Ottawa looking to lay down the law on wireless regulations

by Andrew Roach on April 16, 2013

There has been much speculation in recent weeks as to what the final regulations will be involving the new wireless licences that will be handed out to providers.

But it doesn’t seem like we will have to wait much longer to find out what the rules will be as Industry Minister Christian Paradis has come out by saying that they could be ready as early as next month.

The announcement comes just weeks after Paradis said that the government were reviewing the current wireless regulations in particular involving around the transfer of frequency spectrums.

Many people are commenting that the move could be an attempt to stop major carriers from taking over frequencies from failing independent providers.

Over the past year of two, the government have trying to break down the dominance of the big three telecom companies and open the market up so there were at least room for a fourth firm to compete in the market.

As such, independent carriers such as Wind Mobile, Mobilicity and Shaw Communications have all looked and tried to claim that spot without any success.

In fact, the move has only gone and led the firms into a downward spiral which has resulted in them needing takeovers from the giants to stay afloat with Rogers poised to takeover Shaw’s frequency spectrum and Telus looking to buy Mobilicity outright.

Many industry watchdogs believe that the reviews were needed to make sure that the market stays competitive and allow for more choice within the telecom industry. This was echoed by Industry Canada who told The Globe and Mail that “Our government recognizes that new competitors require sufficient spectrum and is committed to providing access to spectrum for at least four providers in each region”.

Whilst firms have struggled recently to make the vital breakthrough to create a four-way share of the market, the government has looked to make it harder for the likes of Rogers and Telus to dominate completely with new regulations forcing networks to share reception towers with one another and upping the roaming fees on shared networks.

At the moment, it’s going to be tough for independent carriers to try and become as successful as the major telecom firms but with a bit of tweaking down in Ottawa, it could do but enough to help the little guys at least get some sort of foothold before it’s too late.

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Written by: Andrew Roach www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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