This time the information comes first hand directly to me from someone "in the know". Of course the "reliable source" outcome is not guaranteed, but apparently the two companies are in active discussions.
The two companies have, over the course of the last year, collaborated on a couple of large projects. Telus sells Bell TV (Bell ExpressVu) satellite TV service in the west, and Bell and Telus have collaborated on the HSPA network with the ultimate goal of setting up a 4G LTE wireless network. The term coopetition (cooperative competition) can be used to describe this friendly, business rivalry.
The market is obviously heating up in anticipation of the new cellular market entrants (Dave Wireless, Public Mobile, Wind Mobile) expected over the course of the next 6 months. A Bell / Telus merger would otherwise have been frowned upon by the CRTC as anti-competitive, however, once the new cell carriers launch the landscape will change considerably.
In terms of timing - the "reliable source" suggests an announcement some time in the next 3 months.