Canada’s telecom watchdog is hoping to keep installation and repair appointments for internet resellers timely and fulfilled with its latest decision.
The Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission’s (CRTC) latest decision is the result of its review of the ‘competitor quality of service regime.’
The regime was introduced in 2005 to ensure that large incumbent local exchange carriers, like Bell or Telus, provide good quality wireline voice service to resellers in order to let them compete effectively in the market.
Today’s decision, however, acknowledges that internet access is taking priority in terms of consumer demand and mandates these protections for broadband resellers, like TekSavvy.
In response to a request for comment, the reseller told MobileSyrup: “The CRTC’s recent Quality of Service decision is a very positive step in the right direction for our industry, the Canadian consumer and for TekSavvy. Monitoring failure rates for installations and repairs is an excellent start and may help to level the competitive playing field and hold carriers accountable for the regulated services they provide.”
The decision also gained praise from consumer advocates, including the PIAC and OpenMedia, though the latter group criticized the fact that today’s decision stopped short of extending the regime to wholesale wireless roaming.
“Today’s decision is an important step towards ensuring our future high-speed internet access is not held captive by anti-competitive practices of incumbents,” said OpenMedia’s digital rights advocate Katy Anderson in a press statement.
She went on to add: “However, despite extending the application of the regime on wireline, the problems with Canada’s mobile services have been ignored yet again. This is another missed opportunity by the CRTC to increase choice in our wireless market, and improve the conditions for competitors to the entrenched players to be treated fairly.”
The Commission decided against adding wholesale wireless roaming services to the regime because it felt there was no evidence that it was necessary. It further suggested that to degrade wireless service would be against the incumbents’ own interests, and was therefore not likely to happen.
Under the new regime, large operators like the Big Three are monitored on two indicators: installation appointments and repair appointments met.
Bell and Rogers both told MobileSyrup that they are currently reviewing the decision, while the other national telecom has yet to respond with comment.
The CRTC Interconnection Steering Committee will propose business rules with respect to how installations and repairs are counted for the categories of wholesale high-speed internet access metrics, by October 15th, 2018.
Update 4/13/2018: Updated with comment from TekSavvy and Rogers.