Rogers bows to demands, cuts iPhone data plan cost
CTV.ca News Staff
Published Wednesday, July 9, 2008 6:12PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, May 18, 2012 8:34PM EDT
Rogers Wireless has slashed the cost of using an iPhone in Canada following an outcry of customer complaints over the price of its data packages.
The company is launching the much-anticipated phone at six stores across the country on Friday. Customers who buy it before Aug. 31 will now be eligible for a six-gigabyte data plan for $30.
Rogers representatives say six gigabytes will allow users to visit 36,000 Web pages, send or receive more than 157,000 emails or watch almost 6,300 minutes of YouTube videos each month.
The rate covers only Web browsing, emails and video, so phone service costs will be tacked on top of the $30.
The package is notably more economical than those included in the set of iPhone plans Rogers released earlier this month. The cheapest plan under that structure includes 400 megabytes of data, 150 minutes of weekday talk time and unlimited evenings and weekends for $60 per month plus fees and taxes.
"In other countries a lot of companies are offering unlimited data plans," CTV technology expert Kris Abel told Newsnet on Wednesday. "(Rogers' iPhone plans) really outraged a lot of people because they were thought to be too excessively high."
Outraged techies posted an online petition protesting Rogers' rates shortly after their release. More than 57,000 potential customers added their names, demanding lower prices and protesting Rogers' requirement that users sign a three-year service contract.
"That, more than the high prices, is the real sticking point," said Abel, noting some users upgrade their phones much more often than every three years. "Three years is a serious commitment. We don't know when the next iPhone is going to launch."
Rogers' iPhone customers will have a choice between the promotional rate and existing voice and smartphone data plans.
As part of an early morning launch event, the phone will go on sale at 8 a.m. this Friday at six select Rogers Plus stores and one Fido Store in Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Halifax, Calgary and Vancouver. The phone will then be available at most Rogers retails stores and select authorized stores during regular hours. The phone is not being sold at Apple Canada retail outlets.
With files from The Canadian Press