ARCHIVED - Telecom Order CRTC 2012-279

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Ottawa, 9 May 2012

TELUS Communications Company – Withdrawal of Talking Call Waiting service

File number: Tariff Notice 423


1.        The Commission received an application by TELUS Communications Company (TCC), dated 16 January 2012, in which the company proposed to withdraw General Tariff item 300 – Talking Call Waiting (TCW) service, effective 1 June 2012.1 This service enables customers to hear an automated announcement of the Call Waiting caller’s name.

2.        TCC submitted that its TCW service is provisioned on a platform that is failing and no longer sustainable. The company noted that other service alternatives are available, including its Call Waiting with Call Display,2 and Voice Mail service.

3.        TCC also submitted that it had notified all current TCW service subscribers of the details of the company’s application and how they could participate in the proceeding.

4.        The Commission received comments regarding TCC’s application from 25 TCW service subscribers. The public record of this proceeding, which closed on 2 April 2012, is available on the Commission’s website at under “Public Proceedings” or by using the file number provided above.

Should the Commission approve TCC’s application to withdraw TCW service?

5.        TCW service subscribers who commented on the application generally proposed that TCC be required to replace or upgrade its current platform. Blind and visually impaired TCW service subscribers indicated that the audible notification of the incoming caller’s name provided them with valuable information that Call Display service provides to sighted individuals.

6.        In reply, TCC submitted that the estimated $1-million cost to replace or upgrade the current platform could not be justified and that this cost could not be recovered from TCW service subscriber revenues. In response to the specific concerns raised by blind and visually impaired subscribers, TCC submitted detailed product information on two commercially available devices that verbally announce callers’ names for all incoming calls, including those on call waiting.

Commission’s analysis and determinations

7.        The Commission notes that in Telecom Decision 2008-22, it revised its procedures for dealing with applications to destandardize and/or withdraw tariffed services. In particular, the Commission considered that in cases where services (i) rely on technology that is no longer supported by the manufacturer, or (ii) may be subject to increased costs that make the service uneconomic, there may not always be substitutes available that exactly match the functionality and price of those services. The Commission therefore eliminated the requirement that the applicant provide an analysis of available substitutes and a transition plan in these cases.

8.        The Commission also notes that TCW service is an optional service and considers that it would be uneconomic for TCC to replace the TCW service platform at the estimated cost submitted by the company.

9.        The Commission further notes that TCC has suggested substitutes for TCW service – such as its current Call Display service and, for subscribers who are unable to use that service, two commercially available devices.

10.    The Commission considers that TCC has complied with the regulatory requirements to withdraw TCW service and, accordingly, considers TCC’s proposal to be acceptable.

11.    In light of the above, the Commission approves TCC’s application, with an effective date of 1 June 2012.

Secretary General

Related documents


[1]   The Commission approved an application by TCC to destandardize this service in Telecom Order 2009-192.

[2]   TCC noted that 99 percent of its TCW service customers also have its Call Display service.


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