Internet Service Providers Overcharge on Internet Usage in Canada
It is known that Canadians, especially those living in Toronto, pay some of the highest internet and cellphone fees in the world. This is especially true of costs associated with data usage and bandwidth. According to an article in the Toronto Sun, Canadians spend the most time (on average) on the internet when compared with residents in other countries. So why do internet providers charge so much in Canada? And why do only some of Toronto’s internet service providers offer unlimited usage at a reasonable cost?
On average, Canadians spend 36 hours per month browsing the web. That’s a lot of time! This number has gone up with more consumers reporting browsing with their smartphones and tablets, which are increasingly owned and used by younger generations. Many apps now exist to entertain children, educate young learners, and even provide therapy for children with special needs—and many of these apps include video streaming, upping your monthly internet usage. As a result, a higher demand is being put on the amount of internet available to Canadians through monthly plans, and internet service providers should be working to meet this demand.
In Toronto, the cost associated with unlimited downloading and high internet speeds is high for the everyday user. With a reasonable monthly fee, large-scale business internet providers often cap their dataset at 300 gigabytes and charge for every additional gigabyte a after that limit is reached. Furthermore, the fee these large-scale providers charge for unlimited internet is more than the average household can afford. Luckily, local, small-scale internet providers are increasing competition for the wireless giants. Many offer high-speed internet with unlimited download and streaming available for users.
There have been times in the past where Canadians have advocated for increased competition from internet service providers, including the “Stop the Meter” campaign that caused the CRTC head to be brought before a committee of federal MPs over his decision to charge smaller internet providers a usage fee to the larger companies. With fees being charged to small internet providers, the cost will be reflected in the services they offer to the consumer. This does not meet modern demand for increased internet speeds and data to a larger pool of consumers, many of whom share a home; with younger users downloading and streaming on the web, households place a higher demand on the services they require from internet providers.
Small-scale internet service providers have been doing all they can to introduce competition into the industry and provider unlimited internet with increased bandwidth at lower costs. With increased pressure from Canadian consumers, these internet-providing giants are no longer able to hold a monopoly over usage, making unlimited internet more available to the consumer in Toronto and across the country.