After vocal outrage by many, Rogers threw the voracious public a tempting carrot of 6GB-for-$30 data plan. This is actually a really decent price for a data plan - too bad I need to buy an iPhone and get locked in for three years to take advantage of this limited offer. And by the end of August to boot. In the end, I decided I'd sit this one out.
What stayed my hand is the knowledge that the Canadian cell phone market is prepping for a huge change - competition. New carriers are poised to enter within the next year given that the CRTC is auctioning off new bands of the wireless spectrum. Here's hoping for lower voice and data rates. Currently, the mobile space in Canada is a barren wasteland and a plethora of charts and comparisons show just how much our rates lag behind even some third-world countries. Given that we led the broadband internet charge, it makes me sad to see us so far behind on what I consider the next step of computing and the internet.
While that alone might not be enough to assuage my inner consumer cries, the thought of getting locked in for three years manages to effectively muffle it. For anyone who loves their gadgets, (me), they won't hold on to a phone for more than two, let alone three, cycles before wanting to scratch their upgrade itch. Considering also that Apple has already released two generations of the iPhone in six months, (with the 3G being an improvement, but not must-buy), given their record, at least two more iterations will pass you by before you see the end of your contractual tunnel.
However, despite all the people stating their intent to not buy an iPhone, and some going so far as to cancel their Rogers accounts to manifest their discontent, CBC reports that stocks are low all over. Some say that this perhaps reinforces the rumor that Apple redirected shipments to Europe, but what caught my attention was the part about how only new customers being welcomed to buy. At the Metro Square location in Markham, Vincent Lee was second in line. After two people were let in, one a new customer, the other an upgrade, he was told "We're all sold out of upgrades, but we have new activations." I can only assume Rogers is trying to maintain the current public opinion of screwing long-time customers.
So, with Rogers cashing in and locking people down to ride out the next rocky two years on an iPhone-inflated high, I've declined to participate and will bide my time and see how it all shakes out. For those of you armed with your new toy, (I'll have to gadget-whore vicariously through you all), how's nowtoronto.com look for you guys? I'm told it should render pretty well and that our movie times app works too. If you're strolling by the office, please stop by and show it off to me. I promise not to drool on it. Much.