Bell Mobility is rolling out their 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network, where they claim it’s up to three times than their HSPA+ network first launched three years ago. They’ve released this service in the GTA and neighbouring Hamilton & Kitchener/Waterloo areas only at this point. They have planned to release elsewhere later this year and into 2012.
This release is due to boost Bell’s business in the commercial sector as they’ve invested a lot into this network. “We partner with mobile technology start-ups, developer communities and established innovators across Waterloo and the GTA – they’re a big part of the more than $800 million in R&D spending that Bell invests in Canada each year,” said Bell’s Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Stephen Howe. “We’re happy to help accelerate innovation with the fastest wireless network technology commercially available.” Wade Oosterman, President of Bell Mobility, goes on to say that “LTE is the next step in ensuring Bell continues to deliver the best networks in the world to Canadian consumers and businesses, backed up by the newest data devices and the leading mobile services and content available.”
Bell’s 4G LTE is capable of speeds as high as 75Mbps, while Rogers states the same, while admitting that standard download speeds are between 12Mbps – 25Mbps. Rogers made their 4G LTE debut in Ottawa back in July, and are rolling out the service in the Greater Toronto Area this month, followed by the rest of the country soon after. Rogers 4G LTE service will range in price from $45-$90 for 1.5GB-9GB respectively. There will also be a one-time activation fee of $35 for their service. Bell is not as public with their 4G LTE pricing, which is usually a sign that it’s not going to be cheap.
Northern European TeliaSonera was the first to offer the service which is now in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Estonia and Finland, where they offer a different pricing strategy. Depending on the country the prices range from 35€-86€ ($47-$116CAD) for plans of 10GB-30GB for standard speeds between 10-80Mbps. The bottom end is about the same price as the bottom end of Rogers’ pricing for more service, and it goes up from there with much better service in Europe over what’s being released here.
As much as Canada could use more competition in such services to reduce the high prices being asked for 4G LTE and other services, it’s also nice to have companies like Bell Mobility and Rogers that offer cutting edge services before much of the world has it. I’m sure this new network service will do well here with businesses regardless of the prices being charged.