updated 11:35 am EDT, Mon May 18, 2009
Telus May Be Testing HSPA
(Updated with screen cap) Telus' purported early HSPA launch has gained potential support through information supplied to Electronista as well as separate leaks. A Calgary reader has noticed that the carrier selection option on his iPhone now shows Telus as a choice in addition to the expected Fido or Rogers options. It's not possible to connect, though this is unlikely due to the handset's SIM card being tied to Rogers. A Telus SIM would be necessary and wouldn't be publicly available.
An earlier slip had previously only suggested Telus' HSPA would launch first in southern British Columbia; the new update points to other major cities being ready on or near the launch date.
Additionally, the discovery of a browser user agent profile by Mobile Syrup that shows a future HSPA-based phone, the LG BL40, being readied for Telus. Most details escape the XML code contained the profile, though it has an unusually long 345x800 display as well as a 5-megapixel camera. LG hasn't announced the BL40 but wouldn't have the option of putting the phone on Telus' official network until early 2010, when the commercial HSPA network goes live with the Canadian provider.
The move to HSPA, which is being mirrored by Telus' rival Bell, is intended as part of an eventual shift to 4G (using LTE) and is expected to significantly step up competition for cellphones in Canada as it will let all major carriers offer similar phones and to take new customers that don't want to buy replacement handsets that would be needed for a switch between CDMA and HSPA networks today.