Yes, Canadian mobile data rates are crazy compared to the rest of the world. We. Are. Getting. Hosed.

Feeling hosed every time you get your mobile phone bill? Outraged when you hear that Canadian telcos tell you that what you’re paying is competitive with the rest of the world? You aren’t crazy.

Podnews (via Jame Cridland‘s newsletter) compares three levels of mobile data plans from around the planet. Here’s how Canada fares using Bell as a point of comparison:

  • Cheapest: $80 (2.8%) – 4GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $136 (4.7%) – 20GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Super-fancy: $147 (5.1%) – 20GB / unlimited international calls, texts, roaming (2 countries)

Compare that to what is offered by Telstra in Australia.

  • Cheapest: $35 (1% of average annual income) – 30GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Mid-range: $35 (1%) – 30GB / unlimited national calls and texts
  • Super-fancy: $63 (1.9%) – 90GB / unlimited international calls, texts (15 countries), roaming (75 countries)

Holy s**t! Aussies can get THIRTY gigs of data for $35 while we pay $80 for FOUR?

Now compare Canada to the UK through EE.

  • Cheapest: $18 (0.6%) – 2GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Mid-range: $32 (1.1%) – 30GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)
  • Super-fancy: $32 (1.1%) – 30GB / unlimited national calls/texts/roaming (48 EU countries)

To reiterate: holy s**t! Think this sort of robbery doesn’t have an effect on the uptake of data-heavy activities like streaming music and podcast listening?

There are more comparisons here. Prepared to get queasy.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

2 thoughts on “Yes, Canadian mobile data rates are crazy compared to the rest of the world. We. Are. Getting. Hosed.

  • February 25, 2019 at 5:43 am
    Permalink

    What about the initial and continuous capital investment to put the network across this massive geographic region we call Canada? You’re comparing rates to areas – like the UK – that would fit in one Canadian Province? You expect the same speeds in downtown Toronto, to rural Ontario, to throughout the entire country. That cost dough – big time dough to start and continue that upgrade as every new network technology comes along.

    Reply
    • February 25, 2019 at 6:19 am
      Permalink

      Well, Australia is almost as big and even more sparsely populated and their rates are shockingly cleaper. Next question…

      Reply

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