Vancouver-based national telecom Telus has added speed caps to its “unlimited” data plans.
According to the details listed on Telus’ website, the carrier’s three primary plans cap speeds at 250 megabits per second (Mbps) or 1 gigabit per second (Gbps). These speed caps differ from the reduced speed Telus applies to customers who go over their data limits.
The carriers plans, at the time of writing, remained unchanged:
- ‘Unlimited 20 5G’ – $80/mo 20GB (250Mbps speed cap)
- ‘Unlimited 40 5G+’ – $90/mo 40GB (1Gbps speed cap)
- Unlimited 50 5G+’ – $100/mo 50GB and Canada-U.S. talk and text (1Gbps speed cap)
These speed caps apply to customers’ data buckets — once you go over that allotment, Telus will still throttle speeds to a maximum of up to 512Kbps as before.
Update 02/17/2022 at 1:04pm ET: Telus clarified via its Twitter support account that the new speed caps only apply to new plans. In other words, existing Telus customers with the carrier’s previous plans won’t need to worry about having their data speeds capped.
Hi there! No, it doesn't apply to old plans, meaning existing plans. This will only be available for the new plans mentioned in the article.
— TELUS Support (@TELUSsupport) February 17, 2022
Update at 2:56pm ET: Telus’s flanker brand Koodo also added a 100Mbps speed cap to its 4G plans.
Considering Canada’s ‘Big Three’ carriers tend to copy each other, Telus’ addition of speed caps is rather concerning. That said, it’s worth noting that as of publication, Rogers and Bell still only applied the 512Kbps speed cap to data beyond the plan’s bucket. Moreover, it’s frustrating to see yet another restriction applied to what are already some of the most expensive mobile plans in the world.
There are ways carriers could add speed caps that might be good. For example, a system similar to home internet where customers pay based on speed but have unlimited usage could appeal to some users. Alternatively, offering speed-capped plans with a discount may also be an option. But applying speed caps to already-limited (and incredibly expensive) data buckets isn’t acceptable.
Not to mention that 5G in Canada remains sub-par. Since I switched to 5G, I haven’t seen mobile speeds exceed about 150Mbps on my phone — on my old LTE plan, I frequently saw speeds as high as 300Mbps.
Update 02/17/2022 at 9:57am ET: It’s worth noting that Telus also has speed caps for its prepaid plans. Those plans have data “at 4G speed,” but the fine print on Telus’ website notes that those plans “may reach download speeds up to 100 Mbps.”