It’s always interesting to see how carriers respond to a new entrants/brands in the Canadian wireless market. There’s been great change over the past year and more change coming with both Videotron and Shaw still set to launch their new networks. Rogers discount brand Chatr launched yesterday and we reached out to the carriers and also received feedback from analysts. (more…)
When new entrant Public Mobile opened their doors they enticed potential customers by offering a promo of free Unlimited Canadian long distance for life. Months latter and now launched in both Toronto and Montreal it seems a new promo is coming.
We’ve been tipped that customers who join Public Mobile between August 3rd and August 8th will receive 1 month of free service. There are a couple catches: this promo excludes add-ons and is not available to customers who’ve already taken advantage of previous promotions. Public has two price plans that cost $24 and $40 per month.
Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt is positioning their Android platform to eventually become a $10 billion a year (or more) business. In an interview, Schmidt said “If we have a billion people using Android, you think we can’t make money from that?”. Currently Android is free and open for manufacturers to put on their devices, but Schmidt said it would only take $10 for each user to reach that level. One way they plan to earn this massive amount of revenue is through newspaper subscriptions.
It’s getting closer… less than a couple days away until the iPhone 4 officially launches in Canada. Apple has updated their site and announced stores will be open at 7:00 on Friday. They state “Arriving at your favourite Apple Retail Store on 30 July. Stores open at 7:00 a.m. iPhone 4 is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Limit two per person.”
Anyone lining up? If so, what time you planning on getting there?
It was known that if Rogers new discount brand “Chatr” launched, new entrant Mobilicity would proceed with legal action. Mobilicity believes that Rogers launching Chatr is an attempt “to destroy our success” and goes against the “Abuse of Dominant Position” in the Competition Act.
I just had a phone conversation with Stewart Lyons, COO of Mobilicity. I wasn’t allowed to put the audio clip online but here’s what he had this to say about Chatr:
“We served them with a letter last week that basically said if it launches in a manner as was revealed then we would take some certain legal action. Among those things were civil litigation, complaint to the competition tribunal, complaint to the regulatory authorities… and since it did launch in that manner we will be pursuing those avenues.”
A couple years ago the when the government announced the Wireless Spectrum Auction, the Industry Minister stated “Our government’s intentions are clear: to achieve lower prices, better service and more choice for consumers and business. We believe in relying on market forces to the maximum extent feasible because competition benefits consumers, and consumers benefit most when markets are as competitive as they can be.”
In addition, today Lyons said “we do this obviously for our company, but we also do this for consumers. At the end of the day prices have only started to go down. Things like Chatr only started launching when the new entrants came on the scene. Without long term sustained competition for the big 3, I dare say that I don’t believe affordability and value will remain in Canada’s wireless sector for the consumer. If we’re not around the consumer won’t win in the long term… they will just raise prices eventually.”
Rogers new discount brand “Chatr” launched today, offering Canadians located in Toronto, Ottawa, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver yet another choice in wireless. There’s been much talk around this brand and how they are available in the same cities as the new entrants Wind Mobile Public Mobile and Mobilicity are or will be. Chatr offers a couple of plans $35 (Unlimited Talk) and $45 per month (Unlimited Talk & Text) and 4 devices (you can check them out here.
I quickly had a conversation with Garrick Tiplady, Senior VP at Chatr. He’s very excited for this brand to launch as it’s been in the works for over a year. One new development is that Chatr is not stopping at the 5 launch cities that were announced today. Tiplady said that “one of the core things we’ve always said around Chatr as we’ve been design the brand, designing the offer. It’s really about delivering a worry free experience in Talk and Text. With that we’ve always said one of number one priorities is we want to operational ready at launch. We’re operational ready today. We’re launching in 5 major markets across Canada. Soon to be in Montreal. We’ll be in Montreal within the Fall time frame, so we’re excited about getting to market.”
Montreal… Chatr is coming. We’re curious how Videotron and Public Mobile will respond to this news.
(Audio after the break) (more…)
Koodo’s “El Tabador” is back in business, fresh off the launch of their INQ Chat 3G device. This weekend they are offering what they call “The Amigos and Family Deal”. If you join Koodo Mobile they’re going to throw in a free gift worth $50, transfer all your numbers over for you for free and as a bonus will not charge you tax. This deal is on from July 30th until August 2nd.
No official word on what the $50 free gift is but hopefully it’ll be a bill credit, but more likely an accessory of some sorts.
Check it here at Koodo
Looks like the the Galaxy S is looking to make a big impact. Samsung Canada just sent out a press release stating that “Front Street will transform from a commuter-clogged thoroughfare into a rocking concert venue on August 4th when Samsung Mobile celebrates the launch of its premium Galaxy S smartphone with an ultimate impromptu street concert featuring one of Canada’s hottest bands. Toronto music and mobile technology lovers can expect an unforgettable experience that’s sure to rock the city core.”
What: Street concert event
When: August 4, 2010 Show starts at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Union Station – Union Square Plaza, 65 Front Street West
Who: It’s a secret! Here’s a clue: They’re in the prime of your youth
(The Bell Samsung Galaxy S Vibrant is launching on the 6th of August)
On August 11th Bell will be releasing another slide out QWERTY device, this time it’s the LG Rumour Plus. We’ve go no word on official pricing but according to the internal doc we received it shows that it’s “compact & clean… and is especially made for those individuals who want to stay updated and keep in touch with their social circle”. Otherwise knows as this device is perfect targeting the back-to-school crowd.
Specs of this HSPA device: 2.4-inch display (resolution of 240×320), 2 megapixel camera, touch dialing with a slide out QWERTY keyboard, weighs 119 grams and will be available in “Black Blue”.
A press release went out this morning to officially announcing the INQ Chat 3G is in Canada, specifically available through TELUS and Koodo. We’ve known it was coming for some time and even yesterday Koodo Mobile put this up for sale and declared this new QWERTY device as “Canada’s Ultimate Social Phone”. No word on when TELUS will be releasing it but it’s “coming soon”… most likely sometime today or latest by the end of the week.
Frank Meehan, Founder and CEO of INQ “We focus on what our core consumers want to do most with their mobile phone and deliver it at a price point that’s affordable, especially for the youth that are driving the social media revolution. Our mission here in Canada is to bring a great mobile internet experience to the masses. We know there’s a whole generation of people out there with no ‘off button’ – they are messaging, texting and uploading and updating 24/7. We exist for them.”
There’s a “customized phone back unique” for the TELUS an Koodo Mobile 3G Chat. For pricing Koodo has this available for $200 no contract and $50 on the Tab. As for TELUS we’ve been informed that it’s $0.00 on a 2 or 3-year contract; $129.99 – on a 1-year contract and $179.99 no-contract.
Update: This is now available at TELUS for the pricing above.