Ok, so VoIP over 3G isn’t quite there, but 4G is not far off.
It would seem that Apple believes 4G is ready for voice and video calling in Korea at least. According to a Korean blog, Korea Telecom will be deploying the iPhone 4G in June of this year. The new device will sport forward and rearward facing (5-megapixel) cameras, an OLED screen and a video calling service.
It occurs to me that with all that is going on in the mobile space, at least one of the providers would have come to market with a data only + VoIP offer. Well, there is still a chance that might happen, in Canada. If we look at the recent spectrum auction it is plain to see the potential players who could bring the Google Nexus One (N1) to market in Canada. It seems that there are only 2 possibilities; DAVE wireless or Wynd Mobile.
Since Wynd has launched there has been no mention of the N1, so maybe it’s DAVE wireless that is bringing the N1 to market in Canada? Will we see a data only offer? One can only hope.
I am an iPhone 3GS user now, but I would jump ship in a heartbeat if I could get decent coverage at a decent price with 3.5/4G + VoIP service of my choice. This seems like such a no-brainer and could seriously disrupt the industry. Let’s get on with it already!
Wind Mobile wins over CRTC Ruling. Canada to see first new independent mobile operator in more than 10 years.
Woot! Well it’s a happy day in Canada. This is good news for all Canadians, except maybe the few carriers making up the communications oligopoly of today.
Wind Mobile received the green light from the Canadian Minister of Industry today after making some changes to their share structure and foreign ownership within the company.
From their website (and over the wire) this morning
Globalive Welcomes Gov’t of Canada Decision and Prepares to Bring WIND Mobile to Market
TORONTO – December 11, 2009 – WIND Mobile declared a new day for wireless in Canada today, in response to an announcement made by the Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry, to vary a recent decision of the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC).
The Government of Canada variance is effective immediately and provides a clear path for WIND Mobile to enter the Canadian wireless market and to become Canada’s first national wireless alternative in over a decade.
“This is a new day for wireless in Canada. This holiday season we will start to provide Canadians with the competitive choice that they want and deserve,” said Anthony Lacavera, Chairman of Globalive and WIND Mobile. “We thank the Government of Canada for a decision that will serve the best interests of Canadian consumers.”
In its decision today, the Government of Canada concluded that Globalive is a Canadian company that meets the Canadian ownership and control requirements under the Telecommunications Act by varying an October 29 CRTC decision (Telecom Decision CRTC 2009-678).
“For too long, Canadians have suffered from higher prices and an underwhelming customer experience,” said Ken Campbell, CEO of WIND Mobile. “We look forward to offering the most unforgettably positive mobile experience in Canada. In return, we’re asking Canadians to make a new choice in wireless and sign up on WINDmobile.ca today.”
A national survey found that 60 per cent of Canadians are frustrated when dealing with service providers due to factors like a lack of unbiased advice, inability to change their service plans, and in particular, hidden service fees. In addition, Canadians pay an average of 60 per cent more for wireless than Americans.
“For over a year, we’ve been engaged in conversation with Canadians who have been telling us they want more from their mobile experience,” said Lacavera. “But the conversation isn’t over – it’s just beginning. We will always be listening, always inviting thoughts, comments and opinions about how to make things better.”
About Globalive and WIND Mobile
Globalive provides voice, text and data services to Canadians under the brand name WIND on a next-generation wireless network and is committed to offering a level of wireless service presently not available in Canada. WIND is built on actual conversations that are happening with Canadians who are passionate about wireless and creating a better mobile offering nationally. For more information about WIND Mobile, visit our About Us page.
For more information, please contact:
Narrative Advocacy Media
416.644.4124 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The CRTC – Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, had put the kibosh on Wind Mobile’s progress. This action was prompted by the other mobile operators (surprise surprise) who argued against globalive’s entrance due to the company not adhering to the the Canadian foreign ownership rules. Globalive had invested 442 million dollars to buy spectrum in the last auction.
There is at least one question to ask, were there any changes made to the foreign ownership rules to accommodate this ruling? If so does that leave the door open for the other carriers to by swallowed up by even larger carriers elsewhere?
Yes, they will.
1. Rogers has cornered the GSM market in Canada and is the only carrier to offer the iPhone, but that is about to change. Telus and Bell have tag-teamed to erect an HSPA+ network and will be offering the iPhone as early as next month. Just in time for the holiday season and with plenty of time to ready themselves for the 2010 games in Vancouver.
It’s true that 3G is not yet ubiquitous which mean VoIP over 3G is not something that will drive massive adoption in the near term, but it will be enough of a detractor for a good percentage of the users to not choose Rogers if Telus and Bell allow VoIP over 3G on the iPhone.
2. Rumors have it that Globalive / Wind Mobile is hot on trail of Rogers and will be completing Phase 1 of their network build-out as early as this spring. They too might be carrying the iPhone. None of the big three want to get beat out by the new guy on the block.
3. Other devices on the Rogers network already have apps that deliver VoIP over 3G service. It’s not the network that is the limiting factor here, it’s the Apple app store and the contract they have with the carriers representing the iPhone.
4. Net Neutrality. I am sure that Rogers would like to avoid getting dragged into the same kind of kerfuffle the FCC has been crowing about in the US. The Internet does not stop at the desktop, so why should those it be left out of such conversations, it simply shouldn’t.
It’s should also be clear that Apple would prefer it if the carriers would allow VoIP over 3G. It would mean more devices sold and more interesting apps in the app store. I just can;t see Apple saying “no thanks” to VoIP related (product and service) revenue in the app store.
I think the question is more a matter of ‘when’ as opposed to ‘if’. Hopefully it’s soon!
It happening all over North America. As engadget reports, iTunes activations have once again reached epic proportions and have lead to system-wide shutdown of iPhone Activations.
Rogers in Canada is also suffering from the ill effects of a ‘not so well’ thought-out activation system and it would seem this could also be related to iTunes. Although, some are saying different.
No matter how you slice it, at least from a sales perspective, this will be remembered as a major success for Rogers and Apple. If you are selling that many phones, life is grand.
There are only 2 weeks to go before the Canadian Wireless Auction closes, 3 weeks to auction awards and things are getting… interesting.
T-Mobile dropped off the list several weeks ago and more recently Niagara Networks withdrew their application.
This means there are now zero foreign applicants on the roster, right?
Hmm, not necessarily. Upon closer inspection we see that one of the Canadian numbered companies is owned in no small part by a few well known US VCs, with Canadian firm Novacap leading the charge.
Something else that’s rather peculiar about this list on first glance is the missing MSO / Cable Companies. On that note, I have it from a reliable source that Cogeco is also in the running, Quebec’s largest cable provider. The same is true for the Alberta numbered company, we already know that one is Shaw.
There are also some smaller firms that are looking to break into the cellular market in Canada, one such company is GlobaLive.
The privately held company, which sells telecommunications services under the Yak brand, said it was seeking 1,892 bid points with a required deposit of $235 million, making it the sixth-most-aggressive seeker of spectrum so far. The company said it was receiving funding from Egypt-based Weather Investments, which runs cellphone providers in Italy and Greece, as well as London-based Novator, which operates carriers in Poland and Iceland.
From all of the known contenders I think Globalive and MTS (the incumbent in Manitoba) are the most interesting. They both have SIP infrastructure deployed in the public realm and both could bridge the gap between wireless and wired networks in a very seamless manner. Standards compliant VoIP across wired and wireless networks, very interesting.
I will be covering this closely from here on so stay tuned.
erik | sipthat.com