Rogers & bandwidth

Monday, January 18th, 2010

A quick note about Rogers bandwidth restrictions. Here’s what you get:

Rogers bandwidth rates as of January 2010
kbps down kbps up GB cap effective
kbps
cap as % of
bandwidth
Ultra-Lite 500 256 2 6.1 1.22%
Lite 3000 256 25 76 2.53%
Express 10000 512 60 182.4 1.82%
Extreme 10000 1000 95 288.8 2.89%
Extreme Plus 25000 1000 125 380 1.52%
Ultimate 50000 2000 175 558.4 1.12%

Now if you’re using Tek Savvy, and use their unlimited package, you don’t quite get 100% in that last column, but you get a damned site more than you do with Rogers or Bell and their hellish bandwidth caps.

They say you get what you pay for. With Bell & Rogers you get a whole lot less than you do with other providers..

Rogers has new shared family data plan

Friday, June 5th, 2009
Rogers family data plan

iPhone users are currently paying $30 for voice + $40 for data = $70/month,
so for two smartphone users sharing one Rogers bill, this could save $50.

This doesn’t includes all the service charges, 911 fees, and postage and handling that Rogers charges, which probably whittles the real savings down to 52ยข or something. :-/

It shows up at the top of the
search results for “family data plan”,
but Rogers isn’t very rigorous about links into their site, so YMMV.

More Rogers phone news

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

Apparently Rogers
has revived the $30 for 6 GB data plan, originally offered at iPhone launch.
Also, they’ve
added MMS to the value pack while also increasing its cost from $15 to $20.

On top of all this, it is expected that Rogers will announce
a new high-capacity data plan for phones/mobile that will top out at 15 GB/month for $150. Yikes!

It’s phone season

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009
HTC Android phone
HTC Android phone – click for larger

Rogers
has announced
[1]
[2]
availability of the HTC Dream and HTC Magic phones, both running Google’s Android OS, which is not dissimilar to the iPhone’s OS.

The major concern with the previous Android phone, the G1, was the battery life.
It would last an hour.
Apparently this is no longer such an issue.
According to
ZDNet Asia:

Inevitably the connected nature of many of the HTC Magic’s applications means that you’ll push the battery pretty hard. The quoted life is up to 7.5 hours of talk and 420 hours on standby. We found we needed to charge the battery every day at first, but after the initial burst of heavy use this settled down to a couple of days between charges.

The phones cost the same – $150 – and Rogers offers a $45/month, 500 MB data plan.
Quite a bit less data than the 6 GB plan early iPhone users are currently enjoying.

Another phone on the horizon is the
Nokia N97.

4G networks + net-enabled-device = death of traditional cell phones

Friday, May 1st, 2009
verizon
Verizon LTE: 50 Mbps

On this week’s MacBreak they talked abour the much-rumoured Apple tablet (iPadd?).
But then they mentioned something I haven’t been keeping track of very much:
the next generation of wireless internet technology: 4G.

It’s fast.
Like 50 Mbps fast.
Theoretically 100 Mbps/50 Mbps down/up.
That’s pretty frickin’ fast.

Verizon is calling it “LTE” for “Long Term Evolution”,
and the rumours have Apple and Verizon talking about using LTE in the tablet.

Huh.

That got me thinking about how Rogers and Bell up here in Canada
really could use a good kick in the pants.
The whole cell phone industry is nickel and diming their customers to death.
What we need is someone to come along and say “here’s 50 Mbps and no cap — have fun”.
I would drop cell coverage and move to Skype in an instant.
Hell, I could get rid of my home internet connection too and get one of these instead.
With those speeds, they could deliver digital TV as well.

globalive yak

There is a player that could deliver this kick, and it’s
Globalive,
better known as the provider of Yak.
TMCnet describes Globalive’s strategy a month ago (Mar 17th):

New cellphone player Globalive will hire more than 1,000 employees as it works to become a major wireless player in Canada, aiming to take away customers not only from Rogers (TSX:RCI.B), Telus (TSX:T) and Bell (TSX:BCE) but also their discount brands.

Globalive Wireless Management Corp. isn’t going to position itself only as a discount cellphone player where there’s already competition, CEO Anthony Lacavera said Monday.

“Really, we’re going to be split into two brands,” Lacavera said from Toronto.

Globalive is looking to be Canada’s fourth major wireless carrier, with a national presence except for the province of Quebec.

Lacavera said that means fighting the three established cellphone players on two fronts.

One brand will give Globalive’s Yak long-distance and Internet customers the opportunity to have cellphones, taking on Rogers’ Fido, Telus’ Koodoo and Bell’s Solo discount brands.

The other higher-end brand will take on Rogers, Bell and Telus with mobile phones, including smartphones, with more features and fixed price plans with no contracts or limited contracts, he said. Its name and launch are still being worked out.

“At the end of the day, it’s easier for us to have a two-pronged strategy because we already have the Yak brand in the marketplace with customers.” Toronto-based Globalive said it services more than a million customers with brands such as Yak, Canopco and OneConnect.

While the weak economy is a concern for Globalive, Lacavera said it’s “monitoring” competitors Rogers, Telus and Bell even more closely.

Globalive plans to have its wireless network up and running in Toronto and Vancouver with fixed price plans around Christmas, Lacavera said, with other areas coming into service in 2010.

Ottawa held an auction last spring for radio waves over which cellphone networks to create more competition and more choices for consumers in the mobile phone industry, currently dominated by the big three players.

Globalive spent more than $442 million for spectrum in the auction which raised about $4 billion for the federal government’s coffers.

Analyst Troy Crandall said the discount end of the market is full.

“Everybody has been going after this lower-end market,” said Crandall of MacDougall, MacDougall and MacTier in Montreal.

“So who’s left? I guess the people who can’t afford to spend $15 a month,” he said, referring to Rogers Fido, which has plans from $15 and no system-access fee.

Globalive is one new entrant, along with regional networks being planned by Montreal-based Quebecor (TSX:QBR.B) through its Videotron cable unit and Toronto-based Public Mobile, which was born out of BMV Holdings.

Shaw Communications (TSX:SJR.B), which owns western Canada’s largest cable company, also bought spectrum but hasn’t announced plans for a wireless network.

Analyst Mark Goldberg said it’s still not clear what Shaw and Toronto-based DAVE Wireless will do with the spectrum they purchased, noting that new wireless players have come forward and the three established players have said they need it to increase capacity.

“DAVE and Shaw have written cheques and they’re sitting on an asset which is spectrum and it’s an expensive asset,” said Goldberg of Toronto-area Mark Goldberg and Associates. “I think people want to know when they’re going to make use of the asset.” Globalive said Monday it has officially been issued its wireless spectrum licences from Industry Canada and will make a significant investment in its network.

Lacavera said Globalive will hire a couple of hundred people to build its network, 300 to 400 people for its call centre in Windsor, Ont., where it already has 100 employees to support its Yak customers. The balance of the employees will be in support, billing, marketing and management.

Globalive has about 300 employees and Globalive Wireless has 70, he said.

Rogers 3G Internet USB Dongle

Monday, November 24th, 2008

My Mom lives on Wolfe Island.
She has no access to DSL (her phone lines are low quality) or cable.
Until recently, we had been considering getting her Rogers’ WiMax solution, which would have given her ~2Mbps for about $50/month.

When we called to order it over the weekend, however, the sales agent told us about the USB thingee internet solution.
I’d seen ads, and assumed it was simply WiMax on a USB dongle, which would be inappropriate for my Mom, since the inside-antenna WiMax solution wouldn’t work for her (poor signal).
We were going to go for the higher-startup-cost, outdoor antenna solution.

But no, as it turns out this USB thingee uses the 3G network for internet.
This is good news since I noticed that my iPhone was getting 5 bars at my Mom’s place.

It turns out the USB dongle has a SIM card in it.
Interesting!
So if I one could get their hands on a USB dongle, it might be possible to move an iPhone SIM into it and plug it in to the USB port on a laptop for unfettered internet with a 6 GB/month cap!

Update: apparently Rogers is calling it the Rocket.


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