CWTA Survey Reveals Significant Increases and Shifts in Canadian Telecommunication Network Traffic…

Data compiled from some of Canada’s leading facilities-based operators highlight resiliency of telecommunication networks during COVID-19 pandemic.

OTTAWA, MAY 25, 2020 – The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the lives of Canadians, requiring major changes to the way we work, interact, and access critical services. Telecommunications services have been vital to Canadians’ health and safety, and to sustaining economic and social activity during this time.

CWTA has been tracking the many measures that facilities-based network operators have implemented to assist Canadians in the transition to working from home and learning online (see To provide further insight into Canadians’ consumption of telecommunications services during the current health crisis, the CWTA has collected data from some of Canada’s leading facilities-based network operators and released a report on its findings, “Managing Networks in Unprecedented Times.” Network operators surveyed for this report are Bell, Rogers, SaskTel, Shaw/Freedom, Tbaytel, TELUS, and Videotron.

“COVID-19 has disrupted the lives of Canadians. In the face of such disruptions, staying connected has become more important than ever,” said Eric Smith, Senior Vice President of CWTA. “The results of our survey show that the shift to remote work, virtual education, and the digitization of many other services has meant large increases in network traffic and significant changes in how Canadians communicate and connect to the internet during this time. The resiliency of our telecommunications networks in the face of such dramatic changes is a testament to the years of effective planning and investments made by our nation’s facilities-based network operators; the companies that build and operate Canada’s telecommunications network infrastructure.”

“Our telecommunications networks are the backbone of our digital economy and society. Canadian’s reliance on telecommunications will only continue to grow, as more and more businesses and government services move online”, added Robert Ghiz, CWTA’s President & CEO. “That is why our facilities-based network operators are continuing to invest in expanding the nation’s network infrastructure and introducing transformative new technologies like 5G wireless. It is these investments that will drive Canada’s economic growth, create new jobs, and improve Canadians’ quality of life.”

Data Highlights Include:

Wireline home internet traffic increased by as much as 48.7% for download traffic and as high as 69.2% for upload.
Mobile data traffic varied widely across carriers showing both increases and decreases in mobile traffic volumes.
Mobile voice call minutes increased as much as 60%.

More information can be found within CWTA’s full report, available here.
About CWTA
The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association (CWTA) is the authority on wireless issues, developments and trends in Canada. It represents companies that provide services and products across the wireless sector. CWTA actively promotes the industry with the goal of ensuring continued growth of the wireless sector in Canada. CWTA administers a number of initiatives on behalf of its members, including corporate social responsibility programs and the national common short codes program.

Media Inquiries:
Greg Burch
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