Canada’s Telus launches LTE service in 14 areas

Canada’s government has blocked mobile operator Telus’ application to transfer Mobilicity's spectrum licences to the firm

A third player has entered the Canadian LTE market after the operator Telus turned on its LTE network across 14 metropolitan areas.

The operator said that from February 10 its LTE network would be available in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area, Kitchener, Waterloo, Hamilton, Guelph, Belleville, Ottawa, Montreal, Québec City, Halifax and Yellowknife. Outside of these areas, customers would fall back to either its 21Mbps HSPA+ service or its 42Mbps DS-HSPA+ service. Telus said the network would deliver peak speeds of up to 75Mbps, but would average around 12-25Mbps.

The LTE-ready devices available immediately are the Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE tablet, the LG Optimus LTE smartphone and the Novatel Wireless Ovation MC679 4G LTE USB modem. The LTE enabled Samsung Galaxy Note smartphone is available from the 14 February.

The operator said that to complement the new faster network it would launch a video-on-demand service called Optik on the go. This would enable its TV customers to watch, pause and rewind content on demand.

To encourage customers to use the service Telus said that it would not be charging more for use of the LTE service and that prices would remain the same as those for its 3G data plans. “We’re listening to our customers and working hard to give them clear and simple service terms with no surprises,” said Eros Spadotto, executive vice-president of Technology Strategy and Operations, in a statement. “Consistent with this approach, our current rate plans will apply to our 4G LTE customers. We are not introducing a new rate plan or charging a premium to enjoy our new network.”

Telus said that following its initial launch it plans to expand its LTE network to cover 25 million Canadians by the end of 2012.

Rivals Rogers launched its LTE service in July 2011, while Bell Canada lit its 4G offering a couple of months later.

The LTE World Summit takes place on the 23-24 May 2012 CCIB, Barcelona, Spain. Click here to register your interest.

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