What is the SMS Short Code Carrier Brownout Notice in Canada?

Raange Canadian short code brownout period

The days are getting shorter. The nights are getting cooler. To us in SMS marketing in Canada, this means the annual short code brownout period is just around the corner.

What is the Short Code Carrier Brownout Period?

The short code brownout notice or “Annual Canadian Carrier Brownout Notice” is a deadline for new short code applications for new sms marketing programs in Canada. 

Canadian carriers stop provisioning (supplying) new short codes or short code migrations for a period of time between the end of October and the new year. 

As you will see, each carrier is different and the rules are a little cloudy, but hopefully, we can help make some sense of it. 

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What is the application process for a short code?

If you’re a company thinking about starting an SMS marketing program in Canada to take advantage of the Holidays and have spec’d out the requirements for a short code (learn the basics about short codes here), you have to apply and be approved for a short code by the Canadian carriers.

Each application needs to be considered and approved by the carriers before you can even start your program. You can read more about this on txt.ca.

Most companies will work directly with their messaging partner, like Raange, to procure a short code on their behalf. 

New short code applications are reviewed and approved every Tuesday by the Short Code Council. Those applications need to be submitted by 1:00 pm (ET) the previous Thursday.

When is the brownout notice?

As per text.ca: 

“To have a Short Code provisioned or migrated by ALL CARRIERS, applications must be submitted by

Thursday, October 28, 2021 at 1:00pm ET

Applications submitted by this deadline will be provisioned between November 22 – December 14, 2021.”

Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered.

The above blackout date is something that is circled on everyone’s calendar at Raange.

What are the dates for each carrier?

This is where it gets a little confusing – that’s why the above deadline is the most important if you want no hiccups!

Freedom Mobile – Applications submitted after the October 28 deadline will not be provisioned until January 11, 2022.

Rogers – Applications submitted after the October 28 deadline will not be provisioned until January 11, 2022.

TELUS – Applications submitted after the October 28 deadline will not be provisioned until January 11, 2022

TELUS – Applications submitted after the October 28 deadline will not be provisioned until January 17, 2022

ALL OTHER CARRIERS – Follow the November to January blackout period

In conclusion

October 28, 2021 is the most important date if you still have the aspirations of starting a sms marketing short code program in Canada before the Holidays. 

Otherwise you have to wait until January 2022 to start your program. 

If you feel like you need some help deciphering this process, we have a team of regulatory experts that work directly with the CWTA and the individual carriers to help expedite the process. 

If you have any questions whatsoever, our team is here to help so please feel free to reach out anytime.

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