Mobile phones have undoubtedly become part of Canadian culture. Regardless if you are a business professional, student, or parent, everyone seems to have a cell phone. In this sense, the mobile phone industry has grown very quickly over the past decade. Cell phones have gone from being somewhat of a privilege to more of a necessity in a time where instant communication and remaining connected is an important part of life.
The cell phone industry itself has also significantly changed. The industry has gone full circle in the sense that companies who focused primarily on providing cell phone services dominated the market originally, until Canadian telecommunications emerged within the industry. However, in recent years, we have begun to once again see the emergence of companies that are primarily in the business of offering mobile phone services. One such company is WIND mobile.About WIND
Wind Mobile, which is primarily known as WIND to the general public is a relatively new mobile phone company. The company officially launched in Canada on December 16, 2009, in Toronto, and only a few days later in the Calgary Market. Wind is owned and operated by Globalive Communications Corporation.
WIND is an established company with more than 10 years of history. It refined its service offerings in Italy and Greece before making the move to Canada. Once established in its primary Canadian markets, Wind has expanded its network to include other Canadian cities such as Ottawa, Edmonton, Vancouver, and most recently, the Kitchener-Waterloo area. To date, Wind has more than three hundred thousand subscriber across Canada that utilize their mobile phone network. About Globalive
Globalive is a multinational telecommunications company that offers a multitude of telecom services such as mobile phone, long distance, internet, and VoIP. Within their network they own and operate a number of companies. They include Yak Communications, OneConnect, Canada Payphone, and Assemble Conferencing. Strategic Partnerships
To strategically grow its brand, Wind entered alliances with three high profile, and well established brands within the Canadian market.
- Blockbuster: Immediately upon launch in 2009, WIND forged a partnership with Blockbuster to host kiosks within their stores. However, with the recent bankruptcy of Blockbuster and the closing of their stores, this proved to be a shorter partnership than anticipated.
- Loblaw’s: WIND has made their mobile phones available in Kiosks in a variety of Loblaw’s stores include the Loblaw’s Superstore and the Real Canada Superstore.
- 7-Eleven: WIND has also developed a partnership with 7-Eleven stores and offers their phones on a “take out only” basis.
Mobile phones are also available through the company’s website.Network Coverage
One of the downfalls of using a new mobile service provider is that they are often limited in their network coverage. Currently Winds network coverage is comprised of:
- Ontario: Toronto and the GTA, Ottawa (and Gatineau), and Kitchener-Waterloo
- Alberta: Calgary and Edmonton
- British Columbia: Vancouver and Whistler
Any customers that go outside of what they call “Wind Zones” into an “Away Zone” automatically have roaming come into effect. However, Wind is constantly working on expanding the reach of their network within Canada to provide better services to their customers.Court Challenge
Wind has not had an easy road in its attempt to enter the Canadian mobile phone industry. Its legitimacy as a discount mobile phone brand was challenged immediately by some of its main competitors such as Public Mobile because Globalive is not a Canadian owned company. Rather, it is financially backed by an Egyptian telecommunications company named Orascom.
However, after a lengthy court battle, Wind, with the support of the Canadian federal government, was deemed to have a legitimate opportunity to operate within Canada.
Friday, January 08, 2010Public Mobile to contest Globalive foreign ownership A court appeal, which may bring in other wireless carriers, could determine if all telecom companies can get the break Ottawa gave last month to Globalive. Cabinet overturned a decision by the federal telecom regulator denying Globalive a carrier licence on the grounds of its relationship with Orascom
Friday, December 18, 2009Globalive adds Calgary to cellular service area Two days after launching its Wind Mobile service in Toronto, Globalive has expanded into Alberta. The new entrant does not require users to sign contracts, and Sea Board Group says one-third of existing incumbent carriers’ contracts are up for renewal each year.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009Globalive Wireless goes live Toronto now has a fourth facilities-based cell phone carrier, with unlimited data plans, no contracts and voice plans starting at $15 a month. Find out what devices are available
Tuesday, December 15, 2009Globalive to offer BlackBerry Bold 9700 Within a week of getting a green light from Industry Canada, Wind Mobile is expected to launch cellular wireless service. Analysts Michelle Warren, Roberta Fox and Johanne Lemay offer their views
Tuesday, December 08, 2009Lacavera determined to launch Wind Mobile In saying its ‘just a question of when’ the wireless startup will launch, the chairman is betting the cabinet won’t put an insurmountable hurdle in his path
Thursday, October 01, 2009Globalive blasts incumbents at ownership hearing Startup says Bell, Rogers, Telus are trying to block competition. Meanwhile, an industry analyst suspects one of the trio may stall Globalive with an appeal to Ottawa