• Carriers

    by Published on 07-20-2021 02:35 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    I feel like this is more of a PSA than actual news. Nevertheless... Bell's Virgin Mobile has officially re-branded to Virgin Plus. Why? Well, it makes sense to ditch the 'Mobile', as the sub-brand now offers broadband internet and — I didn't actually know this — TV services in Ontario and Québec. As for the rest of Canada:

    Virgin Plus Members across the country will continue [to] enjoy offerings like Sweet Pay, a payment program that allows Members to pay for their phones over the course of 24 low monthly payments. They will also experience easy account management by using the company's award-winning app, which allows Members to easily pay bills, track data usage, and seamlessly manage add-ons. And of course, Virgin Plus will also continue to provide Members with new and hot Member Benefits like food, fashion and entertainment deals; and VIP money-can't-buy experiences.
    There really isn't anything more to this, but for the words of others on the exact same subject see immediately below:

    Source: CNW Release via iPhone in Canada, Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 05-13-2021 05:19 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. News,
    4. From The Forums,
    5. Carriers



    Nokia is bringing the 2720 V Flip to the US via Verizon. The "smart feature phone" running KaiOS comes with 4G and Google Assistant and will be available on May 20th for $79.99.



    Info and full specs at Nokia

    Via: Nokiamob.net
    by Published on 04-18-2021 07:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Canada's largest mobile network has, for many, been down for most of the day. Now we finally know why. Here's Jorge Fernandes, Rogers CTO, to explain what happened:

    We have identified the root cause of the service issues and pinpointed a recent Ericsson software update that affected a piece of equipment in the central part of our wireless network. That led to intermittent congestion and service impacts for many customers across the country.
    When his post was published, Fernandes said it would take "several hours" to get the network back to full service. Hopefully by the time you read this all will be well.

    Source: Rogers via iPhone in Canada

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 04-15-2021 04:40 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Breaking news from the CRTC:

    The CRTC today announced that certain telecommunications providers will be able to access the wireless networks of Canada’s dominant providers to offer Canadians more choice and affordable options.

    As a result, regional providers that invest in network infrastructure and spectrum will be able to offer competitive services to millions of Canadians as mobile virtual network operators in areas where competition is limited. These companies have already been contributing to greater competition and helping to lower prices.
    Bell, Rogers, SaskTel and Telus have been asked to file proposed terms and conditions for access within 90 days. This is going to be interesting...

    via Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 02-02-2021 02:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Koodo has fallen in line with fellow Big Three second-stringers Fido and Virgin—each is now offering a monthly data bucket of 10GB for a very reasonable (for Canada) $50. And as an added bonus you also get phone service and texting, too!

    Virgin Mobile kicked things off over the weekend, with Fido joining in yesterday and Koodo today. It's all to mark the Lunar New Year (Year of the Ox), which begins this Friday, February 12th. Hopefully these offers will stay on the table until then.

    Some specifics: Fido is offering up to $188 in bill credits and additional savings, Koodo will give you 888 free long distance minutes to select Asian countries and Virgin bumps up those long distance minutes to an even thousand.

    I myself have enjoyed service on all three of these carriers, with cost being my only complaint. When you consider that Bell, Rogers and Telus proper are all now charging $80/month for only 15GB of data (previously $75/month for 20GB), these new year promotions are pretty decent in comparison.

    Sources: Fido, Koodo, Virgin Mobile via Mobile Syrup (1) (2) (3) (4)
    by Published on 09-21-2020 12:53 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. News,
    3. From The Forums,
    4. Carriers

    ... Still, while AT&T is positioning its company around wireless and high-speed broadband, Apple’s 5G iPhones, expected to be announced in October, may not be the major event many are expecting. Economic challenges during Covid-19 quarantines may cause fewer people to upgrade immediately, said McElfresh. If you’re not in a hurry to upgrade to 5G, McElfresh shared some additional news -- AT&T engineers are already working on 6G.
    More at CNBC (paywall) and MacRumors
    by Published on 09-14-2020 12:45 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    NEW YORK – Verizon (NYSE: VZ) announced today that it has entered into an agreement with America Movil to acquire Tracfone, the leading pre-paid and value mobile provider in the U.S. The acquisition expands Verizon’s portfolio into the value segment, bringing enhanced access to its industry-leading wireless network and comprehensive suite of mobility products and services to a new customer base [...] The consideration for the transaction will include $3.125 billion in cash and $3.125 billion in Verizon common stock, subject to customary adjustments, at closing.
    Discuss the news on the Tracfone forum here, or the Verizon forum here.

    Source: Verizon Press Release via The Verge

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 06-17-2020 06:40 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Telus has joined Bell and Rogers in bringing 5G service to select markets in Canada. From their official release:

    VANCOUVER – TELUS announced that it is rolling out its first wave 5G network in Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, and the Greater Toronto Area, and will continue to expand to an additional 26 markets across Canada throughout the remainder of the year.

    TELUS also announced today it has selected Samsung as a network infrastructure partner, with the goal to provide transformational 5G mobile services for Canadians. TELUS previously announced it is also working with Ericsson and Nokia as partners in building its 5G network.

    Businesses, consumers, and students with 5G network access will experience a network with peak speeds reaching up to a blistering 1.7 Gbps [...]
    5G-enabled devices already available from Telus include the LG V60 ThinQ 5G Dual Screen, the Moto Edge+ and the Samsung Galaxy S20 series. Like Bell and Rogers, 5G on Telus will cost nothing extra until March of 2021; from then on you'll be expected to pony up an additional $15/month for the privilege.

    Source: Telus (1) (2) via Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 06-11-2020 02:30 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Looks like Bell has beat out Telus to become the second Big Three carrier to offer 5G service in Canada. As of this morning that service is now live in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Montreal. Never mind that this country's official 5G spectrum auction has been postponed until 2021; Bell is using their existing AWS spectrum to bring 5G to their customers right now—provided, of course, that they're using one of the three currently-supported handsets:

    LG V60 ThinQ 5G Dual Screen
    Motorola Edge+
    Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G

    If you've got one of these devices (and live in one of the aforementioned markets) you can enjoy free access to Bell's fifth generation wireless service... until March of 2021, when the privilege will set you back an additional $10 CAD/month.

    Source: Bell Mobility via iPhone in Canada

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 06-03-2020 07:30 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Just four months ago Telus was naming Huawei as a major partner in their forthcoming 5G network. But as of yesterday that's no longer the case. From their press release:

    "TELUS today announced it has selected Ericsson and Nokia to support building its 5G network, with the goal to revolutionize wireless connectivity for customers."
    The news came only hours after this release from Bell:

    "Bell Canada today announced that Ericsson will provide radio access network (RAN) equipment for Bell's national 5G wireless network..."
    The Swedish company is also supplying 5G gear to Rogers, so it looks like Huawei will not be part of the 5G experience in this country anytime soon.

    Some additional notes: (1) Our government hasn't yet made an official decision on Huawei; (2) Freedom Mobile doesn't use Huawei equipment on their network, either.

    Sources: CBC (1) (2), Mobile Syrup (1) (2) (3)

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 04-23-2020 11:34 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. News,
    3. From The Forums,
    4. Carriers

    Verizon posted the following announcement yesterday:

    04/22 Update:

    Verizon continues to support customers who may find themselves needing additional data in order to learn, work or keep connected during this challenging time. That’s why today, we announced we are automatically adding an additional 15GB of 4G LTE data to consumer and small business* shared data plans, hotspots and jetpacks to be used from May 1 through May 31. There is no action needed as this data will automatically be added to consumer and small business accounts.

    * Includes small business customers with 50 lines or less.
    by Published on 03-31-2020 01:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Not flexing or anything here, just providing a data point with my own usage for my last billing period with Telus.

    The good news? It would seem that 20GB of monthly mobile data is indeed enough for my needs. This includes all app updates, uploads to Google Photos, about a gigabyte of podcast downloads and, my guilty pleasure—and also far and away my biggest consumption of data—a nightly before-bed update of the latest GIFs and memes from Imgur.

    The bad news? I rarely if ever consume video on my phone; for that I have an Android TV box hooked up to my home Internet. So if I had to rely on my mobile carrier for everything, 20 gigs per month likely wouldn't cut it.

    How about you? Is your monthly data allotment enough to get by on? And if you blow past it are your throttled data speeds sufficient?

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 03-06-2020 05:22 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    And access is free, but only until next year.

    Alongside the new trio of Samsung Galaxies—the S20, S20+ and S20 Ultra—Rogers is also launching 5G service in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal and Vancouver. Phase one of the 5G rollout (live as of today) is using 2.5 GHz spectrum, with 600 MHz spectrum support coming later this year.

    To access the new network you'll need compatible hardware and a subscription to a Rogers Infinite plan. Oh, and come March 6th, 2021 you'll have to pony up an additional $15/month for the privilege. Because, Canada? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    Sources: iPhone in Canada (1) (2), Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 01-23-2020 07:55 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    While in Japan over the holidays I got the chance to try a new tourist SIM from a company called Mobal. In advance of this summer's Tokyo Olympics they've been putting extra effort into advertising their "unlimited" data SIMs, throttled after usage in excess of 3 GB per day.

    Any local SIM must compete with your carrier's "roam like home" equivalent, so it's up to you to do the math and figure out what's cheaper. Telus would charge $84 CAD for my seven days abroad; at ¥3,990 my 8-day Mobal SIM worked out to only $48 CAD or so and also offered 21 GB of fast data, so it made sense to try it out.

    I ordered a pair of SIMs for the girlfriend and I well in advance of our trip—too far, as it turned out; they arrived at our door in only four days. On departure overseas we installed them in our dual SIM phones, with the understanding that they'd activate only when we landed in Japan.

    Unlike other tourist SIMs for Hong Kong or Taiwan, the Mobal ones require the user to manually set up an APN:

    APN: ppsim.jp
    Username: [email protected]
    Password: jpn

    Once that was done the SIM worked as advertised... mostly. Speeds were generally fine, except for this one result:



    I can't help but wonder if Mobal is a second-class citizen on the Softbank network, and how that would affect a user visiting the country during a very busy Olympic Games. Still, the service was generally very good, and as an added bonus I didn't have to worry about returning anything like I would with other Japanese SIM providers.

    Link: Mobal Japan SIM Cards

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 01-21-2020 07:45 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    While enjoying a leisurely morning last weekend I felt the sudden urge to check on my Telus plan, and it's a good thing I did: that carrier is currently offering 20 GB of unthrottled BYOD data for the same price as 10. If you've multiple lines with them it's even less—thanks to the Telus family discount I'm now actually paying only $70/month per line, an astonishing (for Canada) $3.50 per GB of fast 4G data.

    There are but two caveats to this deal: (1) the US Easy Roam rate is now $8/day instead of $7, and (2) the promo is supposed to end today.

    I say "supposed to" because, according to both iPhone in Canada and Mobile Syrup Bell is already matching this promo, albeit for only 24 months via a $20/month bill credit. Bell also offers a $10 discount for additional lines on the same account.

    Even Rogers is getting in on the action. With them you have the choice of two lines with 20 GB each for $140, or a single line with 10 GB for $65/month.

    Again, the Telus promo is currently set to end today, and the others could go away at any time. So if you're interested and already have your own device I'd jump on one of these deals sooner rather than later.

    Links: iPhone in Canada (1) (2), Mobile Syrup (1) (2), Rogers, Telus

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 01-14-2020 08:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    While on my Christmas vacation this year I got a valuable, if expensive, data point about roaming on Telus.

    Last summer when Canada's Big Three carriers reset the BYOD market with their $75 "unlimited" (to 10 GB) plans, there were questions on HoFo about incoming text messages while abroad. The good news is that, for Telus subscribers anyway, incoming texts continue to be free no matter where you and your device happen to find yourselves.

    The girlfriend and I both have dual SIM OnePlus phones, and for the Japan portion of our trip found a local data SIM cheaper than the $12 CAD/day Easy Roam rate on Telus. Which brings us to the bad news: Easy Roam, if enabled on your account, is automatically activated by using your Telus SIM abroad—either data or, in my case, an outgoing SMS.

    Rubbing salt in this small wound was that the person who texted me is also on WhatsApp, so I could have messaged her back for free. Instead I learned a hard lesson, so that you don't have to!

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 12-07-2019 07:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    Here's an FYI from a helpful person on RFD:

    Hey so I just thought I'd share this because I didn't see it posted anywhere...

    I was speaking to Bell loyalty department and was offered an additional 5 GB free to the $65/10 GB plan (that used to be $60) from last year.

    It is not a limited time only as the agent actually switched the plan to a $65/15 GB loyalty BYOD plan. So same cost per month with 5 additional GB of data ongoing.

    Took only about 5-10 minutes and is definitely worth the phone call for those of you on that original plan from last year. I'm not sure if Rogers or Telus would offer the same.

    Good luck!
    To be clear, this would seem to apply to Bell's holiday miracle plan from December, 2017. And according to iPhone in Canada Rogers did already offer a similar deal to their customers, but the extra data was only good for two years. Bell's data bonus seems to be permanent.

    Like the OP on RFD says, good luck!

    Source: RedFlagDeals Forums via iPhone in Canada, Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 12-03-2019 07:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    If you're thinking of activating a line on Canada's Freedom Mobile network there's something you should know. From Mobile Syrup:

    “Starting Tuesday, December 3, Freedom Mobile will be charging a one-time connection fee for all new activations on our network. As the digital expectations of our customers continue to evolve, Freedom Mobile is committed to continuously improving the quality of our wireless network to provide better coverage to connect more and more Canadians. Charging a one-time activation fee will allow us to fund further network improvements and explore transformative technology.”
    I wouldn't fault anyone for being upset about this on principle alone—it's a move you'd expect from the Big Three, not from Freedom. But I myself am not yet convinced that the sky's falling, for two reasons. First, SIM cards are now free (I believe they used to be $25 with BYOD) and second, iPhone in Canada is reporting the that fees are waived if you activate online:

    Hardware upgrades: $0
    Online activations or upgrades: $0
    Postpaid activations: $20 (charged on first bill)
    Prepaid activations: $10 (charged on first top-up)

    Waiting for a SIM in the mail is certainly less convenient than activating in-store, but at least there's a way to avoid the extra fee if you're dead-set against paying it.

    Sources: iPhone in Canada, Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 11-27-2019 12:55 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Carriers



    * Travel and/or fake ID may be required.

    Canadian Thanksgiving was back in October, but that hasn't stopped Black Friday from becoming an annual November event here. Here are some carrier BYOD deals that you may be interested in—by no means an exhaustive list, just something to get the proverbial ball rolling...

    1. Bell, Rogers, Telus: $10 off BYOD "Unlimited" Plans

    For a limited time you can enjoy 10 GB of unthrottled data with your own device for only $65/month. The catch? You need to be in Manitoba or Saskatchewan to get it.

    For the rest of the country (BC and ON anyway) Telus is currently offering $10 off of their 20 GB Peace of Mind Connect plan. Yay?

    2. Koodo: $55 for 9 GB / $65 for 16 GB

    An even better deal is available on the Koodo network—that is if you're willing to travel to Ottawa to get it. At least one person on RFD got Koodo to match this offer over the phone so you might want to try that first.

    3. Freedom Mobile: All Plans on Sale

    The best data deals are from Freedom, with the caveat of their smaller footprint and capacity. They also offer $0 handset financing, albeit at higher monthly rates.

    If you find any Black Friday bargains that you'd like to share with your fellow Canadians, please do so below!

    Sources: iPhone in Canada (1) (2), Mobile Syrup (1) (2)

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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