Internet Prices In Canada Are Rising As CRTC Ruling Reversal Favors Big Telcos

A price comparison report shows that Canadian high-speed internet prices are among the highest in the world, and that they have been going up since 2019 after the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) reversed a ruling on the wholesale rates.

The report, prepared by Wall Communications Inc and published by the federal government, measures the prices Canadian telecom customers pay across different categories or service “baskets” based on download speeds and monthly data allowances. It also includes comparisons of these prices to the prices in other G7 countries or France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Among these countries, internet prices in Canada were higher in most baskets, or almost the most expensive. For example, for the basket with speeds between 101 and 250 megabits per second (Mbps), the price in Canada was most expensive at $95 monthly, followed by $85 in Japan.

Source: Wall Communications

The report showed that from 2019 and 2021, the average price of internet went up in every service basket except that with download speeds of 10 to 15 Mbps. And it’s important to note that 50% of Canadian customers are subscribed to internet plans with a download speed of at least 100 Mbps in 2020. 

In Ontario, plans with download speeds of 101 to 250 Mbps went up from $87 in 2019 to $105 in 2021.

Source: Wall Communications

The rising rates can be attributed to the CRTC doubling back on its 2019 ruling that made wholesale prices lower for small ISPs to access the networks of major players like Bell and Rogers. These smaller ISPs offered lower retail prices, pushing bigger companies to offer customers better deals.

This ruling was met with appeals which caused CRTC to put the lower wholesale rates on hold and eventually take back the ruling in 2021.

Information for this briefing was found via the Government of Canada, Toronto Star, and the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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