BUSINESS

Canada's Erratic Wireless Prices, Broken Down By Province

03/23/2016 01:21 EDT | Updated 03/23/2016 01:59 EDT

Earlier this year the big three national carriers (Bell, Telus, Rogers) announced a fee hike on their cellphone plans, and blamed it, in part, on the falling Canadian dollar.

The hikes, however, don’t affect plan prices in Quebec, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The reason? The three provinces have regional wireless carriers — Sasktel in Saskatchewan, MTS in Manitoba and Videotron in Quebec.

The regional carriers offer rates lower than the national average, thus forcing the national carriers to either compete or get out.

This is something Canadians have known for a while, going so far as to create a black market for the cheaper prairie plans.

Even though Canadians, in general, pay some of the highest fees in the world, Canadians living outside the above three provinces are definitely getting the shorter end of the stick.

“The lack of competition is going to continue to increase prices. We need real competition here, not competition with spotty coverage that eventually gets acquired by the big three carriers,” Tanvir Toor told the Huffington Post Canada.

Toor is the founder of Sphere, a Vancouver-based online cellphone trading company, that put together the infographic below. It shows just how much the presence of a fourth carrier changes cellphone plan prices across the country.

canada wireless competition

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Canada's Unfair Wireless Prices (2014)