Nunatsiaq News
NEWS: Nunavik January 31, 2010 - 11:09 am

Kuujjuaq gets Nunavik’s first cell phone service

Prepaid account schemes, compatibility with Bell Mobility

SARAH ROGERS

KANGIQSUJUAQ — Nunacell Inc., Makivik Corp.’s newest subsidiary company is open for business.

Nunavik’s first and only cellular phone service officially launched this week, offering prepaid local and long-distance calling, as well as text messaging, to customers in Kuujjuaq.

“We have seen a tremendous demand for access to cellular services in the community and the benefits residents stand to gain are immeasurable,” said Michael Gordon, Makivik’s economic vice-president, in a release.

Nunacell eventually plans to expand service into other Nunavik communities.

Headquartered in Kuujjuaq, Nunacell was developed in partnership with Lynx Mobility, a subsidiary of Canadian telecommunications firm OmniGlobe.

OmniGlobe already supplies cellular servicse to the Naskapi community of Kawawachikamach, located to the south of Kuujjuaq, and to the twin Cree-Inuit communities of Whapmagoostui and Kuujjuaraapik.

The new Kuujjuaq system will use the CDMA platform, or “Code-Division Multiple Access,” that is also used by Bell Mobility.

Customers in Kuujjuaq are able to “roam” with their Lynx Mobility phones on other CDMA carriers’ networks in Canada.

But cell phones won’t replace CB radios just yet because the current cell phone range in Kuujjuaq doesn’t extend beyond a 20-kilometre radius.

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