Tête-à-tête: Where is Canada’s Uncarrier?

Daniel Bader

March 13, 2014 12:10 pm

Welcome to Tête-à-tête, a new series where two of our writers remark on interesting topics in the mobile landscape — through chat. This week, Douglas and Daniel talk about why Canada can’t have its own John Legere, even though one carrier has been taking steps to match T-Mobile’s customer-first approach.

Douglas: We need to have a serious conversation about John Legere and T-Mobile. Other than a deluge of wearable tech and Michael Bay’s meltdown, Legere is the only thing from CES that I can remember two months later. I feel he is sincere in his customer-focused mandate, and the #Uncarrier movement is real. Legere’s recent Twitter trolling of John Chen was impeccable, and it underscored a really great T-Mobile offer for indignant BlackBerry users spurned by a poorly conceived marketing campaign.

But while many Canadians would likely prefer T-Mobile’s prices to the oligarchy of Canadian carriers and their relationship with the CRTC, I’m not sure they’d be able to stomach Legere, if the comment thread on that last post is any indication. I’m not sure you can have one without the other, though — Legere’s personal brand is T-Mobile’s brand.

So my question to you is this: what’s stopping the Uncarrier movement in Canada? Is it due to the nature of the Canadian telecom industry, or the polite sensibilities of Canadian consumers, who don’t seem to approve of aggressive competition?

Daniel: You’re right that the Uncarrier movement (I’m purposefully omitting the hashtag because lame) is working: T-Mobile added over 1.6 million new customers last quarter, its best 3-month period in eight years. Moreover, Legere is singlehandedly, along with some pretty smart marketing, revitalizing the company’s image as a customer-focused, price-conscious upstart.

But this has always been T-Mobile’s role in the United States, ever since Deutsche Telekom ported over its European brand name in 2002. The company is the fourth largest carrier in the US with nearly 47 million customers, and operates at extremely low margins and the lowest postpaid ARPU of the four majors. In other words, Legere is not a turnaround prophet, he was the company’s last hope.

If you’ll recall, T-Mobile’s very existence was tentative until early 2013; its acquisition by AT&T was rejected by the FCC after a regulatory uproar (it would have made the combined telco the biggest in North America), so it had to do something. It acquired regional carrier, MetroPCS, in early 2013, and began refarming its AWS 3G network to PCS so it could launch a nationwide LTE network on its considerable AWS cache. This after AT&T and Verizon had rolled out similar offerings 18 months earlier.

The Canadian market has a Legere: WIND Mobile’s Anthony Lacavera. Unlike Legere, though, Lac lacks the capital and financial backing from WIND’s parent company to expand into new territory. I’d argue that with the strength of VimpelCom behind it, WIND Mobile could have bought the necessary 700Mhz spectrum to roll out a healthy LTE network by the end of 2014. Instead, WIND will likely go bankrupt, its pieces mopped up by Videotron, or worse, a holding company like Cerberus.

There is also the matter of entrenchment: while Canadians love to complain about their incumbent carriers, the addition of three new entrants in 2009 changed almost nothing. WIND has under 700,000 subscribers, and Mobilicity might as well be non-existent. Public Mobile was bought by TELUS and will integrate with Koodo in the coming months. Canadians did nothing but stay put when a viable fourth carrier entered the market and undercut the incumbents by upwards of 50%. Canadian incumbents like Rogers, Bell and Telus boast higher post-paid ARPU than T-Mobile, and have proven that they don’t need to compete on price to win over customers.

Any time you want to complain about a Canadian incumbent carrier, head down to the US and roam on T-Mobile’s “4G” network. It’s awful. Coverage is bad and speeds are worse. Legere is certainly taking steps to improve things, but any customer in a big city like New York, San Francisco, Boston or Chicago will tell you that T-Mobile has, until recently, not been worth its lower prices.

Douglas: I will concede that, at some level, Legere is a false prophet until T-Mobile can improve their coverage issues (which to be fair, is something all US carriers face to a certain extent, but T-Mobile more so) to become a viable option for all Americans, not just some. But I contest your assertion that WIND is T-Mobile North. While T-Mobile is the 4th largest US carrier, they do have 46M subscribers, and are only 7M behind Sprint for 3rd. T-Mobile is much larger proportional to its national market than WIND, and maybe that has contributed to its greater success despite similar business models. Despite low ARPU, T-Mobile is not seen as a discount brand like WIND but rather a viable national option that is ‘sticking it to the big guys.’ Perhaps Canadians are only willing to go with more established carriers they know will be sticking around, or can provide coverage outside the GTA?

I think the best option Canucks have for a Canadian #uncarrier (HASHTAGS) is Telus. While currently #2, they are essentially neck and with Bell and Rogers, but lack those two companies’ resources as media conglomerates, giving them an incentive to push harder to remain competitive. They also have likely the most-loved brand out of the three. Why not leverage that brand equity towards a kinder, gentler #uncarrier that I know Canadians crave deep down in their hearts? I can see it now: cute CGI lemurs tearing up Rogers contracts in TV commercials, and politely reminding viewers that Bell ain’t so great while some pop hit from the ’70s plays in the background. If we can’t have an #uncarrier, can we at least have a #cutecarrier?

Daniel: Perhaps I was unclear: WIND could have been Canada’s T-Mobile, but instead is Canada’s US Cellular (or worse, some MVNO piggybacking off Sprint’s network you’ve never heard of). But Lacavera has the same tenacity and business acumen as Legere, and could easily, with the right resources, do for WIND what Legere is doing for T-Mo.

I’m intrigued by your determination that TELUS has the potential to be Canada’s Uncarrier. Pricing aside — TELUS will never be a “discount” carrier the way T-Mobile is considered by many — you’re right. They were the first to do away with stupid activation fees and bills that couch hidden fees in the print. That TELUS recently left the CWTA is a big deal, as it means they’re no longer satisfied being represented by the same lobby group as Rogers and Bell. Many of the company’s recent changes reflect that desire to be seen as the most consumer-friendly telco in Canada, and it’s working: TELUS boasts the lowest churn of the Big Three, and netted more customers last quarter than their counterparts. And you’re right, the fact they don’t have those alternate revenue streams — media, sports, radio — helps them stay lean and focused on improving their mobile offering.

On the other hand, TELUS is often the most expensive of the three carriers and, if you’ll excuse me while I get technical for a moment, they lack the same amount of spectrum as Rogers and Bell. Indeed, the reason TELUS wanted so badly to purchase Mobilicity was not for its low-ARPU customers but its extremely valuable AWS spectrum. Rogers wiped the floor clean with TELUS and, to a lesser extent Bell, during the AWS auction in 2008, and did the same during the recent 700Mhz auction. TELUS will struggle to scale its LTE network in markets like Southern Ontario where it only has 10Mhz of AWS next to Rogers’ combined 40Mhz (AWS + 2600).

That being said, if they continue to focus on getting the best smart devices and pairing them with the best customer service, TELUS will continue to grow, and is one major disruption away from turning this industry on its head. I worry, though, that complacency and a lack of competition — true competition, not this fake price-matching version — will prevent a real Uncarrier from emerging in Canada.

The Hail Mary pass may come from Videtron, which purchased 700Mhz spectrum in Ontario, B.C. and Alberta during  the recent auction, but it’s unclear whether even they, a company steeped in the conservatism of parent company Quebecor, will make waves in the country’s telecom space. And with former CEO Péladeau coming out in favour of Quebec secession, the company’s biggest shareholder may have thrown quite a curve in the government’s plan to ensure a fourth carrier in every market. And now we wait.

Image Credit: Know Your Cell

  • aamd11

    “Canadians did nothing but stay put when a viable fourth carrier entered the market and undercut the incumbents by upwards of 50%” Perhaps because the so called “viable” new carriers a) didn’t reach the majority of Canadians b) had spotty coverage and poor customer service (at the beginning at least), c) could very easily end up being far more expensive if one didn’t stay in a small central area of their respective city, and d) had a poor launch offering of handsets, and also lacking the compatibility with all (most) of the current phones on the market.

    Remember how excited people got when Verizon was rumoured to be coming north? They would almost certainly not have undercut the incumbents (by much anyways) but the idea of a nationwide reliable carrier had people excited, not sure how a few spotty regional networks can be compared to a truly viable fourth carrier.

    • Stephen_81

      To be fair, the “viable” new Carriers did reach 30% of Canadians within the first 2 years. but geographically they barely met 5% of Canada’s land mass

      But I agree to be a national carrier, geographically you must have a footprint, not just population coverage.

    • aamd11

      It’s a shame, really, that they haven’t had serious merger talks (at least to our knowledge) because combined is the only was I could see them surviving and maybe even thriving

    • Stephen_81

      Problem was all the combined guys still covered the same geographic areas. And Still had really low ARPU’s which means they don’t generate the capital to expand.
      It has been my experience that Canadians expect a higher level of customer service and a more retail friendly experience than those in the US. That costs more. IF a new Carrier wanted to stand out it means spending even more to put the customer first. and not just a race to the bottom price.

      I truly think it is a pipe dream to think that Canada can support 4 National carriers + 3 Regional Carriers and also expect to remain on the cutting edge of technology.

    • Philosoraptor

      The thing is, most people that I’ve spoken with don’t actually want to be on the cutting edge when it comes to network tech. They want their shiny new gadgets but don’t necessarily care about things like LTE. Most of us aren’t asking for these network updates. The EU still hasn’t even began catching up to us in terms of speeds because people in charge are more than content with letting others (like us) test out expensive new infrastructure at our own expense.

    • Stephen_81

      @Philosoraptor:disqus I would agree with you to a point, except that business is more and more being run mobile, infrastructure has to be in place before it can be utilized and Canadian business must compete with the US, so having compatible networks is unfortunately a priority.

      Consumers most certainly would not be happy if Bell/Telus did not go HSPA and were stuck with the slow CDMA speeds for long term until LTE deployment was ready with VoLTE,

      I for one don’t care for LTE yet. but I know that as the market continues to get more data hungry I’ll be thankful that we’ve got the infrastructure in place before we start seeing the dropped signals one sees in Port Dover on Friday the 13ths during warm months.

    • Philosoraptor

      I fail to see why I should subsidize Canadian business needs when most, if not all, Canadian business seems to care very little about my needs.

      And it’s not my fault that Bell/Telus backed the wrong horse. The whole world went GSM a long time before HSPA came into play.

    • Stephen_81

      I can see that this will be a futile discussion.

      You pay for a service, the service costs are divided across the entire business model. Why should I pay for the street lights in my town, my car has headlights!

    • Philosoraptor

      No, it’s you that doesn’t want to see it any other way.
      As an adult capable of critical thought, I will voice my opinion. Why must everything be reduced to a half-baked analogy? Your conclusion seems to imply that I’m against paying for anything that doesn’t seem to have a direct benefit to me. I can assure you that I fully support my tax dollars supporting the less fortunate, our healthcare system, our education system, our freedom of movement, etc.

      I just don’t buy into the whole “support Canadian business” crap that we’re force-fed. All things being equal, I’d love to support a Canadian business over a foreign one. Why does this support always seem to go one way? Are these carriers supporting Canadian citizens in keeping local jobs and helping them provide for their families? Or are they still cutting jobs despite record profits? Why is it that the poorest of us are always expected to support the richest?

    • Stephen_81

      Unless you are a business user, there is nothing forcing you to be paying the big carriers.

      You’ve got the option. You choose to pay because you want the service. the nature of the organization and requirements of the service is that everyone share the burden of deployment.
      I must pay the same per KWH as my neighbours for electricity and delivery charge, I have invested in tankless hot water systems I’ve increased my insulation and replaced windows, The Service has a set fee for use I must pay, I pay for the upgrades to the network and maintenance for my service even though I don’t need increased capacity.

      Theoretically I could chose to go off the grid but I wont because I have needs beyond what could be provided by that.

      Carriers need subscriber volumes to get revenue high enough that they don’t need as high of margins to pay for their capital expenditures. It has nothing to do with the carriers being a Canadian business, it has everything to do with Canadian businesses, being able to compete on the international stage, it has everything to do with global trade, and our largest and closest trade partner is the USA so having compatible systems is advantageous.

    • Jason

      Was it not TELUS that led the most recent price increases of $5 on all secondary lines. I don’t understand this love in with TELUS. They are just as evil but present themselves better.

    • Davidyyz

      Pricing and customer service aren’t directly correlated. You can have high prices, but offer good customer service. This is the approach Telus is taking and it’s paying off. They have the lowest churn and the highest ARPU amongst the Big 3. Clearly, their customers are seeing value in the higher prices they pay. They are not seeing that value with Bell and Rogers.

    • Turbojugend

      But the excitement was for something that was never going to happen. People thought Verizon would come in with $45-$50 price plans with 2 gigs of data and unlimited plans. They never would’ve had that and within a month everybody would’ve been bitching about them.

  • Stephen_81

    Great chatter!

    I can’t see Telus doing anything to attempt to really rock the boat, with their tower share agreements with Bell it would do Telus more harm than it would Bell should the relationship collapse.

    I really don’t believe we will see an Uncarrier movement unless we go even more socialist and launch a national wireless network that carriers lease off of to allow more competition, building towers and covering our country even excluding the territories is expensive and does not have a great ROI, it was far more cost effective for the Big 3 as they expanded out back in the day

    • ScooterinAB

      Up vote because you said tower share.

      I have to agree with you. I really can’t see Telus really changing things up in the same way it sounds like T-Mobile is.

  • Columbo

    Great article. While I’m a big fan (and customer) of WIND, I worry about their viability. Really, in a country of 35 million people we don’t necessarily need 4 carriers… what we need is for one of the big 3 to not such so much. Imagine if Telus did something like cut their prices by 20%… they’d still make billions but wow what a difference it’d make to Canada’s wireless scene.

    • J-Ro

      That I agree with

    • Stephen_81

      Telus in 2012 made approx $1.318 Billion in Profit so cutting by 20% isn’t going to “make them Billions” so to speak.

      They spent $1.9 Billion in capital expenses this year as well. They need to be making revenue to keep up with the pace of the industry, or they need to be taking on more debt load. which isn’t viable.

    • J-Ro

      Now that you have painted a picture with numbers, its hard to see what they do wrong. If they were to lower their prices too much, we would get spotty networks.

    • hardy83

      Maybe it shouldn’t be private industry that expands wireless and wires networks.

      My view has always been that both wireless and wired communication should be owned, expanded, funded and controlled by the crown (federal government).
      Tax payers should pay for its expansion, maintenance and quality.

      The bandwidth both wireless and wired should be rented TO the private companies to use. They get the amount they need and the rental fees offset most of the cost of running/expanding it all.

      This would very much have meant lower monthly prices to the consumer since the most expensive part is nationalized.
      On top of obviously a far better telecom act and regulations on the industry.

      However that’s obviously not an option now as the government sold off pretty much all wireless and wired communication infrastructure to private industry. The telecom act, in my view, is a complete anti-consumer wreck, as well as the government itself being fairly incompetent.

      In another dimensions maybe. :(

    • thomas nguyen

      “government itself being fairly incompetent” is the reason why we dont want this to be owned and operated by the crown.

      and if they do something wrong, how do we fight it if it is owned by the government? who do we go to to voice our concern or issues.

    • Philosoraptor

      To the same officials that our votes keep in power. If they don’t listen, they don’t get to keep those positions.

    • thomas nguyen

      yes, but that requires the masses to vote, voter turnout in the last few elections has barely been 60% of the masses.

    • Philosoraptor

      At least you have the option.

    • hardy83

      By voting people out of their jobs.
      How do you fight a private company that doesn’t have to answer to the people if they do something wrong?

      …With laws, formed by the government…That answers to the people.

      Private companies are just very expensive middle men.

    • thomas nguyen

      but Private companies are driven by their bottom line, they charge for a service, and if you are dissatisfied with the service than you look for a better company with the service you want, which will usually cost more.

      Consumer has the responsibility to pay and promote companies that you think are fair, no different in telecommunication, you can choose which carrier to go to. But lack of service may deter some people.

      This brings me to the second point, is Telecommunication is not all privatized, the price you pay is partially hindered and obstructed by the CRTC, the regulatory board. In part due to their way of forcing carriers to change their commitment time more so than price of the plans, as well as go through a hidden bidding practice for their spectrum (which is to benefit only for themselves to get the most out of each carrier for the bids).

      all this reflects on the price YOU pay as a consumer.

    • Stephen_81

      I don’t disagree with you.
      EXCEPT that how would tax payers have reacted in the early 80’s with interest rates around 10% and mortgages reaching as high as 20% that the government was out spending money building a wireless network for less than 1% of 1% of tax payers to make use of.

      It would have been political suicide to do so, and really would anyone have believed in the 80’s that we’d be using text over voice for 90% of our communications?

      Private enterprise was the fastest way our telecom sector could grow, and did grow. and competition between the major players meant that nationally we get better over all coverage from 3 carriers than the US get, in the US AT&T vs Verizon for national coverage but both have major dead/low service zones the likes we don’t see in Canada from our Big 3.

      I’d also like you to direct some attention to HydroONE and see how great our crown corporation is being run.

    • Philosoraptor

      Our population is 10x lower than our southern neighbours and most of it is relatively close to the border. The US population is way more evenly distributed and their carriers do have to cover a lot more geography than our carriers.

    • Danny Mc Carthy

      Ireland has 4 carries in a country of under 5 Million:
      Vodafone Ireland – Wholly owned by Vodafone Group,
      O2 Ireland – Part of Telefónica,
      Meteor / E Mobile – Part of the eircom group
      3 Ireland – Hutchison Whampoa Group.

  • graze81

    I like this idea as a new feature to MS. Looking forward to seeing more of these!

    After reading up on John Legere earlier this year, I really wish we had someone like this in Canada, who had the finances to rock, no, sink the boat. We DESPERATELY need a viable fourth national carrier. Bell is rumored to be announcing new plans and pricing tomorrow (March 14). How much do want to bet, hours later, Rogers and Telus will match the EXACT same pricing?

    It was brought up in the article that Canadians didn’t jump ship when WIND first started. Do you think one of the reasons this happened was because people are still locked into three year contracts?

    My Rogers contract is ending this April. Despite all the issues WIND is having, I’m still joining them. I’ve researched all the major carrier’s and their sub brands and WIND is offering the best deal for what I need. I’m really hoping Videtron breaks out as a new hope.

    • Stephen_81

      Agreed Contracts for sure played a roll,

      But the number of users added each year to the incumbents from Churn exceeds the total number of WIND subscribers. Telus saw an average monthly Churn of 1.44% of their 7.7million users. which is approximately 110,000 users switching a month. So Contracts play a small roll but not as big as one might think.

    • J-Ro

      Again, you painted the picture very well with numbers.

    • thomas nguyen

      I dont understand the need of a 4th national carrier, we have at least 4-5 per region already, and how many of us get outside your city for large expanse at a time. I rather have a regional carrier that supports all the metropolitan area, then build out once the resources comes in.

      work within your constraints (budget, infrastructure, resources, etc) then accumulate shares, stakeholders (clients), and support before looking at the big picture (national coverage).

      the problem is as a business, you are competing with businesses that have been in the industry and already have a national structure, you cant just go in and build everything up at the same time and expect the turn a profit. start small and regional, then move out.

    • SV650

      I, for one, am sufficiently frequently outside my city, that a regional carrier wold not work well. I’m sure I’m far from alone. The numbers of individuals remaining with the incumbents also indicates that sufficient of us have expectation of broader coverage.

    • ScooterinAB

      I also work outside of my city. More accurately, I live 18 km from the major city I work in, so heavily localized carriers like Wind also do nothing for me. I also have family and very close friends in 3 different cities that I visit quite regularly.

      It’s not about Canadians travelling. It’s about where Canadians live.

    • Jason

      Bell is matching TELUS’s increase not vise versa. TELUS isn’t the god send this article paints

    • ScooterinAB

      I have to disagree with you about contracts. Being in a contract didn’t really play a huge role in Wind failing to become a viable alternative. Even assuming that every single wireless customer in Canada signed a new 3 year contract a week before Wind started, that still doesn’t account for why Wind still isn’t growing in a meaningful and self sufficient manner. Any customer who signed a new contract when Wind started would be out or contract, resigned, and possibly out again by now. It’s been about 5 years. 5 is bigger than 3, so that theory largely goes out the window.

      No, the main reason why customers haven’t been supporting Wind is because they cannot offer the services that the majority of Canadians require.

  • d094

    It’s John’s hair that keeps us from liking him ;)

  • Scott

    I think that a nation MVNO, like TING, could make waves in Canada. The only thing really holding them back are the ‘purchase’ price of air/data time from the current Big 3. The CRTC is talking about addressing this issue but the reality is that it will be unlikely that they will force them to make independent MVNOs viable in Canada.

  • trickster_qc

    the un-carrier was Fido and it was killed in 2004 when Rogers purchased it.

    simple as that.

    • KiwiBri

      totally.. I remember all the great deals at the time FIDO had..
      They were the Original GSM carrier here too. I was SMS (txt) messaging overseas friends etc before people here even knew it existed. lol.

      2004..wow.. has it been that long?

    • trickster_qc

      perhaps it was a bit later but I”m pretty sure it was in 2004.

  • Surveillance

    What if consumers stopped waiting around for the carriers to change and actually changed themselves? It’s pretty easy to get prices down 20%. Make them compete. Shop around.

    • Davidyyz

      Unless millions of Canadians decide to go without cell phones altogether, there’s no point shopping around. The prices are exactly the same wherever you go.

  • Bri Bru

    What will I do when there is no WIND/Mobilicity…

    • trickster_qc

      you’ll be able to enjoy great coverage but it’s going to cost you.

    • Bri Bru

      I don’t need the great coverage and speed for the PREMIUM cost

    • trickster_qc

      I know what you mean, but to me if I’m gonna have a smartphone, I want it to rock.

      Fortunatly I have an older plan with Fido and I end up paying 58$ a month taxes in for unlimited everything + 3 gb.

      not too bad and coverage and speeds are great.

    • Bri Bru

      Not bad not bad..

    • trickster_qc

      Yes im satisfied for the time being

    • ScooterinAB

      You get what you pay for. If you want premium products and services, you pay a premium price. If you don’t need premium products and services, you don’t need to pay a premium price.

    • Stephen_81

      You’ll get to learn how to negotiate for better pricepoints, though you’ll be stuck with metered data moving forward.

    • Philosoraptor

      Negotiation is futile without leverage.

    • Philosoraptor

      You’ll join the prepaid club and use your phone for only the most basic and necessary communication. If people do this instead of just complaining about high prices and still choosing to pay, those prices will drop.

  • bmccull

    Don’t expect the Hail Mary pass from Vidéotron. PKP betrayed his business acumen spending all that money on 700 MHz outside Québec and then standing as a separatist. Do you not think that every Canadian will pause to think of this before purchasing service from Vidéotron? I think their national (or international, if he is successful) aspirations are doomed.

    • Stephen_81

      I bet you the majority of Canadians wouldn’t even know who PKP is.

      If Videotron hit the commercials with a great price and a good coverage map people would make the switch. Politics really don’t play much in peoples purchasing decisions. Apple is the number 1 device maker, they’ve had the most publicized atrocities in their manufacturing facilities, and they own some 30 Billion in taxes to the USA.

      People purchase with wallet before mind more often than not.

    • trickster_qc

      where do you get your info that Apple owes the US govern. billions in taxes?

      I’m curious ahah! totally possible.

    • Stephen_81

      From Tim Cook and his arguing that the US needs to lower their repatriation tax for the 100+ Billion Apple has out of the country.

    • SV650

      Flaw in Logic. Just because it would cost Apple $30 billion to repatriate the monies held offshore, does not mean they owe that in taxes to the US Government. Most or all of it was earned offshore, and remains there. Not at all the same as moving money out of the States to evade taxes.

    • kkritsilas

      If Apple owed the US Gov’t $30B, there would have been Apple executives in jail. All of the money that Apple has outside of the US is legally outside of the US. It was earned outside of the US, and is being kept there. How would you explain to your shareholders, that due to Apple wanting to be seen as doing the right thing, it was bringing all of its money back in from outside of the US so that it can pay out $30B in taxes. Try selling that to the shareholders.

      Kostas

    • Stephen_81

      Apple has to repatriate that money to give to stock holders which is why instead of bringing it in and paying taxes Apple actually took on debt to fund their stock buy back because they are still avoiding the taxation.

      While it is not illegal what they are doing, it does not negate that they are fighting with the government for special treatment because they don’t want to pay their full tax burden.

    • Harjoet Mudan

      What? that’s one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard. They bought back the shares and paid out dividends by taking on debt because it saved the company and its shareholders billions of dollars. Why would they choose to pay more in taxes? Just to be nice to the US? Every major corporation keeps a lot of their money in foreign nations to save on taxes, it’s the smart thing to do.

    • Stephen_81

      Smart things vs socially responsible thing.
      But I apologize I should never speak poorly of Apple they can do no wrong.

    • SV650

      Most of us do our best to pay as little tax as possible. RRSP, charitable donations, RESP, TFSA, etc. Some go beyond tax avoidance to evasion (cash under the table, undeclared income, etc), however I know of no one who does not use every deduction available to them. Maybe you’re more benevolent than most, but don’t expect us all to follow.

    • Stephen_81

      SO you are defending my statement that social responsibility comes second to ones wallet. as I originally stated.

    • SV650

      Taxation and social responsibility are not necessarily connected. One can be socially responsible in many ways, and pay NO taxes. YOU are equating payment of taxes with social responsibility which is not at all the case. For instance, one could give sufficient of their income to charity that they pay no income taxes. They may well be far more socially responsible than the individual who pays at the rate you have selected for them.

    • Sweet

      I disagree. Canadians have no idea who Videotron is — PKP is being associated with Quebecor, not Videotron — which is why several analysts have said that if Videotron were to expand outside Quebec, they’d effectively be starting from scratch as a foreign carrier like Telenor would.

      So IMO, politics will only come into play if the media decides to associate PKP with Videotron, which probably won’t happen if he sells his shares, which he’ll probably have to do.

  • Accophox

    Authors: T-mobile, while sometimes a load of doo-doo, is nothing compared to the truckload of doo-doo that is Sprint. Have you even TRIED using data on a phone on their antiquated CDMA/WiMAX network? Their network is *the worst* in the states, and they charge more for access.

    Sorry, but until you’ve experienced Sprint “4G” (I had a loaner phone from a friend down in the states a year ago, old SGS2 Epic Touch), you can’t talk about how bad T-mobile’s HSPA+ network is.

  • Sweet

    We don’t need a 4th national carrier, but I do see the need for a multi-region carrier. A while ago, StatsCan release stats showing that more and more people are chosing to live in big cities. If that trend continues, then it would make business sense for a carrier like Wind to just stick to the major urban areas and leave the suburbs and rural areas to the incumbents, as Wind and Mobi are doing now.

    It’s really too bad Wind is having problems getting the financing they need. They could have been Canada’s uncarrier.

  • mamemame187

    I thought it was Koodo.

  • Josh Kortleve

    why was my comment deleted? and would you please remove the ablest slurs in your arcticle?

  • Len Waugh

    Now, I went Wind as soon as they came to my city. But, I fear they just don’t have enough capital to be what we need. And we do need a forth.

    Three should be enough but they all have the same pricing, the same coverage, the same promises. Now, ya, you can find difference maybe you would call big… but it’s not comparable to a tmoble vs verizon type comparison.

    Take my needs for example… I want a data dumb pipe for extremly large amounts of data. I have absolutly zero need nor even slight desire for anything that is not data. On any of the big 3 my bill would be insane. None of them have stepped up to fill this highly requested market; none of them break ranks and offer unlimited data (at any cost).

    I can assume they have an unspoken agreement not to drive data prices down because thats the highest cost for what could potentially kill their other cheaper offerings. But what ever the reason, it’s different to what the u.s. has going on and I don’t like it.

  • Amparipaa

    “the polite sensibilities of Canadian consumers, who don’t seem to approve of aggressive competition”

    there’s the problem right there, and until Canadians get over their blind devotion to monopolization and sheer hatred toward competition, we’ll continue to pay up the piper, and be stuck living paycheck-to-paycheck with increasingly less and less of what we need until one day we are stuck on the streets!