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Oh, wow, Canada: No more carrier-locked phones for Canucks

Marcelo Claure, second edition?

Billionnaire Bolivian Marcelo Claure did his first fortune buying Motorola handsets cheaper in Canada (some preferential pricing scheme) and then reselling them in the US

I see room for an enterpreneur bringing back some unlocked mobes otherwise unavailable in the Land Of The Free (tm)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Marcelo Claure, second edition?

That can be tricky this time as LTE bands don't overlap as much as older radio techs.

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Re: Marcelo Claure, second edition?

They are just moving into the 21st century, like most civilized countries.

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Optional

In North America they do, though. The major Canadian carriers (Rogers, Bell and Telus) use much the same frequencies as the major US carriers (Verizon, AT&T etc.)

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Unhappy

Canadians have rights?

Here in the U.S., the only "rights" people seem to have from our carriers is to be overcharged, underserved, tracked constantly and all our personal details sold to anyone.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Canadians have rights?

Surely you have the right to change your monopoly provider ... by moving to a different state.

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Anonymous Coward

The Ossis looked wistfully west, the USsis look wistfully north.

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Quite a sharp shift from previous practices.

A bit tax is something we could do with in the UK to finance the likes of the BBC, The Sun, The Guardian, Channel 4 extra, in place of the existing BBC Tax.

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Internet tax is wrong

The suggestion of a 5% internet tax was nixed by our Prime Minister before it could even get out of the news conference. This is a good thing.

A primary value of the internet is that it treats everybody the same. A tax would be for the benefit of the few. Only large corporations would get paid from such a thing. Those of us who spend a lot of time and effort providing content on the internet would have to pay for that privilege. I can't even begin to express how wrong that is.

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Pint

"...levy a five per cent tax on broadband..."

Canadian PM has already said "No" to this proposal.

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Pint

Impact will be on expensive phones

Canadian telcos will find it increasingly difficult to subsidize expensive phones, since the phone might just up and disappear.

This policy might put a damper on the sale of expensive phones. Poor Apple, LOL.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

You simply get the phone free and pay part of the cost off each month, rather than it being free and the cost being hidden in the charge. It's free to unlock but you have to pay the balance owing on the phone.

And of course the other of the two monopoly providers don't have to accept your phone

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Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

Canadian telcos will find it increasingly difficult to subsidize expensive phones, since the phone

might just up and disappear.

That is exactly what contracts are for.

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Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

You can currently bring any unlocked phone to any provider, that won't change and they won't be allowed to refuse your hardware. Our corporate carrier contracts signed within the last two years had this new "hardware balance" fee which is slowly eroded each month (equalised over the term of the contract). If I cancel the line then I pay back the hardware balance for the discounted I received up front.

So obviously the Telco's knew this change was coming for some time now and are prepared for it.

It is about time this went into effect, I (for once) can praise the CRTC. Most people took a perfectly good phone locked to a carrier and stuck it in a drawer when they switched because they didn't know any better. Such a waste. Soon to be no longer a problem.

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Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

We are all locked into contracts 24-36 months for those phone subsidies. So if we do cancel or leave for another provider we have to pay the device subsidy back for any remaining amounts plus any service cancellation fees.

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aks

Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

why would they want to refuse an unlocked phone?

i doubt if that would be legal.

if the customer is locked into a 12, 18 or 24 month contract, why should the new provider care that you're paying twice. maybe you want a dual-sim phone so you can use a local pay-as-you-go sim when you're over the border. that's what i've been doing for the past 3 years.

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G

What about the other trick where your phone is "unlocked" but the radio bands you'd need with another carrier are permanently disabled?

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Re: G

The three major Canadian carriers use the same frequencies, so that's not likely to be an issue. (Does mean you can't really take one of their phones to a minor carrier like Freedom, but then that's always been the case).

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They should have implemented this sooner.

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I find it very nice that when the carriers moaned about the cost of unlocking - the gubment ordered them to not lock them in the first place, so that there is no cost.

BTW, I live in a country where phone locking is completely unheard of and most phones have multiple SIM cards from multiple carriers.

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Land of the Free

... is no longer USA, unless taken with a large pinch of salt (which, as we know, is a symbol of irony). If taken without salt, them that term seem to be referring to Canada now.

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Re: Land of the Free

Canada still has among the highest cell prices in the world.

This is completely unrelated to the 2 providers having a near monopoly and any competition being effectively banned. Telcos are required to be Canadian owned, and any upstart is investigated for any trace of foreign investment and forced to sell out to one of the governments 2 golfing buddies

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Re: Land of the Free

Hey, we have 3 wireless giants - Rogers, Telus, Bell.

Yes, they are all in cohoots to maximize their profits, and shut out any other contenders.

But at least that's 50% more monopoly to choose from!

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Re: Land of the Free

I am a staunch Telus-denier, I believe that Telus is a hoax.

There is no reliable evidence that Telus ever provided a mobile phone signal

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Land of the Free

Telus has spent the last 15 +/- years trying to be bought out by Bell. But Bell, like everyone, knows this; and they're less interested in buying Telus than Telus is in being bought. It's almost pathetic.

Once upon a time, as a consumer, I became embroiled in a dispute that could (in part) be traced back to the exact issue described above. In the end, I was issued a significant check, and we used the proceeds to assist with buying a couple acres of tropical paradise with a view of turquoise seas. Thank you CCTS.

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I dunno - I think I still boycott cellphones

It's like $100 a month for - what?

I have a free VOIP subscription with freephoneline.ca and that's adequate.

Sorry if it offends anyone, but I choose to put that money into investments instead.

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