Canada’s wireless industry starts to look competitive


Disclaimer: I am currently employed by a Rogers Wireless dealer in a retail sales position.

With Wind Mobile conducting hiring sessions in Vancouver this week in advance of their expansion into the Lower Mainland, news of even more new entrants into Canada’s wireless market are beginning to surface.  Calgary based Shaw Communications, a long time provider of cable and Internet services in western Canada, is looking to spend around $100 million during this year with eyes on launching a 4G cellular service in late 2011.  Meanwhile Videotron, a Quebec-centric cable provider, is also looking at entering the wireless market.

Consumers are hopeful that increased competition in the Canadian wireless market will see a decrease in prices, and increase in services.  Currently three companies, Bell, Rogers and Telus currently have 90 percent of the Canadian wireless market.  Previous wireless start-ups have either gone out of business or been bought by one of the larger companies with Clearnet Communications being bought by Telus in 2000 and Microcell (Fido) being bought by Rogers in 2004.

With both Shaw and Videotron already having significant revenue streams in the cable market, they are more likely to be able to challenge the big three Canadian wireless providers all of whom also have other businesses to draw resources from.

Shaw is currently hiring for its wireless venture, having posted an open call for applications on their website that notes:

At Shaw, we believe that technology should make a positive difference in people’s lives, so when we decided to put together our new wireless team, we knew we needed some really innovative people.

We’re not just looking for people who know wireless, we‘re looking for people who know they can make a positive difference by creating the wireless technologies of tomorrow.

Whether or not these new entrants will mean significant savings won’t be seen until they begin to launch.