Freedom Mobile could be the first to offer 5G unlimited data plans: analyst

Freedom Mobile Will Arnett

IDC’s research vice-president of communications thinks Shaw’s Freedom Mobile will be the first to offer unlimited 5G data plans.

According to IT World Canada, Lawrence Surtees said he doesn’t see the Big Three rolling out unlimited plans.

“Freedom only has maybe four percent market share. So how are you going to from four percent to 25 percent?” He asked in an interview with the publication. “And I thought we’ll find the one radical thing we haven’t had anybody do yet…a [truly] unlimited data plan. There’s no way Telus or Rogers would be first to do that. There’s like a status quo between the three similar positions, and they want to hold on to what they’ve got.”

“But Freedom, only things they could do to realize that strategy would be it and they have a compelling reason. When they get 5G frequencies and also be in a position to have more ubiquitous national coverage, which they lack right now.”

Canada doesn’t have any 5G networks yet because it doesn’t have the necessary spectrum needed. The federal government has announced spectrum for 5G bands is set for 2020 and 2021.

5G operates over traditional and new cell radio frequency bands that include the low- (sub-1GHz such as 700MHz), mid- (1.6GHz, around 3.5-3.8GHz), and millimetre-wave (mmWave, such as 28GHz) ranges.

More recently though, Canada concluded the 600 MHz spectrum auction, a spectrum that is low-frequency and is able to penetrate through buildings and provide long distance coverage.

Freedom acquired 11 bands for nearly $492 million CAD.

Surtees thinks that when the 5G network rollout happens, Freedom has “nothing to lose and everything to gain,” and thinks that it will be a chance for the company to launch unlimited wireless data.

Source: IT World Canada