Public Mobile will NOT have a data plan at launch. Could this be their downfall ?

by Jeff Wiener on August 27, 2009

portable-cell-phone-boothIt seems like things will finally heat up in Canadian cellular space. Public Mobile, one of the three new carriers that will be launching their new “G” band cell service in the coming months, will join Globalive, and DAVE wireless in what looks like a new, now competitive market.

I wrote a blog posting yesterday introducing Public Mobile, and at the end of the posting I posed 2 questions to Public Mobile. The questions and answers are as follows:

1. How are you going to differentiate yourself in the Canadian market ?

Public Mobile will be unlimited. We will offer unlimited talk and unlimited text for a flat rate of $40.

38% of Canadians do not have cell phones – for many people it’s because of the unpredictable monthly costs. Public Mobile will offer a flat rate – so your bill is always the same. No surprises at the end of the month.

2. Do you think the lack of a data offering will negatively affect your long term chances of success ?

Public Mobile will have a data offering when our target subscribers require it. We will evolve the offering as the needs of our customers evolve.

Of course, the incumbent carriers, recognizing the new competitive landscape, have improved their pricing and marketing plans. Telus has been heavily marketing their Koodo cell brand.  But, the stigma of years of bad service, greed, and monopolistic enterprising could cost them many customers, if for no other reason then spite.

I’m wondering if there is enough cell market to go around though – can they all really make a profit ? The big players have deep pockets, and luckily for Public Mobile (whose name sounds bland), got a great bargain on their cell license. It really will be a survival of the fittest, and I expect that after the first year one of the new entrants will be in desperate shape.  The cell market is becoming extremely IP centric – sure, Public Mobile’s rates may be good, but, customers are adopting IP and data plans at rapid rates. Public Mobile’s decision to not launch with a data plan could be there downfall. I’m sure hoping not though – we need these new players to keep Rogers, Bell, and Telus honest.

Want to review Public Mobile’s voice plan – click here:


{ 2 trackbacks }

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Kelly October 12, 2009 at 4:35 pm

There is plenty of untapped cell market in Canada for these new entrants to grab. There are plenty of folks who do not use a cell phone or who limit their cell phone use all due to the high price. So a Public Mobile value brand has the most to gain. If the new entrants come in at anything other than the low end of the price spectrum it will be tough for them to succeed. DAVE Wireless might be building a lightening fast network but they will have to fight the existing Wireless Telcos to get the customers. There is a more limited market for a faster wireless service. The same can not be said for a lower priced entrant. All they have to do is show up and there will be hundreds of thousands of Canadians hunger for cheaper, basic wireless.

lucky February 10, 2010 at 7:42 pm

why should choose public mobile for 40$ in stead of wind mobile same talk+text+cid=35$any logic??????????????

lucky February 10, 2010 at 7:43 pm

why should choose public mobile for 40$ in stead of wind mobile same unlimited province wide talk+text+cid=35$any logic??????????????and first month free……

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