updated 04:20 pm EST, Thu November 8, 2007
Canadian cell users upset
The happiness of Canadian cellphone users is actually on the decline, a J.D. Power and Associates study concludes. Rating on a 1,000-point scale, the satisfaction of subscribers with contracts has fallen 18 points since last year, to sit at 657; overall satisfaction is down 12 points to 702. These figures are so terrible that the average Canadian would prefer to deal with car repairs, traditionally a high-stress affair, than cope with cellular companies. J.D. Power's senior director of research, Charles Schade, says that Canadians believe they are typically paying more than they would in other countries, while receiving little to nothing new.
Schade notes that although the Apple iPhone has been out in the US since June, and will tomorrow ship to Europe, Canadians have yet to hear any release plans, despite conversion for Canadian users being a relatively simple matter. Schade argues that the obstacle is likely Canada's high data rates, which sharply restrict usage: under Fido's new 3G service, for instance, a subscriber must pay $15 extra per month for streaming radio alone, while web browsing is limited to 12MB no matter how much one pays.
The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association counters by saying that Canada has one of the lowest per-minute voice rates within the G7 countries, but this has done little to dissuade jealousy of the American market, where shoppers are more likely to find cheaper and/or unlimited plans. Even a BlackBerry is in fact less expensive in the US, despite its maker being a Canadian icon. [via The Vancouver Sun]