Rogers Slams WIND – Again

by Jordan Richardson on April 27, 2010

The war of words between Canada’s incumbent providers and the new blood continues to heat up.

This time, it’s Rogers firing the shots at WIND Mobile. According to Ken Engelhart, vice-president of regulatory affairs at Rogers Communications, WIND won’t be doing anything for the rural areas. “They are honest about the fact that they are going to only provide service in the major urban areas. None of the new entrants will go to the rural areas,” he said.

Engelhart is essentially suggesting that Canadians in rural areas will need to stick with the big boys if they expect service. Of course, most new companies of any sort don’t start doing business in areas with smaller populations initially. It’s hard to start a business in areas with low population, as you might imagine, but as companies grow they certainly do attempt to broaden their service base.

This sort of unprocessed critique from Rogers is just another example of the line of attack we’re seeing from the Big Three. Bell, Telus and Rogers are trying anything that they think will work to divide and conquer the start-ups right out of the box. The idea is to plant distrust in the Canadian consumer and to promote the fable that only the larger companies can meet customer needs.

Engelhart certainly had a big enough stage for his comments about the new companies, too. He was talking to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology and was answering a question from Anthony Rota, a Liberal MP who represents the rural Ontario riding of Nipissing-Temiskaming.

Just last week I reported that WIND Mobile was stating that the incumbents weren’t sharing the towers and that the WIND was going to put up towers of their own. In that instance, Engelhart, the same guy that suggested that WIND won’t be able to serve the rural areas, said that Rogers has been more than accommodating with respect to the towers.

To say that the incumbents are kicking and screaming like American Tea Partiers on Tax Day may be a bit of an exaggeration, but it doesn’t seem like Rogers, Bell and Telus have any interest whatsoever in being accommodating to the newbies.

If anything, it appears that they are doing everything they can to not only hinder these companies from going into business but also to smudge the professional images of the upstarts before they can even start developing a customer base.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Installer Pete April 27, 2010 at 10:33 am

Rogers is making a good effort to run interference on Wind not only on towers, but rooftops too. Rogers has been bitching that Wind antennas are too close to Rogers on some rooftops, yet the Telus antennas have been operating at the same separation distance (1m industry standard) for years without any issues. IF there are offers to share incumbent towers, I wonder what is in the offer? 10 metres off the ground and big rent?

Jordan Richardson April 27, 2010 at 6:52 pm

Interesting stuff RE: the antennas, Pete. Thanks for sharing.

I’m wondering what the offers to share towers are too. Rogers and Bell are claiming that they’re being nothing but accommodating, but I’m finding that hard to believe.

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