Wednesday, November 15, 2000
Aliant, MTS and SaskTel partner with Bell Mobility on application to bid for new wireless PCS spectrum
(TORONTO, ON) November 15, 2000 –
Aliant Telecom Inc. (“Aliant”), Bell Mobility, Manitoba Telecom Services Inc. (“MTS”) and SaskTel announced today that they have submitted their application to Industry Canada to bid on additional PCS (Personal Communications Services) spectrum at the auction being held in early 2001.
Demand for PCS services is increasing so additional PCS spectrum won in the auction would help address capacity needs to meet the growing demand for wireless services in existing markets. Additional spectrum could also be used to begin to provide the first phase of an emerging ‘third generation’ (“3G”) of wireless services and applications. 3G technology will provide higher-speed data offerings allowing improvement upon services such as wireless e-mail offered today and the introduction of exciting new multimedia services such as video gaming and other services that incorporate graphics or video clips.
Industry Canada spectrum auction rules require that, where companies are considered to be Associated Entities as defined by Industry Canada, one company must submit the application on behalf of all the companies. Bell Mobility’s application therefore has been submitted on behalf of Bell Mobility and its Bell Wireless Alliance (“BWA”) partners: the Aliant companies in Atlantic Canada, MTS in Manitoba and SaskTel in Saskatchewan. If approved by Industry Canada, Bell Mobility’s application would allow it to compete for spectrum across the country.
Under joint agreements between Bell Mobility and each of the parties, each of the BWA partners will be assured of having access to spectrum acquired in the auction to deliver 3G wireless services within their respective operating regions, and Bell Mobility will also be assured of the ability to deliver services on a national basis.
Today’s application also includes provision for Bell Mobility to bid for PCS spectrum in Alberta and British Columbia. MTS will work with Bell Mobility to roll out wireless services in these two provinces, as part of its growth strategy.
This application is being made in accordance with the process established by Industry Canada, announced in June of this year. The process involves the auction of an additional 40 megahertz (“MHz”) of PCS spectrum, in each of 14 regions throughout Canada.
The Aliant group of advanced technology companies and its staff of over 10,000 professionals delivers full service, integrated solutions through its core lines of business: wireline and wireless telecommunications, information technology, remote satellite communications, and Internet-based business solutions. From its base in Canada, Aliant serves consumer and business customers worldwide. The web site for Aliant is www.aliant.ca.
About Bell Mobility
The Bell Mobility Inc. family of companies provides a complete range of wireless communications solutions - cellular, traditional paging, two-way messaging, data, PCS and airline passenger communications services - to 2.7 million Canadian customers. Bell Mobility, was the first PCS company in North America to put an Internet Browser in the PCS handset and the first Canadian carrier to offer business users wireless access to their corporate network through a Digital PCS phone. Bell Mobility Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bell Canada. For more information on Bell Mobility, visit the website at http://www.bellmobility.ca
MTS is Manitoba's preeminent, full-service telecommunications company. Seamlessly blending innovative solutions and world class technology, MTS connects its customers to the world. Its majority-owned subsidiary, Bell Intrigna Inc., offers leading-edge telecommunications services, including next-generation IP-broadband services, to businesses in Alberta and British Columbia. MTS’s common shares are listed on the Winnipeg and Toronto stock exchanges (trading symbol: MBT). Its website is located at www.mts.mb.ca
SaskTel is the leading full service communications company in Saskatchewan, providing competitive voice, data, dial and high-speed Internet, web-hosting, QUANTUMLYNX Office applications, secure electronic transactions, text and messaging services over a fiber optic-based, fully digital network. Digital and analog cellular, paging, wireless data and FleetNet 800 service is provided through its SaskTel Mobility division. SaskTel also maintains investments in companies which provide directory publishing, remote security monitoring, system design, project management, engineering consulting, software sales, multimedia and cable television services. The web site for SaskTel is www.sasktel.com.
For more information:
Vice-President Corporate Communications
Director, Investor Relations