Bell increases BYOD cost to $45/month per line

Daniel Bader

May 1, 2014 4:52 pm

There’s no couching it: the amount consumers can save by bringing their own device to one of Canada’s Big Three carriers is decreasing. A week ago, we reported that Rogers had increased the monthly cost of BYOD, or buying a phone outright and activating it on a carrier’s service, to $50, an overnight increase of $10.

Now we’re reporting that Bell has done the same, though not quite as dramatically, increasing the monthly BYOD cost to $45 from $40. The cost savings over buying a new device on subsidy used to be $20/month, or $480 over two years, which is generally how much a carrier subsidizes a new high-end smartphone over the same period. Now, the equivalent savings is $15/month, or $360 over two years, making it much less attractive to buy a new device outright and bring it to Bell.

A potential reason for this change is to make the Lite device category more attractive, as many of them are already free on a 2-year term and, with a $50/month price tag, cost significantly less over two years than their Plus device counterparts. With a $45/month price tag, BYOD is still a better deal than buying a Lite device on contract, but it’s no longer a great deal.

Screenshot 2014-05-01 15.20.20

From a business perspective, these changes make sense. Bell, Rogers and TELUS want you to buy a phone from them on a 2-year plan: that’s not only guaranteed revenue for 24 months, but a higher blended ARPU, or average revenue per user, which is often used as a gauge for the health of the company’s wireless business.

That Bell responded to Rogers’ BYOD increase with a number half as much is interesting, and is the first time since the wider implementation of share plans that the carriers have differed this much on pricing.

TELUS has yet to respond with a similar increase, but you can be sure the current $40/month BYOD price is not long for this world.

SourceBell

Image credit: National Post

  • Accophox

    The illusion of competition. I guess it’s still some competition though. Sort of. Not really. :/

  • ADRL

    When are we going to tell them: “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!!”

    • Jason

      This is what happens when government gets involved in business. Prices seem to be at an all time high. Thanks Mr. Harper.

      Though, I would not mind if he got out of bed with the oil companies.

    • beyond

      i don’t know, I think he needs the extra lube from all that oil

    • Balls O’Steele

      Nexus 5 with Fido 5gb data only plan and Fongo voLTE. $35/month.

    • Balls O’Steele

      Even better, buy a used N4 for $150 and flash it for LTE.

    • Balls O’Steele

      No bending over for robellus voice and data contacts here.

    • smokinjoe

      You would mind if harper got our of bed with the oil companies? Buddy, gas is at an all time high right now. Never have we seen pricesat the insane levels they currently are.

    • Jason

      Sorry. I meant to write “would not mind”. I fixed my original post.

    • Dave

      When the government bring competition (at least trying to, which is better than nothing) it’s not good.
      When the government doesn’t do anything and let in corporations to rip people it’s obviously not a good idea.

      Do you actually have a solution? Take the wireless market and solve it.

    • Stevert

      They screwed up by not setting aside some of the latest auction. It would have solved everything if Wind was able to get some of that spectrum. Expansion beyond city centers would have started.

    • Jason

      I thought they set aside 25% for new entrants. People on this site seem to be misinformed and it spreads like wildfire.

    • Stevert

      No, the last auction nothing was set aside. The only rule was that there had to be 4 different companies per area. Wind had to pull out because of funding. Basically the company who dumped the most money won which was Rogers.

    • hardy83

      Depends if we can all yell louder than what the big 3 “donate” to political parties.

    • The Invisible Hand

      …which is zero, because Harper banned corporate donations to political parties in 2006.

    • hardy83

      Like that stops a company from making donations under employee names as “personal” donations.

    • The Invisible Hand

      Donations are also limited to $1200 per person, and disclosed on Elections Canada’s website. Feel free to point out the hundreds of maximum donations it would take to significantly influence a federal party.

    • Anonymous501

      As soon as the masses can say no to smartphones…. It’ll never happen.

  • Nexzen

    Ohhhhhhhh no bell is $5 cheaper guys. Competition at an all time high right now in Canada. What will Telus do????

    • HeyYoWL

      Not til next week though of course. They have to show there’s SOME consideration for customer’s pockets…

    • Stevert

      Bell and Telus price fix, it will be the exact same.

  • d094

    Hey Daniel, the amount you can save is actually ‘decreasing’. The amount you pay is increasing as usual.

  • d094

    i agree, and we would get cheaper phones. Apple would leave the iphone at $700 and all the other manufacturers would lower the phone prices. Instead of all phones costing $200 on contract they would all be different prices like it should be.

    • SkAshe

      The ‘other manufacturers’ wouldn’t lower their phone prices in Canada because we would have no contract. It doesn’t work that way.

  • Rimtu Kahn

    Wow first Rogers gives us added value…now Bell adds value….Telus guaranteed to add value in a few days max. We the customers should feel so flattered at being treated with such amazing value….rebelus really does care!!!

    • hardy83

      And a government that only cares about bringing the best possibly options for all Canadians.

  • beyond

    HAHAHAHAHAHA didn’t see that one coming!!! Lol

  • Martin Chan

    In the Rogers news article, I called it!

  • brett ducharme

    These plans have been out for a while. Bell still offers the old price plans where you bring in your own device and get 10 percent off any plan. Here in Manitoba the new plans aren’t advertised or promoted because they’re more expensive.

  • DrCarpy

    I’m so glad that the CRTC won’t allow foreign competitors into the market. Who needs savings? Canadians should thank the Gods of Robellus. The competition is on… to see who can charge the most.

    • Jason

      The CRTC and government are bending backwards to let foreign companies in. The governments wishy washy policies are scaring them all off. And they probably feel they can’t make a good enough ROI.

  • Deciare

    Absolutely! Why settle for saving “about” the cost of a phone when
    you BYOD, when you can save PRECISELY the cost of a phone? Charge
    everyone the same price for a given plan, and bill the monthly device
    subsidy as a separate line item. That is the only way to guarantee that
    everyone pays a fair price.

    • It’s Me

      That would be more fair. But, as they’ve been doing, they’d just keep jacking up prices. So sure, people on subsidy pay more but everyone pays too much.

  • Diderot

    I feel bad for those not living within Wind/Mobi network. I walked in a Wind store with my own device yesterday, dinged me $25 for the sim card, which I thought was too much. Turns out not that bad.

    • Ajanu

      I am moving to Edmonton for work, but unfortunately I will be working just outside which means no Wind coverage. I will be really sad to see my $33/month bill go to >$60. My biggest Wind bill was $38, which is less than you can get a plan for these days at the big 3. =(

    • Joseph

      If your on pay before keep your plan just let it run out that way one you move back to the city you can just top up

    • Walter

      How far outside of Edmonton

    • Stevert

      When I was dt Van I was with Wind for over a year without problems. Now that my work area is Mtb to BC I had to leave.

  • Lukeiphone

    Actually, bell is getting very greedy apparently. Lots of price increases throughout plans

  • disqus_FnCJy6GF9i

    I just checked my Bell 10% off $63 Plan which had unlimited Canada and 2 GB is now $5 more expensive. Has that happened to anyone else?

  • gmd

    New system access fee coming from Bell?

  • gmd

    Other Bell services are also going up. I guess they have to keep the investors of this once 50% american company happy.

  • jay

    Now I am telling you guys how that works! So everybody in canada sign only with Rogers from now on! So after two years if bell and telus want customers back they have to be cheaper than Rogers otherwise we do the same thing again! So we see who has more power!

  • disqusmy

    Good. At least its not the same as Rogers… ..

  • Jason van de Laar

    Wow, if only there was a magical network (WIND) that offered unlimited talk, text and data and allowed you to bring your own device for no charge and in fact will credit you a fixed dollar amount for doing so. Rogers, Bell and Telus lost my business 2 years ago, I would rather have no cell phone at all if it means having to go back to the big 3.

  • den03

    There seems to be an error. The prices remain $40.00. Check the website.