The CRTC is inviting comments and suggestions on a Draft Wireless Code for Canada’s wireless industry. The public can participate in a hearing that begins February 11, 2013 and they will be accepting input until February 15th. The CRTC initially asked the public for comments on the draft process last fall and the Canadian public has responded.
The CRTC intends to issue the new and mandatory code this spring. Assuming, the content doesn’t substantially change, it will undoubtedly be well received by Canadian wireless consumers. Some of the highlights of the draft code are:
- Rules to provide more disclosure and clarity on contract terms and fees
- Guidelines on protecting privacy of consumers
- New rules on the ability to cancel a contract if the provider changes the terms
- Caps on the cost of cancelling subsidized contracts
- Changes with respect to notification on contract renewals
- Disclosure on “Unlimited” plans that in practice or not unlimited
- Notification of additional fees at prescribed intervals
- Tools to allow consumers to monitor usage
- Service providers must upon request immediately cancel Mobile Premium Service (MPS)
- Disclosure on manufacturer’s and extended warranties
- New rules on unlocking phones
- New rules on when and under which conditions providers can cancel services
After several painful experiences with a certain Canadian wireless provider, I hope the changes are implemented and that they will be enforced. The changes to locked phone policies are resonating with me since my previous provider has billed my account to unlock my iPhone 4S which is still not unlocked! Like many other Canadians, I fail to see why I should have to pay to have my phone unlocked when I have already paid outrageous early termination fees, that combined, far exceed the cost of the subsidy!
I don’t always agree with the CRTC’s role or its policies but in this case I say, bring it on!