Rob Bruce or Rogers took the stage at the 2011 Canadian Telecom Summit and stated that this year has “been a very exciting year” and “collectively, we’re facing unprecedented change”. New carriers, new network speeds coming and new government. Bruce stated that he urges the new government to drive Canada’s digital economy and that it’s more than just bringing on “the coolest handsets, the most amazing apps, or even the fastest networks… it’s about a digitally advanced nation. A nation defined by world class infrastructure, digitally savvy Canadians, technologically advanced businesses and a modern skilled workforce”.
Bruce proudly stated that Rogers has “written cheques for more that 10 billion dollars over the past 10 years to connect Canadians from coast to coast” and that Canada is far advanced than other countries. Namely, the United States. “Just ask anyone who’s traveled to New York or San Fransisco. Ask them about their wireless experience. What would they say? They’d complain about the number of dropped calls. The reception quality. The number of failed call attempts. But in Canada… the networks are great… we’re incredibly proud of the reliable, quality we deliver for Canadians.”
Speaking briefly about the upcoming LTE launch this year in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Ottawa Bruce said that “we’re incredibly proud to, once again, be the first in bringing this innovation technology to Canadians… no wonder our competitors are racing to catch up”. Bell recently stated in an internal doc that they will be the first to deploy LTE and that “Our competitors will not get in front of Bell’s network leadership”. So the race to see who will launch LTE in Canada is on.
Bruce did take some time to talk about the upcoming 700MHz spectrum auction and how there should be “fair and equal access” to this spectrum. Some carriers like Public Mobile, WIND Mobile and Mobilicity want the incumbents left out of this auction because they are “spectrum hoarding” by not using what they purchase. Bruce stated that restricting this “would be unfair to our nine million wireless customers who have every right to access a truly national, robust LTE network in both urban and rural markets… We urgently need regulation that doesn’t prop up one company, or one industry, at the expense of another.”
Bruce closed his presentations by noting that “We need policies that allow proud, Canadian owned and operated companies to grow and invest in this great country. Rogers has a proud history of delivering a number of first in Canada:
– The first commercial high-speed cable internet service in North America
– The first to bring high-definition television to Canada
– The first to launch HSPA+ in North America
– The first to launch the iPhone and Android in Canada
– The first to launch BlackBerry service worldwide
– And now the first in Canada to launch and LTE network in Canada.
So there you have it… Rogers first and they state they will be the first to launch LTE.