A CRTC spokeswoman says a glitch in the new national public alert system for mobile devices affected the entire province of Quebec this morning.
Patricia Valladao says the problem did not originate with cellphone service providers. She says the snafu appears to have occurred between emergency management in Quebec and Pelmorex Corp., which operates the system.
Test signals were to be sent to millions of mobile users in Quebec around mid−morning and across Ontario in mid−afternoon. In Quebec, the test was scheduled for 9:55 a.m., while the test in Ontario is still planned for 1:55 p.m.
Valladao points out that at least it was just a test and not a real emergency. Depending on settings, users with compatible devices connected to an LTE network would hear a tone similar to an ambulance alarm or feel a vibration for eight seconds.
Devices that are turned off won’t receive the signal but phone users will hear their conversations interrupted by a sound similar to a call−waiting tone.