Canadian wireless prices rising at 3X inflation: Report

Feel like your wireless bill is growing faster than your pay cheque? Well, you’re right. And a new report sheds light on just how fast our smartphone bills are skyrocketing.

The 2015 Wall Report was commissioned by the CRTC and Industry Canada and offers a comprehensive look at a wealth of Canadian wired and wireless market statistics. It found Canadians pay among the highest prices in the world for telecom services, and the prices continue to rise.

OpenMedia, a Canadian organization lobbying for a more open Internet, crunched the numbers and found the cost of a standard 1GB monthly plan rose by seven per cent, or more than three times the inflation rate of 2.3 per cent. New entrants such as Wind Mobile were as much as 50 per cent cheaper than the incumbents of Bell, Rogers and Telus, added OpenMedia.

“Most Canadian cell phone users don’t need an official report to know that the cost of cell phone service is painfully high – they just need to look at their monthly bills,” said Josh Tabish, campaigns manager for OpenMedia, in a statement. “These high prices are the result of years of regulatory coddling of our unaccountable telecom giants. They are an unacceptable burden on Canadian families and the Canadian economy.”

The Wall Report pegged the monthly cost of a basic wireless service package in Canada at $37.29. While just off the US figure of $37.04, it’s well above the international average of $22, including just $12.15 in Italy.

The biggest international price differential seemed to be around voice packages, which were often significantly cheaper in Europe. For mobile Internet, Canada was cheaper than the U.S. and Japan, but significantly more expensive than most European countries surveyed.

For a drill-down on how wireless prices vary in different cities and regions across Canada, visit our Interactive Map: Inside Canada’s wireless landscape.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras is a technology journalist with IT World Canada and a member of the IT Business team. He began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada and the channel for Computer Dealer News. His writing has also appeared in the Vancouver Sun & the Ottawa Citizen.

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