List of Canadian mobile phone companies

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This is a list of mobile telephony providers in Canada.

As of Q3 2016, there are over 30 million wireless subscriptions in Canada.[1] Approximately 90% of Canadian mobile phone users subscribe to one of the three largest national telecommunication companies (Rogers Wireless, Bell Mobility, and Telus Mobility) or one of their subsidiary brands. These three mobile network operators own and operate transmission facilities that cover most of the country, though they sometimes share each other's networks in certain geographical regions in order to reduce costs and reach more customers.

The remaining 10% of subscribers are served by smaller, regional providers, mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), and resellers.[2] Regional providers own and operate transmission facilities that cover a limited area and rely on partnerships with national service providers to connect their customers across Canada. In contrast, MVNOs and resellers do not own spectrum or network infrastructure and are required to lease network capacity from other providers at wholesale rates. While MVNOs have their own facilities to package and support their mobile services, resellers rely on the host network provider to package, market, bill, and deliver mobile services.[3]

All wireless service providers in Canada are regulated by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), which has been blamed by some for the concentration of wireless service subscribers to only three large national carriers. Though measures have been taken to encourage more competition, critics suggest that more should be done to address the issue, e.g. by mandating wholesale network access for MVNOs.[4][5]

Mobile network operators[edit]

This is a list of mobile network operators, which includes national and regional service providers. Where applicable, this list will also include any subsidiary "extension" brands associated with a mobile service provider. While primary brands, such as Rogers Wireless or Bell Mobility, account for roughly 82% of wireless revenue, extension brands allow wireless service providers to differentiate service offerings and reach broader market segments.[6]

This list is ordered from largest to smallest by the number of current subscriptions.

Parent company Brands and subsidiaries  % of Canadian population covered Subscriptions Blended ARPU monthly
Postpaid Prepaid Total
Rogers Communications Rogers Wireless, Fido Solutions, Chatr Mobile LTE: 95%[7]
HSPA+: 97%
GSM: 97%[8]
8,839,000 1,786,000 10,625,000 $61.94 (2017 Q3)
BCE Inc. Bell Mobility, Virgin Mobile, Bell MTS, Lucky Mobile [9] LTE: 97%
HSPA+: 98%
[10][note 1]
8,243,446 764,827 9,008,273 $69.78 (2017 Q3)
Telus Corporation[note 2] Telus Mobility, Koodo Mobile, Public Mobile LTE: 97%
HSPA+: 98%
[11][note 1]
7,868,000 956,000 8,824,000 [12] $67.04 (2017 Q3)
Shaw Communications Freedom Mobile LTE: Toronto, Ottawa, London, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver[13][14]

HSPA+: 98%[14]
[note 3]

764,091 383,082 1,147,173 $37.66 (2017 Q4)
Vidéotron Vidéotron Mobile Québec and Ottawa N/A 1,000,000 [15] $69.44
SaskTel SaskTel Mobility Saskatchewan
LTE (Saskatchewan): 99%[16]
HSPA+ (Saskatchewan): 99%
N/A 615,882 $64.39
Eastlink Eastlink Wireless Atlantic Canada and Northeastern Ontario N/A
Iristel Ice Wireless Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut N/A
Tbaytel Tbaytel Mobility Northwestern Ontario N/A
TNW Networks TNW Wireless Northwestern British Columbia and Yukon N/A
Lynx Mobility Lynx Mobility Northern Quebec N/A
Keewaytinook Mobile Keewaytinook Mobile Northern Ontario N/A
Sogetel Sogetel Quebec N/A
Xplornet Xplornet Manitoba N/A
References:[17]
  1. ^ a b Bell Mobility and Telus Mobility have a multiple operator core network agreement to provide a common radio network to the customer (distinct from a roaming arrangement, where the radio networks are separate). Bell builds most of its towers in Eastern Canada, while most of Telus' towers are in Western Canada.
  2. ^ Telus numbers include those of recently acquired of Public and may be different from CWTA-reported.
  3. ^ Figure includes partner network coverage. Freedom Mobile operates its own network in Southern Ontario, Greater Vancouver Area, Calgary and Edmonton.

Mobile networks[edit]

Operator Technology Frequency Ownership Roaming
GSM
CDMA HSPA+ LTE
PCS
AWS
Bell Mobility No Shut down planned April 2018 Yes Yes Yes Yes Bell Canada Enterprises Telus Mobility / SaskTel
Eastlink Wireless No No Yes Yes No Yes Eastlink Rogers Wireless / Bell Mobility
Freedom Mobile No No Yes Yes[18] No Yes Shaw Communications Rogers Wireless / Telus Mobility / Bell Mobility
Ice Wireless Yes No Yes Yes Yes No Ice Wireless Rogers Wireless / Videotron
Keewaytinook Mobile Yes No No No No No Keewaytinook Okimakanak's (KO) Kuhkenah Network Rogers Wireless
Lynx Mobility Yes No No No Yes No Lynx Mobility Bell Mobility / Telus Mobility
Rogers Wireless Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Rogers Communications Bell Mobility / Telus Mobility / SaskTel / TBayTel / ICE Wireless
SaskTel Mobility No No Yes Yes Yes Yes SaskTel Bell Mobility / Telus Mobility
Sogetel Mobilité No Shut down planned Yes No Yes No Sogetel Bell Mobility
TBayTel Mobility No No Yes Yes Yes No Thunder Bay Telephone Rogers Wireless
Telus Mobility No No Yes Yes Yes Yes Telus Communications Bell Mobility / SaskTel
TNW Wireless Yes No Yes No No No TNW Wireless Inc.
Vidéotron Mobile No No Yes Yes No Yes Vidéotron Rogers Wireless
A Shut down in Alberta, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Thunder Bay area of Ontario and Gaspé region of Quebec.[19] Entire CDMA network to be shut down by April 2018.[20]

Mobile virtual network operators (MVNO) and resellers[edit]

Operator Ownership Network provider
7-Eleven Speak Out Wireless Ztar Mobile Rogers
Cansel Connect Cansel Rogers (M2M)
DCI Wireless DCI Telecom Telus
Execulink Mobility Execulink Telecom Bell
good2go Mobile Canada Ztar Mobile Rogers
KORE Wireless KORE Telematics Rogers (M2M)
OnStar General Motors Bell (M2M)
PC Mobile Loblaws Bell (prepaid) / Telus (postpaid)
Petro-Canada Mobility Ztar Mobile Rogers
Zoomer Wireless Zoomer Wireless Rogers

Push-to-talk networks[edit]

Operator Ownership Coverage Technology Frequency Status Notes
Fleetcom Fleetcom Inc. Toronto iDEN SMR Active
Airtel Wireless Airtel Wireless Ltd. Calgary iDEN SMR Active

Former mobile networks[edit]

This list includes legacy network terminations as well as defunct network operators.

Operator Type Ownership Purchased by Ceased operations Fate
Bell Mobility Ev-DO Bell N/A July 1, 2015[21] Complete CDMA shutdown planned for April 2018[21]
CityWest CityWest December 13, 2013 Wireless services discontinued; mobile customers will be transitioned to Telus[22]
Clearnet CDMA Clearnet Communications Telus Mobility 2000 Network merged with Telus
Dryden Municipal Telephone Service GSM, CDMA Dryden Municipal Telephone Service Wireless sold to Tbaytel, Wireline to Bell Aliant December 21, 2012 Wireless customers migrated to Tbaytel[23]
Fido GSM Microcell Rogers Communications November 8, 2004 Network merged with Rogers; Fido operates as MVNO
Kenora Municipal Telephone Service CDMA Kenora Municipal Telephone Service Wireless sold to Bell Aliant February 2008 & July 19, 2015 Wireless customers sold to Bell Aliant.[24] KMTS wireless subscribers moved to Bell Mobility.[25]
Lynx Mobile CDMA Lynx Mobile N/A December 31, 2015 CDMA network replaced by GSM Network[26]
Mobilicity AWS, HSPA+ DAVE Wireless Rogers Communications 2015 Rogers will transition some Mobilicity retail locations and all its customers to Rogers sub-brand Chatr Mobile. As of August 16, 2016, Rogers will stop activating new Mobilicity lines.[27]
MTS Mobility HSPA+ Manitoba Telecom Services Bell Mobility 2016
NorthernTel Mobility NorthernTel Mobility Bell Aliant July 19, 2015 NorthernTel Mobility wireless subscribers moved to Bell Mobility.[28]
Northwestel Northwestel Bell Mobility June 19, 2014 Wireless services discontinued, sold to Bell Mobility.[29]
Public Mobile CDMA with Ev-DO Public Mobile Telus Mobility August 8, 2014[30] MVNO on Telus HSPA+ network[30]
Sasktel CDMA Sasktel N/A July 5, 2017[31] CDMA network's EVDO support ended on September 30, 2014[32]
Superior Wireless CDMA Superior Wireless TBayTel August 2006 Merged with TBayTel[33]
TBayTel CDMA TBayTel N/A December 31, 2014.[34]
Télébec Mobilité Télébec Mobilité Bell Aliant July 19, 2015 Télébec Mobilité wireless subscribers moved to Bell Mobility.[35]
Telus Mobility CDMA Telus N/A May 31, 2017[36]
Telus Mobility iDEN Telus N/A January 29, 2016
Mike iDEN over SMR Telus N/A January 29, 2016[37]

Former subsidiaries[edit]

Operator Ownership Network provider
Solo Mobile Bell Mobility Bell
Clearnet (Telus Mobility) Telus Telus

Travel SIM cards and specialty services[edit]

Operator Ownership Network provider Notes
AlwaysOnline Wireless Otono Various A global data network for iPad owners on the go. AlwaysOnline Wireless is an on-demand 4G LTE service in over 45 countries with plans by the hour, by the day, or by the megabyte.[38]
iRoam, formerly Brightroam iRoam Mobile Solutions Rogers International SIM, offers Canadian and American numbers.[39]
Know Roaming Know Roaming Various Global SIM Sticker placed on existing SIM card.[40]
ZIP SIM Otono[38] T-Mobile USA Offers American numbers.[41]
Roam Mobility (USA) Otono T-Mobile USA Offers American numbers for roaming in the USA and Mexico.[42][43]
Roam Mobility (Canada) Otono Various Offers Canadian numbers for roaming in Canada. SIM's expire after usage.[44]
PhoneBox PhoneBox Rogers (postpaid) / Telus (postpaid) Offers Canadian numbers. SIM's expire after usage.[45]
FlyMobi FlyMobi CDMA Sprint For inmates

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Subscribers Stats EN 2016 Q3" (PDF). CWTA. Retrieved February 5, 2017. 
  2. ^ "Communications Monitoring Report 2015" (PDF). CRTC. 
  3. ^ "Mobile Service Providers". 
  4. ^ Geist, Michael. "CRTC falls short on true wireless competition". 
  5. ^ Chin, Brian. "No room for low-cost MVNO smartphone plan providers in Canada". 
  6. ^ "Percentage of revenues and subscribers derived via primary brands, extension brands, and resellers/rebillers, 2014" (PDF). Communications Monitoring Report. CRTC. 
  7. ^ "Rogers LTE Coverage (Q3 2015 report)" (PDF). 
  8. ^ "Rogers GSM/HSPA Coverage (2013 Industry Canada)" (PDF). 
  9. ^ "BCE announces agreement to acquire Manitoba Telecom Services (MTS)". 
  10. ^ "Bell Network Coverage". 
  11. ^ "Telus Network Coverage (Q2 2015 report)". 
  12. ^ "Telus reports $3.4 billion revenue in Q3 2017 earnings report". 
  13. ^ Dobby, Christine (Nov 21, 2016). "Wind Mobile seeks fresh start with name change, LTE service". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved December 29, 2016. 
  14. ^ a b "Cell Coverage Zones". Freedom Mobile. Dec 28, 2016. Retrieved December 29, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Videotron celebrates millionth mobile customer". www.newswire.ca. 
  16. ^ "About SaskTel - SaskTel completes LTE expansion and boasts largest LTE network in Province - SaskTel". www.sasktel.com. 
  17. ^ "Q2 2016 Subscriber Stats" (PDF). CWTA. Retrieved 2015.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  18. ^ Behar, Rose (December 15, 2016). "Freedom Mobile's LTE network is now actually live in Toronto and Vancouver". MobileSyrup. Retrieved December 17, 2016. 
  19. ^ "CDMA network change". Bell Canada. Retrieved February 17, 2017. 
  20. ^ Hardy, Ian (August 15, 2016). "Bell to start decommissioning its CDMA network on January 31st, 2017". MobileSyrup. Retrieved December 17, 2016. 
  21. ^ a b Hardy, Ian (April 8, 2014). "Bell lays out plan to shutter its CDMA network by January 1st, 2017". MobileSyrup. 
  22. ^ "About TELUS". about.telus.com. 
  23. ^ "DMTS Notice to Customers " Dryden Municipal Telephone System". Dryden Municipal Telephone System. Retrieved October 21, 2015. 
  24. ^ http://www.bce.ca/news-and-media/releases/show/city-of-kenora-unanimously-approves-bell-aliant-offer-to-purchase-kenora-municipal-telephone-system-for-27-million
  25. ^ "Wireless services & superphones from Bell Mobility - Bell Canada". www.bell.ca. 
  26. ^ "Lynx Mobility - Home EN". www.lynxmobility.com. 
  27. ^ Hardy, Ian (May 10, 2016). "Rogers to shutter Mobilicity, will shift stores and customers to chatr mobile". MobileSyrup. 
  28. ^ "NorthernTel Mobility and Télébec transition". support.bell.ca. 
  29. ^ http://www.bce.ca/news-and-media/releases/show/northwestel-wireless-moves-to-bell-mobility
  30. ^ a b "Public Mobile". www.publicmobile.ca. 
  31. ^ "About SaskTel - SaskTel turning down CDMA Network July 2017 - SaskTel". www.sasktel.com. 
  32. ^ "About SaskTel - SaskTel Turning Down EV-DO Data Service - SaskTel". www.sasktel.com. 
  33. ^ "TBayTel signs agreement to purchase Superior Wireless - Media.Knet.Ca". media.knet.ca. 
  34. ^ "Tbaytel tells customers to upgrade older cell phones". 
  35. ^ https://www.telebec.com/english/magasinage_ligne/asp/mobilite/transfert_bell.asp/
  36. ^ "Telus pushes back CDMA network shutdown to May 31st, 2017". February 1, 2017. 
  37. ^ "Mike® is retiring". 
  38. ^ a b https://otono.com/brands
  39. ^ "International SIM Cards, Cell Phones & Data Plans from Brightroam". www.brightroam.com. 
  40. ^ "Reduce Roaming Fees With KnowRoaming". KnowRoaming. 
  41. ^ "USA Prepaid SIM Cards for Short-Term Wireless Service - ZIP SIM". www.zipsim.us. 
  42. ^ "Unlimited USA Roaming Day Plans - Roam Mobility". www.roammobility.com. 
  43. ^ https://www.roammobility.com/mexico-roaming-plans
  44. ^ "Canadian Prepaid SIM Cards for Short Term Wireless Service - Roam Mobility Canada". roammobility.ca. 
  45. ^ "PhoneBox Wireless Service Provider". gophonebox.com.