Communications Monitoring Report 2015: Telecommunications sector overview

5.0 Telecommunications sector overview

This display presents several key indicators for the telecommunications sector and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $45.9 billion, an increase of 2.4% over 2013.  Second indicator: capital expenditures: $14.7 billion, an increase of 60% over 2013. Third indicator: revenue share of the top 5 companies: 84%. Fourth indicator: telecommunications earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA): 37%.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the wireless: 48%, wireline voice: 22%, Internet: 19%, and data and private line: 11% revenues as a percentage of total telecommunications revenues in 2014. Total telecommunications revenues were $45.9 billion.

Canada’s telecommunications industry consists of six sectors: local, long distance, Internet, wireless, data, and private line. Approximately 94% of telecommunications revenues were derived from services that are no longer price-regulated. Canada’s telecommunication market has been relatively resilient to external economic conditions compared to other communications services. In the midst of a recovering economy, revenues from telecommunications services expanded in each of the last five years by an average annual rate of 2.5%.

Telecommunications service revenues exclude revenues from the sale and rental of wireline telephone sets. Annual investment in plant and equipment only includes investments made by companies with annual revenues greater than $100 million.

In 2014, Canadian telecommunications revenues reached $45.9 billion, with the vast majority (92%) derived from the retail services and a smaller portion (8%) from the wholesale sector. Service providers supplied retail services to over 12 million households, one million businesses, and, through the wholesale market, 800 other telecommunications entities.

Large incumbent TSPs captured over 62% of industry revenues. Their main group of competitors, cable-based carriers, accounted for 31% of revenues and 8% of the total number of companies. Resellers comprised nearly 68% of service providers but only 3% of revenues. These enterprises generally acquire wholesale services from incumbent TSPs and/or cable-based carriers to provide telecommunications services to their own customers.

a) Revenues

Table 5.0.1 Telecommunications revenues (retail and wholesale) ($ billions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Wireline Retail 20.6 20.6 20.7 20.9 21.2 0.7
Annual growth (%) -1.9 0.3 0.2 1.2 1.3
Wholesale 3.1 3.0 2.9 2.8 2.7 -2.6
Annual growth (%) -0.3 -1.4 -3.6 -5.1 -0.3
Wireline total 23.6 23.6 23.6 23.7 23.9 0.3
Annual growth (%) -1.7 0.0 -0.3 0.4 1.1
Wireless Retail 17.5 18.4 19.5 20.2 20.9 4.6
Annual growth (%) 7.2 5.0 6.1 3.4 3.7
Wholesale 0.5 0.7 0.8 1.0 1.0 21.6
Annual growth (%) -12.9 51.3 17.1 13.5 9.0
Wireless total 18.0 19.1 20.4 21.2 22.0 5.1
Annual growth (%) 6.6 6.2 6.5 3.8 3.9
Retail total 38.1 39.0 40.2 41.1 42.1 2.5
Annual growth (%) 2.1 2.5 3.0 2.3 2.5
Wholesale total 3.5 3.7 3.7 3.7 3.8 1.8
Annual growth (%) -2.2 5.6 0.4 -1.0 2.1
Total 41.6 42.8 43.9 44.8 45.9 2.5
Annual growth (%) 1.7 2.7 2.8 2.0 2.4

Source: CRTC data collection

Revenues from telecommunications services are derived from sales to residential and business consumers (retail revenues) and to other carriers (wholesale revenues). The table displays retail and wholesale revenues for wireline and wireless services for the years 2010 to 2014.

Estimates were made to capture revenues of service providers that did not provide data. In 2014, these estimates were less than 1% of total telecommunications revenues. Revenues derived from the sale and rental of local and access terminal equipment and other non-telecommunications revenues were excluded from wireline retail service revenues.

b) Forbearance

In 2014, approximately 94% of telecommunications revenues were from services that the Commission has determined are sufficiently competitive that tariff filings are no longer required.

Forbearance

The Commission refrains from regulation when it finds that a service is subject to sufficient competition or where refraining is consistent with the Canadian telecommunications policy objectives. This is referred to as forbearance. Where a service is forborne it is generally relieved of the obligation of a Commission-approved tariff. Other aspects of the service may still be regulated.

Table 5.0.2 Percentage of telecommunications revenues generated by forborne services
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Local and access 73 76 77 78 79
Long distance 96 95 99 99 97
Internet 98 98 98 97 96
Data and private line 81 83 84 84 89
Wireless 100 100 100 100 100
Overall 92 93 93 94 94

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the percentage of telecommunications revenues by market sector that are not regulated by the CRTC from 2010 to 2014. With respect to the local and access market sector, ‘access’ refers to wireline services that provide telecommunications services access to the subscriber or the telecommunications network.

c) Canadian Ownership

Section 16 of the Telecommunications Act addresses the eligibility of Canadian carriers to operate as telecommunications common carriers. For the purposes of applying the provisions of section 16, the Commission has determined that, for the period between the date of release of the 2015 Communications Monitoring Report and the date of release of the 2016 edition, the total annual revenues from the provision of telecommunications services in Canada is $45.9 billion.

What does section 16 of the Telecommunications Act require?

Subject to certain exceptions, section 16 requires that telecommunications companies that own or operate telecommunication transmission equipment and have Canadian telecommunications revenues greater than $4.6 billion (i.e. 10% of total Canadian telecommunications revenues) be Canadian owned and controlled.

d) Number, size, and type of companies

Figure 5.0.1 Percentage of telecommunications revenues, by type of provider of telecommunications service, 2014

This is a bar chart that shows the various types of telecommunications service providers’ revenue share and the total number of providers as a percent of total number of industry providers of telecommunication services in 2014. There are five types of service providers in this bar chart. Large incumbent TSPs (including out-of-territory): 62%, 1%; Small incumbent TSPs: 1%, 4%; Resellers: 3%, 68%; Other facilities-based service providers: 3%, 19%; Cable-based carriers: 31%, 8%.

Source: CRTC data collection

This graph displays the percentage of total revenues captured by type of provider of telecommunications services and the percentage of providers offering service.

The incumbent TSP data displayed above includes revenues from all of their Canadian telecommunications operations, both inside and outside of their traditional operating territory.

Providers of telecommunications services provide diverse information and communications technology (ICT) services, ranging from voice and data telecommunications services to data storage and cloud computing, and other services encompassing both Canadian and non-Canadian activities. In 2014, 59% of the revenues from providers of telecommunications service were from telecommunications services to Canadians. The remaining 41% were from other ICT services, broadcasting distribution services, and non-telecommunications services such as floor space rental services and fleet operations.

The industry is dominated by 10 large companies that collectively, with their affiliates, accounted for 93% of Canadian telecommunications revenues in 2014. The remaining companies accounted for less than $3.3 billion of these revenues.

Figure 5.0.2 Percent of total telecommunications revenues by ownership groups

This bar chart shows telecommunications revenues for the top 5 group of companies, the next top 5 group of companies and the remaining companies for 2012, 2013 and 2014. Top 5 companies: 85%, 83% and 84%; Next 5 companies: 9%, 9% and 9%; Remaining companies: 7%, 8% and 7%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Bell Canada, MTS Inc./Allstream Inc., Rogers, Shaw, and TELUS are Canada’s five largest providers of telecommunications services. Combined, including their affiliates, they accounted for more than 84% of total market revenues. The next five largest groups/entities - Bragg, Cogeco, Quebecor, Saskatchewan Telecommunications, and Telesat Canada—accounted for less than 9% of total market revenues. The remaining groups/entities captured 7%.

The top 10 groups/entities are facilities-based service providers, meaning that they own and operate the transmission equipment required to provide telecommunications services. Of the remaining groups/entities, the vast majority are resellers.

Providers of telecommunication service are classified as either incumbent TSPs or alternative service providers. The alternative providers consist of resellers and other facilities-based service providers, which include cable-based carriers.

Incumbent TSPs are the traditional telephone companies. For monitoring purposes, this group of TSPs is further subdivided to identify their activities outside of their traditional or incumbent territory as follows: incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) and incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory). Additional details on the classifications of providers of telecommunications services can be found in Appendix 8.

The incumbent TSPs’ revenues, excluding their out-of-territory revenues, have increased 1.3% annually over the 2010 to 2014 period. Over the same period, revenues for alternative providers of telecommunications service, including the incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory), grew 3.9% annually. Overall the cable-based carriers have experienced the strongest growth in telecommunications revenues, which increased 3.8%, from $12.2 billion in 2010 to $14.2 billion in 2014.

Table 5.0.3 Total telecommunications revenues, by type of service provider ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs Large incumbent TSPs 26,755.2 27,205.0 27,478.5 27,818.4 28,424.3 1.5
Small incumbent TSPs 417.5 469.9 474.4 450.4 448.1 1.8
Subtotal 27,172.7 27,674.9 27,953.0 28,268.8 28,872.3 1.5
Less: out-of-territory 4,326.1 4,463.5 4,934.6 5,023.3 4,816.1 2.7
Incumbents (excl. out-of-territory) 22,846.6 23,211.3 23,018.4 23,245.4 24,056.2 1.3
Percent of total (%) 55 54 52 52 52
Alternative service providers Facilities-based carriers Incumbents (out-of-territory) 4,326.1 4,463.5 4,934.6 5,023.3 4,816.1 2.7
Cable-based carriers 12,233.7 12,722.1 13,260.2 13,785.5 14,204.1 3.8
Other carriers 716.3 866.8 1,161.5 1,226.0 1,247.3 14.9
Subtotal alternative carriers 17,276.1 18,052.5 19,356.2 20,034.9 20,267.5 4.1
Resellers 1,504.7 1,493.4 1,527.7 1,542.0 1,585.5 1.3
Total alternative providers 18,780.8 19,545.9 20,883.9 21,576.8 21,853.0 3.9
Percent of total (%) 45 46 48 48 48
Total 41,627.3 42,757.2 43,902.3 44,822.3 45,909.2 2.5

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays telecommunications revenues by type of TSP for the years 2010 to 2014. It provides subtotals for the incumbent TSPs, excluding their out-of-territory revenues. The out-of-territory revenues are moved to the alternative providers of telecommunications services portion of the table. This adjustment acknowledges that incumbent TSPs are considered alternative TSPs for their out-of-territory operations.

e) Financial performance

There are a number of elements to consider in assessing a company’s financial performance or profitability. One of these is EBITDA as a percentage of total revenue (EBITDA margins).

Figure 5.0.3 Telecommunications revenues and EBITDA margins

This line clustered column chart on two axes shows the wireline, wireless and total telecom revenues in billions of dollars and wireline and wireless EBITDA margins for each year between 2013 and 2014. Note that wireline EBITDA margins represent only Incumbent TSPs which includes their out of territory operations. Wireline: 23.7, 23.9; Wireless: 21.2, 22.0; Wireline: 32.9%, 33.7%; Wireless: 43.3%, 40.6%.

Source: CRTC data collection

The EBITDA margins are calculated for TSPs that had telecommunications revenues greater than 80% of their total revenues.

This table shows the total growth in telecommunications revenues from wireless and wireline services between 2013 and 2014. It also shows the EBITDA margins for wireless, wireline, and total telecommunications.

Non facilities-based providers (i.e., resellers) generally had lower EBITDA margins. On average, their EBITDA margins were approximately one seventh that of facilities-based service providers.

Large providers of telecommunications service with Canadian telecommunications revenues in excess of $100 million were generally more profitable than smaller providers of telecommunications service.

Figure 5.0.4 Percentage of revenues and EBITDA margins by size of entity, 2014

This bar chart shows the EBITDA margins of Canadian telecommunications entities whose telecommunications revenues were greater than 80% of their Canadian operating revenues and had revenues in one of the three revenue ranges in 2014. Percent of revenues and EBITDA margins by entities with revenues greater than $100: 99%, 37%; between $10 and $100 millions: 2%, 12%; between $1 and $10 million: 1%, 22%.

Source: CRTC data collection 

The percentage of revenues and profitability are calculated for TSPs that had telecommunications revenues greater than 80% of their total revenues.

These companies were subdivided into three telecommunications revenue ranges: $1-$10 million, $10-$100 million, and greater than $100 million.

The collective EBITDA margin of companies with Canadian telecommunications revenues greater than 80% of their total revenues was 37.0%. As displayed above, companies with revenues in excess of $100 million displayed the highest EBITDA margin, 37.3%. Companies with telecommunications revenues between $10 million and $100 million collectively had a 12.0 % EBITDA margin and those between $1 and $10 million had a 21.8% margin.

f) Annual investment in plant and equipment

What are ‘access services’ and ‘network related capital expenditures’?

‘Access services’ refer to the facilities required to connect the subscriber to the network. Examples include local telephone lines and broadband access facilities.

‘Network related capital expenditures’ refer to expenditures on facilities that connect the access services facilities.

‘Annual investment in plant and equipment’ refers to the capital expenditures made to ‘replenish’ or upgrade the network of a provider of telecommunications services. In 2014, these providers spent $14.7 billion on capital expenditures of which 30% were for access services and 19% were network related. The remaining 52% related to spectrum and non-network activities such as billing and fleet operations.

Table 5.0.4 Telecommunications investments made in plant and equipment, by type of provider of telecommunications service ($ billions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Wireline Incumbent TSPs 4.4 4.6 4.7 4.9 4.8 -2.3
Annual growth (%) 5.1 5.4 2.0 4.2 -2.3
Alternative service providers Other facilities-based service providers (including cable-based carriers) 2.1 2.4 2.3 1.9 2.3 1.7
Annual growth (%) 40.2 13.7 -4.6 -17.0 18.7
Resellers 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 6.9
Annual growth (%) -35.5 33.6 48.8 1.4 -35.2
Subtotal 2.2 2.5 2.4 2.0 2.3 1.8
Annual growth (%) 38.7 13.9 -4.0 -16.7 17.6
Wireline total 6.6 7.1 7.1 6.9 7.1 2.1
Annual growth (%) 14.2 8.2 0.0 -2.8 3.4
Wireless 1.8 2.5 2.6 2.3 7.5 42.6
Annual growth (%) -18.9 35.2 4.9 -11.4 228.8
Wireline and wireless total 8.4 9.6 9.7 9.2 14.7 15.0
Annual growth (%) 4.9 14.1 1.2 -5.1 59.7

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the investments made by type of TSP for the period between 2010 and 2014.

The data for the incumbent TSPs includes their out-of-territory operations. The table also excludes TSPs with revenues less than $100 million since these companies were not required to provide this data.

The data above include expenditures made to acquire spectrum. In 2014, wireless capital expenditures increased significantly due to the sale of the 700 MHz spectrum held by Industry Canada.

Since 2010, incumbent TSPs have accounted for approximately 50% of the capital expenditures in the sector. Resellers had the least amount of capital expenditures since they use the transmission facilities of others.

A useful measure to compare annual capital expenditures is “capital intensity.” Under this measure, cable-based carriers and other facilities-based service providers spent on average 31 cents from every revenue dollar over the past two years on wireline facilities compared to 32 cents by the incumbent TSPs.

During the 2010 to 2013 period, wireless service providers had the lowest capital intensity. Over this period, their capital intensity was relatively constant at 12 cents or approximately one-third that of what the cable-based carriers and other facilities-based service provides spent on wireline facilities. In 2014, wireless capital expenditures increased significantly due to the sale of the 700 MHz spectrum held by Industry Canada.

Figure 5.0.5 Telecommunications capital expenditures as a percentage of revenues, by type of TSP

This line chart shows the capital expenditures as a percentage of revenues by type of TSP for each year between 2010 and 2014. There are three types of TSPs in this line chart. Wireless providers: 10%, 13%, 13%, 11%, 35%; Incumbent TSPs: 26%, 28%, 30%, 33%, 32%; Cable-based carriers and other facilities-based service providers: 38%, 41%, 37%, 27%, 32%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Capital intensity is a measure of the degree or level a company spends on its plant and equipment. It is derived by dividing annual capital expenditures by annual revenues, expressed as a percentage.

This figure shows the capital intensity of TSPs for the period between 2010 and 2014.

The data for the incumbent TSPs includes their out-of-territory operations, while that of alternative TSPs excludes the incumbent out-of-territory operations. TSPs with revenues less than $100 million are not included as these companies were not required to provide this data.

5.1 Telecommunications retail sectors

This display presents several key indicators for the telecommunications retail sectors and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $42.1 billion, an increase of 2.5% over 2013.  Second indicator: vertical integration, percent of retail revenues captured by 8 companies operating in all telecommunication sectors: 84%. Third indicator: wireline IP-based service revenues as a percentage of residential wireline service revenues: 66%. Fourth indicator: facilities-based service providers’ revenue market share as a percentage of total retail revenues: 97%.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the retail wireless: 50%, wireline voice: 22%, Internet: 20%, and data and private line: 8% revenues as a percentage of retail telecommunications revenues in 2014. Total telecommunications retail revenues were $42.1 billion.

As noted in the previous section, Canada’s telecommunications industry consists of six sectors: local, long distance, Internet, wireless, data, and private line.

In 2014, Canadian retail telecommunications revenues were $42.1 billion, of which 50% were from wireline services. Of the wireline revenues, 57% were from residential services and 43% from business services. The top 5 incumbent TSPs and top 5 cable-based carriers captured 61% and 32% of retail telecommunications revenues, respectively. Collectively, these 10 companies captured 93% of all retail revenues. The remaining 7% of the revenues were garnered by a large number of resellers and other facilities-based service providers. The data suggests that companies which operated in scale and scope (multiple sectors) have clear competitive advantages relative to those who are less integrated.

In 2010, revenues from wireless services were $17.5 billion or 46% of total retail revenues. By 2014, mobile wireless service revenues increased to $20.9 billion or 50% of total retail revenues. This growth was driven in large part by increased subscriptions and heightened demand for wireless data services. Data revenues, excluding roaming and other services (e.g. interconnection), have experienced an average annual growth rate of 22.4% between 2010 and 2014.

Wireline revenues have increased at a much slower pace since 2010. Wireline service revenues increased from $20.6 billion in 2010, or 54% of retail telecommunications revenues, to $21.2 billion, or 50%, in 2014. This small expansion masks the fact that wireline voice services’ revenues have fallen by nearly $1.7 billion or 16%, since 2010. The number of local lines has also declined from 18.5 million lines in 2010 to 16.4 million lines in 2014. In contrast, wireline data services such as Internet, new data protocols, and data and private line services have experienced strong revenue growth.

In urban centres across Canada, with the exception of the northern territories, there were generally 2-3 local service providers, 3-9 Internet service providers, and 3-5 wireless service providers. In rural centres, there were generally 1-2 local service providers, 2-5 Internet service providers, and 3-5 wireless service providers.

On average, Canadians could expect to pay between $23 and $75 per service per month in urban centres and $23 and $82 in rural centres, depending on the service. Companies operating in multiple sectors generally offered discounts to customers for purchasing bundled services.

Telecommunications service revenues exclude revenues from the sale and rental of wireline telephone sets. Annual investment in plant and equipment only includes investments made by companies with annual revenues greater than $100 million.

a) Revenues

Table 5.1.1 Telecommunications retail revenues, by market sector ($ billions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR(%) 2010-2014
Wireline Wireline
voice
Local 8.3 8.1 7.8 7.7 7.4 -2.7
Annual growth (%) -2.6 -2.4 -3.5 -2.0 -2.8
Long distance 2.6 2.4 2.1 1.9 1.8 -9.7
Annual growth (%) -14.4 -8.6 -11.4 -8.7 -10.0
Subtotal 10.9 10.5 10.0 9.6 9.2 -4.2
Annual growth (%) -5.7 -3.9 -5.3 -3.5 -4.3
Non-voice Internet 6.4 6.8 7.2 7.7 8.4 6.9
Annual growth (%) 4.6 5.7 6.0 7.3 8.6
Newer data protocols 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 1.9 5.2
Annual growth (%) 5.9 10.4 5.6 2.3 2.8
Legacy data protocols, private line, and other 1.6 1.6 1.7 1.7 1.7 0.6
Annual growth (%) -5.5 -2.9 4.3 3.6 -2.4
Data protocols, private line and other subtotal 3.2 3.3 3.5 3.6 3.6 2.9
Annual growth (%) -0.2 3.6 5.0 2.9 0.3
Non-voice subtotal 9.6 10.1 10.7 11.3 12.0 5.6
Annual growth (%) 3.0 5.0 5.6 5.9 6.0
Total wireline 20.6 20.6 20.6 20.9 21.2 0.7
Annual growth (%) -1.9 0.3 0.1 1.4 1.3
Wireless 17.5 18.4 19.5 20.2 20.9 4.6
Annual growth (%) 7.2 5.0 6.1 3.4 3.7
Total 38.1 39.0 40.2 41.1 42.1 2.5
Annual growth (%) 2.1 2.4 2.9 2.4 2.5

Source: CRTC data collection

Telecommunications revenues come from a variety of sources. Revenues from wireline voice services come from local telephone and long distance services, while revenues from non-voice services come from Internet services, newer data protocols services (such as Ethernet and IP-VPN), and legacy data protocols services (such as ATM and X.25). Revenues for mobile wireless come from mobile voice and data services, and from the sale and rental of mobiles devices. This table presents a detailed breakdown of the retail revenues and annual growth rates for wireline and wireless services by market sector for the years 2010 to 2014. The CAGR for each market sector for the period of 2010 to 2014 is presented as well.

Wireline services are generally a household or a business service, whereas mobile wireless services are an individual or personal type of service.

Figure 5.1.1 Telecommunications wireline and wireless retail revenues

This line stacked column chart shows both wireline and wireless revenues in billions of dollars 2010 and 2014. The line on the graph represent retail wireline revenues as a percentage of total retail telecommunications revenues. Wireline: 20.6, 20.6, 20.7, 20.9, 21.2; Wireless: 17.5, 18.4, 19.5, 20.2, 20.9; Wireline revenues as a percentage of total retail telecommunications revenues: 54.0, 52.8, 51.4, 50.9, 50.3.

Source: CRTC data collection

This graph presents the retail wireline and mobile wireless revenues for the years 2010 to 2014. Over this period, aggregate revenues from wireline and wireless services have increased steadily. The line on the graph represents retail wireline revenues as a percentage of total retail telecommunications revenues.

In 2013, the most recent period for which telephone penetration data is available from Statistics Canada’s Survey of Household Spending, 78.9% of households had wireline service, 84.9% had wireless service, 14.4% had only wireline service and 20.4% had only wireless service.

Figure 5.1.2 Distribution of telecommunications retail revenues, by market sector

These are side by side pie charts that show the telecommunications revenue distribution by market segment for 2010 and 2014. The five market segments displayed in each of pie chart are local and access, long distance, internet, data and private line, and wireless. Local and access: 22%, 18%; Long distance: 7%, 4%; Internet: 17%, 20%; Data and private line: 8%, 9%; Wireless: 46%, 50%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These two figures show the distribution of retail telecommunications revenues by market sector for two periods, 2010 and 2014. Wireless data services are captured within the wireless market sector. Wireless services are capturing increasingly larger shares of the market, while the market share of long distance and local telephone services has declined.

b) Technology indicators

Technology has been a key driver of growth in the telecommunications industry. It has promoted network efficiencies, and service and product innovation, and facilitated competition. Revenues from legacy services have generally been declining as consumers switch to other services that provide greater functionality and flexibility.

What are the newer services and technologies?

Newer services and technologies refer to services and technologies that are displacing traditional telephony services or reducing dependency on traditional telephony services.

Figure 5.1.3 Revenues of newer and legacy telecommunications services, by technology

This clustered column charts shows the revenue growth from newer telecommunication services versus legacy telecommunication services in billions of dollars for each year between 2012, 2013 and 2014. Newer services consists of wireless, internet, and newer data protocols. Legacy services consists of local and access, legacy data and private line, and long distance. Wireless: 1.1, 0.7, 0.7; Internet: 0.4, 0.5, 0.7; Newer data protocols: 0.1, 0.0, 0.1; Local and access: -0.3, -0.2, -0.2; Legacy data and private line: 0.1, 0.1, 0.0; Long distance: -0.3 -0.2, -0.2.

Source: CRTC data collection

New technologies are changing the way Canadians access telecommunications services. This graph shows the annual change in revenues for new technologies such as wireless, Internet, and other services based on data protocols in each of the past three years. The graph also compares the annual revenue change for newer services and for legacy services such as local, legacy data and private line, and long distance services.

Newer data protocols refer to services using protocols such as Ethernet and IP. Legacy data refers to services using protocols such as X.25 and frame relay.

Figure 5.1.4 Residential IP-based service revenues

This bar chart show residential IPTV, Internet Access, Voice via cable and total IP-provisioned service revenues (billions) for 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014. IPTV: 0.2, 0.3, 0.6, 0.9, 1.3; Internet Access: 4.5, 4.9, 5.4, 5.9, 6.5; Voice via cable: 1.2, 1.3, 1.3, 1.4, 1.4; Total: 6.0, 6.5, 7.3, 8.3, 9.2.

Source: CRTC data collection

A fibre-optic cable is a cable containing one or more strands that carry light. The light is used as a medium to transmit data. A fibre-optic cable is excellent for transmission over longer distances and at higher bandwidths or capacity than wire cables.

Number of homes passed refers to the number of homes that can have the telecommunications service using this technology.

Figure 5.1.5 Homes passed by fibre-optic cable, 2014

This graph shows the number homes that were either passed by fibre-based lines to the premise or to the node, by type of provider. The number of line are reported in millions. Incumbents: 2.8, 8.2; Cable-based carriers: 0.1, 12.7; Other facilities-based service providers: 0.1, 0.0.

Source: CRTC data collection

Providers of telecommunications service are adopting fibre-based systems (i.e. FTTN and FTTP). This graph shows the number of premises that were either passed by fibre-based lines or that were passed by copper lines connected to a node that was served by a fibre-optic cable. The node connected by fibre-optic cable is the closet node to the premises. A node is a pedestal where connections are made.

Figure 5.1.6 Percentage of residential lines using fibre-optic cable, 2014

This pie chart contains the percentage of FTTN, FTTP and Non fibre lines in 2014.  FTTN: 25.3%, FTTH: 6.2% and Non fibre: 68.5%.

Source: CRTC data collection

TSPs are adopting fibre-based systems (FTTN and FTTP). This table shows the percentage of fibre-based lines as a percentage of total residential lines in 2014.

c) Competitive landscape

Facilities-based providers of telecommunications services accounted for 97% of the retail telecommunication revenues in 2014. Cable-based carriers and other facilities-based alternative providers of telecommunications services are the largest source of competition to the incumbent TSPs.

Total retail telecommunications revenues in 2014 were $42.1 billion. This chart shows the percentage share of the revenues captured by separate groups of providers of telecommunications service. For example, incumbent TSPs captured the largest share of the market, excluding their operations outside their traditional operating territory. Cable-based carriers and other facilities-based alternative providers of telecommunications service captured the next largest share, followed by incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory), and finally, resellers.

Figure 5.1.7 Total retail telecommunications revenue market share, by type of service provider, 2014

This is a single pie chart that shows the telecommunications revenue market share by type of service provider in 2014. There are four types of service providers in this pie chart. Incumbent TSPs (excludes out of territory): 51%; Cable BDUs and other facilities based TSPs: 35%; Incumbent TSPs (out of territory): 11%; Resellers: 3%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Company characteristics

Companies with services in five or more market sectors are generally large facilities-based companies with revenues greater than $100 million. Companies with services in two or fewer market sectors are generally resellers with revenues less than $10 million.

Affiliated companies are included with their parent company.

Table 5.1.2 Number and percentage of retail telecommunications revenues generated by companies operating in multiple markets
Number of market sectors Number of reporting groups or entities operating in these markets Percentage of telecom revenues generated in these markets
2011 2012 2013 2014 2011 2012 2013 2014
6 9 9 9 8 85 83 84# 84
5 13 16 12# 11 9 9 10 10
4 17 20 29# 25 2 2 3 2
3 31 42 33# 42 1 1 1 1
2 22 22 26# 22 2 2 1 1
1 34 49 44# 43 1 2 1 2

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the dominance of larger companies in the telecommunications market sectors. For example, although few companies operate in all six telecommunications market sectors (local, long distance, Internet, wireless, data, and private line), these companies captured almost 84% of total market revenues.

In the wireline telecommunications market sectors, alternative service providers made greater revenue gains in the residential market than in the business market. Contributing to this increase are the cable companies that upgraded their cable networks to provide telephony services to their residential television subscribers.

Wireline market sectors include:

  • Local telephone market sector
  • Long distance market sector
  • Internet market sector
  • Data and private line market sector
Table 5.1.3 Wireline telecommunications revenue market share (%), by type of service provider, 2014
Residential Business Total
Incumbent TSPs (excl. out-of-territory) 48.4 64.1 55.2
Alternative service providers Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 0.1 11.7 5.1
Cable-based carriers and other facilities-based service providers 45.7 16.1 32.9
Resellers 5.8 8.1 6.8
Subtotal 51.6 35.9 44.8

Source: CRTC data collection

In this table, revenue market shares for wireline telecommunications services are split into residential and business sources for incumbent TSPs (excl. out-of-territory), as well as, alternative providers of telecommunications services, such as resellers, cable-based carriers and other facilities-based service providers, and incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory).

d) Contribution

In 2014, approximately 10% of residential telephone lines were in high-cost serving areas. As part of a commitment towards the social and economic objectives of the Telecommunications Act, TSPs, or groups of related TSPs, with at least $10 million in Canadian telecommunications service revenues, contributed $108 million towards the provision of residential telephone service in high-cost serving areas that met the basic service objective.

Figure 5.1.8 Subsidy paid to local exchange carriers and the revenue-percent charge

This bar line chart shows the subsidy received by LECs in millions of dollars from 2010 to 2014:  165, 157, 132, 118 and 108.  Contribution rates for the same period are also provided: 0.73%, 0.66%, 0.63%, 0.53% and 0.55%.

Sources: CRTC data collection and decisions

What is the basic service objective?

The Commission established the basic service objective in 1999, which reflected the level of service available at that time to most Canadians. The basic service objective ensures that Canadians in all regions have access to affordable, high-quality telecommunications services. Currently, the basic service objective consists of the following:

  • Individual line local touch-tone service;
  • Capability to connect to the Internet via low-speed data transmission at local rates;
  • Access to the long distance network, operator/directory assistance services, enhanced calling features and privacy protection features, emergency services, as well as voice message relay service; and
  • A printed copy of the current local telephone directory upon request.

e) Consumer voices

What is the CCTS?

The CCTS is an independent organization dedicated to working with consumers and TSPs to resolve complaints relating to telecommunications services.

The CCTS is responsible for complaints related to services for which the Commission no longer approves rates.

In 2014, the CRTC and the Commissioner for Complaints for Telecommunications Services Inc. (CCTS) had 44,000 communications with Canadians regarding telecommunications services. Of these, 62% were with the CRTC and 38% were with the CCTS. Wireless service issues were the most common (40%), followed by Internet issues (21%) and telemarketing issues (16%).

The underlying issues of these complaints were billing errors (33%), contract disputes/terms of service (15%), and service delivery/provision of service (12%).

Table 5.1.4 Number of telecommunications-related contacts received by the CRTC, by type of issue and service, 2014
Issue CRTC policies/ decisions Billing /rates Quality of service Provision of service Terms of service Other Total Contacts per 10,000 residential lines, subscribers or payphones
Telemarketing 6,841 - - - - 80 6,921 6.3
Incumbent telephone companies 358 1,789 502 397 263 412 3,721 6.2
Wireless services 1,113 3,504 461 496 1,210 552 7,336 2.5
Internet services 3,402 590 528 499 150 693 5,862 5.0
Telecommunication services 858 439 75 177 62 276 1,887 1.7
Competitive local exchange carriers 68 286 124 106 67 81 732 1.5
Alternative providers of long distance service 30 118 37 26 38 24 273 0.2
VoIP services 102 156 121 97 23 22 521 0.5
Pay telephone services 20 23 3 4 1 11 62 7.3
Total 12,792 6,905 1,851 1,802 1,814 2,151 27,315  

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.1.5 Summary of issues raised in telecommunications complaints handled by the CCTS (2013-2014)
Issue  Billing error Contract dispute Service delivery Credit management Total
Wireless services 4,676 3,379 1,673 439 10,167
Internet access 1,440 723 1,048 104 3,315
Local telephone 1,158 680 834 90 2,762
Long distance 278 88 78 15 459
Directory assistance 5 5
Operator 5 5
White page directories 1 3 4
Total 7,562 4,871 3,636 648 16,717

Source: CCTS annual reports

5.2 Wireline voice retail sector

This display presents several key indicators for the communications industry and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $9.1 billion, an increase of 4.3% over 2013.  Second indicator: local telephone service revenues: $7.3 billion, an decrease of 2.8% over 2013. Third indicator: VoIP Access-independent connections: 0.7 million (4% of local telephone lines). Fourth indicator: Long distance service revenues: $1.7 billion, a decrease of 10.3% over 2013.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the retail wireline voice revenues as a percentage of total retail telecommunications revenues in 2014: 22%. Total telecommunications retail revenues were $42.1 billion.

The retail wireline voice sector includes both local and long distance telephone service provided by over 150 companies. Wireline voice service revenues and the number of local telephone lines continue to decline as Canadians use other services to meet their communications needs. In 2014, revenues from wireline voice services decreased $400 million, or 4.3%, from 9.5 billion in 2013; 51% of the decrease was attributable to local revenues and 49% was attributable to long distance revenues.

Two underlying trends are reducing Canadians’ reliance on traditional wireline telephone services. First, some Canadians are abandoning wireline telephone service in favour of wireless service. As discussed in section 2, the percentage of Canadian households with only wireless service has increased more than 8 fold over a ten-year period from 2.5% of Canadian households in 2003 to over 20% in 2013. In addition, over 67% of wireless subscribers use smartphones which provide far greater functionality in how and when they can communicate.

Second, access-independent Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) provides local telephone service that is similar to traditional telephone service at a fraction of the cost. Typically, this service requires broadband Internet. The number of Canadians subscribing to access-independent VoIP represents approximately 4% of all retail local telephone lines.

The retail wireline voice sector, which includes revenues from local telephone and long distance services, yielded $9.1 billion in 2014, 81% of which was from local telephone services and 19% from long distance services.

Local telephone service includes unlimited local calling within a specific geographic area, emergency calling (9-1-1), message relay services, access to long distance and dial-up Internet services. Optional add-on services or features include call display, call forwarding, and conference calling. The advent of IP opened the wireline voice market sector to additional TSPs.

Long distance service provides voice communications between two local calling areas. Whereas local service is a monthly subscription service, long distance service is generally billed on a per-minute usage basis.

a) Revenues

Table 5.2.1 Local and long distance retail revenues ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Total retail local revenues 8,308 8,106 7,821 7,661 7,441 -2.7
Annual growth (%) -2.6 -2.4 -3.5 -2.0 -2.9
Less: Subsidy received 165 157 132 118 108 -10.1
Annual growth (%) -18.7 -4.8 -16.2 -10.6 -8.2
Net local service revenues 8,143 7,949 7,690 7,544 7,333 -2.6
Annual growth (%) -2.2 -2.4 -3.3 -1.9 -2.8
Percentage of total (%) 75.6 76.8 78.3 79.5 80.8
Long distance retail revenues 2,634 2,408 2,134 1,949 1,755 -9.7
Annual growth (%) -14.4 -8.6 -11.4 -8.7 -10.0
Local and long distance retail revenues 10,777 10,357 9,824 9,493 9,088 -4.2
Annual growth (%) -5.5 -3.9 -5.1 -3.4 -4.3

Source: CRTC data collection

Total retail local revenues include revenues from local telephone service provided to residential and business customers. It includes revenues from calling features such as call display, and call forwarding, as well as installation and repair, and excludes revenues from the sale and rental of telephone sets.

Basic local telephone service with access to long distance service is part of the basic service objective. The obligation to serve and the basic service objective are regulatory measures imposed on incumbent local telephone companies. To this end, these companies receive a subsidy from a national contribution fund in which all telephone service providers are required to participate. These subsidies are excluded in the remaining tables and figures of this section.

Table 5.2.2 Residential local telephone and long distance service revenues, by type of TSP ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory)
Local 3,349 3,129 2,906 2,679# 2,545 -6.6
Annual growth % -5.6 -6.6 -7.1 -7.8 -5.0
Percentage of total 74.7 74.9 75.7 76.9 78.8
Long distance 1,136.2 1,050.9 931.4 801 687 -11.8
Annual growth % -11.8 -7.5 -11.4 -14.0 -14.2
Total 4,485 4,180 3,837 3,480 3,231 -7.9
Annual growth % -7.2 -6.8 -8.2 -9.3 -7.1
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory)
Local 9 12 16 17# 14 13.1
Annual growth % -1.8 31.7 34.2 6.6 -13.1
Percentage of total 81.8 92.3 100.0 100.0 93.3
Long distance 2 1 1 1 0 -28.8
Annual growth % -16.4 -21.8 -38.1 -18.3 -34.9
Total 11 13 16 17 15 9.0
Annual growth % -4.5 23.0 26.7 5.3 -14.0
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers)
Local 137 174 188 164 216 12.0
Annual growth % -9.2 27.5 7.8 -12.7 31.3
Percentage of total 27.7 34.5 40.1 43.7 55.0
Long distance 357 330 281 211 178 15.9
Annual growth % -24.7 -7.6 -14.9 -25.1 -15.7
Total 494 505 469 375 393 -5.6
Annual growth % -21.0 2.1 -7.0 -20.1 4.9
Cable-based carriers
Local 1,252 1,285 1,307 1,388 1,399 2.8
Annual growth % 13.9 2.6 1.7 6.2 0.8
Percentage of total 84.4 85.2 86.2 87.4 88.5
Long distance 232 223 210 201 180 -6.3
Annual growth % -1.0 -3.9 -5.9 -4.3 -10.3
Total 1,484 1,508 1,517 1,589 1580 1.6
Annual growth % 11.3 1.6 0.6 4.8 -0.6
Total residential
Local 4,746 4,600 4,417 4,248 4,174 -3.2
Annual growth % -1.2 -3.1 -4.0 -3.8 -1.8
Percentage of total 73.3 74.1 75.6 77.8 80.0
Long distance 1,728 1,606 1,424 1,213 1.045 -11.8
Annual growth % -13.6 -7.0 -11.4 -14.8 -13.9
Total 6,474 6,206 5,840 5,462 5,219 -5.2
Annual growth % -4.8 -4.1 -5.9 -6.5 -4.4

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays revenues and annual revenue growth rates from residential local and long distance services, by type of provider, for the years 2010 to 2014. The annual growth rates indicate that residential revenues from both local and long distance services are in decline for all types of service providers except cable-based carriers and to a lesser extent the other alternative service providers. These carriers have increased their revenues from local telephone service and have the lowest decline in revenues from long distance services.

Note that revenues from local telephone services are increasingly exceeding those from long distance service.

Table 5.2.3 Business local telephone and long distance revenues, by type of TSP ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory)
Local 2,934 2,813 2,664 2,597# 2,488 -4.0
Annual growth % -2.7 -4.1 -5.3 -2.5 -4.2
Percentage of total 83.9 85.1 85.6 85.1 83.9
Long distance 565 491 449 454 479 -4.0
Annual growth % -15.6 -13.1 -8.5 1.2 5.3
Total local 3,499 3,304 3,113 3,052 2,967 -4.0
Annual growth % -5.1 -5.6 -5.8 -2.0 -2.8
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory)
Local 270 259 306 312 293 2.1
Annual growth % -12.6 -4.0 18.1 1.9 -5.4
Percentage of total 70.1 68.5 77.5 79.8 80.5
Long distance 115 119 89 79 71 -11.6
Annual growth % -28.2 2.7 -25.0 -10.8 -11.1
Total 385 378 395 391 364 -1.4
Annual growth % -18.0 -2.0 4.6 -1.0 -6.6
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers)
Local 49 90 93 141 119 25.0
Annual growth % -17.0 83.7 3.0 52.7 -15.5
Percentage of total 26.2 43.5 46.5 49.8 52.2
Long distance 138 117 108 142 109 -5.8
Annual growth % -5.6 -15.1 -8.3 31.8 -23.3
Total 187 207 200 283 228 5.1
Annual growth % -8.9 10.7 -3.4 41.5 -19.4
Cable-based carriers
Local 144 187 210 247 258 15.7
Annual growth % 3.9 29.9 12.3 17.5 4.5
Percentage of total 62.1 71.1 76.1 80.5 52.2
Long distance 88 76 66 60 52 -12.4
Annual growth % -12.2 -14.2 -13.2 -8.2 -13.9
Total 232 263 276 307 310 7.5
Annual growth % -2.9 13.2 5.0 11.4 0.9
Total business
Local 3,397 3,350 3,273 3,295 3,159 -1.8
Annual growth % -3.6 -1.4 -2.3 0.7 -4.0
Percentage of total 62.1 71.1 76.1 80.5 81.6
Long distance 907 802 711 736 710 -5.9
Annual growth % -15.8 -11.5 -11.3 3.5 -3.5
Total 4,303 4,151 3,984 4,031 3,869 -2.6
Annual growth % -6.4 -3.5 -4.0 1.2 -4.0  

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays revenues and annual revenue growth rates from business local and long distance services, by type of provider, for the years 2010 to 2014. Similar to the residential market, the business market is in decline, but at a slower rate.

Table 5.2.4 Long distance retail revenues by type of provider and size ($ millions)
Service provider 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Telecom revenues over $100 million
Incumbent TSPs 1,768 1,598 1,444 1,311 1,216 -8.9
Annual growth % na -9.6 -9.7 -9.2 -7.2
Percentage of total 67.1 66.4 67.7 67.3 69.6
Cable-based TSPs 367 345 272 257 228 -11.2
Annual growth % na -6.0 -21.3 -5.3 -11.5
Percentage of total 13.9 14.3 12.7 13.2 13.0
Other TSPs 102 78 68 56 45 -18.6
Annual growth % na -23.2 -13.1 -17.0 -20.9
Percentage of total 3.9 3.2 3.2 2.9 2.5
Subtotal 2,237 2,021 1,783 1,624 1,488 -9.7
Annual growth % na -9.6 -11.8 -8.9 -8.4
Percent of total (%) 84.9 83.9 83.6 83.3 85.1
Telecom revenues between $100 million and 10 million 300 292 268 251 197 -10.0
Annual growth % na -2.4 -8.4 -6.3 -21.6
Percentage of total 11.4 12.1 12.5 12.9 11.2
Telecom revenues below $10 million 99 95 83 74 64 -10.3
Annual growth % na -3.6 -12.6 -10.9 -13.9
Percentage of total 3.7 3.9% 3.9 3.8 3.6
Total 2,634 2,408 2,134 1,949 1,749 -9.7
Annual growth % -5.5 -8.6 -11.4 -8.7 -10.3

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays long distance revenues and annual revenue growth, by type of service provider and size, as measured by their total Canadian telecommunications revenues. As a group, TSPs with telecommunications revenues less than $100 million captured less than 15% of the revenues from long distance services. These smaller service providers generally operate in relatively small niche markets catering to the needs of specific consumers.

b) Subscriber data

Local telephone service subscriber data is represented by the number of telephone lines, while minutes are used for long distance.

This section categorizes local telephone lines into two types: managed and non-managed. A managed line refers to telephone service which uses a local service provider’s network, and the provider has control over call quality. A non-managed line refers to telephone service that is provided using the public Internet, with the local service provider having less control over the quality of service. This type of local service is referred to as access–independent VoIP.

Table 5.2.5 Number of retail managed and non-managed local telephone lines (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Managed local telephone lines
Local telephone lines 18,210 17,869 16,866 16,251 # 15,710 -3.6
Annual growth % -1.9 -1.9 -5.6 -3.6 -3.3
Percent of total 98.6 97.8 95.1 93.9 95.8
Non-managed local telephone lines
Access independent lines 255 404 861 670# 694 28.4
Annual growth % 28.2 58.4 112.8 20.1 3.5
Percent of total 1.4 2.2 4.9 6.1 4.2
Managed and non-managed local telephone lines
Total 18,466 18,274 17,726 16,921# 16,403 -2.9
Annual growth % -1.6 -1.0 -3.0 -4.6 -3.1

Source: CRTC data collection

The number of local telephone lines is in decline. The decline is partially offset by the increase in the number of non-managed lines Access-independent VoIP (as provided by magicJack, Ooma and others) has grown from 1.4% of wireline connections in 2010 to 6% in 2014 (primarily in the residential market) as customers migrate to lower-cost, IP-based services.

The # symbol denotes a change in the data from what was published in the previous Communications Monitoring Report. (refer to Appendix 1 for details)

The number of managed local telephone lines has decreased 13.7% from 18.2 million lines in 2010 to 15.7 million lines in 2014; whereas the number of non-managed local lines has increased 172% from 255 thousand in 2010 to 694 thousand in 2014. However, the total number of telephone lines remained in a state of decline.

As set out in section 2 of this report, Statistics Canada’s Survey of Household Spending indicates that the percentage of households subscribing to wireline telephone service has declined from 89.1% in 2010 to 79.9% in 2013, a reduction of approximately 380,000 households. In addition, the survey indicated that the number of households with two or more lines has been declining as well.

Table 5.2.6 Residential and business local telephone lines by type of TSP (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory)
Residential 8,142 7,543 6,942 6,389 5,943 -7.6
Annual growth % -7.7 -7.4 -8.0 -8.0 -7.0
Business 4,721 4,598 4,445 4,255 4,065 -3.7
Annual growth % -5.0 -2.6 -3.3 -4.3 -4.5
Total 12,863 12,141 11,387 10,644 10,008 -6.1
Annual growth % -6.7 -5.6 -6.2 -6.5 -6.0
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory)
Residential 27 34 33 53 38 9.2
Annual growth % -6.1 26.7 -3.5 62.8 -28.4
Business 638 752 639 635 605 -1.3
Annual growth % 3.3 17.9 -15.0 -0.6 -4.8
Total 665 786 672 688 642 -0.8
Annual growth % 2.9 18.2 -14.5 2.5 -6.6
Alternative TSPs (excluding cable-based carriers)
Residential 510 646 723 482 711 8.6
Annual growth % 12.9 26.6 11.9 -33.3 47.4
Business 178 225 264 261 224 5.9
Annual growth % 1.1 26.1 17.4 -1.2 -14.0
Total 689 871 987 743 935 7.9
Annual growth % 9.6 26.5 13.3 -24.7 25.8
Cable-based carriers
Residential 3,947 4,061 4,258 4,314 4,247 1.8
Annual growth % 15.2 2.9 4.8 1.3 -1.6
Business 303 414 422 531 571 17.2
Annual growth % 8.9 36.9 1.9 25.8 7.4
Total 4,250 4,476 4,681 4,846 4,818 3.2
Annual growth % 14.8 5.3 4.6 3.5 -0.6
Total retail
Residential 12,626 12,284 11,956 11,238 10,939 -3.5
Annual growth % -0.8 -2.7 -2.7 -6.0 -2.7
Business 5,840 5,989 5,770 5,683 5,465 -1.6
Annual growth % -3.3 2.6 -3.7 -1.5 -3.8
Total 18,466 18,274 17,726 16,921 16,403 -2.9
Annual growth % -1.6 -1.0 -3.0 -4.5 -3.1

Source: CRTC data collection

This table presents the number of residential and business telephone lines, by type of service provider, and their respective annual growth rates. The total number of telephone lines has declined in both the residential and business markets. However, the number of residential telephone lines have declined more quickly than those of business.

The use of VoIP services in the residential and business markets varies significantly. On the one hand, cable-based carriers provide local telephone service – mostly to residential customers – over their managed network using access-dependent VoIP technology. They leverage existing cable infrastructure to provide local telephone service via their cable networks to their consumers. As a result, these carriers are the largest competitor to the traditional telephone companies in the residential market. Over 39% of households subscribe to local telephone service from a cable-based carrier.

Figure 5.2.1 Retail VoIP local lines, access-dependent and access-independent, by market (2014)

This bar chart contains lines in millions categorized by Residential VoIP Access dependent, Residential VoIP Access independent and Business VoIP Access dependent, Business VoIP Access independent. Residential VoIP Access dependent: 3.2; Residential VoIP Access independent: 0.6; Business VoIP Access dependent 0.7; and Business VoIP Access independent: 0.1.

Source: CRTC data collection

In 2014, there were 3.9 million access-dependent lines, compared to 0.7 million access-independent VoIP connections.

c) Performance indicators

Table 5.2.7 Local and long distance retail monthly revenues ($) per line
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Residential 42.56 41.52 40.16 39.25 39.22 -2.0
Annual growth % -3.4 -2.5 -3.3 -2.3 -0.1
Business 60.37 58.49 56.46 58.66 57.84 -1.1
Annual growth % -2.9 -3.1 -3.5 3.9 -1.4

Source: CRTC data collection

Monthly revenues per line

Monthly revenue per line is calculated by (i) dividing the annual service revenues by the average number of local lines in the year, and then (ii) dividing the result by 12. The average number of lines is determined by dividing the sum of the number of lines at the beginning of the year and at the end of the year by two.

Table 5.2.8 Long distance retail monthly revenues ($) per line
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Residential 11.36 10.74 9.79 8.72 7.85 -8.8
Annual growth % na -5.4 -8.9 -10.9 -9.9
Business 12.72 11.30 10.08 10.71 10.63 -4.4
Annual growth % na -11.2 -10.8 6.3 -0.7

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.2.9 Local telephone service monthly revenues ($) per line, by type of TSP
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Residential local service
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 32.91 33.25 33.44 33.41 34.39 1.1
Annual growth % 2.2 1.0 0.6 -0.1 2.7  
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 26.75 32.09 39.22 46.20 26.48 -0.3
Annual growth % -0.9 20.0 22.2 17.8 -18.2  
Alternative TSPs (excluding cable-based carriers) 23.70 25.14 22.90 22.72 30.12 6.2
Annual growth % -6.7 6.1 -8.9 -0.8 32.6  
Cable-based carriers 28.31 26.74 26.18 26.99 27.24 -1.0
Annual growth % -2.0 -5.5 -2.1 3.1 0.9  
Total residential 31.21 30.78 30.37 30.53 31.37 0.1
Annual growth % 0.3 -1.4 -1.3 0.5 2.8  
Business local service
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 50.47 50.32 49.10 49.72 49.84 -0.3
Annual growth % 2.8 -0.3 -2.4 1.3 0.2  
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 35.82 31.06 36.66 40.76 39.40 2.4
Annual growth % -14.3 -13.3 18.0 11.2 -2.8  
Alternative TSPs (excluding cable-based carriers) 22.97 37.13 31.54 44.86 41.02 15.6
Annual growth % -29.4 61.6 -15.1 42.2 -8.6  
Cable-based carriers 41.33 43.48 41.86 43.16 39.04 -1.4
Annual growth % 0.0 5.2 -3.7 3.1 -9.6  
Total business 47.65 47.19 46.38 47.96 47.23 -0.2
Annual growth % 0.1 -1.0 -1.7 3.4 -1.5  

Source: CRTC data collection

Average monthly revenues per line have been essentially constant from 2010 to 2014 for both the residential and business markets. However, there were relatively large differences in these revenues among the different types of TSPs.

Table 5.2.10 Long distance retail revenues ($) per minute, by type of TSP
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010- 2014
Residential long distance service
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 0.092 0.089 0.088 0.087 0.084 -2.1
Annual growth % -8.4 -2.3 -2.0 -1.5 -2.7
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 0.082 0.084 0.072 0.081 0.071 -3.6
Annual growth % 14.1 2.9 -13.8 12.0 -12.0
Non-cable, alternative TSPs 0.058 0.049 0.051 0.047 0.043 -6.9
Annual growth % -2.2 -16.3 4.0 -6.9 -7.1
Cable-based carriers 0.044 0.043 0.042 0.043 0.043 -0.8
Annual growth % -4.9 -3.1 -2.4 2.4 -0.3
Total residential 0.072 0.068 0.067 0.066 0.067 -1.9
Annual growth % -5.8 -6.6 -0.8 -1.6 1.1
Business long distance service
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 0.059 0.061 0.049 0.050 0.050 -4.0
Annual growth % -11.7 2.6 -18.8 1.5 0.1
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 0.043 0.062 0.032 0.026 0.023 -14.0
Annual growth % -24.0 12.1 -14.7 -18.7 -8.7
Non-cable, alternative TSPs 0.051 0.036 0.038 0.044# 0.040 -5.9
Annual growth % -1.7 -20.2 3.6 15.8 -8.8
Cable-based carriers 0.028 0.027 0.025 0.024 0.025 -2.8
Annual growth % -1.7 -20.2 3.6 -2.5 2.9
Total business 0.046 0.044 0.040 0.043 0.041 -2.8
Annual growth % -11.0 -4.7 -10.0 8.6 -4.7

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the average long distance revenues per minute for the residential and business markets by type of service provider. On average, residential consumers pay more for long distance service than business customers. In both cases, long distance prices have been trending downward. In 2014, Canadians paid 6.7 cents per minute compared to 4.1 cents by business customers.

Cable-based carriers generally had the lowest price per minute in both the residential and business markets.

d) Price

Basic local telephone service includes unlimited calling within a geographic area, 9-1-1 services, and message relay services, as well as access to long distance services. Approximately 13% of households subscribing to wireline local service subscribe to basic service, while the remaining 87% subscribe to additional local features, which may be bundled with such other services as Internet, television, or wireless. The figures below display the price of basic local telephone service on a stand-alone basis in a number of urban and rural centres.

Urban centres

The bar charts below display the range of monthly prices of basic local service in 24 major urban centres in Canada. The blue bar displays the lowest price, and the red bar displays the difference between the lowest and the highest price. The number at the top reflects the highest price, while the number in brackets along the horizontal represents the number of providers within the urban centre.

Figure 5.2.2 Price of basic local telephone service ($/month) and number of companies providing this service in major urban centresurban centres

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest prices of basic local telephone service by major centre, as well as the number of service providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 2 providers, low 30, high 41; Victoria: 2 providers, low 30 high 41; Calgary: 2 providers, low 30, high 41; Edmonton: 2 providers, low 30, high 41; Saskatoon: 2 providers, low 22, high 30; Regina: 1 providers, low 22, high 30; Winnipeg: 2 providers, low 29, high 41; Toronto: 2 providers, low 34, high 41; Ottawa-Gatineau: 3 providers, low 26 high 41; Hamilton: 3 providers, low 33, high 41; London: 2 providers, low 33, high 41; Kitchener-Waterloo: 2 providers, low 33, high 41; St. Catharines – Niagara: 3 providers, low 33, high 41; Windsor: 3 providers, low 33, high 41; Oshawa: 2 providers, low 33, high 41; Montréal: 2 providers, low 26, high 41; Québec: 2 providers, low 26, high 41; Fredericton: 2 providers, low 25, high 31; Halifax: 2 providers, low 27, high 31; Charlottetown: 2 providers, low 27, high 31; St. John’s: 2 providers, low 25, high 30; Whitehorse: 1 providers, low 32, high 32; Yellowknife: 1 providers, low 32, high 32; Iqaluit: 1 providers, low 33, high 33;

Source: CRTC data collection

The price of basic local service varied across the major urban centres from $22 per month in Saskatoon and Regina to $32 in Whitehorse and Yellowknife and $34 in Toronto.

In some cases, service providers did not provide the price of basic local telephone service. These companies provided the price for the service that came closest to the definition.

Access-independent VoIP, not included above, is available in many major urban centres.

Rural communities

Figure 5.2.3 Price of basic local telephone service ($/month) and number of companies providing this service in rural communities, by province and territory

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest prices of basic local telephone service by rural and urban communities, by province or territory, as well as the number of service providers in the rural and urban communities.  BC Rural: 2 providers, low 35, high 41; BC Urban: 3 providers, low 30 high 41; Alberta Rural: 1 provider, low 36, high 36; Alberta Urban: 2 providers, low 30 high 41; Saskatchewan Rural: 1 provider, low 31, high 31; Saskatchewan Urban: 2 providers, low 22 high 30; Manitoba Rural: 1 provider, low 29, high 30; Manitoba Urban: 2 providers, low 29 high 41; Ontario Rural: 1 to 2 providers, low 21, high 41; Ontario Urban: 2 to 3 providers, low 26 high 41; Quebec Rural: 1 to 2 providers, low 21, high 41; Quebec Urban: 2 to 3 providers, low 26 high 41; New Brunswick Rural: 1 provider, low 27, high 27; New Brunswick Urban: 2 providers, low 25 high 31; PEI Rural: 1 provider, low 27, high 31; PEI Urban: 2 providers, low 27 high 31; Nova Scotia Rural: 1 provider, low 30, high 31; Nova Scotia Urban: 2 providers, low 25 high 31; Newfoundland Rural: 2 providers, low 27, high 30; Newfoundland Urban: 2 providers, low 25 high 30; Yukon Rural: 1 provider, low 33, high 33; Yukon Urban: 1 provider, low 32 high 32; Northwest Territories Rural: 1 provider, low 33, high 33; Northwest Territories Urban: 1 provider, low 33 high 33; Nunavut Rural: 1 provider, low 33, high 33; Nunavut Urban: 1 provider, low 33 high 33;

Source: CRTC data collection

This bar chart displays the range of monthly price of basic local telephone service in fifty-four rural communities in Canada. The blue bar displays the lowest price and the red bar displays the difference between the low price and the high price. The number at the top of the bar is the high price. The number appearing in parentheses along the horizontal axis after the name of each province and territory indicates the range in the number of basic local telephone service providers in each rural centre or community responding to the survey.

The price of basic local telephone service in rural communities varied, from lows of between $21 to $36 per month to highs of between $27 and $41 per month.

In some cases, service providers did not provide basic local telephone service. These companies provided the price for the service that came closest to the definition of basic local telephone service as defined in the survey.

Which communities were included?

Fifty-four rural communities were selected to assess the price of Internet access service in rural communities. These communities met the following criteria:

  • the community was not part of one of the census metropolitan areas of the twenty-four urban centres;
  • the community had a population density of fewer than 400 people per square kilometre, or its population centre had fewer than 1,000 people;
  • the number of communities selected in each province/territory was proportional to the population of the province/territory; and
  • the communities were not clustered together

Appendix 9 contains the list of rural communities.

e) Type of local facilities

Leased lines are lines acquired from facilities-based carriers. Resold lines connect directly from the underlying facilities-based carrier’s network to a customer.

Figure 5.2.4 Alternative TSP and cable-based carriers local retail lines, by type of facility

This bar chart shows local retail lines in millions, categorized by owned, leased and resold lines for the years 2012 through 2014. For 2012: Owned lines 4.5; Leased lines 0.1 and Resold lines 0.2. For 2013: Owned lines 4.6; Leased lines 0.1 and Resold lines 0.1. For 2014: Owned lines 4.7; Leased lines 0.0 and Resold lines 0.1.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.2.5 Alternative TSP and cable-based carriers local residential and business retail lines, by type of facility, 2014

This chart contains two pie graphs. The first shows alternative TSP local share by type of facility for residence lines:  Owned lines 98.7%; Leased lines 1.3% and Resold lines 0.0%.  The second pie chart shows alternative TSP local share by type of facility for business lines:  Owned lines 85.3%; Leased lines 7.5% and Resold lines 7.2%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These pie charts compare retail line ownership percentages for the residential and business markets for alternative TSPs. The higher proportion of owned lines in the residential market than in the business market can be attributed to the cable companies.

f) Competitive landscape

Table 5.2.11 Incumbent TSP (excluding out-of-territory) provincial retail local market share, by line (%)
Province 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
British Columbia 67.3 65.2 60.9 61.4 59.7
Alberta 68.2 66.8 64.6 63.6 63.4
Saskatchewan 93.0 92.5 90.9 89.7 89.0
Manitoba 83.7 80.2 77.4 76.1 77.4
Ontario 70.2 67.6 66.4 64.8 65.1
Quebec 62.8 58.0 55.5 53.9 52.5
New Brunswick 85.1 83.1 81.6 72.5 74.3
Nova Scotia 67.8 65.1 65.8 65.6 65.9
Prince Edward Island 74.7 71.7 71.3 71.5 70.8
Newfoundland and Labrador 89.4 90.9 81.2 83.8 76.8
Yukon n/a n/a n/a 99.8 99.0
Northwest Territories n/a n/a n/a 99.9 97.7
Nunavut n/a n/a n/a 100.0 99.7
Canada 69.8 66.9 64.8 63.6 63.6

Source: CRTC data collection

Traditionally, Canada’s telecommunications market has been dominated by a handful of large incumbent TSPs. Over time, previously closed markets have opened to competition, largely from the cable-based companies. This table shows the percentage of local retail lines providing service by the incumbent TSPs between 2010 and 2014.

Since 2010, the retail local market share of the incumbent TSPs has been declining in each province.

Table 5.2.12 Incumbent TSP (excluding out-of-territory) residential and business local retail line market share (%), by area
Province Major centre or area Residential lines Business lines
2013 2014 2013 2014
British Columbia Vancouver 56.2 53.6 60.6 61.0
Victoria 44.6 43.1 61.9 57.9
Remaining areas 65.9 63.4 75.3 73.7
Alberta Calgary 48.8 46.8 59.0 56.6
Edmonton 54.6 53.1 63.5 61.6
Remaining areas 77.4 78.4 87.6 89.5
Saskatchewan Saskatoon 71.6 69.8 91.9 89.9
Regina 81.4 79.1 97.0 95.1
Remaining areas 95.6 95.0 98.9 99.0
Manitoba Winnipeg 53.3 54.2 87.4 88.3
Remaining areas 91.9 95.2 92.7 98.8
Ontario Toronto 53.6 50.3 70.5 75.4
Ottawa-Gatineau 56.7 49.5 86.8 87.1
Hamilton 54.5 47.6 68.8 76.9
London 53.5 50.2 71.4 75.8
Kitchener-Waterloo 50.8 48.5 73.3 73.6
St. Catharines-Niagara 57.9 56.1 70.7 79.1
Windsor 59.8 53.2 61.5 67.3
Oshawa 50.8 49.9 82.9 87.6
Remaining areas 73.8 72.7 79.7 84.7
Quebec Montréal 43.1 41.9 68.9 68.2
Québec 36.8 34.1 60.9 67.6
Remaining areas 60.0 55.5 66.6 67.5
New Brunswick Fredericton 67.5 65.6 98.3 98.4
Remaining areas 60.0 62.4 98.5 97.4
Nova Scotia Halifax 50.9 52.7 74.0 74.4
Remaining areas 67.5 66.2 82.4 83.9
Prince Edward Island Charlottetown 54.7 56.1 78.8 75.7
Remaining areas 80.1 78.3 78.0 76.5
Newfoundland and Labrador St. John’s 65.8 64.3 98.2 96.8
Remaining areas 86.7 71.4 94.4 94.1
Yukon Whitehorse 100.0 99.5 99.7 98.3
Remaining areas 100.0 99.8 99.5 99.3
Northwest Territories Yellowknife 100.0 99.2 99.9 94.8
Remaining areas 100.0 99.9 99.9 98.6
Nunavut Iqaluit 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
Remaining areas 100.0 99.7 100.0 99.7

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the percentage of residential and business local retail lines providing service from the incumbent TSPs in Canada’s major urban centres and in the remaining areas of the province or territory in 2013 and 2014. Major urban centre boundaries are defined using Statistics Canada’s census metropolitan area and census agglomeration definitions. In most areas the incumbent TSP’s residential line share is lower than their business line share, reflecting, in part, competition from the cable-based companies. Note that the incumbent TSP share of residential lines in Victoria, Calgary, Ottawa-Gatineau, Hamilton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Oshawa, Montréal, and Québec has dropped to below 50%.

Table 5.2.13 Large incumbent TSPs’ retail long distance revenue market share (%), by region
Region 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
B.C., Alberta 68 74 75 74 81
Saskatchewan 83 92 92 92 94
Manitoba 78 84 83 81 83
Ontario, Quebec 61 71 70 69 80
Atlantic 81 83 83 86 88
The North 97 97 97 98 99

Source: CRTC data collection

Traditionally, large incumbent TSPs were the sole providers of long distance services in Canada. With the introduction of long distance competition in 1992, other service providers entered the market. This table shows the percentage of retail long distance revenues captured by the large incumbent TSPs.

The North includes Yukon, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut.

g) Pay telephone service

Figure 5.2.6 Large incumbent TSPs’ payphone revenues and quantities

Number of payphones and retail revenue per payphone

This chart contains two bar charts. The chart on the left hand side contains a bar chart depicting the number of payphones (in thousands) for the years 2012 through 2014 and a line chart showing retail revenues per payphone for the same years. Payphones: 2012: 94, 2013: 85, 2014: 74. Retail revenue per payphone:  2012: $682, 2013: $559, 2014: $462. The chart on the right hand side contains a bar chart depicting the percentage of coin-operated payphones for the years 2012 through 2014. Percentage of coin-operated pay telephones:  2012: 93%, 2013: 92%, 2014: 92%.

Coin-operated payphones as a percentage of total payphones

This chart contains two bar charts. The chart on the left hand side contains a bar chart depicting the number of payphones (in thousands) for the years 2012 through 2014 and a line chart showing retail revenues per payphone for the same years. Payphones: 2012: 94, 2013: 85, 2014: 74. Retail revenue per payphone:  2012: $682, 2013: $559, 2014: $462. The chart on the right hand side contains a bar chart depicting the percentage of coin-operated payphones for the years 2012 through 2014. Percentage of coin-operated pay telephones:  2012: 93%, 2013: 92%, 2014: 92%.

Source: CRTC data collection

The number of payphones owned and operated by the large incumbent TSPs has declined steadily between 2012 and 2014. Per-payphone revenues have also been declining.

Approximately 12% of payphones are equipped with Teletype capability.

In 2014, no payphones were equipped with Internet capability.

Figure 5.2.7 Number of payphones per 1,000 households

This bar chart shows the number of payphones per 1000 households for the years 2012 through 2014. For 2012: 6.8. For 2013: 6.1. For 2014: 5.5.
Source: CRTC data collection

5.3 Retail Internet sector and broadband availability

This display presents several key indicators for the retail Internet sector and broadband availability and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $8.4 billion, an increase of 8.6% over 2013.  Second indicator: take-up: 82% of Canadian households. Third indicator: monthly data usage: 48% increase by Canadian high-speed household subscribers. Fourth indicator: broadband availability: 99% of Canadian households.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the percentage of retail Internet revenues as a proportion of all retail telecommunications revenues in 2014.  Internet: 20%; remaining market sectors: 80%; Total telecommunications retail revenues were $42.1 billion.

In 2014, Internet service revenues increased 8.6% from $7.7 to $8.4 billion; 80% of these revenues ($6.7 billion) came from residential sources and 20% ($1.7 billion) came from business sources.

What is “fixed wireless?”

“Fixed wireless” refers to the use of radio spectrum to provide communications services to subscribers. The connection to the subscriber is from a tower located in the area to the premises of the subscriber.

These services were provided by approximately 525 ISPs consisting of traditional telephone and cable companies, fixed-wireless service providers, and resellers. The revenue market share for Internet access for the top 5 companies has declined from 75% in 2013 to 74% in 2014. The share of the cable-based carriers has declined to 49% in 2014, down from 51% in 2013, while the Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) have increased from 37% to 38%.

As noted in Section 2 of the report, Canadian households spent an average of $38.91 per month on Internet access service in 2014. The ARPU for residential high-speed access subscribers has increased, from $44.87 in 2013 to $47.86 in 2014, a 6.7% increase. It has increased at an average annual rate of 6.1% since 2010.

Ninety-six percent of Canadian households can access a download speed of 5 Mbps, which is sufficient for streaming higher quality audio and video content. The vast majority of Canadians (94%) can access these speeds using either landline or fixed-wireless facilities and an additional 1.5% may get access via satellite facilities. Seventy-seven percent of Canadian households subscribe to these services.

Fibre-to-the-premises (FTTP)

While incumbent TSPs rely mainly on their copper wire local telephone network, they have been making significant use of FTTP.

Cable-based carriers have made less use of this technology.

At the same time, Canadians are demanding more bandwidth from broadband service providers. The average monthly amount downloaded by residential subscribers increased 49% between 2013 and 2014 to 66.5 GB per month, and an average of 46% annually over the last 5 years, indicating that Canadians are likely using more video content and other high-bandwidth consuming services. Uploads have also increased 43% in 2014, reaching 8.6 GB per month.

There were approximately 283 facilities-based providers. These mainly consist of incumbents and cable-based carriers, utilizing DSL, fibre and cable modem facilities, and satellite and fixed wireless-based providers. Fixed wireless is major source of broadband Internet connectivity in rural areas, where 31% of households have access available to them via fixed-wireless services but not fibre, cable, or DSL. While rural Canadians have access to services provided by satellite, capacity limitations restrict practical availability to approximately 1.5% of Canadian households.

Digital subscriber line (DSL) - Bringing new services to older facilities

Incumbent TSPs rely mainly on their copper wire local telephone network using DSL, or fibre-to-the-node (a pedestal in the neighbourhood). In the latter arrangement, copper wires complete the connection to the subscriber.

Deploying fibre to a pedestal decreases the distance that the signals must travel though the copper wires to reach the subscriber. This makes possible faster Internet service and the delivery of television (IPTV).

There were approximately 242 companies providing services solely through the use of resale facilities provided by the incumbent TPSs and the cable-based carriers. These providers have become an increasingly important source of competition in the industry. Residential high-speed Internet subscriptions through wholesale DSL and cable-based services have more than doubled since 2010.

Industry churn rates varied in 2014. For residential high-speed access subscriptions, the rate is up slightly over last year, going from 1.75% to 1.79%, while for business subscriptions, the rate is down, from 1.67% to 1.37%.

Unless otherwise noted, broadband availability figures exclude wireless mobile technology. Satellite access services in this section refer to direct-to-home satellite, and does not refer to the technology used to connect the community to the Internet.

Broadband target

In Telecom Regulatory Policy 2011-291, the Commission set a target that all Canadians should have access to broadband speeds of at least 5 megabits per second (Mbps) downstream and 1 Mbps upstream, through a variety of technologies, by the end of 2015. As of December 31, 2014 it is estimated that this service was available to 96% of Canadian households, using a variety of technologies including LTE and satellite.

a) Revenues

Table 5.3.1 Retail Internet service revenues ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Residential
Dial-up access 96 69 43 32 22 -30.7
High-speed access 4,442 4,853 5,325 5,906 6,508 10.0
Residential total 4,538 4,923 5,369 5,938 6,530 9.5
Annual growth (%) 5.9 8.5 9.1 10.6 10.0
Business
Access 1,125 1,142 1,138 1,171 1,248 2.6
Transport 77 52 65 71 72 -1.4
Business total 1,202 1,194 1,202 1,243 1,320 2.4
Annual growth (%) 10.7 -0.6 0.7 3.4 6.2
Applications, equipment, and other Internet-related services 686 674 625 544 540 -5.8
Annual growth (%) -11.0 -1.8 -7.3 -13.0 -0.8
Total 6,426 6,791 7,196 7,724 8,390 6.9
Annual growth (%) 4.6 5.7 6.0 7.3 8.6

Source: CRTC data collection

This table presents an overview of revenues from residential and business Internet access services as well as other related services. Residential Internet access service revenues have increased more quickly than business access and transport service revenues, 9.5% vs. 2.4%, respectively, over the 2010 to 2014 period.

Revenues from applications, equipment and other services have been declining over time. These services are provided to both residential and business customers, but are not shown separately in this table.

Due to changes in company reporting, business transport service revenues in 2011 are not comparable to those in other years.

The types of Internet services available vary according to the download speed of the Internet connection. The lowest download speed is dial-up, at 64 Kbps. High-speed, which refers to any download speed greater than 256 Kbps. Broadband is defined as any service with a 1.5 Mbps download speed or greater.

“Business transport” refers to the transfer of Internet traffic between networks. This is generally used by large business customers.

Table 5.3.2 Residential Internet service revenues, by type of service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory)
Dial-up 64 46 30 20 13 -32.8
High-speed 1,588 1,732 1,860 2,136 2,428 11.2
Total 1,652 1,778 1,890 2,155 2,441 10.3
Annual growth (%) 3.4 7.7 6.3 14.0 13.3
Cable-based carriers
Dial-up 1 1 0 0 0 -42.1
High-speed 2,572 2,811 3,065 3,293 3,477 7.8
Total 2,573 2,811 3,065 3,293 3,477 7.8
Annual growth (%) 6.3 9.2 9.1 7.4 5.6
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers)
Dial-up 31 23 12 12 9 -26.7
High-speed 282 310 400 477 603 20.9
Total 313 332 413 490 612 18.2
Annual growth (%) 17.4 6.3 24.0 18.6 25.0
Total of the above
Dial-up 96 69 43 32 22 -30.7
High-speed 4,442 4,853 5,325 5,906 6,508 10.0
Residential total 4,538 4,923 5,369 5,938 6,530 9.5
Annual growth (%) 5.9 8.5 9.1 10.6 10.0

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.3.3 Business Internet service revenues, by type of service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Internet access
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 478 481 499 501 507 1.5
Cable-based carriers 284 309 273 306 350 5.4
Total 762 790 772 807 857 3.0
Annual growth (%) 13.5 3.7 -2.3 4.5 6.1
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers)
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 81 81 81 79 84 0.8
Remaining alternative service providers 282 272 285 285 307 2.1
Total 364 353 366 364 391 1.8
Annual growth (%) 4.5 -3.1 3.7 -0.4 7.4  
Internet access total 1,125 1,142 1,138 1,171 1,248 2.6
Annual growth (%) 10.4 1.5 -0.4 3.0 6.5
Transport 77 52 65 71 72 -1.4
Annual growth (%) 15.2 -32.4 25.0 10.4 1.3
Total business Internet service revenues 1,202 1,194 1,202 1,243 1,320 2.4
Annual growth (%) 10.7 -0.6 0.7 3.4 6.2

Source: CRTC data collection

Over the 2010 to 2014 period, the business Internet market has increased by 2.4% annually. Of the various providers, cable-based carriers have the highest annual growth rate (5.4%).

b) Subscriber data

Table 5.3.4 Residential Internet service subscribers, by type of service provider (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory)
Dial-up 210 137 97 70 53 -29.1
Annual growth (%) -26.6 -34.9 -28.8 -27.9 -24.3  
Share of total dial-up (%) 57.3 55.5 53.2 57.1 56.8  
High-speed 3,762 3,874 4,014 4,172 4,375 3.8
Annual growth (%) 2.4 3.0 3.6 3.9 4.9  
Share of total high-speed (%) 37.6 37.2 37.1 37.5 37.9  
Total 3,972 4,011 4,111 4,242 4,428 2.8
Annual growth (%) 0.3 1.0 2.5 3.2 4.4  
Share of total (%) 38.3 37.6 37.4 37.7 38.1  
Cable-based carriers
Dial-up 10 7 6 2 1 -39.5
Annual growth (%) -23.0 -28.9 -14.6 -69.2 -28.1  
Share of total dial-up (%) 2.8 3.0 3.5 1.6 1.5  
High-speed 5,642 5,839 5,925 5,931 5,952 1.3
Annual growth (%) 5.3 3.5 1.5 0.1 0.4  
Share of total high-speed (%) 56.4 56.0 54.8 53.3 51.6  
Total 5,653 5,846 5,932 5,933 5,954 1.3
Annual growth (%) 5.2 3.4 1.5 0.0 0.4  
Share of total (%) 54.5 54.8 54.0 52.7 51.2  
Other service providers
Dial-up 146 102 79 51 39 -28.2
Annual growth (%) -21.7 -30.1 -22.3 -36.1 -23.3  
Share of total dial-up (%) 39.9 41.5 43.4 41.3 41.7  
High-speed 604 712 870 1,025 1,210 19.0
Annual growth (%) 10.8 18.0 22.1 17.8 18.0  
Share of total high-speed (%) 6.0 6.8 8.1 9.2 10.5  
Total 750 815 950 1,076 1,249 13.6
Annual growth (%) 2.5 8.6 16.6 13.3 16.1  
Share of total (%) 7.2 7.6 8.6 9.6 10.7  
Total of the above
Dial-up 366 246 183 123 93 -29.1
Annual growth (%) -24.6 -32.8 -25.7 -32.9 -24.0  
Share of total (%) 3.5 2.3 1.7 1.1 0.8  
High-speed 10,008 10,426 10,809 11,128 11,537 3.8
Annual growth (%) 4.5 4.2 3.7 2.9 3.7  
Share of total (%) 96.5 97.7 98.3 98.9 99.2  
Grand total of dial-up and high-speed 10,375 10,672 10,992 11,251 11,631 2.8
Annual growth (%) 3.1 2.9 3.0 2.3 3.4  

Source: CRTC data collection

Residential Internet service subscribers receive Internet service from a variety of service providers. This table shows the number of Internet subscribers and the annual growth rates by type of provider for the period from 2010 to 2014. Overall, the annual growth in the number of Internet service subscribers remained relatively stable, at approximately 3%. When compared to Statistics Canada’s annual population growth rates, the rate of Internet service subscriber growth was approximately three times that of population growth.

Table 5.3.5 Number of business Internet access subscriptions, by type of service provider (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Dial-up 84 72 61 54 47 -13.5
Annual growth (%) -26.0 -13.5 -15.2 -11.8 -13.5
High-speed
Incumbent TSPs
(excluding out-of-territory)
447 452 444 470 487 2.2
Annual growth (%) 3.6 1.3 -1.8 5.8 3.6
Share of total high-speed (%) 55.2 52.8 50.4 48.6 0.0
Cable-based carriers 199 232 268 310 347 14.9
Annual growth (%) 13.3 16.6 15.1 15.8 12.2
Share of total high-speed (%) 24.6 27.1 30.4 32.0 0.0
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 11 19 19 17 18 12.6
Annual growth (%) -8.2 76.5 -3.9 -8.0 3.0
Share of total high-speed (%) 1.4 2.3 2.1 1.8 0.0
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers and incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 152 152 150 170 179 4.2
Annual growth (%) -3.8 -0.2 -1.1 13.1 5.4
Share of total high-speed (%) 18.8 17.7 17.1 17.6 0.0
Total high-speed 809 856 881 967 1,031 6.2
Annual growth (%) 4.1 5.8 2.8 9.8 6.6

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.3.1 High-speed residential Internet service subscribers, by GB download capacity

This column chart describes the number of gigabytes per month downloadable by residential subscribers versus the percentage of residential subscribers subscribing to plans with at least these limits for the years 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014. Those with 20 Gigabytes or more in their plan comprise 89% of all subscriptions in 2011, 88% in 2012, 93% in 2013, and 94% in 2014; 40 gigabytes or more: 72% in 2011, 77% in 2012, 76% in 2013, and 87% in 2014; 60 gigabytes for more: 61% in 2011, 75% in 2012, 75% in 2013, and 78% in 2014; 80 gigabytes or more: 47% in 2011, 58% in 2012, 62% in 2013, and 67% in 2014; 100 gigabytes or more: 44% in 2011, 45% in 2012 and 50% in 2013, and 58% in 2014; 120 gigabytes or more: 42% in 2011, 44% in 2012, 45% in 2013, and 54% in 2014; 140 gigabytes or more: 27% in 2011, 31% in 2012, 29% in 2013, and 40% in 2014; 160 gigabytes or more: 21% in 2011, 26% in 2012, 23% in 2013, and 29% in 2014.  Unlimited: 13% in 2011, 12% in 2012, 12% in 2013 and 14% in 2014.

Source: CRTC data collection

c) Performance indicators

Table 5.3.6 Residential Internet service one-month average revenue, by advertised download speed ($)
Advertised download speed 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Lite and wideband up to 256 Kbps 25.18 33.86 35.97 35.36 36.00
Wideband 300 to 1400 Kbps 28.87 33.03 35.83 35.49 33.80
Broadband
1.5 to 4 Mbps 33.57 32.87 41.87 31.45 48.05
5 to 9 Mbps 42.23 40.97 44.05 46.10 46.87
10 to 15 Mbps 39.67 42.11 40.62 48.17 48.52
16 Mbps and higher 53.71 51.63 46.83 59.87 54.06
16 to 49 Mbps
51.66 50.76 44.85 58.69 51.96
50 Mbps and higher
75.80 78.06 59.69 66.05 60.90
Total sample 38.96 39.80 43.80 49.64 50.06

Source: CRTC data collection

In general, the average price for high-speed Internet service has been increasing. While some categories have seen price declines, these declines have been offset by movement towards larger, faster packages. All data excludes revenues from modem rentals.

The one-month average revenue by downstream speed was calculated by dividing the total one-month revenue in each speed tier provided by the service providers by the total number of subscribers to the service in each speed tier in that month. The month used was December or the closest available month.

Table 5.3.7 Weighted-average upload/download limits (GBs) of residential Internet service plans, by advertised download speed
Advertised download speed 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Lite and wideband up to 256 Kbps - - - - -
Wideband 300 to 1400 Kbps 7.20 14.90 17.89 25.42 27.25
Broadband
1.5 to 4 Mbps 24.69 69.06 94.93 68.22 52.20
5 to 9 Mbps 49.07 80.81 76.78 48.46 53.36
10 to 15 Mbps 74.55 74.22 106.74 99.84 101.79
16 Mbps and higher 116.90 179.58 160.23 168.94 183.37
16 to 49 Mbps
112.27 176.98 131.50 142.14 159.15
50 Mbps and higher
165.33 236.54 364.80 362.86 283.10
Total sample 48.14 81.11 103.48 99.24 118.27

Source: CRTC data collection

Except for the 2013 year, the amount of gigabytes downloadable in the average package has been going up, as Canadians subscribe to larger Internet packages.

The weighted-average upload/download limit was calculated for each downstream speed tier based on the number of subscribers to plans with upload/download limits.

Table 5.3.8 Residential Internet service upload speed (Kbps) by advertised download speed and average advertised download speed
Advertised download speed 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Lite and wideband up to 256 Kbps 209 178 168 136 162
Wideband 300 to 1400 Kbps 352 314 313 291 283
Broadband
1.5 to 4 Mbps 584 666 651 768 746
5 to 9 Mbps 870 855 1,118 809 937
10 to 15 Mbps 797 876 2,519 2,407 2,225
16 Mbps and higher 1,735 2,693 4,291 6,656 6,797
16 to 49 Mbps
1,661 2,662 2,912 4,133 4,676
50 Mbps and higher
2,529 3,667 13,199 19,890 13,701
Total sample 769 961 2,009 3,031 3,676
Weighted-average download speed 7,060 8,238 12,610 15,465 21,242

Source: CRTC data collection

The weighted-average upload speed was calculated for each advertised download speed tier based on the number of subscribers to the plan. Weighted-average download speed was calculated based upon the number of subscribers to each plan for all plans.

d) Price

Approximately 77% of households subscribed to a 5 Mbps download or higher broadband Internet service in 2014, up from 71% in 2013. Urban households generally paid lower prices and had a greater number of Internet service providers to choose from than rural households.

Service providers were asked to report the price of the least expensive service they offered that provides a download speed of at least 5 Mbps. Some service providers only offered options that are greater than 5 Mbps, and these were included in the following tables.

Urban centres

Figure 5.3.2 Price of residential broadband (5 Mbps) Internet access service and number of companies providing this service in urban centres, 2014

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for 5 Mbps service by major centre, as well as number of providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 6 providers, low 30, high 58, a difference of 28; Victoria: 6 providers, low 30, high 58, a difference of 28; Calgary: 6 providers, low 30, high 58, and difference of 28; Edmonton: 6 providers, low 30, high 58, a difference of 28; Regina: 2 providers, low 25, high 50, a difference of 25; Saskatoon: 2 providers, low 50, high 55, a difference of 5; Winnipeg: 3 providers, low 49, high 55, a difference of 6; Hamilton: 10 providers, low 27, high 55, a difference of 28; Kitchener-Waterloo: 8 providers, low 26, high 55, a difference of 29; London: 8 providers, low 26, high 55, a difference of 29; Oshawa: 8 providers, low 26, high 55, a difference of 29; Ottawa-Gatineau: 9 providers, low 25, high 55, a difference of 30; St Catharines – Niagara: 9 providers, low 27, high 55, a difference of 28; Toronto: 8 providers, low 25, high 55, a difference of 30; Windsor: 9 providers, low 27, high 55, a difference of 28; Montréal: 7 providers, low 25, high 49, a difference of 24; Québec: 8 providers, low 27, high 49, a difference of 22; Fredericton: 3 providers, low 42, high 76, a difference of 35; Charlottetown: 3 providers, low 42, high 76, a difference of 35; Halifax: 4 providers, low 42, high 76, a difference of 35; St. John’s: 3 providers, low 42, high 76, a difference of 35; Whitehorse: 1 provider, 63; Yellowknife: 1 provider, 63; Iqaluit: 1 provider, 180.

Source: CRTC data collection

This bar chart displays the range in the monthly price of 5 Mbps Internet service in twenty-four urban centres in Canada. The blue bar displays the lowest price, and the red bar displays the difference between the lowest and highest prices. The number at the top of each bar is the highest price. The number appearing in parentheses along the horizontal axis after the name of each urban centre represents the number of ISPs in that urban centre. Satellite service is excluded, but is available in all areas for $65 per month.

The price of 5 Mbps Internet service varied from lows between $25 to $63 per month, and highs between $50 and $76 per month, except for services offered in Iqaluit. Subscribers in Iqaluit paid $180 per month for non-satellite Internet service.

Subscribers living in provincial urban centres generally had a choice of between three and nine providers, while those living in territorial urban centres had a more limited selection.

Data caps that limit the amount that can be downloaded per month were a differentiating feature among the service providers. Low Internet users would generally benefit from these caps, while heavy users would not. Of the 19 service providers,

Rural communities

As displayed in the Figure 5.3.3, the price of 5 Mbps Internet service was generally higher in rural communities than in urban centres, except in New Brunswick.

The price of 5 Mbps Internet service in rural communities varied from lows of between $27 and $65 per month, and highs of between $65 and $100 per month.

Internet service subscribers living in rural communities generally had fewer service providers to choose from than subscribers living in urban centres. Rural subscribers usually had a choice of between two and four service providers except in Ontario and Quebec.

Which communities were included?

Fifty-four rural communities were selected to assess the price of Internet access service in rural communities. These communities met the following criteria:

  • the community was not part of one of the census metropolitan areas of the twenty-four urban centres;
  • the community had a population density of fewer than 400 people per square kilometre, or its population centre had fewer than 1,000 people;
  • the number of communities selected in each province/territory was proportional to the population of the province/territory; and
  • the communities were not clustered together

Appendix 9 contains the list of rural communities.

Figure 5.3.3 Price comparison of residential broadband (5 Mbps) Internet access service and number of companies providing this service in urban and rural communities, 2014

This two-series stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for 5 Mbps service by urban are rural areas on a per province basis.  BC Rural: 2 to 4 providers, low 49, high 100;  BC Urban: 6 to 6 providers, low 30, high 58; Alberta Rural: 2 to 3 providers, low 58, high 72; Alberta Urban: 6 to 6 providers, low 30, high 58; Sask Rural: 3 to 3 providers, low 50, high 80; Sask Urban: 2 to 2 providers, low 25, high 55; Manitoba Rural: 1 to 2 providers, low 54, high 65; Manitoba Urban: 3 providers, low 49, high 55; Ontario Rural: 4 to 7 providers, low 30, high 87; Ontario Urban: 8 to 10 providers, low 25, high 55; Quebec Rural: 4 to 7 providers, low 27, high 65; Quebec Urban: 7 to 8 providers, low 25, high 49; NB Rural: 3 to 4 providers, low 42, high 76; NB Urban: 3 providers, low 42, high  76; PEI Rural: 3 to 3 providers, low 65 high 76; PEI Urban: 3 providers, low 42, high 76; NS Rural, 3 to 3 providers, low 65, high 76; NS Urban: 3 providers, low 42, high 76; Nfld Rural: 2 to 3 providers, low 65, high 76; Nfld Urban: 3 providers, low 42, high 76; Yukon Rural: 2 to 2 providers, low 65, high 90; Yukon Urban: 1 provider, 63; NWT Rural: 2 to 2 providers, low 63, high 90; NWT Urban: 1 provider, 63; Nunavut Rural: 1 to 1 provider, 65; Nunavut Urban: 1 provider 180.

Source: CRTC data collection

This bar chart displays the range in the monthly price of broadband (5 Mbps) Internet access service in fifty-four rural communities in Canada. The blue bar displays the lowest price, and the red bar displays the difference between the lowest and highest prices. The number at the top of each bar is the highest price. The number appearing in parentheses along the horizontal axis after the name of each province and territory represents the range in the number of service providers among the communities or centres. For example, “BC rural (2/4)” means that the number of service providers among the rural communities in British Columbia included in the survey varied between 2 and 4.

Satellite service is excluded in urban areas, but is available in all areas for $65 per month.

e) Consumer trends

In 2010, 49.1% of the ISPs’ Internet high-speed residential access service revenues were from plans with download speeds between 5 and 9 Mbps. Plans with lower speeds yielded 25.4% of their revenues, while plans with higher speeds captured 25.5%. Four years later, the 5 to 9 Mbps plans no longer yield the highest percentage of revenues having declined to 25.2%, while revenues from lower-speed plans declined to 5.1%, and revenues from higher-speed plans increased to 69.7%.

Table 5.3.9 Residential Internet service one-month revenue distribution (%), by advertised download speed
Advertised download speed 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Lite and wideband up to 256 Kbps 0.2 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.1
Wideband 300 to 1400 Kbps 4.3 3.6 2.4 2.1 1.3
Broadband
1.5 to 4 Mbps 20.9 20.3 17.4 4.6 3.6
5 to 9 Mbps 49.1 47.0 41.6 30.5 25.2
10 to 15 Mbps 22.8 16.5 9.3 24.8 24.8
16 Mbps and higher 2.7 12.3 29.1 37.8 45.0
16 to 49 Mbps
2.4 11.8 24.1 31.1 33.1
50 Mbps and higher
0.3 0.6 5.0 6.7 11.9
Total sample 350.0 375.7 427.6 494.9 517.8

Source: CRTC data collection

All data excludes terminal rental revenues. All services are listed without regard to upload speed. 80.0% of high-speed revenues are from a service that meets the Commission target of 5 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload, compared to 94.9% from services with at least 5 Mbps download and any upload.

In 2014, Canadians continued to subscribe to higher-speed Internet access services than in 2010. In 2010 the most common plans were those with download speeds of 5 to 9 Mbps, representing 45.3% of all subscriptions. Plans with lower speeds attracted 30.3% of all subscriptions, and plans with higher speeds represented 24.4% of subscriptions. Four years later, the 5 to 9 Mbps plans are no longer the most popular. The percentage of subscribers to these plans declined to 26.9%. Interestingly, in 2014 the percentage of subscribers to lower-speed plans less than 5 Mbps declined to 5.8%, while the percentage of subscribers to higher-speed plans greater than 9 Mbps grew to 67.2% since 2010.

Table 5.3.10 Residential Internet service one-month subscriber distribution (%), by advertised download speed
Advertised download speed 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Lite and wideband up to 256 Kbps 0.3 0.4 0.3 0.3 0.2
Wideband 300 to 1400 Kbps 5.8 4.3 2.9 2.7 1.9
Broadband
1.5 to 4 Mbps 24.2 24.6 18.2 7.3 3.7
5 to 9 Mbps 45.3 45.6 41.3 32.8 26.9
10 to 15 Mbps 22.4 15.6 10.1 25.6 25.6
16 Mbps and higher 2.0 9.5 27.2 31.4 41.6
16 to 49 Mbps
1.8 9.2 23.5 26.3 31.9
50 Mbps and higher
0.2 0.3 3.6 5.0 9.8
Total sample 8,983.1 9,440.3 9,761.1 9,970.1 10,345.1

Source: CRTC data collection

This table indicated that, over time, faster speeds attract more subscriptions. 79.2% of high-speed subscribers take a service that meets the Commission target of 5 Mbps download and 1 Mbps upload, compared to 94.2% that take a service with at least 5 Mbps download and any upload. Eighty-one percent of Canadian households subscribe to some form of high-speed service.

f) Competitive landscape

Figure 5.3.4 Broadband subscriptions ‒ Incumbent TSPs vs. cable-based carriers

This two line chart describes, for the years 2010 to 2014, the number of subscriptions (in thousands) of broadband for Incumbent TSPs and for cable-based carriers. For 2010: 3,553, 5,280; For 2011: 3,693, 5,562; For 2012: 3,917, 5,730; For 2013: 4,110, 5,785; For 2014: 4,327, 5,845.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.3.5 Internet access service revenue shares, by market and by type of service provider, 2014

These two pie charts describe the percentage revenue market share of various industry participant groups for residential and business Internet access markets: Residential pie chart: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 38%; Cable-based carriers: 53%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 0%; Remaining alternative service providers: 9%. Business pie chart: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 40%; Cable-based carriers: 28%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 7%; Remaining alternative service providers: 25%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.3.6 Business Internet access service revenues by access technology, 2010 vs. 2014

What is meant by “satellite?”

Satellites can provide Internet access service. Connections are established between an Earth station on the ground (using equipment such as satellite dishes) and a satellite in space. Satellites can support various frequency bands (C-, Ku-, and Ka-band).

Satellite Internet service delivered using the C-band requires a large satellite dish and is typically used to serve a community. Ka-band, and to a lesser degree Ku-band, satellite Internet access can be offered using a small satellite dish located at the customer’s premises.

Only direct-to-home services are counted as satellite in this section.

These two pie charts describe the percentage of business access revenue by technology.  For 2010: DSL: 45%; Cable: 18%; Fiber: 27%; Other: 8%; Dial-up: 2%. And for 2014: DSL: 39%; Cable: 25%; Fiber: 27%; Other: 8%; Dial-up: 1%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Business Internet access revenue is derived from services providing using a variety of access technologies. The “Other” segment in the charts refers to other technologies, such as fixed-wireless and satellite technologies.

Figure 5.3.7 Residential Internet access service subscriptions by access technology, 2010 vs. 2014

These two pie charts describe the percentage of residential subscriptions by technology.  For 2010: DSL: 38%; Cable: 55%; Dial-up: 4%; Fibre 0%; Fixed wireless and satellite: 3%. And for 2014: DSL: 36%; Cable: 55%; Dial-up: 1%; Fibre: 5%; Fixed wireless and satellite: 4%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Canadians can access broadband using either wireline or wireless facilities. These facilities support evolving services, which make new experiences possible for Canadians, ranging from television and radio, to new and highly interactive services and programs offering greater consumer control and choice. Connected consumers can engage with the digital world with their devices at the time and place of their choice.

The rest of this section examines the availability of broadband Internet access services, the capacity requirements that must be met for participation in the digital environment, as well as the impacts of these requirements on consumer behaviour. It also looks at certain technologies as they relate to Canada’s broadcasting and telecommunications sectors.

g) Capacity requirements

This section examines the extent to which Canadians have access to broadband Internet service and the associated capacity requirements.

Fixed and mobile broadband services [i.e. Evolved High-Speed Packet Access (HSPA+) and Long Term Evolution (LTE)] are available to over 99% of households in Canada. Canadians are accessing the growing volumes of content, whether audio, video, or data, that are being made available online. Spurring this development is the adoption by Canadians of advanced handheld devices (e.g. smartphones, tablets).

There were approximately 525 Internet service providers in operation across Canada providing broadband access using a combination of DSL, cable modem, fibre-optic, satellite, and fixed-wireless facilities. These services are available to 97% of Canadian households not including satellite, and with satellite they are available to 99%.

Wireless service providers also provided broadband service. As displayed in the ‘Wireless retail market sector’ section of this report, 67% of wireless service subscribers in 2014 had advanced handheld devices capable of accessing the digital world.

3G refers to third-generation wireless technology

SD refers to standard definition

HD refers to high definition

Figure 5.3.8 Popular Internet applications – Bandwidth requirements

This chart is an illustration attempting to show the amount of bandwidth required for various online applications and services, in order to illustrate the sorts of services that consumers may expect to receive depending on the Internet access service that they use as well as the capabilities of several broadband technologies. The X-axis is the Average Available Bandwidth in Mbps, and there are 6 labels along the axis; Dial-up, 128 kbps, 500 kbps, 1.5 Mbps, 5 Mbps, 15 Mbps, and greater than 15 Mbps. The Y-axis is Required Performance Consistency, and has 3 labels; Files, Streaming, and Real-Time. Within the body of the chart are various ovals illustrating the type of services and the bandwidth they require. In the “Files” category are the following: E-mail from dial-up to 128 kbps; Small Software Download from 128 kbps to 500 kbps; Music Downloads from 500 kbps to under 1.5 Mbps; Software Download (1 CD) from 1.5 Mbps to 5 Mbps; DVD Size Video Download from 5 Mbps to 15 Mbps; Blu-ray Size Video Download above 15 Mbps. Between the “Files” and “Streaming” categories is Web Surfing, which ranges from Dial-up to 1.5 Mbps. In the “Streaming” category are the following: Radio from dial-up to 140 kbps; Audio streaming from 140 kbps to 400 kbps; SD video streaming from 300 kbps to under 1.5 Mbps; HD Video Streaming from 3 Mbps to 15 Mbps. In the “Real-Time” category are the following: VoIP from dial-up to under 128 kbps; Real-Time Gaming from 70 kbps to 500 kbps; Video Conferencing from under 500 kbps to 5 Mbps.  Mobile 2.5G is capable of speeds up to 128 kbps, but cannot do more than file type performance consistency and low end web surfing.  Mobile 3G is capable of up to 500 kbps, is able to do VoIP, but its capability diminishes for other real time applications, and is limited to low end real-time gaming.  Mobile HSPA+ and wireline broadband less than 5 Mbps can do low end HD video streaming and SD IPTV, and many forms of video conferencing. Mobile 4G/LTE and faster wireline broadband services can handle all other applications.

Source: CRTC Technology Resource Centre

Bit rates

Figures 5.3.9 and 5.3.10 illustrate the Internet access speed requirements for a number of commonly accessed online services on both wireline and mobile networks. These figures provide detail regarding average upload and download data rates required by each service. Some services do not allow for manual selection of the quality and/or speed setting, but rather adjust their quality automatically. See Appendix 10 for more details.

Figure 5.3.9 Average data rate (speeds) of select services over a wireline broadband Internet connection, 2014

This horizontal bar chart illustrates that average download and upload data rate in kbps for various services  over a wireline broadband connection.  For Netflix (UHD-2160P): 16,750, 378; YouTube (2160P): 11,841, 285; YouTube (1440P): 6,644, 162; Netflix (High): 5,477, 73; Shomi (Best): 4,855, 78;Shomi (Better): 3,801, 62; CBC TV (High): 3,688, 77; YouTube (1080P): 3,399, 85; Shomi (Good): 3,147, 42; Netflix (Med): 2,034, 34.7; YouTube (720P): 1,069, 48; Global TV: 1,856, 43;Netflix (Low): 1,092, 23.1; YouTube (480P): 1,069, 29; CBC TV (Med): 1,068, 28; Spotify (High): 566, 12; CBC TV (Low): 537, 18; Spotify (Normal): 250, 6; CBC Radio 2 – Eastern: 191, 9.

Source: CRTC Technology Resource Centre

Figure 5.3.10 Average data rate of select services over a mobile broadband Internet connection, 2014

This horizontal bar chart illustrates that average download and upload data rate in kbps for various services  over a mobile broadband connection.  For Shomi (Best): 2,934, 46; Shomi (Better): 2,312, 37; Shomi (Good): 1,681, 31; Spotfiy (High): 289, 4; Spotify (Normal): 170, 3.

Source: CRTC Technology Resource Centre

Data Caps

Figures 5.3.11 and 5.3.12 illustrate the number of hours each service can be used before reaching the limit of the various usage caps based on the information from the previous tables. Figure 5.3.11 shows typical wireline broadband monthly usage caps, while Figure 5.3.12 shows typical mobile broadband monthly usage caps.

Figure 5.3.11 Number of usage hours before typical wireline monthly broadband capacity thresholds are reached, by service, 2014

This horizontal bar chart illustrates the amount of hours that a service may be used until typical wireline broadband capacity thresholds are reached.  These thresholds are 300 GB, 100 GB and 50 GB.  For Netflix (UHD-2160P): 39, 13, 6; YouTube (2160P): 55, 18, 9; YouTube (1440P): 98, 33, 16; Netflix (High): 140, 40, 20; Shomi (Best): 135, 45, 23; Shomi (Better): 173, 58, 29; CBC TV (High): 177, 59, 30; YouTube (1080P): 191, 64, 32; Shomi (Good): 209, 70, 35; Netflix (Med): 322, 107, 54; YouTube (720P): 343, 114, 57; Global TV: 251.1, 117.0, 58.5; Netflix (Low): 598, 199, 100; YouTube (480P): 607, 202, 101; CBC TV (Med): 608, 203, 101; Spotify (High): 1,155, 385, 192; CBC TV (Low): 1,201, 400, 200; Spotify (Normal): 2,598, 866, 433; CBC Radio 2 – Eastern: 3,333, 1,111, 555.

Source: CRTC Technology Resource Centre

Figure 5.3.12 Number of usage hours before typical mobile monthly broadband capacity thresholds are reached, by service, 2014

This horizontal bar chart illustrates the amount of hours that a service may be used until typical mobile broadband capacity thresholds are reached.  These thresholds are 5 GB, 2 GB and 1 GB. For Shomi (Best): 3.7, 1.5, 0.7; Shomi (Better): 4.7, 1.9, 0.9; Shomi (Good): 6.5, 2.6, 1.3; Spotfiy (High): 38.0, 15.2, 7.6; Spotify (Normal): 64.0, 25.6, 12.8.

Source: CRTC Technology Resource Centre

Although some services offer manual control over the quality of streaming (and thereby control of data consumption), other services attempt to maintain the highest quality possible, which may result in higher data consumption. There are various ways to monitor data usage. For both wireline and wireless broadband connections, service providers typically provide usage-tracking tools and automatic alerts that can inform consumers when they’re nearing their limit. For those without access to such tools, third party applications may be utilised.

Due to the limited number of measurement samples and the wide variety of network configurations and equipment, the reported average bandwidth and capacity used is for illustrative purposes only and results obtained may vary in different settings.

h) Key indicators

Broadband Calculation

Broadband availability is calculated by utilising information provided by ISPs. Locations are considered serviced if their dissemination block representative point falls within broadband coverage. Data may not take into account capacity issues, or issues with regard to line-of-sight.

Information does not take into account upload speeds. Inclusion of a 1 mbps upload speed requirement into the 5 Mbps category will affect results.

Table 5.3.11 Key telecommunications availability indicators
Platform Availability (% of households)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Mobile broadband
3G/3G equivalent 98 99 99 99 99
HSPA+ 96 99 99 99 99
LTE n/a 45 72 81 93
Wireline broadband
DSL 85 86 87 82 82
Cable modem 81 82 82 82 82
Fixed wireless 82 86 50 63 68
IPTV 22 34 45 56 65
Digital satellite National National National National National

Source: CRTC data collection

Not all broadband technologies are available in all parts of the country. This table lists the various types of mobile and wireline broadband technologies [as well as IPTV and digital satellite technologies], and shows the percentage of households nationally, for the years from 2010 to 2014, that were able to access such technologies. The decline in the availability of fixed wireless services in 2012 and of DSL in 2013 was due to the deactivation of the Inukshuk network and the deployment of fibre technology, respectively.

Figure 5.3.13 Broadband availability (percentage of households)

This column chart describes, for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, and 2013 the availability of broadband via various access means.  For 2010, DSL was at 85%, Cable modem was at 82%, Fixed-wireless and Satellite was at 83%, Mobile was at 96%, for a total availability of 98%.  For 2011, DSL was at 86%, Cable modem was at 82%, Fixed-wireless and Satellite was at 87%, Mobile was at 99%, for a total availability of 99%. For 2012, DSL was at 87%, Cable modem was at 82%, Fixed-wireless and Satellite was at 51%, Mobile was at 99%, for a total availability of 99%. For 2013, DSL was at 82%, Cable modem was at 82%, Fixed-wireless and Satellite was at 64%, Mobile was at 99%, for a total availability of 99%. For 2014, DSL was at 82%, Cable modem was at 82%, Fixed-wireless and Satellite was at 68%, Mobile was at 99%, for a total availability of 99%.

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

Figure 5.3.14 Broadband availability vs. broadband subscriptions by province/territory, 2014

This stacked column chart describes, for the provinces of Canada, the availability of broadband via fixed technology, with a stacked element for the additional coverage provided by HSPA+ mobile technology.  In addition, it shows the subscriber take-up percentage of broadband subscriptions per province via fixed technology.  BC: 96%, HSPA+ adds 3%, take-up rate is 84%; AB: 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 81%; SK: over 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 72%; MB: 98%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate 74%; ON: 98%, HSPA+ adds 1%, take-up rate is 81%; QC: 96%, HSPA+ adds 3%, take-up rate is 77%; NB: over 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 82%; NS: over 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 76%; PEI: over 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 82%; NL: 85%, HSPA+ adds 12%, take-up rate is 82%; North: 99%, HSPA+ adds 0%, take-up rate is 82%; Canada: 97%, HSPA+ adds 2%, take-up rate is 80%.

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

The availability and take-up rates of broadband services vary from province to province. The provinces of New Brunswick and Saskatchewan have arrangements to provide broadband service via satellite at terms and conditions similar to those for wireline service. In the province of Prince Edward Island, HSPA+ is available to households without access to other means of broadband service at terms and conditions equivalent to those for wireline service. These arrangements have been taken into account in the “fixed broadband availability” bars in the graph. These data exclude satellite broadband service for availability, but they are included for subscriptions. HSPA+ shows the contribution that including HSPA+ technology would have on availability.

Figure 5.3.15 Broadband, 5 Mbps availability (percentage of households), 2014

This column chart describes, for 2014, the availability of 5 Mbps broadband via various access means. For 2013, DSL was at 79%, Cable modem was at 81%, Fixed-wireless was at 51%, Fibre was at 20%. Mobile was at 93%, for a total availability of 94% without mobile, with mobile adding another 2%.

Source: CRTC Data collection

Broadband download speeds of at least 5 Mbps are available to Canadian households on a variety of platforms. This bar graph shows the availability rates of broadband access through DSL, cable modem, fixed-wireless, fibre, and mobile technologies, as well as the availability rate of all technologies at this speed. Satellite service is excluded; however, it would add approximately 1.5% to the availability of 5 Mbps broadband services.

i) Broadband availability

Figure 5.3.16 Broadband availability by speed (percentage of households)

This column chart describes the availability of broadband by various download speeds, in Mbps for 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014, excluding HSPA+.  For 1.5 to 4.9 Mbps:96%, 97%, 97%, 97%, 97%; for 5 to 9.9 Mbps: 86%, 87%, 91%, 94%, 94%; for 10 to 15.9 Mbps: 81%, 83%, 84%, 84%, 85%; for 16 to 24.9 Mbps: 77%, 80%, 82%, 82%, 84%; From 25 to 29.9 Mbps: 70%, 78%, 80%, 81%, 82%; for 30 Mbps to 49.9 Mbps:  66%, 76%, 79%, 80%, 81%; 50 Mbps to 99.9 Mbps: 58%, 75%, 77%, 78%, 79%; and 100 Mbps and higher: 16%, 28%, 35%, 60%, 71%.

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

The availability of broadband service at higher speeds has been expanding in Canada. This graph excludes satellite and mobile technologies.

Table 5.3.12 Broadband availability nationwide, by speed and number of platforms (percentage of households), 2014
Number of platforms 1.5 Mbps and higher 5.0 Mbps and higher 10.0 Mbps and higher 16.0 Mbps and higher 25.0 Mbps and higher 30.0 Mbps and higher 50.0 Mbps and higher 100 Mbps and higher
1 3 6 19 20 21 23 50 63
2 10 10 56 59 56 54 29 9
3 34 43 10 5 5 5 0 0
4 53 38 0 0 0 0 0 0
  99 96 85 84 82 81 79 71

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

This table shows the percentage of households nationwide that have access to broadband technologies at varying speeds, and over four platforms: DSL/Fibre, cable modem, fixed-wireless, and mobile (HSPA+ and LTE). At one end of the availability spectrum, broadband platforms at speeds of at least 5 Mbps are available to 96% of Canadian households. At the other end of the spectrum, two broadband platforms at a speed of more than 100 Mbps are available to 9% of Canadian households.

The effects of line bonding (using more than one line to provide service) on DSL were not considered. This mainly affects speeds above 50 Mbps.

The total at the bottom of each column indicates the percentage of Canadian households that can access the speeds noted for each column. This table excludes satellite technologies.

Table 5.3.13 Broadband availability, by speed and province/territory (percentage of households), 2014
Province/territory 1.5-4.9 Mbps 1.5-4.9 Mbps with HSPA+ 5-9.9 Mbps 5-9.9 Mbps with LTE 10-15.9 Mbps 16-24.9 Mbps 25 Mbps or higher
British Columbia 96 98 93 96 91 90 88
Alberta 99 99 98 99 86 85 81
Saskatchewan 99 99 88 88 74 60 58
Manitoba 98 99 95 95 77 69 69
Ontario 98 99 97 99 87 86 86
Quebec 96 99 94 96 85 83 81
New Brunswick 99 99 90 95 83 83 83
Nova Scotia 99 99 87 95 84 83 81
Prince Edward Island 99 99 77 99 62 60 53
Newfoundland and Labrador 85 97 82 90 71 71 63
Yukon 99 99 96 96 69 62 60
Northwest Territories 97 97 91 91 76 50 42
Nunavut 99 99 33 33 0 0 0

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

Not all regions of the country have similar access to broadband technologies. This table shows the regional availability of broadband technology, by province and territory, in 2014. Since satellite is a service with a national footprint, it is excluded from this table.

Figure 5.3.17 Broadband availability – Urban vs. rural (percentage of households), 2014

This column chart shows broadband availability, by size of community and speed. Large population centers: 1.5-4.9 Mbps: 100%, 5-9.9 Mbps: 100%, 10-15.9 Mbps: 99%, 16-24.9 Mbps: 99%, 25-29.9 Mbps: 99%, 30-49.9 Mbps: 99%, 50-99.9 Mbps: 97%, 100+ Mbps: 96%. Medium population centers: 1.5-4.9 Mbps: 100%, 5-9.9 Mbps: 100%, 10-15.9 Mbps: 98%, 16-24.9 Mbps: 98%, 25-29.9 Mbps: 97%, 30-49.9 Mbps: 96%, 50-99.9 Mbps: 95%, 100+ Mbps: 93%. Small population centers: 1.5-4.9 Mbps: 100%, 5-9.9 Mbps: 99%, 10-15.9 Mbps: 93%, 16-24.9 Mbps: 88%, 25-29.9 Mbps: 83%, 30-49.9 Mbps: 80%, 50-99.9 Mbps: 73%, 100+ Mbps: 69%. Rural areas: 1.5-4.9 Mbps: 87%, 5-9.9 Mbps: 75%, 10-15.9 Mbps: 37%, 16-24.9 Mbps: 32%, 25-29.9 Mbps: 29%, 30-49.9 Mbps: 28%, 50-99.9 Mbps: 26%, 100+ Mbps: 25%. HSPA+ addition to small centres for broadband, 0%, addition to rural areas for broadband: 11%; LTE addition to small and medium centres for 5-9.9 Mbps: 1%, addition to rural areas for 5-9Mbps: 11%.

Sources: Industry Canada and CRTC data collection

Broadband technology availability differs between Canada’s urban and rural areas, particularly in terms of technologies that offer faster download speeds. This table shows the percentage of Canadian households in large, medium, and small population centres, as well as in rural areas, that can access various broadband services.

Small population centres are areas that have a population of between 1,000 and 29,000. Medium population centres have a population of between 30,000 and 99,999. Large population centres have populations greater than 100,000. Rural areas have a population of less than 1,000, or fewer than 400 people per square kilometre.

The HSPA+ and LTE bars show the additional contribution that inclusion of these technologies would make to the respective categories.

Satellite is excluded.

Table 5.3.14 Adoption of various video technologies in Canada
Adoption (%)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Internet TV
Anglophones 31 34 38 42 47
Francophones 26 33 34 39 42
Internet video on cell/smartphone
Anglophones 9 12 14 23 38
Francophones 4 8 8 16 27
Internet use on tablet
Anglophones n/a n/a 23 33 44
Francophones n/a n/a 14 25 37
Internet video on tablet
Anglophones n/a 6 12 20 26
Francophones n/a 3 7 16 25

Source: MTM 2010-2014 (Respondents: Canadians 18+)

This table shows the rates of adoption and growth rates of various video technologies among Canadian consumers. Over the past years, the popularity of video and television streaming to personal electronic devices has grown greatly.

5.4 Data and private line retail sector

This display presents several key indicators for the data and private line retail sector and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $3.6 billion, an increase of 0.3% over 2013.  Second indicator: forborne private line: 6,057 routes, up 1.8% from 2013. Third indicator: forborne data: 98% of revenues. Fourth indicator: forborne private line: 85% of revenues.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the retail data and private line revenues as a percentage of retail telecommunications revenues in 2014. Data and private line: 9%. Total telecommunications retail revenues were $42.1 billion.

Data and private line services refer to those services sold by TSPs to business customers for the transmission of data, video, and/or voice traffic. These communications channels provide private, highly secure communications between locations.

Canadian businesses were served by approximately 191 entities offering data and private line services in 2014. Of these, incumbent telecommunications service providers (incumbent TSPs or incumbent providers) accounted for approximately 15%, and alternative service providers, such as cable-based carriers, utility telcos, and resellers, accounted for the remaining 85%.

Data services are packet-based services that intelligently switch data through carrier networks. They make use of (a) new data protocols such as Ethernet and IP, or (b) legacy protocols such as X.25, asynchronous transfer mode (ATM), and frame relay to transmit data.

These services are provided by both in-territory incumbent TSPs and their competition, with competitors having around 43% of the total market, including network management and equipment.Notable is the increase over time in the activity of cable-based carriers in the newer protocol space.

Private line services provide a non-switched dedicated communications connection between two or more points to transport data, video, and/or voice traffic. These services include high-capacity digital transmission services and digital data systems, as well as voice-grade and other analog systems. Transmission facilities include copper wire and fibre-optic cable. Private line services make use of transmission facilities such as OC-3 fibre optic lines, DS-1 copper facilities, etc.

In the private line space, the market is dominated by the in-territory operations of the incumbent TSPs. Of the alternative service providers, independent operators are the largest provider category.

a) Revenues

Table 5.4.1 Data and private line retail revenues ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Data
Data protocols 1,740 1,833 1,893 1,917 1,952 2.9
Annual growth (%) -0.2 5.3 3.3 1.2 1.8
Other 654 732 796 832 857 7.0
Annual growth (%) 5.1 11.9 8.7 4.6 3.0
Total data protocols and other 2,394 2,565 2,689 2,749 2,809 4.1
Annual growth (%) 1.2 7.1 4.9 2.2 2.2
Private line 807 751 793 834 784 -0.7
Annual growth (%) -4.2 -7.0 5.6 5.2 -6.0
Total data and private line 3,201 3,316 3,482 3,583 3,593 2.9
Annual growth (%) -0.2 3.6 5.0 2.9 0.3

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows retail data and private line revenues for the years from 2010 to 2014. Data services were classified into one of two categories: (a) services making use of data protocols such as Ethernet and IP, X.25, ATM, and frame relay; or (b) other services such as network management and networking equipment.

Table 5.4.2 Retail data service revenues, by classification of data protocol used ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
New protocols
Ethernet 451.4 478.6 482.7 483.0 464.7 0.7
Annual growth (%) -6.4 6.0 0.9 0.1  -3.8
IP 995.9 1,124.4 1,189.7 1,217.9 1,284.1 6.6
Annual growth (%) 14.4 12.9 5.8 2.4  5.4
Other protocols 118.9 125.9 154.0 167.3 170.9 9.5
Annual growth (%) -5.9 5.7 22.3  8.6 2.2
Total new protocols 1,566.2 1,728.9 1,826.4 1,868.1 1,919.8 5.2
Annual growth (%) 5.9 10.4 5.6  2.3 2.8
Legacy protocols 173.6 103.6 67.1 48.9 32.4 -34.3
Annual growth (%) -34.3 -40.3 -35.3  -27.1 -22.1
Total data protocols 1,740.0 1,832.5 1,893.4 1,917.0 1,952.1 2.9
Annual growth (%) -0.2 5.3 3.3  1.2 1.8

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the retail data service revenues realized by service providers. The data services were classified as services making use of (a) new data protocols such as Ethernet and IP or (b) legacy protocols such as X.25, ATM, and frame relay. The table charts growth in these revenues over the period from 2010 to 2014.

Table 5.4.3 Private line retail revenues, by type of service provider ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 681 625 610 641 593 -3.4
Annual growth (%) 4.9 -8.2 -2.4 5.0 -7.5  
Alternative service providers
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 53 45 41 42 41 -6.5
Annual growth (%) -52.9 -15.7 -8.0 1.6 -2.9  
Cable-based carriers 34 48 49 54 61 15.3
Annual growth (%) -25.3 39.7 2.3 9.7 12.9  
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers) 38 33 92 97 90 23.5
Annual growth (%) 12.2 -14.8 183.2 5.4 -7.8  
Total alternative service providers 126 125 183 193 191 11.0
Annual growth (%) -34.8 -0.3 45.6 5.7 -1.0  
Total private line 807 751 793 834 784 -0.7
Annual growth (%) -4.2 -7.0 5.6 5.2 -6.0

Source: CRTC data collection

b) Competitive landscape

Although incumbent TSPs accounted for only approximately 15% of the entities providing data and private line services, they captured 74% of retail revenues. The remaining 85% of entities providing these services, consisting of cable-based carriers, other carriers, and resellers, accounted for 26% of retail revenues.

Figure 5.4.1 Retail data and private line revenue market share (%), by type of service provider

These two pie charts describe the percentage revenue market share of various industry participant groups for the retail data and private line market for 2011 and 2014. For 2011: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 66%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 14%; Non-incumbent alternative TSPs: 20%.  For 2014: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 61%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 13%; Non-incumbent alternative TSPs: 26%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.4.2 Retail data service revenue market share (%), by type of service provider

These two pie charts describe the percentage revenue market share of various industry participant groups for the retail data market for 2011 and 2014. For 2011: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 61%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 17%; Non-incumbent alternative TSPs: 22%.  For 2014: Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory): 57%; Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory): 15%; Non-incumbent alternative TSPs: 28%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.4.4 Retail data service revenue market share (%), by service provider and by classification of data protocol used
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
New data protocols
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 57 52 48 49 48
Alternative service providers          
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 18 20 19 17 18
Cable-based carriers 4 7 10 12 12
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers) 21 21 23 22 22
Total alternative service providers 43 48 52 51 52
Legacy data protocols
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 56 61 55 53 55
Alternative service providers - - - - -
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) - - - - -
Cable-based carriers          
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers) - - - - -
Total alternative service providers 44 39 45 47 45
All data protocols
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 57 52 48 49 48
Alternative service providers - - - - -
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) - - - - -
Cable-based carriers          
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers) - - - - -
Total alternative service providers 43 48 52 51 52

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the percentage of retail data revenues realized by service providers through the use of new and legacy data protocols, with alternate service providers having more revenues than the incumbent TSPs since 2012 in total and for newer data protocols. Incumbent TSPs in their own territories continue to have the majority of revenues for legacy data services. However, when factoring all services, including network management and equipment, incumbent TSP operations within their incumbent territories continue to dominate, as shown in Figure 5.4.2.

Due to changes in company reporting in 2010 and 2011, results for incumbent providers when operating outside their traditional geographic areas are not consistent with those reported in previous years. In addition, these providers did not report revenues from data services using other protocols separately before 2010. This had less than a 2% impact on the results in 2010.

Table 5.4.5 Retail private line revenue market share (%)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 84 83 77 77 76
Alternative service providers          
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 7 6 5 5 5
Cable-based carriers 4 6 6 6 8
Alternative service providers (excluding cable-based carriers) 5 4 12 12 11
Total alternative service providers 16 17 23 23 24

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the revenue shares for the incumbent TSPs when providing service to their business customers, both within and outside of their traditional geographic areas, and for alternative service providers (i.e. cable-based carriers, utility telcos, and resellers), for the years from 2010 to 2014. Incumbent TSPs continue to dominate in this service category.

Due to changes in company reporting in 2010 and 2011, results for incumbent providers when operating outside their traditional geographic areas are not consistent with those reported in previous years. In addition, due to new reporting by alternative service providers, 2012 results may not be comparable to results for previous years.

5.5 Wireless retail sector

This display presents several key indicators for the wireless retail sector and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $20.9 billion, an increase of 3.7% over 2013.  Second indicator: subscriber market share of the top 3 wireless service providers: 90%. Third indicator: average revenue per subscriber per month: $61, an increase of 1.8% over 2013. Fourth indicator: percent of Canadians subscribing to wireless services: 80%, an increase of 1.3% over 2013.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the retail wireless: 50% as a percentage of retail telecommunications revenues in 2014. Total telecommunications retail revenues were $42.1 billion.

The wireless retail market remained the largest communications market sector with revenues of $20.9 billion and a growth rate of 3.7% in 2014.

Canada’s wireless networks enable Canadians to access services that are comparable to wireline services. Wireless service providers (WSPs) provide voice, data, Internet, and video services. The differentiating factors for these services tend to be mobility and price. Based on MTM statistics, the three most popular activities by Canadian smartphone owners were text messages, Internet access, and email. Currently, wireless services are much more of an individual, rather than a shared service within households.

Wireless networks cover approximately 20% of Canada’s geographic land mass and reach 99% of Canadians. The advanced wireless network that supports handsets, such as smartphones, tablets, and turbo sticks, is also available to 99.3% of Canadians. The long-term evolution (LTE) network, which delivers even higher speeds than previous generation networks, is available to approximately 92.8% of Canadians. Not only were these networks serving over 28.8 million Canadian subscribers, there were also over 2.6 million machine-to-machine connections reported in 2014.

In addition to such advanced wireless networks as LTE which provide broadband Internet access, wireless service providers have established over 14,000 publicly available WiFi hotspot locations across the county by the end of 2014 (number of free and for-pay WiFi hotspot locations reported in 2014). This provided Canadians an additional method of accessing voice and data communication services on their handheld and other wireless communication devices. WiFi hot spots also provide wireless subscribers a means to minimize potential roaming charges.

Over the past five years, the percentage of Canadian who subscribed to wireless services increased slightly from 79% to 80%, however, the subscriber growth rate had declined from 7.9% to 1.5%. At the same time, Canadians have shifted the way in which they use their mobile devices, by placing an emphasis on data usage rather than voice services. Canadians’ appetite to access mobile applications, multi-media services, social networking, Internet browsing, and other data intensive activities have driven wireless data growth to over 14.9% in 2014, and, on average, 22.4% over the past five years.

The implementation of the Wireless Code in 2013, which ensured that consumers of wireless services could better understand their contracts, established consumer-friendly business practices, and significantly limited the early cancellation fees that were previously sought by retail wireless service providers; this also enables consumers to take advantage of competitive offers at least every two years. Approximately 67% of post-paid plans in 2014 had contracts that were equal to or less than two years, compared to 44% in 2013. Canadians can expect these figures to continue to increase as WSPs adapt and modify their plans to adhere to the rules within the Wireless Code.

In terms of provider choice, Canadians were served by three large national WSPs, collectively accounting for 90% of wireless service subscribers. A number of smaller, regional, facilities-based WSPs and a small number of mobile virtual network operators and resellers accounted for the remaining 10%. In both urban centres and rural communities, Canadians generally had a choice of between two and six WSPs. Over the past several years, the Government of Canada has taken a number of measures to encourage greater competition in the wireless market so that Canadians benefit from more choice, lower prices, and better service.

In 2014, wireless service providers invested $7.5 billion in their wireless network infrastructure. Wireless capital investments took a significant leap due to the sale of the 700 MHz spectrum held by Industry Canada. The amount of capital investment as a percentage of total wireless revenues, or capital intensity, rose to 34% compared to 11% in 2013.

a) Revenues

Figure 5.5.1 Wireless service revenue and subscriber growth rates (excluding paging)

This line chart shows the mobile wireless revenue and subscriber percentage growth for each year between 2010 and 2014. Wireless revenue growth: 7.3%, 5.0%, 6.2%, 3.5%, 3.7%. Subscriber: 7.9%, 5.9%, 3.3%, 2.3%, 1.5%.

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows revenue and subscriber growth rates for WSPs from 2010 to 2014. Revenue growth was relatively constant between 2010 and 2012, in the 5 to 7% range, even though subscriber growth rates declined. In 2014, the wireless revenue growth rate inched higher to 3.7% and subscriber growth rates slipped to 1.5%, the lowest in 10 years.

Table 5.5.1 Retail wireless and paging service revenues ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Wireless 17,487.4 18,368.6 19,504.8 20,179.3 20,927.9 4.6
Annual growth (%) 7.3 5.0 6.2 3.5 3.7
Paging 41.9 38.2 21.8 18.4 17.3 -19.9
Annual growth (%) -13.0 -9.0 -42.8 -15.6 -6.3
Total revenues 17,529.3 18,406.7 19,526.6 20,197.7 20,945.2 4.6
Annual growth (%) 7.2 5.0 6.1 3.4 3.7

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the growth in revenue for the wireless and paging service markets from 2010 to 2014. Revenues from paging services, which predate wireless voice communication services, declined.

Table 5.5.2 Retail wireless and paging service revenue components ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Basic voice 10,285.0 9,816.5 9,486.8 8,818.7 8,665.5 -4.2
Annual growth (%) 0.1 -4.6 -3.4 -7.0 -1.7
Long distance 1,275.9 1,286.2 1,255.6 1,160.3 880.4 -8.9
Annual growth (%) 6.2 0.8 -2.4 -7.6 -24.1
Paging 41.9 38.2 21.8 18.4 17.3 -19.9
Annual growth (%) -13.0 -9.0 -42.8 -15.6 -6.3
Terminal equipment including handheld devices 1,159.0 1,401.9 1,532.8 1,501.5 1,673.7 9.6
Annual growth (%) 4.8 21.0 9.3 -2.0 11.5
Data, roaming, and other Data 3,866.1 5,046.1 6,233.2 7,546.1 8,672.6 22.4
Annual growth (%) 29.0 30.5 23.5 21.1 14.9
Roaming and other 901.4 817.8 996.3 1,152.8 1,035.7 3.5
Annual growth (%) 25.2 -9.3 21.8 15.7 -10.2
Total data, roaming, and other 4,767.5 5,863.9 7,229.5 8,698.8 9,708.3 19.5
Annual growth (%) 28.3 23.0 23.3 20.3 11.6
Total 17,529.3 18,406.7 19,526.6 20,197.7 20,945.2 4.6
Annual growth (%) 7.2 5.0 6.1 3.4 3.7

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the service revenue components of the wireless market for the years 2010 to 2014. These components include voice, long distance, paging, hardware, data, roaming, and other. Mobile television revenues are included within data revenues.

Table 5.5.3 Prepaid and postpaid retail wireless service revenues (basic voice, long distance, and data) ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Prepaid 1,042.9 978.2 877.3 790.4 877.3 -5.6
Annual growth (%) na -6.2 -10.3 -9.9 11.0
Postpaid 14,296.2 14,957.3 15,762.3 16,303.6 17,179.5 6.3
Annual growth (%) na 4.6 5.4 3.4 5.4
Total 15,339.1 15,935.5 16,639.6 17,094.0 18,056.8 5.6
Annual growth (%) na 3.9 4.4 2.7 5.6

Source: CRTC data collection

Canadians have a choice of either prepaid or post-paid wireless services. With prepaid services, a significant portion of services and usage is paid prior to consuming the services. With post-paid services, a significant portion of services and usage is paid subsequent to consuming the services.

This table shows the revenues from and revenue growth in both service plan options over the period from 2010 to 2014.

Figure 5.5.2 Roaming revenues, by type and destination, 2014

This bar chart shows the percentage of voice and data roaming revenues that were derived within Canada, the United States, and internationally (SMS and MMS revenues were excluded). Canada voice: 2%; Canada data: 2%; the United States: 71%; the United States: 62%; International voice: 27%; International data: 36%.

Source: CRTC data collection

WSPs extend their coverage area to areas where they do not have facilities by making arrangements with other WSPs that do have facilities in those areas to offer service to their end-users. When a subscriber uses the facilities of another WSP, the subscriber is said to be “roaming.” This graph shows the percentage of roaming-out revenues that were derived within Canada, the United States, and internationally. SMS and MMS revenues were excluded from the data revenue component within this particular figure.

b) Subscriber data

Table 5.5.4 Number of wireless and paging service subscribers
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Subscribers (thousands) Wireless 25,344.6 26,844.3 27,720.6 28,363.8 28,788.9 3.2
Annual growth (%) 7.9 5.9 3.3 2.3 1.5
Paging 240.8 219.0 186.3 161.5 146.7 -11.6
Annual growth (%) -5.1 -9.0 -14.9 -13.3 -9.1
ARPU ($/month) Wireless 59.68 58.66 59.58 59.97 61.03 0.6
Annual growth (%) -0.8 -1.7 1.6 0.7 1.8

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the growth in the number of subscribers to wireless and paging services between 2010 and 2014. From 2010 to 2014, the number of subscribers to paging services, which predate wireless voice communication services, declined.

Table 5.5.5 Number of post-paid wireless service subscribers as a percentage of total wireless service subscribers
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Post-paid 79 78 81 83 86

Source: CRTC data collection

From 2010 to 2014, Canadians subscribing to wireless services favoured postpaid services.

This chart shows the percentage of post-paid plans that were under contract for less than 1 year, for 1 to 2 years, and for greater than 2 years.

With the implementation of the Wireless Code in 2013, the percentage of post-paid plans with contracts of more than 2-years has declined significantly.

Figure 5.5.3 Percentage of wireless service contracts by duration

This bar chart shows the percentage of postpaid plans that were under contract for less than 1 year, for 1 to 2 years, and for greater than 2 years in 2013 and 2014. Less than 1 year: 24.0%, 28.5%; 1 to 2 years: 19.5%, 38.1%; Greater than 2 years: 56.4%, 33.4%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Short message service (SMS) enables the transmission of text messages of up to 160 characters in length between subscribers.

Multi-media messaging service (MMS) is similar to SMS, but it enables the transmission of multimedia content, such as pictures and videos, between subscribers.

Figure 5.5.4 Total number of MMS and SMS messages

This bar chart shows the total and daily number of SMS and MMS messages for each year between 2011 and 2014. SMS and MMS: 167B, 201B, 194B, 186B; SMS and MMS daily: 456M, 551M, 531M, 510M.

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the growth in the number of messages sent and received by Canadians via SMS and MMS per day and annually for the period 2010 to 2014. The total number of SMS and MMS messages was restated for 2010 to 2012 to include estimates for a company that was overlooked in those years.

Table 5.5.6 Average mobile data usage (MB/month)
2014
Average per subscriber 637
Average usage per advanced handheld device subscribers 988

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the average mobile data usage across all retail subscribers and the average data usage across subscribers who own advanced handheld devices.

The average wireless data usage per subscriber and per advanced handheld device subscriber were calculated by dividing total retail data usage (upload/download data) for the year by the average number of subscribers at the beginning and at the end of the year. Subscribers to voice with data and data-only plans were classified as advanced handheld device subscribers.

c) Competitive landscape

Figure 5.5.5 TSPs’ wireless subscriber market share

These side by side pie charts show the mobile wireless subscriber market share of Rogers, Bell Group, Telus, New entrants and Others for 2013 and 2014, respectively. Rogers: 34%, 33%; Bell Group: 28%, 28%; Telus: 28%, 28%; New entrants: 5%, 6%; Others: 5%, 5%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These charts show the percentage of subscribers to wireless services in 2013 and 2014 for Canada’s three major TSPs: the Bell Group of companies (Bell Group), Rogers Communications Partnership (Rogers), and TELUS. Collectively, Bell, Rogers, and TELUS had 90% of wireless subscribers in 2013, and 2014.

The “Other” category includes TSPs such as MTS Allstream, SaskTel, and other small TSPs. The “New entrants” category refers to the new wireless entities that acquired spectrum in Industry Canada’s 2008 AWS spectrum auction and were still operating as a competitor to Bell Group, Telus and/or Rogers in 2014. These entities included: Data & Audio Visual Enterprises Wireless Inc.; Globalive Wireless Management Corp., operating as WIND Mobile; Videotron s.e.n.c.; and more recently, Bragg Communications Incorporated, operating as Eastlink.

The “Bell Group” category includes Bell Canada; Bell Mobility; Latitude Wireless; NorthernTel, Limited Partnership; Northwestel Mobility; Télébec, Limited Partnership; and Virgin Mobile. In 2013, Public Mobile’s figures were included with those of TELUS.

Figure 5.5.6 TSPs’ wireless service revenue market share

These side by side pie charts show the mobile wireless revenue market share of Rogers, Bell Group, Telus, New entrants and Others for 2013 and 2014, respectively. Rogers: 35%, 35%; Bell Group: 28%, 29%; Telus: 29%, 28%; New entrants: 3%, 3%; Others: 5%, 5%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These charts show the percentage of revenues from wireless services in 2013 and 2014 for Canada’s three major TSPs: the Bell Group, Rogers, and TELUS. Collectively, Rogers, Bell, and Telus had 92% of all wireless revenues in 2013 and 2014.

Extension brands are brand names created by companies to serve specific customer needs. These names are in addition to the companies’ established or main brand.

Extension brands are sometimes referred to as “flanker brands.” Some Canadian flanker brands include Fido, Solo, and Koodo.

Resellers/rebillers are companies that rely mainly on the large, facilities-based operators to package, market, bill, and deliver their mobile services, e.g., PC mobile, Petro-Canada Mobility, and SpeakOut 7-Eleven.

Figure 5.5.7 Percentage of revenues and subscribers derived via primary brands, extension brands, and resellers/rebillers, 2014

This bar chart shows the percentage of revenues and subscribers garnered through primary brands, extension brands, and resellers/rebiller arrangements. Primary brands: 82%, 72%; Extension brands: 17%, 28%; Resellers/Rebillers: 1%, 1%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Canadian WSPs market wireless services through primary and extension brands. By marketing their services through various market segments, WSPs are able to differentiate service offerings to potentially affect the competitive landscape in regional markets. This graph depicts the revenues and subscribers garnered through primary brands, extension brands, and reseller/rebiller arrangements.

Table 5.5.7 Average revenue per user ($/month)
2014
ARPU of Canada’s three major WSPs 62.0
ARPU of the other WSPs 61.3
ARPU of the new entrants 39.8

Source: CRTC data collection

This table compares the combined ARPU of the three major WSPs to that of the new entrants and the other WSPs.

Table 5.5.8 Average monthly churn rates (%)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Bell Mobility 1.9 2.0 1.7 1.6 1.5
Rogers Communications 1.5 1.8 1.8 1.7 1.6
TCC 1.6 1.7 1.5 1.4 1.3

Sources: Companies’ annual reports and CRTC data collection

The average churn rate is a measure of subscriber turnover. It is derived by dividing the number of subscribers that have left a wireless service by the total number of wireless service subscribers.

This table shows the average churn rate for three major WSPs from 2010 to 2014. Customers may leave their WSP for a number of reasons, including dissatisfaction with the service, taking advantage of competitive offers, and pricing issues.

d) Technology indicators

The following tables and charts indicate the extent to which Canadians are adapting to a digital communication system. Advanced handheld devices, tablets, and other wireless devices that provide access to the Internet are continually increasing demand for wireless capacity.

Figure 5.5.8 Mobile device penetration

This clustered bar chart shows the percentage of Anglophones and Francophones owning the following mobile devices from 2010 to 2014: 2010: 72%, 24%, 3%; 2011: 77%, 37%, 10%; 2012: 80%, 51%, 26%; 2013: 83%, 62%, 39%; 2014: 83%, 66%, 49%.

Source: MTM 2014 (Respondents: Canadians aged 18+)

This graph shows the percentage of Canadians, 18 years of age and older, who owned regular cell phones, smartphones, and tablets, from 2010 to 2014. The use of smartphones and tablets increases the volume of data traffic on the network.

Table 5.5.9 Mobile device penetration, by linguistic group (%)
Mobile device ownership 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Anglo Franco Anglo Franco Anglo Franco Anglo Franco Anglo Franco
Cellphone 74 63 80 67 83 71 86 74 86 75
Smartphone 27 14 41 26 55 39 66 49 69 54
Tablet 4 2 12 6 28 17 42 30 51 41

Source: MTM 2014 (Respondents: Canadians aged 18+)

This table shows the percentage of Francophones and Anglophones in Canada who own cellphones, smartphones, and tablets, from 2010 to 2014. Cellphone owners include people who own either a cellphone or a smartphone.

Figure 5.5.9 Mobile device penetration, by region

This clustered bar chart shows the percentage of Canadians owning the following mobile devices in 2014 broken down by region: Regular cellphones: 16% (British Columbia), 12% (Alberta), 16% (Manitoba/Saskatchewan), 15% (Ontario), 22% (Quebec), 20% (Atlantic), 23% (Total); Smartphones: 68%, 80%, 69%, 68%, 57%, 58%, 66%; Tablets: 48%, 55%, 50%, 49%, 43%, 54%, 49%.

Source: MTM 2014 (Respondents: Canadians aged 18+)

Canadians who reside in the western provinces are generally more likely to adopt smartphones and tablets than Canadians who reside in the eastern provinces.

Table 5.5.10 Number and percentage of advanced handheld devices, by province and territory
2013 2014 Annual growth (%)
Province/territory Number of advanced handheld devices (000’s) Percentage of total advanced handheld devices (%) Number of advanced handheld devices (000’s) Percentage of total advanced handheld devices (%)
British Columbia 2,388 14# 2,559 13 7
Alberta 2,477 14# 2,657 14 7
Saskatchewan 596 3 653 3 10
Manitoba 804 5# 864 4 8
Ontario 6,938 39# 7,999 41 15
Quebec 3,202 18# 3,450 18 8
New Brunswick 346 2 358 2 3
Nova Scotia 460 3# 479 2 4
Prince Edward Island 65 0 70 0 7
Newfoundland and Labrador 269 2# 289 1 8
The North 53 0 55 0 4

Source: CRTC data collection

Advanced handheld devices offer more than voice functions. They often support MMS, Internet email functions, and video. The number of advanced handheld devices is a measure of the extent to which Canadians are participating in the digital economy.

This table shows the number of advanced handheld devices that were in use in each region of the country in 2013 and 2014, as well as the number of advanced handheld devices expressed as a percentage of all advanced handheld devices in use.

Data-only plans include built-in and portable access devices, such as hubs, sticks, dongles, and laptops.

Figure 5.5.10 Mobile data-only plan revenues and subscribers, by data plan capacity, 2014

These side by side pie charts show the percent of revenues and subscribers for mobile data only plan for three categories, less than 501 MB, between 501 MB and 2 GB and greater than 2 GB. Revenues: 62%, 12% and 26%; Subscribers: 78%, 7% and 15%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These charts show the percentages of revenues and subscribers realized by WSPs by data plan capacity in 2014. Of the total number of subscribers, 5% were reported to be data-only subscribers.

A standard mobile broadband user is someone who owns a smartphone or a regular cellphone with a subscription to a data and voice plan. (Mobile phone plans with browsing only are excluded from this category.)

A dedicated mobile broadband user refers to someone with a subscription to dedicated data services over a mobile network. These subscriptions are purchased separately from voice services, either as a stand-alone service (modem/dongle) or as an add-on data package to voice services, which requires an additional subscription.

Figure 5.5.11 Percentage of mobile revenues, voice vs. standard broadband vs. dedicated broadband, 2014

This pie chart shows the percent of revenues by type of mobile plan in 2014. Voice: 20%; Standard mobile broadband: 77%; Dedicated mobile broadband: 3%.

Source: CRTC data collection

This chart shows the percentage of revenues that WSPs derive from customers who subscribe to voice plans, standard broadband plans, and dedicated broadband plans in 2014.

Table 5.5.11 Mobile broadband subscribers
2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2011-2014
Standard mobile broadband
Number of subscribers (millions)
12.0 13.0 16.1 17.7 13.7
Percentage of all subscribers (%)
44 47 57 61
Annual growth (%) na 8.0 24.3 9.5
Dedicated mobile
Number of subscribers (millions)
1.2 1.3 1.5 1.6 11.1
Percentage of all subscribers (%)
4 5 5 6
Annual growth (%) na 12.3 10.5 10.4
Total mobile broadband
Number of subscribers (millions)
13.2 14.3 17.6 19.3 13.5
Percentage of all subscribers (%)
48 51 62 67  
Annual growth (%) na 8.4# 23.0# 9.6

Source: CRTC data collection

From 2011 to 2014, Canadians increasingly used broadband technology on mobile devices.

Figure 5.5.12 Percentage of mobile subscriber, by type of plans, 2014

This side by side bar chart shows the percentage of wireless subscribers with and without a data plan and the percent distribution of subscribers with a data plan, by size of the plan. No data plan: 36%; data plan: 64%. Size of data plan: less than 300MB: 14%; 300MB-999MB: 16%; 1GB-2GB: 36%; greater than 2GB: 34%.

Source: CRTC data collection

The data reported in this dual bar chart represents over 85% of total mobile subscribers. The chart on the left shows the percentage of subscribers with and without a data plan. The chart on the right shows the percent distribution of subscribers with a data plan, by size of the plan. Due to the difficulty of reporting corresponding voice and SMS services associated with each defined data plan, the assumption was made that all data plans included voice and text messaging services.

Figure 5.5.13 Popular Internet and mobile activities performed by Canadians on their smartphone

This clustered bar chart shows the percentage of Anglophone and Francophone Canadians who reported engaging in the following activities on their smartphone in 2014: Made an online purchase: (Anglophones) 21%, (Francophones) 16%; Banking online: 41%, 30%; Read online news: 46%, 43%; Watch Internet TV: 21%, 35%; Access social networking: 65%, 62%; Access Internet: 85%, 82%; Send/receive Email: 74%, 59%.

Source: MTM 2014, spring 2015 (Respondents: Canadians aged 18+)

This graph shows the activities that Francophones and Anglophones carry out using their smartphones.

Figure 5.5.14 Popular Internet and mobile activities performed by Canadians on their tablet

This clustered bar chart shows the percentage of Anglophone and Francophone Canadians who reported engaging in the following activities on their tablet in 2014: Made an online purchase: (Anglophones) 21%, (Francophones) 26%; Banking online: 23%, 29%; Read online news: 38%, 51%; Watch Internet TV: 31%, 41%; Access social networking: 51%, 58%; Access Internet: 87%, 91%; Send/receive Email: 51%, 57%.

Source: MTM 2014, spring 2015 (Respondents: Canadians aged 18+)

e) Performance indicators

Table 5.5.12 Average wireless service revenue per subscriber
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Average wireless service revenue per subscriber ($/month) 59.7 58.7 59.6 60.0 61.0 0.6
Annual growth (%) -0.8 -1.7 1.6 0.7 1.8

Source: CRTC data collection

Average wireless service revenue per subscriber is a useful measure of the revenues WSPs receive per subscriber. Conversely, from a consumer perspective, it is a measure of consumers’ expenditures on wireless services. This table shows the average revenue per user for wireless services for the years 2010 to 2014.

The average wireless service revenue per subscriber was calculated by dividing total annual wireless service revenues by the average number of subscribers during the year. The result was then divided by twelve to obtain a monthly result. The average number of subscribers was determined by dividing the sum of the number of subscribers at the beginning and at the end of the year by two.

Table 5.5.13 Average wireless service revenues per subscriber, by province and territory (excluding paging)
Province/territory 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
British Columbia 62.59 63.84 62.55 63.42 62.48
Alberta 71.89 75.82 72.82 74.10 75.01
Saskatchewan 63.45 53.51 57.83 58.72 62.16
Manitoba 52.07 53.07 54.99 59.42 60.97
Ontario 62.04 58.18 60.60 58.93 59.50
Quebec 52.79 51.08 51.46 53.69 53.58
New Brunswick 55.11 53.15 54.62 55.65 55.56
Nova Scotia 57.76 55.26 57.22 58.15 56.98
Prince Edward Island 52.15 52.01 55.47 52.86 51.62
Newfoundland and Labrador 53.78 53.86 58.70 60.61 61.18
The North 82.02 105.43 94.31 135.44 81.09

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the average revenue per user for WSPs in each region of the country for the years 2010 to 2014 based on provincial revenue and subscriber data reported. Estimates were made for companies that were not required to provide provincial and territorial data.

f) Price

What is the report on Price Comparisons of Wireline, Wireless and Internet Services in Canada and with Foreign Jurisdictions?

This report provides a 2014 update to the previous annual telecommunications price comparison studies conducted over the period from 2008 to 2014 by Wall Communications Inc. for the CRTC and Industry Canada.

The individual services covered by the study include wireline, mobile wireless, broadband Internet, and mobile Internet services.

For more information, please consult the following link:

http://crtc.gc.ca/eng/publications/reports/rp140714.htm

The price structure of wireless services is based on usage. To assess the price of wireless services in urban centres and in rural communities, four baskets were used and both flanker and primary service brands were considered. These baskets were adopted from the report on Price Comparisons of Wireline, Wireless and Internet Services in Canada and with Foreign Jurisdictions (2014).

Most noticeable changes in 2014 compared to 2013 were the narrowed price variance between the lowest and highest price in all service baskets and the shift in the number of WSPs in various service baskets and community centres. An increase in the number of providers was the result of a new service provider entering the wireless market sector, as well as existing service providers who expanded into new urban and rural communities across Canada. A decrease in the number of providers in a number of areas was mainly due to consolidation in the wireless market sector.

Urban centres

Urban centres having four or more WSPs had the largest price variance between the lowest and highest price reported, as well as the lowest prices in all four service baskets. The variance between lowest and highest prices across all service baskets in any given urban centre was wide, ranging from a low of $4 to a high of $46. The average price variances between lowest and highest prices for the Level 1, 2, 3, and 4 service baskets were $6, $10, $18, and $22, respectively.

In cities where at least one of the new entrants offered wireless service, prices were significantly lower for all four service baskets. Although the results of the pricing survey suggest that the existence of more competitors leads to lower prices, this analysis does not take into consideration certain factors that could affect certain facets of consumer value, such as network coverage, quality of service, and bundling options.

The following four bar charts display the range in the monthly price of a Level 1, Level 2, Level 3, and Level 4 wireless service basket in 24 urban centres in Canada. The blue bar displays the lowest price, and the red bar displays the difference between the lowest and the highest price. The number at the top of each bar is the highest price. The number appearing in parentheses along the horizontal axis after the name of each urban centre represents the number of local WSPs.

Figure 5.5.15 Price of a Level 1 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in a number of select cities

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 1 basket of wireless service by major centre, as well as number of providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Victoria: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Calgary: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Edmonton: 4 providers, low 24, high 32; Saskatoon: 4 providers, low 28, high 32; Regina: 4 providers, low 28, high 32; Winnipeg: 4 providers, low 27, high 35; Toronto: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Ottawa-Gatineau: 5 providers, low 21, high 32; Hamilton: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; London: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Kitchener-Waterloo: 4 providers, low 25 high 32; St Catharines – Niagara: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Windsor: 4 providers, low 25 high 32; Oshawa: 4 providers, low 25, high 32; Montréal: 4 providers, low 21, high 32; Québec: 4 providers, low 21, high 32; Fredericton: 3 providers, low 28, high 32; Charlottetown: 4 providers, low 28, high 32; Halifax: 4 providers, low 27, high 32; St. John’s: 3 providers, low 27, high 32; Whitehorse: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Yellowknife: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Iqaluit: 2 providers, low 27, high 32.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.16 Price of a Level 2 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in a number of select cities

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 2 basket of wireless service by major centre, as well as number of providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 5 providers, low 25, high 41; Victoria: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; Calgary: 5 providers, low 25, high 41; Edmonton: 5 providers, low 25, high 41; Saskatoon: 4 providers, low 31, high 46; Regina: 4 providers, low 31, high 46; Winnipeg: 4 providers, low 30, high 49; Toronto: 5 providers, low 25, high 41; Ottawa-Gatineau: 6 providers, low 25, high 41; Hamilton: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; London: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; Kitchener-Waterloo: 4 providers, low 34 high 41; St Catharines – Niagara: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; Windsor: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; Oshawa: 4 providers, low 34, high 41; Montréal: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; Québec: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; Fredericton: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; Charlottetown: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; Halifax: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; St. John’s: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; Whitehorse: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; Yellowknife: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; Iqaluit: 2 providers, low 35, high 45.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.17 Price of a Level 3 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in a number of select cities

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 3 basket of wireless service by major centre, as well as number of providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Victoria: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Calgary: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Edmonton: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Saskatoon: 4 providers, low 50, high 71; Regina: 4 providers, low 50, high 71; Winnipeg: 4 providers, low 50, high 104; Toronto: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Ottawa-Gatineau: 5 providers, low 41, high 63; Hamilton: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; London: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Kitchener-Waterloo: 4 providers, low 41 high 63; St Catharines – Niagara: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Windsor: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Oshawa: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Montréal: 4 providers, low 45, high 55; Québec: 4 providers, low 45, high 55; Fredericton: 3 providers, low 54, high 64; Charlottetown: 4 providers, low 54, high 64; Halifax: 4 providers, low 54, high 63; St. John’s: 3 providers, low 54, high 63; Whitehorse: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; Yellowknife: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; Iqaluit: 2 providers, low 63, high 70.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.18 Price of a Level 4 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in a number of select cities

This stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 4 basket of wireless service by major centre, as well as number of providers in each centre.  Vancouver: 5 providers, low 40, high 63; Victoria: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; Calgary: 5 providers, low 35, high 63; Edmonton: 5 providers, low 35, high 63; Saskatoon: 4 providers, low 50, high 81; Regina: 4 providers, low 50, high 81; Winnipeg: 4 providers, low 50, high 95; Toronto: 5 providers, low 40, high 63; Ottawa-Gatineau: 6 providers, low 40, high 65; Hamilton: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; London: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; Kitchener-Waterloo: 4 providers, low 40 high 63; St Catharines – Niagara: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; Windsor: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; Oshawa: 4 providers, low 40, high 63; Montréal: 4 providers, low 54, high 65; Québec: 4 providers, low 54, high 65; Fredericton: 3 providers, low 55, high 64; Charlottetown: 4 providers, low 55, high 64; Halifax: 4 providers, low 55, high 64; St. John’s: 3 providers, low 55, high 63; Whitehorse: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; Yellowknife: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; Iqaluit: 2 providers, low 63, high 85.

Source: CRTC data collection

Price comparison of urban and rural wireless services

What rural communities were included in this comparison?

54 rural communities were selected to assess the price of wireless services. These communities met the following criteria:

  • They were not part of one of the census metropolitan areas of the 24 urban centres;
  • They had population densities of fewer than 400 people per square kilometre, or their population centres had fewer than 1,000 people;
  • The number of communities in each province/territory was proportional to the population of the province/territory; and
  • The communities were not clustered together.

Appendix 4 contains the list of rural communities.

To assess the price of wireless services in rural communities, 54 rural communities were selected, and the price of wireless services in these communities was compared to that in urban centres.

The price of wireless services in rural communities, across all service baskets, was generally equal to or higher than that in urban centres.

The variance between the lowest and highest price of wireless services across all service baskets in rural communities, by province and territory, was wide, ranging between $0 and $46. This variance was also wide in the urban centres.

The average price variances among rural communities for Level 1, 2, 3, and 4 service baskets were $5, $9, $14, and $16, respectively. In the urban centres for the identical service baskets, the price variances were $5, $10, $16, $21, respectively.

The following four bar charts display the range in the monthly price of wireless services in urban centres and rural communities in Canada, by province and territory. The blue bar displays the lowest price, and the red bar displays the difference between the lowest and the highest price. The number at the top of each bar is the highest price. The number appearing in parentheses along the horizontal axis after the name of each province and territory represents the number of local WSPs.

Figure 5.5.19 Price of a Level 1 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in urban centres and rural communities

This two-series stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 1 basket of wireless service by urban are rural areas on a per province basis.  BC Rural: 3 providers, low 27, high 32;  BC Urban: 4 providers, low 27, high 32; Alberta Rural: 3 providers, low 27, high 32; Alberta Urban: 4 providers, low 27, high 32; Sask Rural: 4 providers, low 28, high 34; Sask Urban: 4 providers, low 28, high 32; Manitoba Rural: 4 providers, low 27, high 39; Manitoba Urban: 4 providers, low 27, high 35; Ontario Rural: 3 providers, low 27, high 32; Ontario Urban: 5 providers, low 27, high 32; Quebec Rural: 5 providers, low 21, high 32; Quebec Urban: 4 providers, low 21, high 32; NB Rural: 3 providers, low 28, high 32; NB Urban: 3 providers, low 28, high 32; PEI Rural: 3 providers, low 27, high 32; PEI Urban: 4 providers, low 27, high 32; NS Rural, 4 providers, low 27, high 32; NS Urban: 4 providers, low 27, high 32; Nfld Rural: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Nfld Urban: 3 providers, low 27, high 32; Yukon Rural: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Yukon Urban: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; NWT Rural: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; NWT Urban: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Nunavut Rural: 2 providers, low 27, high 32; Nunavut Urban: 2 providers, low 27, high 32.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.20 Price of a Level 2 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in urban centres and rural communities

This two-series stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 2 basket of wireless service by urban are rural areas on a per province basis.  BC Rural: 3 providers, low 35, high 41;  BC Urban: 4 providers, low 25, high 41; Alberta Rural: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; Alberta Urban: 5 providers, low 35, high 41; Sask Rural: 4 providers, low 31, high 46; Sask Urban: 4 providers, low 31, high 46; Manitoba Rural: 4 providers, low 30, high 49; Manitoba Urban: 4 providers, low 30, high 49; Ontario Rural: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; Ontario Urban: 6 providers, low 35, high 41; Quebec Rural: 5 providers, low 33, high 41; Quebec Urban: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; NB Rural: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; NB Urban: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; PEI Rural: 3 providers, low 35, high 60; PEI Urban: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; NS Rural, 4 providers, low 35, high 41; NS Urban: 4 providers, low 35, high 41; Nfld Rural: 2 providers, low 35, high 41; Nfld Urban: 3 providers, low 35, high 41; Yukon Rural: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; Yukon Urban: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; NWT Rural: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; NWT Urban: 2 providers, low 35, high 45; Nunavut Rural: 2 providers, low 358, high 45; Nunavut Urban: 2 providers, low 35, high 45.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.21 Price of a Level 3 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in urban centres and rural communities

This two-series stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 3 basket of wireless service by urban are rural areas on a per province basis.  BC Rural: 3 providers, low 54, high 63;  BC Urban: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Alberta Rural: 3 providers, low 54, high 63; Alberta Urban: 4 providers, low 41, high 63; Sask Rural: 4 providers, low 50, high 71; Sask Urban: 4 providers, low 50, high 71; Manitoba Rural: 4 providers, low 50, high 104; Manitoba Urban: 4 providers, low 50, high 104; Ontario Rural: 3 providers, low 54, high 63; Ontario Urban: 5 providers, low 41, high 63; Quebec Rural: 5 providers, low 45, high 64; Quebec Urban: 5 providers, low 45, high 64; NB Rural: 3 providers, low 54, high 64; NB Urban: 3 providers, low 54, high 64; PEI Rural: 3 providers, low 54, high 64; PEI Urban: 4 providers, low 54, high 63; NS Rural, 4 providers, low 54, high 63; NS Urban: 4 providers, low 54, high 63; Nfld Rural: 2 providers, low 54, high 63; Nfld Urban: 3 providers, low 54, high 63; Yukon Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; Yukon Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; NWT Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; NWT Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; Nunavut Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 70; Nunavut Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 70.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.5.22 Price of a Level 4 basket wireless service ($/month) and number of companies providing the service in urban centres and rural communities

This two-series stacked bar chart shows the highest and lowest monthly prices in dollars for a level 4 basket of wireless service by urban are rural areas on a per province basis.  BC Rural: 3 providers, low 55, high 63;  BC Urban: 5 providers, low 35, high 63; Alberta Rural: 3 providers, low 55, high 63; Alberta Urban: 5 providers, low 35, high 63; Sask Rural: 4 providers, low 50, high 81; Sask Urban: 4 providers, low 50, high 81; Manitoba Rural: 4 providers, low 50, high 95; Manitoba Urban: 4 providers, low 50, high 95; Ontario Rural: 3 providers, low 55, high 63; Ontario Urban: 6 providers, low 35, high 65; Quebec Rural: 5 providers, low 50, high 65; Quebec Urban: 4 providers, low 54, high 65; NB Rural: 3 providers, low 55, high 64; NB Urban: 3 providers, low 55, high 64; PEI Rural: 3 providers, low 55, high 63; PEI Urban: 4 providers, low 55, high 64; NS Rural, 4 providers, low 55, high 64; NS Urban: 4 providers, low 55, high 64; Nfld Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 63; Nfld Urban: 3 providers, low 55, high 63; Yukon Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; Yukon Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; NWT Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; NWT Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; Nunavut Rural: 2 providers, low 63, high 85; Nunavut Urban: 2 providers, low 63, high 85.

Source: CRTC data collection

g) Coverage/availability details

Figure 5.5.23 Wireless coverage, penetration, and ARPU by province and territory, 2014

This combination of a bar chart and plotted dot plot shows wireless coverage, penetration, HSPA+ coverage and LTE coverage by province and monthly ARPU in dollars by province for 2014: Wireless coverage: BC: 98.7%, AB: 99.8%, SK: 99.3%, MB: 98.3%, ON: 99.9%, QC: 99.4%, NB: 99.7%, NS: 99.8%, PEI: 99.9%:, NL: 96.3%, North: 87.5%, Canada: 99.4%; Penetration: BC: 88.0%, AB: 95.9%, SK: 84.1%, MB: 79.9%, ON: 82.8%, QC: 68.6%, NB: 76.2%, NS: 80.5%, PEI: 79.9%:, NL: 93.2%, North: 58.4%, Canada: 80.1%; HSPA+ coverage: BC: 98.6%, AB: 99.8%, SK: 99.3%, MB: 97.7%, ON: 99.8%, QC: 99.2%, NB: 99.6%, NS: 99.8%, PEI: 99.9%:, NL: 95.6%, North: 72.7%, Canada: 99.3%; LTE: BC: 92.8%, AB: 92.4%, SK: 60.0%, MB: 76.6%, ON: 98.2%, QC: 92.8%, NB: 84.9%, NS: 92.9%, PEI: 99.0%:, NL: 82.6%, North: 45.9%, Canada: 92.8%; ARPU: BC: $62.48, AB: $75.01, SK: $62.16, MB: $60.97, ON: $59.50, QC: $53.58, NB: $55.56, NS: $56.98, PEI: $51.62, NL: $61.18, North: $81.09, Canada: $60.93.

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows wireless coverage and penetration rates for various wireless technologies such as LTE and HSPA+, by percentage of population for each province and the territories. The table also shows the average monthly revenue per user in each region.

Figure 5.5.24 Roaming voice and data traffic by destination, 2014

This dual chart shows the percentage of voice minutes and data traffic, excluding MMS and SMS, derived from roaming within Canada, the United States, and internationally.
Canada: 48%, 60%; the United State: 44%, 35%; International: 8%, 5%.

Source: CRTC data collection

WSPs extend their coverage area to areas where they do not have facilities by making arrangements with other WSPs that do have facilities in those areas to offer service to their end-users. When a subscriber uses the facilities of another WSP, the subscriber is said to be “roaming.” This dual chart shows the percentage of voice minutes and data traffic, excluding MMS and SMS, derived from roaming-in and roaming-out within Canada, the United States, and internationally.

Table 5.5.14 Wireless coverage, penetration, and average revenue per subscriber, by province and territory, 2014
Province/territory Coverage (%) Penetration rate (%) ARPU ($/month)
Wireless HSPA+ LTE
British Columbia 98.7 98.6 92.8 88.0 62.48
Alberta 99.8 99.8 92.4 95.9 75.01
Saskatchewan 99.3 99.3 60.0 84.1 62.16
Manitoba 98.3 97.7 76.6 79.9 60.97
Ontario 99.9 99.8 98.2 82.8 59.50
Quebec 99.4 99.2 92.8 68.6 53.58
New Brunswick 99.7 99.6 84.9 76.2 55.56
Nova Scotia 99.8 99.8 92.9 80.5 56.98
Prince Edward Island 99.9 99.9 99.0 79.9 51.62
Newfoundland and Labrador 96.3 95.6 82.6 83.2 61.18
The North 87.5 72.7 45.9 58.4 81.09
Canada 99.4 99.3 92.8 80.1 60.93

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows wireless coverage and penetration rates for various wireless technologies, such as LTE and HSPA+, by percentage of population for each province and the territories. The table also shows the average monthly revenue per user in each region.

Table 5.5.15 Number of different wireless networks, expressed as a percentage of population covered, by province and territory, 2014
Number of networks
Province/territory None 1 only 2 only 3 only 4 or more
British Columbia 1% 2% 33% 11% 53%
Alberta 0% 0% 35% 9% 56%
Saskatchewan 1% 25% 71% 3% 0%
Manitoba 2% 2% 21% 75% 0%
Ontario 0% 0% 25% 33% 42%
Quebec 1% 4% 5% 18% 73%
New Brunswick 0% 4% 92% 4% 0%
Nova Scotia 0% 4% 14% 82% 0%
Prince Edward Island 0% 1% 17% 82% 0%
Newfoundland and Labrador 4% 49% 47% 0% 0%
The North 13% 27% 60% 0% 0%
Canada 1% 3% 25% 25% 46%

Source: CRTC data collection

This table represents the number of different wireless networks, in terms of radio access facilities, in each of the provinces and territories. In many provinces, facilities-based wireless service providers who own spectrum share the same radio access facilities to offer telecommunications services to the public.

Figure 5.5.25 Established carriers’ coverage and penetration vs. new entrants’ coverage and penetration

This horizontal bar chart shows established carriers’ coverage and penetration versus new entrants’ coverage and penetration by percent of population for the years between 2010 and 2014: Established carriers’ coverage: 99.4%, 99.4%, 99.4%, 99.0%, 99.0%; Established carriers’ penetration: 76.2%, 76.9%, 75.6%, 75.1%, 73.1%; New carriers’ coverage: 64.3%, 64.5%, 57.6%, 54.9%, 47.0%; New carriers’ penetration: 4.5%, 3.8%, 4.2%, 3.0%, 1.4%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Canada’s wireless service market is dominated by established carriers. These companies offer significantly more coverage and achieve higher subscriber penetration rates than the new entrants.

Figure 5.5.26 Number of WiFi hotspot locations and penetration of advanced handheld devices, 2014

This combination bar and line chart shows the number of free WiFi hotspots per 100,000 population and the percentage penetration of advanced handheld devices by population for select provinces.  For hotspots per 100,000 population: For BC: 122; For AB: 78; for MB and SK combined: 25; for ON: 24; and for QC: 15.  For percentage penetration of advanced handheld devices: For BC: 57%; for AB 64%; for MB and SK combined: 63%; for ON: 58%; and for QC: 42%.

Source: CRTC data collection

WiFi hotspots are an important way in which TSPs attempt to differentiate their services from each other, as well as a way to extend their brand. Major providers in western Canada have moved towards providing free hotspots, as shown in the above chart.

Only hotspots provided by the major TSPs are included, which may exclude independently run free hotspots provided by hotels, restaurants, and other public facilities.

Data for the Atlantic provinces and the North is not reported due to the confidentiality of the data.

Figure 5.5.27 Number of free and pay-for-use WiFi hotspot locations in Canada, 2014

This pie chart shows the number of free and pay-for-use WiFi hotspot locations in Canada.  Free: 14,489;  For-pay: 1,067.

Source: CRTC data collection

The above chart shows the number of free and pay-for-use WiFi hotspots provided by major TSPs in Canada. Hotspots are locations where Internet access via 802.11 WiFi technology is provided to the public. Free is defined as having no charge for at least 1/2 hour of access, even if access requires being a paid customer to the location.

This does not include hotspots that only provide access to existing customers of other telecommunications services.

Map 5.5.1 Wireless service availability by number of facilities-based WSPs, 2014

This map displays the presence and the number of wireless facilities-based service providers in Canada.

Source: CRTC data collection

This map shows the cross-country availability of wireless services from facilities-based WSPs.

Map 5.5.2 Wireless HSPA+ service availability by incumbent and new-entrant facilities-based WSPs, 2014

This map displays the presence and the number of HSPA+ wireless facilities-based service providers in Canada.

Source: CRTC data collection

This map shows the cross-country availability of HSPA+ technology by incumbent and new-entrant facilities-based WSPs.

5.6 Wholesale telecommunications sector

This display presents several key indicators for the wholesale sector and is divided into 5 sections.  First indicator: revenues: $3.8 billion, an increase of 2.1% over 2013.  Second indicator: percentage of revenues not price regulated: 74%. Third indicator: wireless revenues: $1.0 billion, an increase of 9.0% over 2013. Fourth indicator: wireline revenues: $2.7 billion, a decrease of 0.3% over 2013.  Fifth indicator: pie chart shows the percentage of wholesale revenues as a proportion of all telecommunications revenues.  In 2014, these revenues were 8% of all telecommunications revenues.  Total telecommunications revenues were 45.9 billion in 2014.

Wholesale services are services provided by a TSP (telecommunications service provider) to another provider of telecommunication services for use in the provision of telecommunications services. All providers of telecommunications services rely on wholesale services to varying degrees. Resellers of telecommunications services depend more on wholesale services than companies that have their own facilities to provide service. In 2014, for the purposes of providing wireline services, resellers spent 48 cents out of every revenue dollar for wholesale services compared to less than 6 cents for service providers that have facilities.

The availability of wholesale services is a major factor that ultimately provides greater choice to Canadians in the telecommunications market. In 2014, the telecommunications wholesale market was $3.8 billion of which 27% was for the provision of wireless services and 73% for wireline services.

Independent ISPs are frequently dependent on access services of the Incumbent TSPs and the cable-based carriers in order to connect to their customers. Over the years, sales of cable-based access services, known as TPIA (Third Party Internet Access), to independent ISPs have increased, and now it is the most popular means of access to residential subscribers. This has resulted in greater competitiveness on the part of independent ISPs.

Wholesale from wireless services is an increasingly important part of the telecommunications landscape. Joint network building by several large carriers allow them to minimize overall costs and reduce the need for duplicate networks. Roaming rates have recently been reduced, allowing network providers the ability to provide better roaming capability for their customers. Since 2010, network sharing and roaming revenues have increased at an average annual rate of 26.4%.

a) Revenues

Table 5.6.1 Wholesale telecommunications revenues ($ billions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (% 2010-2014
Wireline 3.1 3.0 2.9 2.8 2.7 -2.6
Annual growth (%) -0.3 -1.4 -3.6 -5.1 -0.3
Wireless 0.5 0.7 0.8 1.0 1.0 21.6
Annual growth (%) -12.9 51.3 17.1 13.4 9.0
Total 3.5 3.7 3.7 3.7 3.8 1.8
Annual growth (%) -2.2 5.6 0.4 -1.0 2.1

Source: CRTC data collection

This table presents an overview of wireline and wireless wholesale revenues, as well as the annual growth rates for each year, and the average annual growth rates over the 2010 to 2014 period. The table shows that wireline wholesale revenues have been declining since 2010, while wireless wholesale revenues have been increasing. The wireless wholesale market excludes fixed-wireless services.

Table 5.6.2 Wholesale telecommunications revenues, by market sector ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Wireline Voice Local and access 798 832 751 704 646 -5.2
Annual growth (%) -3.1 4.3 -9.8 -6.2 -8.3
Long distance 797 617 552 433 414 -15.1
Annual growth (%) 2.2 -22.6 -10.6 -21.5 -4.5
Voice subtotal 1,595 1,449 1,303 1,137 1,059 -9.7
Annual growth (%) 0.0 -0.1 -0.1 -0.1 -6.8
Non-voice Internet 346 411 429 444 500 9.6
Annual growth (%) -2.9 18.6 4.4 3.5 12.6
Newer data protocols 253 307 352 390 435 14.5
Annual growth (%) 17.0 21.3 14.6 11.0 11.3
Legacy data protocols 42 41 35 30 24 -13.1
Annual growth (%) -25.4 -2.2 -14.5 -12.5 -22.1 2.7
Other data services 89 65 88 94 99
Annual growth (%) 125.8 -26.7 35.2 6.4 5.3
Data subtotal 384 413 475 515 557 9.8
Annual growth (%) 23.2 7.6 15.0 8.4 8.2
Private line 729 737 695 657 628 -3.7
Annual growth (%) -8.0 1.1 -5.7 -5.5 -4.4
Non-voice subtotal 1,459 1,561 1,599 1,615 1,685 3.7
Annual growth (%) -0.1 7.0 2.4 1.0 4.3
Total wireline 3,055 3,010 2,901 2,753 2,744 -2.6
Annual growth (%) -0.3 -1.4 -3.6 -5.1 -0.3
Wireless Mobile 474 718 840 953 1,038 21.6
Annual growth (%) -12.9 51.3 17.1 13.4 9.0
Total 3,529 3,728 3,742 3,706 3,783 1.8
Annual growth (%) -2.2 5.6 0.4 -1.0 2.1

Source: CRTC data collection

Voice wholesale revenues have declined 9.7% annually since 2010, whereas wireline non-voice revenues have increased 3.7%. The strongest revenue growth was in newer services such as Internet and mobile wireless services, and data services using newer data protocols such as Ethernet and IP. These services have increased between 9.6% and 21.6% annually since 2010.

Figure 5.6.1 Wholesale telecommunications revenues, by market sector

This bar chart shows the revenues from 2010 to 2014 for the various sectors of the wholesale market.  Local and access: 798, 832, 751, 704, 646; Long distance: 797, 617, 552, 433, 414; Internet: 346, 411, 429, 444, 500; Newer data protocols: 253, 307, 352, 390, 435; Legacy data protocols: 42, 41, 35, 30, 24; Private Line: 729, 737, 695, 657, 628; Wireless: 474, 718, 840, 953, 1,038; Other data services: 89, 65, 88, 94, 99;

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.6.2 Percentage distribution of wholesale telecommunications revenues, by market sector (2010 vs. 2014)

These two pie charts show the distribution of wholesale telecommunications revenue by market sector in 2010 and 2014. In 2010: Wireless 13%, Local and access 23%, long distance 22%, private line 21%, Internet 10%, new data protocols, 7%, other data 4%.  In 2014: Wireless 27%, local and access 17%, long distance 11%, private line 17%, internet 13%, new data protocols 12%, other data 3%.

Source: CRTC data collection

These pie charts compare the percentage distribution of wholesale service revenues between 2010 and 2014. During this period, revenues from mobile wireless wholesale services have increased as a percentage of total wholesale revenues, from 13% in 2010 to 27% 2014. They make up the largest percentage of wholesale revenues, followed by local and access and private line.

Figure 5.6.3 Wholesale telecommunications revenues as a percentage of total revenues, by market sector

This bar chart shows the percentage of revenue for each sector/service derived from wholesale services in 2013 and 2014.  In 2013: Local and access: 8%, long distance 18%, Internet 5%, Newer data protocols 17%, Legacy data protocols, 38%, private line 44%, mobile wireless 5%, other data services 10%. In 2014: Local and access: 8%, long distance 28%, Internet 6%, Newer data protocols 18%, Legacy data protocols, 42%, private line 44%, mobile wireless 5%, other data services 10%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.6.3 Local wholesale telecommunications revenues, by major component ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010 – 2014
Interconnection 276 2544 220 212 198 -7.9
Centrex 89 888 76 64 57 -10.4
PSTN access 288 3544 327 304 283 -0.4
Unbundled loops 79 600 47 44 40 -15.9
Other revenues 42 422 44 42 52 5.2
Total 774 7988 714 665 629 -5.0

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays local and access wholesale revenues by major component. Providers of telecommunications services use these components to provide retail telecommunications service. For example, unbundled loops can be used by an alternative service provider to provide local telephone service to its retail customers. In addition, interconnection allows the customers of one service provider to contact the customers of another service provider.

Table 5.6.4 Local wholesale telecommunications revenues, by province ($ millions)
Province 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
British Columbia 67 77 60 44 59
Alberta 69 87 58 58 45
Saskatchewan 9 9 8 9 8
Manitoba 34 32 31 28 19
Ontario 356 357 341 302 274
Quebec 197 194 174 176 174
New Brunswick 20 17 17 17 16
Nova Scotia 25 22 22 24 29
Prince Edward Island 2 2 2 3 3
Newfoundland and Labrador 6 9 9 10 10
Yukon 0 1 1 1 1
Northwest Territories 0 1 1 1 1
Nunavut 0 0 0 0 0
Total 785 809 725 674 638

Source: CRTC data collection

Table 5.6.5 Internet-related wholesale revenues, by type of service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR 2010-2014
Higher capacity access and transport 42 53 45 52 73 15.0
Annual growth (%) -12.2 26.4 -15.7 15.5 42.1
Lower capacity access 218 266 303 336 369 14.0
Annual growth (%) 2.3 21.7 14.2 10.8 9.7
Other wholesale services 86 92 81 56 58 -9.5
Annual growth (%) -10.0 6.9 -12.2 -30.5 2.7
Wholesale total 346 411 429 444 500 9.6
Annual growth (%) -2.9 18.6 4.4 3.5 12.6

Source: CRTC data collection

Internet-related Wholesale revenues consist of services that provide access for TSPs to the Internet, to allow TSPs to connect directly to their subscribers, or to provide Internet related equipment, applications or other miscellaneous services. In the above table, they are divided into three categories.

  1. In “Higher capacity access and transport”, “Higher capacity access” refers to fibre-based Internet access services. “Transport” refers to the transfer of Internet traffic between networks.
  2. “Lower capacity access” includes services that connect TSPs directly to their end-users, typically for the purpose of providing Internet access. This includes wholesale DSL and Cable (TPIA) services under the wholesale high-speed access (HSA) framework. It also includes sales of non-fibre Internet connectivity between TSPs.
  3. “Other wholesale services” includes sales and rental equipment, applications, and other Internet-related services between TSPs.
Table 5.6.6 Wholesale HSA revenues, by service component ($ millions)
2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2012-2014
Access 183 200 213 8.1
Growth rate (%)  n/a 9.6 6.5
Capacity 30 54 107 89.2
Growth rate (%)   n/a 82.2 96.4
Interface and other 32 33 27 -8.5
Growth rate (%)   n/a 3.3 -18.9
Total wholesale HSA services 244 287 347 19.1
Growth rate (%)   n/a 17.7 20.6

Source: CRTC data collection

The Commission has mandated that DSL and cable facilities be made available to third-party providers utilizing the wholesale HSA framework. Wholesale HSA has the following components: “Access”, which is paid per month for each end-user customer that they service via wholesale HSA. It may or may not include a charge for the assumed amount of capacity a user may use. “Capacity” is a charge that can be levied by the facility owner for capacity on their network in increments of 100 Mbps. Other charges include “Interface” which is the basic connection to the carrier, and other fees for services such as installation and modem equipment.

Table 5.6.7 DSL and cable wholesale high-speed access, by type of service (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Cable-enabled subscriptions 28 76 187 305 393 93.0
Annual growth (%) 36.8 169.1 145.7 63.3 28.6
DSL-enabled subscriptions 442 468 458 462 480 2.1
Annual growth (%) 6.7 6.0 -2.1 0.8 3.9
Total DSL and cable 470 544 645 767 873 16.7
Annual growth (%) 8.2 15.8 18.6 18.9 13.8

Source: CRTC data collection

The vast majority of the above subscriptions are covered under the wholesale HSA framework, as described above. Over time, TSPs have been making increased use of wholesale DSL and cable facilities to connect to their end-users.

Figure 5.6.4 Wholesale HSA enabled subscriptions, by service speed in Mbps (thousands)

This multiple stacked bar chart shows the number of wholesale HSA enabled subscriptions in thousands, by service speed in Mbps from 2012 to 2014.  In 2012: 0 to 4 Mbps: 49; 5 to 9 Mbps 427; 10 to 15 Mbps 110; 16 to 49 Mbps: 63; 50 and up: 0; Total for all: 650. In 2013: 0 to 4 Mbps: 29; 5 to 9 Mbps 435; 10 to 15 Mbps 99; 16 to 49 Mbps: 212; 50 and up: 4; Total for all: 778.  In 2014: 0 to 4 Mbps: 17; 5 to 9 Mbps 373; 10 to 15 Mbps 180; 16 to 49 Mbps: 281; 50 and up: 18; Total for all: 869.

Source: CRTC data collection

Wholesale HSA services are available at various speeds for end-user access. Over time, TSPs have availed themselves of higher-speed services to enable connectivity to their end-users. The above subscriptions are for residential and business end-user locations. Totals may not exactly match previous tables due to the use of different data sources.

Table 5.6.8 Data protocol wholesale revenues, by service category ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Newer protocols
Ethernet 197 221 225 259 288 10.0
Annual growth (%) 13.7 12.4 1.8 14.7 11.5
IP 42 69 99 102 118 29.6
Annual growth (%) 253.5 65.0 43.2 3.9 15.0
Other 14 17 28 30 29 18.6
Annual growth (%) -53.8 16.8 64.7 6.2 -3.1
Total newer protocols 253 307 352 390 435 14.5
Annual growth (%) 17.0 21.3 14.6 11.0 11.3
Legacy protocols 42 41 35 30 24 -13.1
Annual growth (%) -25.4 -2.2 -14.5 -12.5 -22.1
Total data protocols 295 348 386 421 458 11.7
Annual growth (%) 8.3 18.0 11.2 8.9 8.9

Source: CRTC data collection

The data services were classified as services making use of (a) newer data protocols such as Ethernet and IP, or (b) legacy protocols such as X.25, ATM, and frame relay. This table displays the revenues from wholesale data services by the protocol used in the service from 2010 to 2014.

Table 5.6.9 Wireless mobile wholesale revenues, by type of service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010-2014
Interconnection and roaming 350 607 736 811 892 26.4
Annual growth (%) n/a 73.3 21.3 10.3 10.0
Other 124 111 105 142 146 4.1
Annual growth (%) n/a -10.6 -1.6 35.3 3.1
Wholesale total 474 718 840 953 1,038 21.6
Annual growth (%) -12.9 51.3 17.1 13.4 9.0

Source: CRTC data collection

Interconnection and roaming services are sold to other wireless service providers. The service allows the service provider to exchange their traffic and extend their geographic coverage area. ‘Other’ services mainly consist of, but are not limited to, arrangements for a wireless provider to provide wireless services for another company’s customers, also known as resale or MNVO arrangements.

b) Subscriber data

Table 5.6.10 Local and access lines, by type of TSP (thousands)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010 – 2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 515 525 495 447 467 -2.5
Annual growth (%) -3.4 1.9 -5.8 -9.6 4.3
Percent of total 59 53 47 53 64
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 266 322 247 236 191 -7.9
Annual growth (%) -11.2 21.0 -23.3 -4.6 -18.8
Percent of total 31 32 24 28 26
Other alternative providers of telecommunications service 83 135 267 149 68 -5.0
Annual growth (%) -15.7 61.4 98.4 -44.1 -54.4
Percent of total 10 13 26 18 9
Cable-based carriers 5 16 33 5 4 -0.8
Annual growth (%) - 262.4 100.5 -85.2 -9.6
Percent of total 0 2 3 1 1
Total wholesale lines 870 999 1,042 837 730 -4.3
Annual growth (%) -6.7 14.8 4.4 -19.7 -12.8

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays the number of local and access wholesale lines by type of service provider, as well as growth rates and the percentage of wholesale lines by type of service provider for the years 2010 to 2014. Over this period, in-territory incumbent TSPs’ share of wholesale lines increased from 59% in 2010 to 64% in 2014.

c) Competitive landscape

Table 5.6.11 Wireline wholesale telecommunications revenue market share, by type of provider of telecommunications service (percentage)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Incumbent TSPs (excl. out-of-territory) 64.8 70.6 72.1 72.3 71.5
Alternative service providers Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 16.1 15.1 12.7 11.3 10.5
Facilities-based alternative service providers (includes cable-based carriers) 16.6 11.7 12.1 12.8 14.0
Resellers 2.6 2.7 3.1 3.5 4.0
Subtotal 35.2 29.4 27.9 27.7 28.5

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays wireline wholesale revenues market share by type of TSPs for the years 2010 to 2014. Over this period, Incumbent TSPs have increased their share of wholesale revenues. With a 72% share of wholesale revenues, they have the largest share of the wholesale market.

Table 5.6.12 Local and access revenues, by type of provider of telecommunications service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010 – 2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 653 682 623 588 570 -3.3
Annual growth (%) -1.1 4.5 -8.7 -5.5 -3.1
Percent of total 82 82 83 84 88
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 105 112 85 69 55 -15.0
Annual growth (%) -8.6 6.5 -24.2 -18.5 -20.6  
Percent of total 13 13 11 10 9  
Other alternative service providers of telecommunications service 21 22 34 36 12 -12.7
Annual growth (%) -20.8 1.6 56.5 6.5 -65.7
Percent of total 3 3 5 5 2
Cable-based carriers 19 17 10 11 9 -17.8
Annual growth (%) -13.9 -11.5 -41.1 10.4 -20.7  
Percent of total 2 2 1 2 1  
Total wholesale 798 832 751 704 646 -5.2
Annual growth (%) -3.1 4.3 -9.8 -6.2 -8.3  

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays revenues from local and access wholesale services by type of service provider, as well as growth rates and the percentage of wholesale revenues by type of service provider for the years 2010 to 2014. Over this period, incumbent TSPs maintained over 82% of these revenues.

Table 5.6.13 Long distance revenues, by type of provider of telecommunications service ($ millions)
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 CAGR (%) 2010 – 2014
Incumbent TSPs (excluding out-of-territory) 311 315 323 254 228 -7.5
Annual growth (%) -16.6 1.3 2.6 -21.4 -10.5
Percent of total 39 51 59 59 55
Incumbent TSPs (out-of-territory) 229 205 138 106 94 -20.1
Annual growth (%) -1.1 -10.5 -32.5 -23.5 -11.7  
Percent of total 29 33 25 24 23  
Other alternative providers of telecommunications service 64 55 72 59 81 6.3
Annual growth (%) 57.7 -13.7 30.7 -17.2 36.8  
Percent of total 8 9 13 14 20  
Cable-based carriers 194 42 18 13 11 -50.7
Annual growth (%) 42.9 -78.2 -56.5 -26.6 -15.2  
Percent of total 24 7 3 3 3  
Total wholesale 797 617 552 433 414 -15.1
Annual growth (%) 2.2 -22.6 -10.6 -21.5 -4.5  

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays revenues from long distance wholesale services by type of service provider, as well as revenue growth rates and the percentage of wholesale revenues by type of service provider for the years 2010 to 2014. Wholesale long distance service includes the resale of long distance minutes that one service provider has acquired from another services provider. Providers of prepaid long distance calling cards rely on these services. Over this period, incumbent TSPs had a 7.5% annual decline in these revenues, whereas non-incumbent alternative service providers had a 6.3% annual increase.

What are tariff, off-tariff and non-tariff wholesale services?

Tariff services are services whose rates, terms, and conditions are set out in a Commission-approved tariff.

Non-tariff services are those telecommunications services whose rates, terms, and conditions are not set out in a Commission-approved tariff.

Off-tariff services are those whose prices are filed with the Commission but for which the parties have agreed to an alternate price.

Tariff services revenues now exclude off-tariff services.

d) Forbearance

Figure 5.6.5 Telecommunications wholesale service revenues, by type of tariff, 2014

This is a single pie chart that shows the percent of telecommunications wholesale services revenues that are tariff, off-tariff and non-tariff for 2014. Tariff: 26%; Off-tariff: 1%; Non-tariff: 73%.

Source: CRTC data collection

Figure 5.6.6 Telecommunications wholesale service revenues, by type of service, 2014

This is a single pie chart that shows the wholesale telecommunications revenue market share by type of service in 2014. Local and access: 17%; High-speed access (WHSA) services: 9%; Private line and Ethernet services: 23%; Support structures: 2% and other: 49%.

Source: CRTC data collection

This pie chart displays the percentage of revenues from wholesale services by type of wholesale service. For purposes of this chart, support structure revenue was included in wholesale revenues.

Approximately 74% of wholesale revenues were from non-tariff services and those services where the parties have agreed to an alternate price.

Table 5.6.14 Percentage of telecommunications wholesale revenues generated by forborne services
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Local and access 58 60 61 61 59
Long distance 97 96 99 99 97
Internet 54 59 56 41 35
Data 85 86 86 87 86
Private line 53 54 53 53 54
Wireless 100 100 100 100 100

Source: CRTC data collection

This table displays the percentage of wholesale telecommunications revenues from services that are not provisioned in accordance with a Commission-approved tariff. Additional companies reported in 2012.

e) Inter-provider expenses

Wholesale service revenues are the inter-provider expenses of providers of telecommunications services acquiring these services. All companies purchase telecommunications services from another carrier. The extent to which service providers rely on these services depends on the nature of their operations.

Inter-provider expense per revenue dollarcompares the expenses incurred by a TSP in acquiring wholesale services to its telecommunications revenues for wireline services.

It is derived by dividing total annual inter- provider expenses by annual telecommunications revenues. This calculation includes all revenues from telecommunications services, including revenues from telecommunications services requiring no or limited dependency on wholesale services.

Figure 5.6.7 Inter-provider expenses per revenue dollar for wireline services

This bar shows the inter-provider expenses in cents per revenue dollar for various market participants.  SILECs: 8.7, ILECs 5.1, Cable 5.1, Other facilities-based 15.3, Resellers: 48.1.

Source: CRTC data collection

This table shows the extent to which various providers of telecommunications services rely on wholesale services. In total, facilities-based providers of telecommunications service spend less than 6 cents of every revenue dollar on wholesale telecommunications services, whereas resellers – service providers that do not own or operate transmission facilities – are very dependent. They spend 48 cents of every dollar on these services.

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