Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadians Choosing Wireless Phones over Traditional Landlines, CRTC Says

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Canadians Choosing Wireless Phones over Traditional Landlines, CRTC Says

Article excerpt

Canadians keep dropping land lines: CRTC


OTTAWA - More Canadians are moving online to watch TV and listen to radio and choosing wireless over landlines for phone service, says the country's telecommunications watchdog.

The electronic habits of Canadian information consumers are clearly evolving, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission's annual communications monitoring report concludes.

"More Canadians than ever are watching and listening to content on their computers, smartphones and tablets, yet the vast majority of programming is still accessed through traditional television and radio services," said commission chairman Jean-Pierre Blais.

The report said a third of Canadians watched Internet television, with the typical user watching three hours a week, up from 2.8 hours in 2011.

It said six per cent watched programming on a tablet or smartphone, while four per cent said they only watch TV online.

A fifth of the population said they streamed AM or FM radio over the Internet. The report found 14 per cent of people listened on a smartphone, 13 per cent streamed a personalized Internet music service and eight per cent streamed audio on a tablet.

Canadians have also been abandoning traditional landlines in favour of wireless, the report found; the number of residential phone subscribers decreased by 2.1 per cent to 11.9 million in 2012.

In 2012, the number of Canadian wireless subscribers grew by 1.8 per cent to 27.9 million, with an average of two wireless subscriptions per household.

The report said Canadians have dropped more than a million telephone lines in the last five years, while wireless subscriptions rose by 5.8 million in the same period.

Blais said the report is important because it keeps him and his fellow commissioners abreast of changes in the communications landscape.

"While Canadians generally are well-served by their communication system, the commission must remain vigilant and responsive to emerging trends and issues," he said. …

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