Last month the CBC ran a story about Ting
, a Toronto-based company that offers wireless service to US customers -- specifically, it resells mobile bandwidth bought in bulk from Sprint.
If this sounds at all familiar, it's pretty much the same way that the independent ISP TekSavvy
operates; here in Ontario they buy bandwidth in bulk from Bell and Rogers, then offer it to customers via their own cable and DSL plans -- plans that are decidedly cheaper than what you'd pay Bell and Rogers, by the way. My TekSavvy DSL gives me a solid 25 Mbps down and 10 Mbps up for less than what I'd be paying Bell directly – and as an added bonus I get an exponentially higher bandwidth cap.
Similarly, while Sprint unlimited smartphone plans can go as high as $70 USD/month, Ting breaks up voice, messaging and data into separate buckets
. You only pay for the minutes and data used, plus messages sent -- incoming messages are free, I hope!
Ting seems to be a popular choice where it's available. I myself have heard users sing its praises on at least one American podcast
. And Sprint doesn't seem to have any problem selling them wholesale mobile service.
Canada's Big Three carriers, though, are an entirely different story.