Wind Mobile has moved quickly since getting the green light from the industry minister. Retail locations have opened up and they have teamed up with Blockbuster as a distribution partner. Just some quick numbers.
The cheapest plan $15 a month
$5 unlimited texting
The only thing that might hold customers back is the initial cost of buying the handset. $450 for a Blackberry Bold 9700 might scare some people off. In the long run, it still works out to be cheaper but most consumers are used to the “free phone” business model other companies have been doing. I think a lot of consumer don’t realize that their monthly charges over the course of their contract ends up paying for the subsidized phone buy costs more in the end. The no contract thing forces Wind to charge customers the full price for the handset upfront.
The other thing bugging potential new customers is the inability to port a phone from another carrier. I think once they build up a bit of a user base activating an unlocked gsm phone on Wind shouldn’t be a problem. As well the number of handsets should expand. Porting a phone number as well should be available soon.
If you have no plans to switch you still might be in luck. The added competition should force your existing wireless service provide to offer you a more competitive contract. Rogers, Bell, and Telus have had it good for a while now and the recent text messaging fees they have been cashing in have padded their profits nicely. Just make sure you aren’t paying for those free text messages. Hopefully we’ll see a return to good customer service.