^^^^ I'm certainly no fan of Bell, but they have been doing a lot of installing fibre over the years. While technology is cheaper, it still costs a lot to run cable.
But is it fair to saddle all
of their customers, even those who have no interest in FTTH, with the supposed cost of upgrading/expanding their networks? Is the concept of raising capital funds on the stock market, for example, going out of fashion? There's ample evidence that ever since the majority of Bell's core services were deregulated
, their retail customer rates have consistently gone up disproportionate to any reasonable factor. In Bell's 138 year history, their rates only began skyrocketing after being granted forbearance. Now, BCE operates under the premise that only profits/shareholders matter, customers and employees do not.
I've personally seen examples of a deceased family member's telephone bills filed away in a box among other personal documents, from the 1940s to 1990s, and I was really surprised to discover that monthly rates for all Bell services were shockingly steady for decades, up until the 1990s when things started going up, up, up. It's not as if growth and technological advancement in the telecom sector was stagnant for 100 years, and then all of a sudden commercial Internet came along and required complete rebuilds of networks every decade. Copper plant has an expected service life, and it's supposed to be accounted as a cost of doing business, not a sudden "uh oh, time to raise rates to pay for something we forgot to maintain". Fibre in the field may have a longer lifespan, but it's not as though stringing it on poles or boring it underground is any less costly of an undertaking than with copper wires.
A coaxial cable distribution system is designed primarily on a shared bandwidth principle, not a dedicated twisted-pair path back to switching facilities. Unless Rogers installs thousands of new neighbourhood nodes, they do not have the capacity to simply ratchet up bandwidth for every single customer. OTOH, Bell can only reduce the loop length of its "POTS" circuits so much, to increase the bandwidth it can serve, before it's not economically feasible anymore. So yes, both companies are on a very slow migration to a purely fibre-based network, but this will take decades to complete, even if money was no object. Reaching every single household nationwide with fibre might never happen because the incumbent telecoms claim there's no business case for spending oh-so-much of their insatiable profit margins outside of urban centres.
I say all this as a cautionary note: don't expect a fibre built-out too soon, unless you live in Toronto, Montreal, or a brand new subdivision/condo. It took a decade after "broadband" Internet DSL/HFC was first launched before it was widely available. Same for IPTV. Now, for competitive reasons, "Robellus" will expand FTTH deployment where they see fit, not where makes any sense to their lowly customers.
Anyway, the discussion was supposed to be about rates. Personally, I think it's ridiculous that Bell gouges all
of its customers, regardless of whether they benefit from the so-called improvements to services. Would it be similarly okay if GM added $5000 more, every year, to the cost of each ordinary car it sells, just because they "invest in world-class research for things like driverless cars" that only benefit a small segment of their customer base? Maybe Tesla should double the cost of their cars in order to pay for Elon Musk's SpaceX research?
I live in Kitchener, and there's no plan whatsoever for FTTH construction in so-called brownfield areas, here. So rhetorically, why should I pay higher and higher rates for basic DSL, to private corporation BCE, to subsidize FTTH overbuild in Toronto?