Canada sets wireless spectrum auction for April 2015

Cell phone. (Shutterstock)

Cell phone. (Shutterstock)

Jessica Hume, Parliamentary Bureau

, Last Updated: 4:25 PM ET

OTTAWA — Industry Minister James Moore announced Friday a new auction for wireless providers and new rules for companies he says boost competition and lower consumer prices.

A new block of wireless spectrum will be auctioned off in April 2015, and Moore told reporters Friday the government has introduced measures to ensure no fewer than four providers have the opportunity to compete.

"Today's announcement means Canadian consumers in urban and rural areas will soon benefit from the deploymemt of advanced mobile and broadband services, which will lead to better, faster Internet services on the latest technologies," Moore said.

Companies can bid for licences to use the spectrum in specific areas, to be made smaller to allow for "more opportunity for rural Internet providers to participate in this auction."

This spectrum — on the 2500MHz band — is "ideal for delivering fast, reliable service on the latest smartphones and tablets," he said.