Telus and Bell Going HSPA, Hungry for iPhone 3GS in Canada?


BGR served up a rumor that Telus in Canada was getting the iPhone 3GS in October. How will a CDMA carrier get the GSM iPhone? Simple, as mentioned last year, Telus has partnered with Bell to expand their CDMA network by adding in HSPA. That means Bell Mobility could support the iPhone 3GS as well, and the rumor's TiPb's hearing is they just might (though exact timing will of course depend on how fast they get HSPA up and running).

If Rogers/Fido's Canadian iPhone 3GS exclusivity was tied only to their GSM monopoly, and that suddenly becomes an oligopoly, will the increased competition lead to better iPhone plans and prices for Canadian consumers? Well, oligopolies are historically only slightly better than monopolies, so we won't get our hopes up any time soon.

So Canadians, anyone rather have their iPhone on Telus or Bell?

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Telus and Bell Going HSPA, Hungry for iPhone 3GS in Canada?


I hate all major carriers except Fido.
I HATE the system access fee. Rogers has it but Fido doesn't... wtf?
If Telus/Bell do get it, I wouldn't mind. More of my friends will be able to get iPhones and prices, even if only by a little, will probably be better :D.

i love bells network, cdma is great in canada, esp for us here in the atlantic. and love the iphone. so this is great news, hope its true!

I'm a huge fan of Bell, Their customer service is really good, and they for the most part, have had decent price packages. The second I can put a Bell SIM card in this Unlocked iPhone, I will terminate my Rogers contract, and switch back over to Bell.

Telus always bent over backwards to make me happy. Rogers treats me as though they're grudgingly doing me a favour by taking my business. I only switched for the iPhone and I'd go back if I could.

Yeah, it is believable only time will tell..Now dat Apple is selling the iphone without a contract at Rogers/Fido store and also Future shop..dat means 2 me dat maybe more carriers r coming and Apple is tryin' to sell their product to many people as we all know dat Bell/Telus r suppose 2 be launching their HSPA service in 2010...For me, i'll be waiting for more cheaper and advantages plans.

I've never dealt with Bell - but I can't stand Telus. I'm much happier with Rogers then Telus. I've never had good customer service with them - and I think it says a lot out here in Edmonton at least that lots of people would rather go with SHAW (a cable proider that offers phone service) then Telus.
So I'll be interested to hear what people think of Bell if this is indeed true.

It is an open secret that monthly rates are partly decided by Apple as it gets a cut out of monthly plans. So it is unlikely that Apple will allow its profits to reduce by letting two carriers get into a price war. Take France and India by way of examples. Both of these countries have more than one carriers but the rates are the same for all.


JC, ummm, no. Unless you have evidence of an actual exclusivity contract between Rogers and Apple that the rest of the world doesn't know about, the consensus understanding is that they do not. Unlike AT&T in the US, most international markets at this time have multiple carriers with the iPhone.
Exclusivity costs carriers big money, and back when the original 3G launched, there was absolutely no need for Rogers, the sole GSM carrier, to pony up any additional dollars, since they were by default the only network capable of supporting it.

I am with Fido here in Montreal and was lucky enough to have gotten the 45$/month plan (unlimited incoming/outgoing calling) about 2 years ago. To that I added the 30$/month for 6gb of data and the 20$/month 2500 text messages etc. I think my plan is just perfect as I can use everything as much as I want. I like Fido.

HI i have been told by numerous people that iphone will be coming to bell and telus in september of 2009 or october of 2009. I have heard this from the manager of a bell mobility store and friends who work for bell.

I am dying to get an iphone, but i've been a Bell customer for years and I love their customer service, they've always been great. I'd probably switch to Rogers if I had to in order to get an iphone, but if there is a chance that Bell might get it, i'll wait.

I have been speaking with Telus Loyalty for the past few weeks about the Samsung Omnia and they told me that they are going to GSM in September and they are getting the iphone it is just a matter of when possibly October or maybe January. They staff does not know until it shows up!

I hope this is true (I hate Rogers/Fido) so that I can finally consider buying an iPhone cause the only thing I have close to it is my iTouch 2G... All because it's 60 bux a month... outrageous

I've had nothing but good experiences will Bell, having been with them for 5 or 6 years now. I've still got 8 or 9 months left on my contract with them and was seriously considering holding my nose and going over to Rogers/Fido to goet me an iPhone when it expired. But if Bell may be carrying it soon I'm happy to stay with Bell.
And it'll be a cold day in hell before I go to Telus. I ditched them for home phone and cellular years ago and will never look back. Worst service EVER.

This is VERY exciting news for me, i really want an i-phone but not if that would mean me having to leave Bell who i have been with now for 7 years and LOVE LOVE LOVE their customer service, to go over to crappy rogers and deal with there bs customer service is not even an option!!!!!!
Wonder how many people will leave rogers and their crappy ways as soon as this happens... hmmmmmm :)

Bob, I sure hope you eman customer service, not network service, because Bell uses Telus's CDMA network so you're getting the same 'service' in that regard. As per the switch as an ex-Bell employee now working for Rogers with a ton of contacts I worked with at Bell for years and years, GSM is coming, but I'd hold off any drastic ship-jumping until coverage maps are provided. Think local, not national (local that is if you live in Southern Ontario, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Winnipeg, Saskatoon or Halifax and don't plan on a lot of travelling). As for the iPhone, yes, Rogers does have an exclusivity deal in place for the previous gen. and the new 3GS, however it is a set term (can't say how long) and doesn't cover any new generations (hint, hint) which may come out in the form of a 4G iphone. Keep in mind Roger's new 4G network, set to launch around the same time as Telus and Bell's 3G GSM, gets speeds of up to 21Mbps!!! Lastly before you get too excited about anything being promised by Bell, remember that they got bsuted a few months ago for advertising 3G service and when pushed to explain how that was possible, they said that it was unrelated to what is commonly known as 3G around the world and instead was their in-house abbreviation for the fact that they were on their "3"rd "G"eneration of CDMA phones. AKA they B.S.'d as they usually do to try and seem like they aren't a dinosaur.

Great News!
It was a happy day for me when I ditched those rude SOBs at Rogers.
Telus is great. They're polite, helpful and have better deals and better reception.
The only thing missing was the iPhone.

@James The reason Bell and Telus are rolling out HSPA is so they can later upgrade to LTE, which is a 4G standard. Rogers won't be the only one with 4G.