published weekly by Angus TeleManagement Group
Number 465: January 21, 2005
Publication of Telecom Update is made possible by generous
financial support from:
** ALLSTREAM: www.allstream.com
** AVAYA: www.avaya.ca/en/
** BELL CANADA: www.bell.ca
** CISCO SYSTEMS CANADA: www.cisco.com/ca/
** ERICSSON: www.ericsson.ca
** MITEL NETWORKS: www.mitel.com/
** SPRINT CANADA: www.sprint.ca
** UTC CANADA: www.canada.utc.org/
IN THIS ISSUE:
** Wireless Auction Nears End
** Telus Offers Push-to-Talk Cellphones
** AT&T Revenue in Free Fall
** Ottawa Intervenes in RIM Patent Fight
** Ottawa Funds VoIP Net in North Ontario
** Broadband Comes to Fort Frances Area
** Cogeco Aims to Launch VoIP by July
** Telehop Offers 4-Cent Dialaround LD
** Bell Deal Costs Nexxlink a Contract
** Transport Agencies Want 5-1-1 as Weather Info Code
** Venoa and Bell in Dispute Over In-Building Wire
** Shaw, Vancouver Battle Over Access Fees
** Bell Withdraws 39 Nexxia Contracts
** Globalstar Intros Asset Tracking Service
** Contest to Judge Wireless Innovation
** Utility Telcos Set Conference in February
WIRELESS AUCTION NEARS END: Industry Canada's auction of 2300/3500 MHz
spectrum is into its final stage and seems likely to end next
week. After two weeks, high bids total $55 Million -- about five times
the total amount bid in last February's auction of licences in these
** Highest bidders at week's end are Bell Canada ($34.4M),
Telus Mobility ($7.9M), 4253311 Canada Inc ($6.9M), and
Rogers Wireless ($4.6M).
** Only eight licences out of 848 remain without bids, so almost all
of Canada will soon have five broadband wireless licensees.
TELUS OFFERS PUSH-TO-TALK CELLPHONES: Telus Mobility has introduced
Instant Talk, a Push-To-Talk service that operates on the company's 1X
PCS network, using new PTT-capably phones from Kyocera and
Motorola. Customers with monthly rate plans over $40 can add unlimited
PTT for $10/month; others will pay $20.
** Telus Mobility says its existing PTT service, Mike, will
expand coverage to Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, and Peru
later this quarter.
AT&T REVENUE IN FREE FALL: AT&T Corp, once the world's largest
corporation, reports that its total revenue declined 11.6% to US$30.5
billion in 2004 and will probably drop another 15%-18% this year. In
the consumer sector, where AT&T has stopped most marketing, sales fell
16%; business sales declined 7.4%.
OTTAWA INTERVENES IN RIM PATENT FIGHT: The federal government has
asked a U.S. appeals court to reconsider its patent- dispute ruling
against Research In Motion, claiming this decision will
inappropriately affect services provided by servers located in
Canada. (See Telecom Update #462)
OTTAWA FUNDS VoIP NET IN NORTH ONTARIO: K-Net, the Band- operated ISP
that serves many Nishnawbe-Aski First Nations communities in
Northwestern Ontario, has received an Industry Canada grant to
establish an IP telephone network linking Band offices, schools,
police stations, and other facilities in five communities. The grant
is part of $2.3 million in new federal spending on telecom projects
planned by Keewaytinook Okimakanak Tribal Council.
** A C-Band earth station in Sioux Lookout will provide
telehealth, distance education, and video conferencing
services to remote communities in Manitoba, Ontario, and
Quebec, as part of the newly-formed Northern Indigenous
Community Satellite Network.
BROADBAND COMES TO FORT FRANCES AREA: Bell Canada, Pwi-di- goo-zing
Ne-yaa-zhing Advisory Services, and Industry Canada this week
announced the Fort Frances Area First Nations Broadband Project, which
extend ADSL-based high-speed Internet access to ten First Nations
communities in northwestern Ontario.
COGECO AIMS TO LAUNCH VoIP BY JULY: CEO Louis Audet said January 17
that Cogeco Cable expects to launch IP-based telephone service within
** The cableco's September-November revenue of $136 million
was 4.8% higher than during the same months of 2003. Net
income was $3.8 million. The number of Internet
subscribers rose 6.9% to 261,825.
TELEHOP OFFERS 4-CENT DIALAROUND LD: Toronto-based Telehop
Communications now offers dialaround ("10-10-100") long distance calls
to Canadian locations for 4 cents/minute with no minimum charge per
call. International pricing starts at 5 cents for calls to China.
BELL DEAL COSTS NEXXLINK A CONTRACT: Videotron is terminating the $3.6
million/year telephone assistance and Internet support contract it
awarded to Nexxlink, because Bell Canada has launched a takeover bid
for the Montreal IT company. (See Telecom Update #461)
TRANSPORT AGENCIES WANT 5-1-1 AS WEATHER INFO CODE: The Intelligent
Transportation Systems Society of Canada, a body including Environment
Canada, Transport Canada, and others, wants the CRTC to designate the
code 5-1-1 for non-commercial access to time-sensitive weather and
traveler information. The application is supported by deputy
ministers responsible for transportation and highway safety in all
provinces and the Yukon territory.
VENOA AND BELL IN DISPUTE OVER IN-BUILDING WIRE: DSL service provider
Venoa Communications wants to use the in-building portion of unbundled
loops in apartment buildings served by Bell Canada. Bell says Venoa
can only connect to a loop at the Central Office, or to non-active
pairs of Bell's in- building wire, and that Venoa may need a broadcast
licence to transmit video signals. Venoa has asked the CRTC to
SHAW, VANCOUVER BATTLE OVER ACCESS FEES: Shaw Cablesystems has asked
the CRTC to grant it access to municipal properties and highways in
Vancouver, on terms consistent with Decision 2001-23 (the "Ledcor
decision"). The city is suing both Shaw and Rogers for fees it claims
are owed under a now-expired 1973 agreement.
BELL WITHDRAWS 39 NEXXIA CONTRACTS: In December 2002, the CRTC ordered
Bell Canada to file tariffs for over 100 Customer Specific
Arrangements originally signed by Bell Nexxia (see Telecom Update
#362). The telco has now received CRTC approval to withdraw 39 of the
proposed CSAs; Bell says these relate to agreements that have expired
or been restructured.
GLOBALSTAR INTROS ASSET TRACKING SERVICE: Satellite phone carrier
Globalstar has introduced a service for tracking assets in areas not
covered by cellular. Quick Locate, starting at $39.95/month, covers
the majority of the U.S., Canada, Europe, Western Asia, the Middle
East, North Africa, and the North Atlantic.
CONTEST TO JUDGE WIRELESS INNOVATION: A contest sponsored by the
Wireless Innovation Network of B.C. is looking for wireless success
stories and promising new applications. Deadline for entries is
February 1; full details can be found at www.winbc.org/contest.
UTILITY TELCOS SET CONFERENCE IN FEBRUARY: The 2005 UTC Canadian
Utility Telecom Conference will be held at the Hotel Omni Mont-Royal
in Montreal, February 28-March 2. The conference and exposition will
focus on industry issues such as Broadband over Power Line, wireless
options, and security standards. See www.utccanadaconference.org/ for
DECONVERGING: A once-hyped meaning of the multi-purpose word
"convergence" was the supposed merging of print, broadcast, and
Internet journalism. In 2001, BCE hired David Akin to report on
business and technology for CTV and the Globe and Mail and their
websites. The "convergence reporter" has now been named Parliamentary
Reporter for CTV, and will no longer write for the Globe and Mail. No
replacement has been named.
** Despite our severe doubts about "convergence," we have
admired and appreciated Akin's reports on our industry,
and we wish him well in his new position.
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