Comwave

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Comwave Telenetworks
Industry Service
Founded 1999
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Number of locations
1600+
Area served
Canada
United States
Products Telephone services
Voice over Internet Protocol
High-Speed Internet
Owner Yuval Barzakay
Number of employees
200[1]
Website Comwave's Official Web Page

Comwave Telenetworks is a Canadian company that markets telecommunication services. Actual telecommunication services are provided by third party carriers.[2] Based in Toronto and run by president and CEO, Yuval Barzakay, Comwave was established in 1999 and it serves over 500 cities in Canada and over 1,100 in the United States. Comwave claims to be an industry leader in Voice over IP (VoIP) and offer home phone services,[3] small business phone lines,[4] mobile calling, and high-speed internet.[5] Comwave offers number portability, to keep your number when you change carriers, and has been battling other carriers to protect this right for Canadians.[6]

In September 2012, the company launched the ePhone app for Android [7] (now available on iOS as well). This VoIP Softphone app helps users avoid roaming and long distance fees by providing a free alternate telephone number in the North American market of their choice.

In May 2012, Comwave launched its Hosted PBX platform.[8] Comwave Hosted PBX is a cloud based phone system for business that bundles together Polycom telephones, phone lines, over 40 business class features, long distance and a private digital secure connection, for a fixed monthly fee. Comwave Hosted PBX phone systems are managed by Comwave 24x7 on a secure private connection.

Predating Apple's iPhone, beginning in 2004, Comwave offered a bundle of hardware and services, sold as an alternative to traditional phone service known as the iPhone.[9] They no longer offer this service under the iPhone name.

In April 2013, Comwave launched its high speed internet services across Canada. Their plans are all inclusive and include your modem, dry loop, and in-home installation.[10]

Management[edit]

  • Yuval Barzakay - President & CEO

Telemarketing issue[edit]

In April 2013, Comwave Telenetworks paid a $100,000 fine by the CRTC. The fine was a result of 33 calls made between April 1, 2011, and March 18, 2013 to people who had registered their phone numbers on the do-not-call list by independent telemarketers hired by Comwave. The company has voluntarily agreed to stop telemarketing and report any customer complaints it receives to the regulator yearly.[11]

Consumers issues[edit]

In spite of Comwave receiving Consumers Choice Award, in 2012, there is a growing number of issues reported by Comwave customers. Among the most common is the complaint of customers being tied to a 3-year contract with the advertised offer. Several hundred reviews [12] attest Comwave's customers growing concerns, in what appears being signed up without full disclosure with regards to the contract term and penalties.

Current Home Phone Plans[edit]

The following table lists the current Home Phone plans that Comwave offers as of June 2017: [13]

Home Phone Plan Pricing Included Features Included Countries*** 6 Months FREE Home Phone Service Promotion**
Basic Plan [14] $9.95/Month (3 Year Term) - $14.95/Month (No Contract) Unlimited Local Calls, Caller ID Block, My Account Web Access, Free Long Distance between Comwave customers, Keep your current phone number at no extra charge. YES - If you transfer your number to Comwave on a 3 year term within 30 days.
Enhanced Plan [15] $14.95/Month (3 Year Term) - $19.95/Month (No Contract) Caller ID with Name, Caller ID Block, Call Waiting, Visual Call Waiting, Call Forwarding, Enhanced VoiceMail, Unlimited Local Calls, Free Long Distance between Comwave Customers, Do Not Disturb, 3-Way Calling, Speed Dial Memory, My Account Web Access, Keep your current phone number at no extra charge. YES - If you transfer your number to Comwave on a 3 year term within 30 days.
Canada Plan [16] $19.95/Month (3 Year Term) - $24.95/Month (No Contract) Unlimited Canada-Wide Long Distance, Caller ID with Name, Caller ID Block, Call Waiting, Visual Call Waiting, Call Forwarding, Enhanced VoiceMail, Unlimited Local Calls, Free Long Distance between Comwave Customers, Do Not Disturb, 3-Way Calling, Speed Dial Memory, My Account Web Access, Keep your current phone number at no extra charge. YES - If you transfer your number to Comwave on a 3 year term within 30 days.
Global Plan [17] $29.95/Month (3 Year Term) - $29.95/Month (No Contract) Unlimited Long Distance To 60 Countries***, Caller ID with Name, Caller ID Block, Call Waiting, Visual Call Waiting, Call Forwarding, Enhanced VoiceMail, Unlimited Local Calls, Free Long Distance between Comwave Customers, Do Not Disturb, 3-Way Calling, Speed Dial Memory, My Account Web Access, Keep your current phone number at no extra charge. Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria - other, Bahrain, Belgium, Brazil, Brunei *, Canada *, Chile, China *, Colombia, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Guadeloupe, Guam *, Hong Kong *, Hungary, Iceland, India *, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico *, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Singapore *, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand * Turkey, United Kingdom, United States *, U.S. Virgin Islands *, Venezuela YES - If you transfer your number to Comwave on a 3 year term within 30 days.
* Calls to mobile phones included
** 3 Months FREE Home Phone service if you do not transfer your number to Comwave on a 3 year term within 30 days.
*** All Calls to landline phones included, excluding certain call types such as calls to premium numbers.  Calls to mobile phones may be included depending on the destination.  Certain countries exclude associated territories.  Calls to Colombia include Bogota & Cali only.  Calls to Mexico include Guadalajara, Mexico City & Monterrey only.  Calls to Brazil include Rio and Sao Paulo only.  Calls to Russia include Moscow & St. Petersburg only.  Calls to the United States do not include Hawaii, or Alaska.  Calls to Canada do not include Yukon, Nunavut, or Northwest Territories.

Current Internet Plans[edit]

The following table lists the current Internet plans that Comwave offers as of June 2017: [18]

Internet Plan Download Speed Upload Speed Data Usage Pricing Notes
Internet 30 [19] 30 Mbps 2 Mbps Unlimited** $49.95/Month
Internet 100 [20] 100 Mbps 10 Mbps Unlimited** $59.95/Month Limited Time Offer, Valid Until July 29, 2017.
Internet 150 [21] 150 Mbps 15 Mbps Unlimited** $64.95/Month for the first 12 months, $95.00/month afterwards.
Internet 250 [22] 250 Mbps 20 Mbps Unlimited** $89.95/Month for the first 12 months, $115.00/month afterwards.
** Unlimited Data Usage is subject to Comwave's Fair Usage Policy.

Retired Internet Plans[edit]

The following table lists Internet plans that have been retired by Comwave to new customers. However, existing customers who are still using these Internet plans can choose to keep using the Internet plan, or make the switch to an Internet plan that is currently being offered by Comwave:

Internet Plan Download Speed Upload Speed
Internet 6 Lite 6 Mbps 800 Kbps
Internet 15 15 Mbps 1 Mbps
Internet 25 25 Mbps 2 Mbps
Internet 50 50 Mbps 4 Mbps
Internet 60 60 Mbps 4 Mbps

Legal issues[edit]

On September 13, 2016, Comwave Telenetworks was fined $300,000 by the Canadian Competition Bureau for misleading advertisements.

The Bureau concluded that Comwave's advertisements misrepresented the charges consumers would face for their services, and that the advertised prices were not attainable because of additional non‑optional fees.

The Competition Bureau had determined [23] that despite Comwave marketing their Voice over IP (VoIP) home phone services and high speed internet services as unlimited, Comwave had applied a monthly minute cap onto their VoIP home phone service, as well as a monthly Bandwidth cap onto all tiers of their internet service regardless; per Comwave's Fair Usage Policy for Internet.[24]

The Bureau has also concluded that while this information was being disclosed in their fine print, and that Comwave's staff had been instructed to provide some of this information to customers when they call into their call centre, it was not sufficient enough to prevent the advertisements from being misleading.

Under a consent agreement filed between The Commissioner of Competition and Comwave Telenetworks,[25] Comwave Telenetworks had agreed to pay $60,000 towards the cost of the Bureau's investigation.

Comwave Telenetworks had also agreed to establish a corporate compliance program to help the company avoid any similar issues in the future, as well as to change their advertisements to accurately explain their services to customers; in order to relieve the Bureau's concerns.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "# of locations/# of employees". Crunch Base. Retrieved 2011-04-07. 
  2. ^ Legal Disclaimer - Residential and Small Business Retrieved February 6, 2017
  3. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-home/
  4. ^ http://www.comwave.net/business-home/
  5. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet/
  6. ^ http://www.itworldcanada.com/news/president-and-ceo-comwave/98896
  7. ^ http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1041499/comwave-announces-a-new-ephone-app-for-android
  8. ^ http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/978149/comwave-launches-hosted-pbx-business-phone-system-in-the-cloud
  9. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/technology/toronto-company-has-dibs-on-iphone/article1068651/
  10. ^ http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1141387/comwave-launches-unlimited-internet
  11. ^ http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/comwave-fined-100-000-for-breaking-telemarketing-rules-1.1222649
  12. ^ http://www.gonevoip.ca/comwave-residential-review
  13. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-home/
  14. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-basic-plan/
  15. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-enhanced-plan/
  16. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-canada-plan/
  17. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-global-plan/
  18. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet
  19. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet-30/
  20. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet-100/
  21. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet-150/
  22. ^ http://www.comwave.net/residential-internet-250/
  23. ^ http://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca/eic/site/cb-bc.nsf/eng/04133.html
  24. ^ http://www.comwave.net/fairusage
  25. ^ http://www.ct-tc.gc.ca/CMFiles/CT-2016-014_Registered%20Consent%20Agreement_02_38_9-13-2016_7866.pdf