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Rogers unlimited data plan an inroad for iPhone in Canada?

post #1 of 46
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Canadian wireless carrier Rogers Communications, often criticized for its exorbitant data rates, has just introduced a $20 per month unlimited data plan that could knock out one more barrier to an official iPhone launch in Canada.

The Toronto, Ontario-based carrier said customers could start adopting the new plan, dubbed the $20 Communicate Value Pack, on "feature phones" excluding the RIM Blackberry beginning today. In addition to unlimited on-device mobile browsing, it also offers 2500 standard outgoing text messages, 1000 outgoing picture or video messages, call display and voicemail.

Although it's believed the new plan from Rogers is an attempt to combat a $7 unlimited data offering from local rival Bell Canada alongside its HTC Touch handset, many see the move as key step towards an official iPhone launch in the region.

Steep wireless data rates have been singled out time and time again as one of the primary reasons Canadians have not yet been treated to the Apple iPhone experience.

In the U.S., AT&T's combined iPhone service and data plans start at just $59.99 for 450 anytime minutes, 5000 additional night and weekend minutes, and unlimited data. But in Canada, a comparable plan for Rogers Wireless -- the only carrier with an iPhone-compatible GSM network -- has long run about $295 per month.

"The barrier to the iPhone in Canada is not Apple," says Michael Geist, Canada research chair of Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa. "Rather, it is the lack of wireless competition that [...] leads to pricing that places Canadians at a significant disadvantage compared with other developed countries."

For its part, Rogers has been scrambling to secure a deal with Apple to bring iPhone to Canada for over a year now. Back in January of last year, the carrier sent out an email communication saying it was actively working with Apple to launch the iPhone in Canada "as soon as possible."

In an interview with the Globe and Mail earlier that month, Rogers chief operating officer Nadir Mohamed implied that his firm would make a good fit for the Apple handset, as it represents the only Canadian provider offering GSM service.

"Im not saying whether we have agreements or anything [with Apple], but given the iPhone was launched on GSM, were in good position to reinforce that were the first and have the best-feature devices," he said.

Several months later, however, a Rogers corporate communications manager backpedaled on claims of an impending deal with Apple in an e-mail to CBC News Online.

"We haven't announced whether we will carry the iPhone," he wrote. "Everything in the media has been speculations to this point."

Update: Unfortunately, Rogers' new $20 Communication Value Pack is presently limited to just web browsing on cell phones with only those browsers authorized by Rogers for the plan. Browsing through other means, as well as use of email clients over the network, will continue to incur a 5 cents/KB charge.
post #2 of 46
Well lets hope that competition finally forces Rogers or another company to lower their rates to an acceptable point for the iPhone to finally come to Canada.

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post #3 of 46
Well, that's just what the article is saying. Rogers new rates ARE now in line with a potential iPhone launch.

I think Rogers just blinked.
post #4 of 46
iPhone hope in Canada news is my favorite type of news right now.
post #5 of 46
I'm *very* tempted to buy a 16gb iPhone and break it just so I can use it on Fido up here in Canada. I'd switch to Rogers if they had a decent iPhone package... Now to sound like an petulant child, I want, I want, I want.
post #6 of 46
woohoo! 16GB iPhone here I come!!! I hope it comes out before the summer.
post #7 of 46
The plan will not work with lots of apps like google maps. Only for select phones (not for blackberries, PDAs, windows mobile devices, etc...)

From the rogers site:

Important: This plan includes unlimited on-device mobile browsing only. Plan is available on select phones only (PDAs such as Blackberry or Windows Mobile devices, PC cards and non-Rogers certified devices are not eligible). Data usage incurred on ineligible devices, incurred while tethering (using device as wireless modem for laptop) or incurred using non-Rogers (3rd party) applications downloaded to your device will be subject to pay-per-use charges of 5 cents/KB.

\tWhat is tethering?
This plan does not include any usage incurred while tethering. Tethering is when you use your phone as a wireless modem to connect to the Internet from a laptop computer. The phone can be connected to the laptop via USB cable or Bluetooth. Once connected, you can access the Internet wirelessly on your laptop using the Rogers Wireless network. While accessing the Internet wirelessly on your laptop, data charges are incurred at a rate of 5¢/KB.
\tWhat are 3rd party applications?
3rd party applications are applications like Yahoo! Go or Google Maps. These are non-Rogers applications which can be downloaded to the device and incur data charges at a rate of 5¢/KB.
post #8 of 46
The Rogers plans only include WAP browsing, which is limited to crappy (IMHO) text-only based browsing of websites on phones like the Razr2/Shine. It's also limited only to Rogers-branded, IMEI tracked, non-smartphones.

This is like the ANTI-iPhone plan. Frigging Rogers.
post #9 of 46
I don't know who I'm more angry with:

AppleInsider for the moronic reporting that got my hopes up.

Rogers for the continued, non-competitive business practices that dashed my hopes.

Or me, for still having hopes.

Thanks, data-rate-tards!
post #10 of 46
Weird they did this. I JUST (last Thursday) updated my plan so I could check mobile-mail on my crap-ass chocolate. The plan was the $20 communicate package which included everything they have now, except the internet was limited to 5MB a month.. that's quite a leap to unlimited.

Maybe they are gearing up for an iPhone release in Canada. YAY!
post #11 of 46
More news that shows how Canada is slipping further behind the rest of the world when it comes to consumer-level communications technology. Even our wired internet plans are substandard and overpriced when compared to those in other nations. For a country in which the first long distance telephone call was ever made, it's really sad.
 
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post #12 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by auxio View Post

More news that shows how Canada is slipping further behind the rest of the world when it comes to consumer-level communications technology. Even our wired internet plans are substandard and overpriced when compared to those in other nations. For a country in which the first long distance telephone call was ever made, it's really sad.

If the Canadian telecoms spent on development even a fraction of the time they spend worrying about disabling phones and crippling features, then Canada would be far better off. I'm not holding my breath, since I currently pay Rogers $50/month for unlimited wireless, just not on cellphone frequencies -- they clearly don't give a damn about the consumers, and that certainly includes not wanting to deal with Apple (who, oddly enough, actually seem to care about consumer goodwill -- go figure!)
post #13 of 46
I saw this Communicate Value Pack on my Rogers statement, but didn't realize it featured unlimited data. I was about to cancel it, but may keep it to show my support for the idea, and to get some usage out of my cell phone's browser (cheapo Nokia). Can't wait for the iPhone.... come to Canada, baby!
post #14 of 46
Tired to wait, this is another example that we need more competition here in Canada. They complaints about Quebécor (videotron) want a network to offer the best technology in mobile cell phone but they don't want to offer good rate!

May of this year will be the month of the CRTC who will selling some new antenna for videotron, YESSS come videotron and fight those big sleeping company.

Videotron dream to offer the iPhone here, but they need to win the auction in May first and after that built there own network hmmmm, not before 2009.

http://www.avenirdusansfil.ca/home
post #15 of 46
Question: I have a hacked Iphone working under Rogers and am able to use the edge network.. but I am afraid to use it much for browsing because I may go over the 5mb per month my plan enables.. With this unlimited data plan will I be able to browse web pages without any issues?
post #16 of 46
The AppleInsider article states that the Unlimited plan only works with Rogers-certified browsers, so no, I don't think it would be safe to be using Mobile Safari with this plan, unfortunately.
post #17 of 46
still crappy!! wap browsing only!! On authorized device meaning that only the device purchased from rogers will work...

Rogers won't roll out the iphone until a 3G version is out...the infrastructure is already in place for 3G so they don't want to support the Edge while it is being phased out.
post #18 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yash Keough View Post

WTF Rogers? Get your act together.

As an aside, what really pisses me off about Rogers is how they include Macs or pics of Mac hardware (like the Apple Key, keyboard, iMac) in their TV, online, and print ads to drum up business, yet don't support Macs or OS X when you call them for tech support.

That smacks of false advertising to me...perhaps a little Mac-user class-action lawsuit might shake them up?

In fact, I hope Apple includes a clause in their iPhone deal with Rogers that stipulates they can't have access to the device unless they start supporting Macs just as well as PCs running Windows.

My two cents.
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Aluminum MacBook; Black MacBook; Mac mini; 2 x iPhone 3G; Time Capsule, iPod Touch and a few other iPods kicking around.
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Aluminum MacBook; Black MacBook; Mac mini; 2 x iPhone 3G; Time Capsule, iPod Touch and a few other iPods kicking around.
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post #19 of 46
Don't be mad at AppleInsider, I called Rogers and a customer service supervisor has informed me that the information on the website is incorrect and they are in the process of trying to get it corrected.

I posted about my experience on the phone with them on my blog and have included screenshots that support what AppleInsider had reported. You can read all about it (and view the screenshots) here: Rogers new $20 unlimited mobile browsing plan an error?

AppleInsider, you might want to post another update.
post #20 of 46
Wow, absolutely unreal. This borders on bait and switch if you haven't read the fine print below the plans:

Quote:
* Plan includes unlimited on-device mobile browsing only. Plan is available on select phones only (PDAs such as Blackberry or Windows Mobile devices, PC cards and non-Rogers certified devices are not eligible). Data usage incurred on ineligible devices, incurred while tethering (using device as wireless modem for laptop) or incurred using non-Rogers (3rd party) applications downloaded to your device will be subject to pay-per-use charges of 5 cents/KB.
Purchases limited to eligible wireless essentials which are not already included in existing Value Packs.
Discount will not apply if your Value Pack subscription is cancelled.

Imagine someone with a Blackberry or Windows Mobile device wanting to browse while not needing to have their wages garnished by Rogers. Rogers' limiting and controlling monopoly on GSM data is beyond disgusting.
post #21 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by VertiGoGo View Post

As an aside, what really pisses me off about Rogers is how they include Macs or pics of Mac hardware (like the Apple Key, keyboard, iMac) in their TV, online, and print ads to drum up business, yet don't support Macs or OS X when you call them for tech support.

Odd, I've been a Mac user longer than I've had Rogers Hi-speed internet. I could have sworn they support Macs.

1) When I first bought hi-speed (back in 2000), they came to my apartment, hooked up the modem and made sure it worked on my Mac.

2) The manuals (again circa 2000) included pages on setting up the software and debugging using a Mac. Notably, what required several pages for Windows, required only a few for a Mac - which I think was running MacOS 8 or 9? And this was in the dark days when Mac marketshare was dying a painful slow death.

3) When I had troubles with my modem getting a signal, I called customer support. They asked what OS I was running (then OS X). They stepped me through the Network Utilities app to check the connection. I have memories of the rep turning to the Mac service page of his manual, looking at what it offered and saying "wow, this does everything".

So what makes you say they DON'T support Macs?
post #22 of 46
Here's hoping the rumours about Telus migrating to GSM pan out.
post #23 of 46
Just spoke to Rogers about adding this to my account. They told me that you can only browse Rogers-branded sites like their music store. Non-rogers sites and/or e-mail still only get 5MB of download included in the pack and then 5 cents per KB or $51.20 per megabyte (.05 * 1024). Totally useless for me and I suspect almost everyone else!

I've been using an unlocked iPhone on Rogers since September now and I was hoping to finally be able to turn on Edge (I've had it turned off at all times thus far) but alas no luck yet. I guess I'll till have to hunt for free wireless networks which are becoming more and more difficult to find nowadays.
post #24 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmas View Post

Here's hoping the rumours about Telus migrating to GSM pan out.

That won't happen till 4G so it will be a few years before we see that.
post #25 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jhayman View Post

Odd, I've been a Mac user longer than I've had Rogers Hi-speed internet. I could have sworn they support Macs.

1) When I first bought hi-speed (back in 2000), they came to my apartment, hooked up the modem and made sure it worked on my Mac.

2) The manuals (again circa 2000) included pages on setting up the software and debugging using a Mac. Notably, what required several pages for Windows, required only a few for a Mac - which I think was running MacOS 8 or 9? And this was in the dark days when Mac marketshare was dying a painful slow death.

3) When I had troubles with my modem getting a signal, I called customer support. They asked what OS I was running (then OS X). They stepped me through the Network Utilities app to check the connection. I have memories of the rep turning to the Mac service page of his manual, looking at what it offered and saying "wow, this does everything".

So what makes you say they DON'T support Macs?

Then you're a fortunate individual. I've been with Rogers for my high speed service since 2001 and have called a number of times for assistance with issues affecting my modem or service. On at least three occasions (the most recent was 6 months ago) the agent I dealt with told me, and I quote, "Oh, Mac. We don't support that."

I've never spoken with an agent that could walk me through System Prefs or anything else to do with OS X. I'm glad you have had success with them, but I have not.

I guess we can add "terrible inconsistency of service" to the many things I don't like about Rogers (aside from over-priced service). ;-)
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Aluminum MacBook; Black MacBook; Mac mini; 2 x iPhone 3G; Time Capsule, iPod Touch and a few other iPods kicking around.
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Aluminum MacBook; Black MacBook; Mac mini; 2 x iPhone 3G; Time Capsule, iPod Touch and a few other iPods kicking around.
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post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by aestival View Post

If the Canadian telecoms spent on development even a fraction of the time they spend worrying about disabling phones and crippling features, then Canada would be far better off. I'm not holding my breath, since I currently pay Rogers $50/month for unlimited wireless, just not on cellphone frequencies -- they clearly don't give a damn about the consumers, and that certainly includes not wanting to deal with Apple (who, oddly enough, actually seem to care about consumer goodwill -- go figure!)

I wouldn't go so far as to say that Apple is about consumer goodwill. What I would say about them is that they actually have someone with a real passion for technology and a vision shaping the direction of their company. Someone who manages to balance profitability with research and innovation.

As opposed to having anonymous shareholders who could care less about the actual experience of the product, and whether anything is actually moving forward, as long as there are record profits because there's no real alternative for consumers.

If only the Canadian market were big enough for service providers from other countries to care about, there'd be a huge shakeup. I'm starting to seriously think about joining FON. It seems to be to only way to fight the wireless service providers at this point.
 
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post #27 of 46
This plan is horrible!

It is terribly restricted. You cannot use it with Blackberries, Windows Mobile devices or iPhones?!? What is the point?!

Nice try Rogers, back to the drawing board.
post #28 of 46
How there has never been any Government investigation into the anti-competitive nature of Canadian data rates, how our politicians and regulatory agencies are not utterly humiliated by the worse-than-third-world communication standards puked over Canadians, and how each and every user doesn't raise bloody murder online, in writing, and in statement to the CRTC (or whomever has regulatory authority) is beyond me.

(Not even mentioning how much money Rogers would make if they really did offer a $20 (or whatever competitively priced) unlimited internet access package -- have they never heard of volume pricing or economy of scale? 100 desperate corp Crackberry accounts @$200 is far, far less than thousands upon thousands of regular consumers @$20. Is everybody chasing the prosumer market but Rogers??)
post #29 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by telusman View Post

I'm *very* tempted to buy a 16gb iPhone and break it just so I can use it on Fido up here in Canada. I'd switch to Rogers if they had a decent iPhone package... Now to sound like an petulant child, I want, I want, I want.

I'm in the same boat, I would have broken an iphone for fido use already but I haven't had time to dip down to buffalo since the iphone launched. But I would leave fido for rogers (even though they're the same damn thing), if rogers became competitive.
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post #30 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by gigi View Post

Tired to wait, this is another example that we need more competition here in Canada. They complaints about Quebécor (videotron) want a network to offer the best technology in mobile cell phone but they don't want to offer good rate!

May of this year will be the month of the CRTC who will selling some new antenna for videotron, YESSS come videotron and fight those big sleeping company.

Videotron dream to offer the iPhone here, but they need to win the auction in May first and after that built there own network hmmmm, not before 2009.

http://www.avenirdusansfil.ca/home

I think we are looking at longer than 2009...it's not like Videotron, MTS Allstream or any other "emerging" carrier will have the infrastructure right away. And it's not like the big 3 will "play nice" and give up tower space. Rogers will still have us by the 2G GSM / 3G HSPDA nutsack for a while.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmas View Post

Here's hoping the rumours about Telus migrating to GSM pan out.

It looks like they may start with some kind of hybrid CDMA / UMTS network...this allows them to keep their current customer base and be ready to move to the eventual LTE type network.

BTW, did you know Telus unlimited browsing is only to their preferred websites?

I'm interested in what stipulations the Bell unlimited plan has.
post #31 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by rener View Post

I don't know who I'm more angry with:

AppleInsider for the moronic reporting that got my hopes up.

Rogers for the continued, non-competitive business practices that dashed my hopes.

Or me, for still having hopes.

Thanks, data-rate-tards!

be mad at the CRTC! that's where i'm channelling my hate right now... lol
post #32 of 46
Sounds like a 419 scam to me...
post #33 of 46
Don't Trust Rogers
post #34 of 46
Excuse me for my ignorance but there is something I don't understand here. Why having to browse internet using their network? I mean, iphone doesn't have wifi connectivity like ipod touch has? That is what I love from my touch, being able to connect to my wireless router at home and browse internet.
post #35 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by finalcut View Post

Excuse me for my ignorance but there is something I don't understand here. Why having to browse internet using their network?.

Because sometimes people actually leave their home (and need to look up information while they're not at home).
 
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post #36 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by rener View Post

How there has never been any Government investigation into the anti-competitive nature of Canadian data rates, how our politicians and regulatory agencies are not utterly humiliated by the worse-than-third-world communication standards puked over Canadians, and how each and every user doesn't raise bloody murder online, in writing, and in statement to the CRTC (or whomever has regulatory authority) is beyond me.

(Not even mentioning how much money Rogers would make if they really did offer a $20 (or whatever competitively priced) unlimited internet access package -- have they never heard of volume pricing or economy of scale? 100 desperate corp Crackberry accounts @$200 is far, far less than thousands upon thousands of regular consumers @$20. Is everybody chasing the prosumer market but Rogers??)


Amen to that, brother! (or sister) I couldn't have said it better myself. I have a secret desire that some genius hacker (who is also a champion for competition) will hack the Rogers network and bring it to a screeching halt until they offer an unlimited data plan that can be used by iPhones. Rogers is desperately clinging to the fat profit margins of business users who need wireless data access. Its pathetic and I hope they burn for it.
post #37 of 46
$20 for unlimited WAP BROWSING? That's ****** TEXT ONLY 1993 SHIT!

THE WORST DEAL EVER. IS ROGERS LIVING IN THE 1980's? WTF?

What the hell is going on with our neighbors to the north??? Canada even has a government agency that is responsible for competition in telecommunications, right??
You guys need to REVOLT against Rogers and Cancel ALL YOUR ACCOUNTS!
post #38 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by winterspan View Post

$20 for unlimited WAP BROWSING? That's ****** TEXT ONLY 1993 SHIT!

THE WORST DEAL EVER. IS ROGERS LIVING IN THE 1980's? WTF?

What the hell is going on with our neighbors to the north??? Canada even has a government agency that is responsible for competition in telecommunications, right??
You guys need to REVOLT against Rogers and Cancel ALL YOUR ACCOUNTS!

I canceled my Rogers account three months ago. They were bleeding me dry... crap customer service... sick and tired of the BS, I decided to pay the cancellation fee and get the hell out. I don't have a cell phone anymore and I'm doing just fine. I refuse to go back until I see fairer pricing. Right now it's a bald-faced rip-off... and what's with these stupid contracts forcing us to use their - and only their - overpriced, over-hyped crummy product for 2-3 years? What a scam.
post #39 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by jhayman View Post

Odd, I've been a Mac user longer than I've had Rogers Hi-speed internet. I could have sworn they support Macs.

1) When I first bought hi-speed (back in 2000), they came to my apartment, hooked up the modem and made sure it worked on my Mac.

2) The manuals (again circa 2000) included pages on setting up the software and debugging using a Mac. Notably, what required several pages for Windows, required only a few for a Mac - which I think was running MacOS 8 or 9? And this was in the dark days when Mac marketshare was dying a painful slow death.

3) When I had troubles with my modem getting a signal, I called customer support. They asked what OS I was running (then OS X). They stepped me through the Network Utilities app to check the connection. I have memories of the rep turning to the Mac service page of his manual, looking at what it offered and saying "wow, this does everything".

So what makes you say they DON'T support Macs?

I've been with Rogers since they started (rogers@home) and had a mac since day 1 (1984). Rogers will provide limited tech support when you call. The guy opens his book and follows the instructions under the mac tab. They provide no product support for macs - no free norton anti-virus; you can't use their music service, or any other software they supply. No big deal because most of it is junk anyway.

As for the iPhone - I talked to a rep at the rogers store yesterday and he told me one problem is that Apple wants royalties on every account. They want a cut of every monthly bill. I don't know if there is any truth to this but we have two cheapskate companied battling over money - go figure - oh and who cares about the customers.

I guess Rogers supports Apple as much as Apple supports Canada. They've had movies on iTunes for ages - we recently got crappy reruns of shows nobody watched in the first place. Or hockey games that nobody cares about (carolina vs tampa - if they wanted to sell videos put on old coach's corner clips). Where are the movies and new rentals. Why would anyone in Canada buy an appleTV. The only content would be pirated movies or copied rentals. And to top it off we still pay more for computers even though our money is now equal!

That's why I own stock in both apple and rogers (as well as a bank and oil companies). If you are willing to screw your customers for a buck and you're the only game in town, you'll always make money!
post #40 of 46
latest rumour i've heard is that the iphone could be coming to rogers on march 18th as they are apparently set to release some new data plans on that day. it is a tuesday for what it's worth.

i won't hold my breath.
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