The fight for wireless wholesale roaming continues for one small Canadian wireless player.
British Columbia-based TNW Wireless has advised Canada’s telecom regulator that it will be going forward with its application to compel Bell and Telus to provide wholesale roaming agreements.
The company requested in July 2017 that the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) rule that TNW’s iPCS Cloud Spectrum technology “is compliant with current CRTC rules and regulations regarding wireless roaming in Canada.”
To date, however, Bell and Telus have refused to provide TNW with roaming agreements, citing concerns that TNW will allow permanent roaming on their respective networks.
TNW’s confirmation comes following the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission’s (CRTC) major wireless wholesale roaming decision last week.
The decision stated that, for the purpose of wholesale mobile wireless roaming service, the definition of ‘home network’ would not be broadened to include ‘Wi-Fi-first’ applications.
In other words, Canada’s major carriers do not have to sell roaming service to mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs) that do not own physical infrastructure or spectrum at mandated rates.
It should be noted, however, that TNW does in fact own infrastructure, and states that its iPCS technology is different from what’s provided by the likes of former back-door MVNO Sugar Mobile.
While the decision was pending, the CRTC suspended consideration of TNW’s July 2017 application. After it was released on March 22nd, the CRTC requested that TNW advise if it still wanted go forward with its application.
A TNW spokesperson told MobileSyrup: “We have advised the CRTC today that we will be going forward with our application.”
The operator has until April 13th, 2018 to supplement its application as appropriate in light of the recent wholesale roaming decision. After that, Bell, Telus and any other interveners have until May 3rd, 2018 to supplement their original submissions. TNW’s final reply is due by May 14th.