarify my understanding?

You are correct. When you are outside of 3G coverage, you will have no service. Contrasted with Rogers, where you fall back to edge if you lose 3G.

That's what makes Bell's rates (and I assume Telus) so funny. Rogers actually managed to take some market share away from Bell/telus without having to do anything, other than carry the iPhone. The three of them have an understanding, that is pretty much out right collusion, not to poach each others customers. This is why their rates are almost identical, their fees are the same, the same services are 'extras' for all three, etc. Yet, now that Bell/Telus have the chance to take back some of the customers they lost by carrying the iPhone too, the only option left for them would be to beat rogers on rates and plans. They won't. That would break their unwritten, unspoken agreement.

Alternative carriers do not mean competition if the carriers all refuse to compete. This is why the Canadian cellular carriers are the most profitable in the world (amongst anyway)

What is even more unfortunate, is that one of the new national carriers we were supposed to get next year (Wind) has just been blocked by the CRTC (similar to FCC), because of foreign ownership restrictions. What is bizarre is that their ownership was already declared OK by the Competition Bureau (similar to FTC) and was approved. But, Rogers/Bell/Telus lobbied the CRTC to block them, because Wind made no secret that they were going to upset the status quo and actually compete on price. The last time there was a national carrier that dared to compete, Fido, the big three basically just threw dice to decide which on would buy them out.

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...sometimes it's both
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post #37 of 40
Would be nice if Sprint, Verizion, US Cellular, etc. did the switch like Bell and Telus did.
post #38 of 40
Well, speaking of Canadian service, anyone have Fido? I'm thinking about going that route, I just wanted to hear how people were liking/disliking it versus the other guys.
post #39 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Expat View Post

Well, speaking of Canadian service, anyone have Fido? I'm thinking about going that route, I just wanted to hear how people were liking/disliking it versus the other guys.

Fido == Rogers

I have compared the Bell's plan with Telus's and Rogers': the $45 plan (excluding system access fees, etc., of course ) seems to fit my needs. I don't chat endlessly and 500MB per month is good enough for me. Simply put I just want to have an iPod that I can use as a phone. But then do I want to sign up with Bell for 3 yrs? No thanks! Not to mention it is pretty closed to what the others are offering at the moment. There is no competition up here... only collusion.

I guess no iPhone for me. I hope when they roll out the "iTablet" I can just get one w/o a plan from an Apple Store...
post #40 of 40
The fact that Telus and Bell offered essentially the same terms as Rogers for the iPhone is the smoking gun that there's collusion among the three cell phone providers. The fact that they're so callous about making it obvious indicates that they can pretty much take it to the bank that the CRTC will do nothing about it.

At least this is one area where Americans don't get screwed as badly as Canadians. There are four cell phone providers versus three in Canada.
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