Rogers LTE Bandwagon Reaches Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver

by Gaurav Kheterpal on September 29, 2011

As I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, Rogers is well ahead of any other Canadian wireless carrier in the LTE game. In July, the carrier launched Canada’s first Long Term Evolution (LTE) wireless network in Ottawa. In August, the Rogers LTE bandwagon headed to Toronto and the carrier set the clock ticking on the LTE launch in Vancouver and Montreal.

And true to its promise, Rogers yesterday launched its LTE network in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver, thereby making ‘near broadband speed’ LTE service available to nearly 5.5 million Canadians.

Rogers also announced it will launch Canada’s first LTE-enabled tablets, the HTC Jetstream, starting Oct. 18. The carrier also plans to launch the Samsung Galaxy S II LTE in coming weeks.

“We’re thrilled to be the first carrier in Canada to offer LTE and the fastest mobile speeds to Canada’s three largest provinces and to more Canadians than any other carrier in Canada,” said John Boynton, Rogers Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer in the official Press Release. “With Rogers LTE wireless network coverage, customers have access to speeds similar to broadband connections, making it easier for people to use their devices to download apps, stream HD videos and music or play on-line games, with virtually no delays or buffering.”

Rogers demonstrated its LTE network in Montreal Wednesday morning, claiming 100 megabits per second download speeds, and up to 40 megabits per second uploading. This is several times faster than the HSPA+ technology, that’s used by rivals such as Telus. As the fourth generation of wireless networking, LTE promises users speeds up to 10x faster than the current 3G network, ostensibly making one’s wireless connection as fast as many users wired home Internet connection.

Earlier this month, Bell launched its next generation 4G LTE wireless network service in areas of Toronto, Mississauga, Hamilton, Kitchener-Waterloo and Guelph. However, Rogers remains the only carrier to offer LTE service ‘from east to the west’ and I have no doubt that it will gain a massive early mover advantage in this high-stake segment. In fact, Rogers accelerated LTE deployment plans have surprised analyst and even company executives.

In the past, Rogers CEO Nadir Mohamed has reiterated that LTE is the future and it would “fuel Canada’s digital economy” in this century. He pointed out that LTE is already used by Verizon and AT&T in the United States so there are no question marks over its reliability. Rogers maintains that bagging the lion’s share of LTE early adopters has always been its goal and its team has toiled hard to advance the roll out by months.

However, LTE is a costly affair. A Rocket Stick starter plan of just 1.5GB costs $45, with the largest data package coming in at $90 for 9GB. To celebrate the expansion of its LTE network, Rogers also announced a “special introductory plan” of 10GB for $52.93 per month. For this plan, there would no overage charges for the first two months after activation.

Are you prepared for the Rogers speedy LTE ride?

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Written by: Gaurav Kheterpal. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.comby: RSS,TwitterFacebook, or YouTube.

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