Skip to main content

Metered Internet billing gets an icy reception in Canada

metered InternetOur  neighbors to the north may now pay their Internet service providers based on how much they use the Web. Canadian telecommunications regulators made a ruling last week that would largely make it possible for smaller ISPs to continue to offer pay-per-month data plans.

Currently, many smaller Canadian ISPs lease bandwidth from larger ISPs on a per-customer basis, which allows them to offer customers unlimited bandwidth, and bill them monthly. Laws had prohibited larger ISPs like Bell from charging these wholesale customers (smaller ISPs) per gigabyte for usage, but the Canadian Radio-television Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) has moved to abolish that restriction, a shift in billing that will ultimately make its way down to customers.

Related Videos

One example is the small ISP TekSavvy, which under the ruling will be forced to the set the data ceiling at 25GB a month and charge customers between $1.90 and $2.35 for each additional gigabyte. TekSavvy formerly offered 200GB or unlimited options, which will be wiped away by the CRTC’s new regulations. According to an e-mail sent out to its subscribers, its premium, unlimited plan users pay $31.95 for will now only get them 25GB per month.

According to petition site, it would be less expensive to start using SSDs. “…It is now cheaper in Canada to put our downloads on to expensive SSDs, ship them across the country, and then throw them out instead of paying the $2 per GB our ISPs want to charge us when we go over our already ridiculously bandwidth caps.”

So, besides the customers and indie ISPs, who’s going to suffer because of the new regulations? Video streaming sites. Netflix (which was only just introduced to Canada), Apple, Amazon, and Hulu are bandwidth hogs, and only stand to increase the amount of data they chew through as their services’ quality improves.

Naturally, the ruling is already being challenged. Federal Liberals argue that it would limit competition and choice for consumers, and Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper announced via Twitter that he has ordered a review of the decision. “We’re very concerned about CRTC’s decision on usage-based billing and its impact on consumers. I’ve asked for a review of the decision.” According to CBC News, a decision will be reached by March 1. More than 200,000 citizens have already signed a petition against the new regulations.

Editors' Recommendations

This Lenovo laptop with 128GB RAM is over $5500 off, and that’s no joke
this lenovo laptop with 128gb ram is over 5500 off deal thinkpad p16 feature

If you're looking for one of the most high-end laptop deals around, Lenovo continues to knock things out of the park with a deal on the Lenovo ThinkPad P16 Mobile Workstation. As with all Lenovo laptop deals, it's been given a fairly hefty estimated value price by Lenovo of $9,649 but given the spec, that could be possible here. Right now, the laptop is discounted by a huge $5,564 so it's down to $4,085. That's no impulse buy price but if you're looking for a supremely powerful laptop, it could be worth the investment. Intrigued? Let's take a look at what it offers.

Why you should buy the Lenovo ThinkPad P16 Mobile Workstation
The Lenovo ThinkPad P16 Mobile Workstation is high-end stuff. In many cases, it's probably going to be overkill if you simply want a laptop to complete basic tasks on. If you need a powerhouse of a system, regular edit videos, or simply need something that truly never misses a beat for a long time, this could be the one for you. It has a powerful 12th-generation Intel Core i9 processor paired up with 128GB of RAM. Yup, we said RAM, not SSD storage. That's a frankly phenomenal amount given even high-end gaming systems tend to offer 32GB at most right now, so this is seriously future-proofed. For storage, you get 2TB of SSD storage so -- again -- it's going to last a very long time.

Read more
Get a $50 Amazon gift card when you subscribe to Microsoft 365
Computer user touching on Microsoft word icon to open the program.

One of the best Microsoft Office deals is on Microsoft 365 Family at Amazon. If you buy today, you can get a 12-month subscription for the whole family for $100 instead of $150, plus you get a $50 Amazon gift card bundled in for free. Combined, that means the Microsoft 365 Family Subscription works out at just $50 for the year. Here's a look at who needs it and why.

Why you should buy Microsoft 365 Family 12-month subscription
If you've been checking out the best alternatives to Microsoft Office, you'll appreciate that you can't go wrong with the genuine article. This version of Microsoft 365 gives you 12 months of access for up to six people so the whole family can easily use its services all year around. It provides you with access to Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, and Microsoft Outlook.

Read more
Microsoft Teams is about to get faster and much easier to use
Microsoft said that Teams has received a ground-up redesign, which will “empower customers to navigate the challenges of the evolving modern workplace.”

Microsoft has announced a major revamp of the Teams application for Windows, which was made available as a public preview on Monday.

The brand said that Teams has received a ground-up redesign, which will “empower customers to navigate the challenges of the evolving modern workplace.”

Read more