Eastlink to launch wireless service next week

Ian Hardy

February 8, 2013 9:22 am


It’s been a long trek for Eastlink in launching their wireless service. However, Lee Bragg, Eastlink’s CEO, recently stated that “there’s no first to market advantage for us, we’re not in a big panic. We really want to do this right.”

Halifax, Nova Scotia-based Eastlink (Bragg Communications) purchased 19 licences during the 2008 spectrum wireless auction at a cost of $25 million. They’ve been slowly building out their offering and teasing East Coasters for months saying that “BIG savings are straight ahead.” Their service was originally targeted to go live mid-2011, then pushed to late-2012 and now “coming soon” in “early 2013.”

We’ve been informed that Eastlink will finally go live with their “world-class wireless network” late next week – possibly on Friday February, 15th – in both PEI and Nova Scotia. The details of the specific monthly plans, devices and exact coverage areas are still a mystery, but Eastlink will offer no-contracts, plus number portability, to customers looking switch or sign up. In addition, Eastlink will go heavy on ensuring this “made in the Maritimes” wireless service and will offer lower pricing to those customers who bundle various services together (cable, internet, home phone).

More competition is en route to the East Coast. When Eastlink goes live you can expect the Big 3 (Rogers, Bell and TELUS) and their sub-brands to diligently respond by discounting handsets and offering lower monthly pricing with new features.

More soon…
(Thanks tipsters!)

  • whoever

    Videotron east.

  • Drew

    Perfect! Competition is great!

  • chuck

    What the hell? No New Brunswick???

    • chairitable

      Eastlink only has service in Sackville, not surprising..

    • Gimppy

      Rogers has cable in NB and so EL will not go in there and start a turf war with Rogers so they will keep out of NS and PEI. its just that simple

  • Franko

    FINALLY HALIFAX WOOOOOO Wind really missed the boat here, they haven’t even updated us.

  • Keith

    Sounds promosing. It would be awesome if I could bring my own Lumia 920 have and be able to get a LTE plan priced like I’m not getting a phone from them.

  • screamer

    Wind and all these company are good but only in city’s big city’s! Other than that only the same price everywhere companys are an option. In Europe you can get now for 27 $ tax included unlimited everything and it works everywhere not like here you have to be In a zone ….

    For me wind should spend a lot of money to get service everywhere and bring all of these money eater to fall. Than we will all change to wind and see what these gangsters are doing all the same price anyways

    • The “Ontario Sucks” Song

      Wind has a large network in Southern Ontario, not just the “big cities”.

  • Kain

    they start off in big cities because there are more potential customers there.
    I have had a cell phone since 97 and the companies back then started in big cities too.
    It’s just smart business

  • Aaron

    “…Eastlink will offer no-contracts, plus number portability…”

    Pretty sure all carriers are legally required by the CRTC to offer number portability. I don’t think it’s something they do out of the goodness of their hearts.

    • SL

      I’m glad you mentioned that. It’s half-true. The CRTC mandates that the major carriers offer number portability in certain areas. I forget the exact details, but I believe it has something to do with population density. Even that’s a recent rule. Up until about 5 years ago, if you wanted to switch carriers, you were screwed.

  • Scott

    Any idea of the network type? Ive read AWS?

    • David N

      Im pretty sure they will be like tmo in the US. Only certain bands will work for 3g. As far I was told LTE wont be enabled, but should be launching. Now this is info I was given last year at a job interview so it should be taken with a grain of salt

    • Mike

      To answer what type of network, it was supposed to be AWS. It’s weird though, when I go into network selection on my iPhone 5, it shows up, which would indicate otherwise I guess? If I’m in Ottawa or Toronto and try to search for networks, neither Wind nor Mobilicity show up. Here’s what I get when I search: Rogers, Bell, TELUS, Eastlink, EXT (Don’t know what EXT is).

    • Sweet

      Eastlink is indeed operating in the AWS band. It’s not known yet whether they’ll be offering LTE or not. The fact that Eastlink’s network is showing up in the list of networks in an iPhone5 means that Eastlink does operate LTE in the AWS band, since the iPhone5 only supports LTE in the AWS band.

      You don’t see Wind, Mobilicity nor Videotron show up in the network list of an iPhone5 because those networks do not offer LTE in the AWS bands which the iPhone doesn’t support, which is why Wind, Mobilicity and Videotron don’t offer the iPhone.

    • Daniel AJ

      @David N: What do you mean by “LTE will not be enabled but should be launching”?

  • o2qc418

    Lol the first comment is about Vidéotron !
    Vidéotron is the big four 4 ! Device price are bad ! and plan are bad ! … oh yes … you save a great 5$ if you take all Vidéotron service !!! Vidéotron don’t have any coverage too in estearn quebec and rural area (like rogers) !!! Bell have better offer with their Fibe combo ! or just shop with tecksavvy for internet or any isp … Deal with retention with your Wireless carrier… This is the only things you can in Quebec… There are no competition in QC… Only Gatineau are Lucky with Wind and Mobilicity !

  • Janika

    More competition for robelus, sweet! Can’t wait for T-Mobile to set foot in Canada.

    • Tom

      Unfortunately, given that Eastlink, like Wind/Mobi, is relying on the AWS 1700 spectrum, the Big Three have little to worry about given that only a small fraction of the phones they sell are pentaband, and AWS has pretty bad indoor penetration and data speeds.

      Key factor: The iPhone, regardless of what you think of it, is overwhelmingly popular, and it doesn’t support AWS. T-Mobile USA recently starting refarming its network to support 1900 so that iPhones could be used on it without being stuck in 2G mode. Wind/Mobi and likely Eastlink too don’t even have a fallback 2G network, meaning the iPhone is absolutely useless on those.

      I really hoped the new entrants would scare Robellus, but as long as Robellus maintains their oligopoly on the non-AWS bands (850/900/1900, same as AT&T and most European carriers), nothing is going to change. What we need is not more AWS small companies, we need to open up the ENTIRE SPECTRUM to competition.

    • Sweet

      I

    • Sweet

      I’ll bet that if T-Mobile decides to operate in Canada, they’ll start by buying either Mobilicity or Wind, or perhaps even both.

  • SL

    This is great news! I’m 3 months from moving to PEI, and I was dreading the thought of going back to one of the Big 3 after using Wind and Mobilicity for the past two years.

  • ns.dev

    Doubt it. BB10 will launch first…

    crap, can’t use that joke anymore.