Following TekSavvy and Start.ca, Distributel became yet another independent internet service provider (ISP) to raise its subscription fees due to uncertainties around the Canadian Radio and Telecommunication Commission’s (CRTC) wholesale pricing.
Distributel, which chiefly provides cable internet service over the backbones of Rogers, Videotron, Cogeco and Shaw, announced yesterday that its customers should expect a CA$5 to CA$10 surcharge to their monthly bill.
In a statement, Distributel criticized the incumbent service providers for challenging CRTC’s wholesale pricing, and the Cabinet for rejecting CRTC’s original rate without presenting new evidence.
“The government could have simply allowed the CRTC to proceed with its own review,” said Matt Stein, chief executive officer of Distributel. “But by inserting this extra commentary, it’s created more confusion and uncertainty. What’s more, this runs counter to the government’s campaign promises of making life more affordable and helping working Canadians get ahead. Keeping prices high is simply bad for Canadians.”
TekSavvy, Start.ca, and Distributel service over 570,000 Canadians collectively, all of whom could potentially face higher monthly internet bills.
Similar to many other independent ISPs, Distributel lowered its prices when CRTC announced its new wholesale price in August 2019. After numerous petitions from incumbents, the pricing has suspended by the Federal Court since September 2019.