It’s time to look at splitting up Canadian telecoms

Excellent discussion of the topic of Structural Separation and how it could help improve access to and quality of broadband and wireless services at a lower cost.


Chopping_BoardSo Canadians finally have a set of rules that will shield them from the worst practices of cellphone carriers – three-year contracts and exorbitant roaming rates among them – thanks to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission and its new Wireless Code of Conduct. But will the regulator’s manifesto result in lower monthly bills? In some cases, perhaps, but in others, no.

The code effectively makes three-year contracts moot by requiring carriers to divide up the cost of customers’ phone subsidies over a maximum of 24 months. If a customer wants to cancel early within that time frame, carriers are only allowed to recoup whatever subsidy is left on the device and nothing more. They’re still free to offer three-year contracts, but with customers able to walk away after 24 months with zero charges, there’s no point.

The rules also cap roaming fees at $100 and data overage charges…

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