Canadian Carriers: No, You Can’t Compare Our Plans

I’ve talked about trying to pull together a measurable comparison of Internet service in Canada for a while, but as of yet haven’t had the resources to build a tool which meets my criteria. Industry Canada had a similar idea for basic cell phone services. Specifically, the government department created a calculator to help Canadians easily compare text/voice plans across Canada’s various mobile provides. We’ll never see the calculator, however, because:

Internal departmental records released to Postmediareveal that Clement’s decision came after direct lobbying from the likes of Rogers Communications, Telus and the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association. Clement defended the decision to shut down the calculator by stating that it was “unfair” in that it didn’t include bundled services mainly offered by, yes, the big telecommunications providers.

It’s incredibly unfortunate that this tool wasn’t provided – it would have been of real assistance to the large number of Canadians that aren’t using bundled services. What’s worse is that, rather than providing the tool in a ‘basic’ state and then scaling it depending on demand (the approach planned by Industry Canada) the whole project was scrapped. Not even the source code has been made available. Consequently, Canadians paid a fortune to develop a tool which met its basic design specs, and have nothing to show for it save for a large government bill and the continued hassle of trying to decipher the cacophony of mobile phone plans. Carriers: 1 Canadians: 0.

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