Rogers Lied – HSDPA Modems and Data Plans

Back in July, shortly after the iPhone launch I was checking out Rogers’ web site. I looked at their HSDPA data plans and modems. While there I noticed that the promotional 30.00/mth for 6GB plan was shown as listed for the HSDPA cards and Modems. I called the Rogers number on the site and confirmed this with the rep in not one but two phone calls. I went ahead and ordered the modem. While I don’t do a lot of travelling around I thought it was a reasonable price for a service and comparable to what was available in the US for a Data Plan. I ordered the modem and was told I would have it the next day. Well the modem never showed up.

I tried calling the rep I was dealing with and found out he was on vacation so I tracked my order and learned that these USB modems were out of stock. Last week I called the rep again (August 6th) and was told that the modems were back ordered and that they were due any day. On the 7th of August I received a call that the modem was in and that it would be here on the 8th.

Sure enough on the morning of the 8th, my UPS driver showed up with the package. I was just heading out of town so I left the modem behind till I got back.

Today I was checking something on the billing on my wife’s Blackberry. Seems there was a fairly large overage plan on her phone and I wanted to find out about it. Turns out they had only applied the 15.00 1.5 MB plan to her phone and not the 15.00 unlimited email only plan to her phone. As a result there was a 22 or so dollar overage charge. I have since rectified this problem. While I was on the phone with the rep I was checking out their Blackberry plans and noticed that there was a change to their website. They had a couple of asterisks beside the 30.00 6GB plan saying that it was not available on the PC Connect cards.

I had the rep check the account for my new Modem and sure enough it had a 50.00/500MB data plan on it. Useless!!!!! I immediately called my rep and had him check it and yes the 30.00 plan was not there. I have now cancelled the order (I never used the modem at all) and will be sending it back. If I really needed this type of service I could always use the Rogers Portable Internet Service although it is not truly mobile.

Once again the Canadian third world data plans are in effect! My guess is that a lot of people had the same idea that I had and that Rogers realized their over site on not flagging the site saying it was not available on the High Speed cards.  The existing data plans for high speed cards in Canada are ridiculous and they are not at all worth the cost of owning one.

I am being told that the 30.00 plan should be available with the Blackberry Bold on it’s release. So if this is true then I could always tether my Blackberry, however knowing Rogers that plan will not work with a BES server and it will be useless for me. If that is the case I may have to breakdown and buy an iPhone to get the exchange support in the data plan. I guess I could learn to live with the terrible iPhone keyboard.

While on the subject I also got some clarification into the Rogers 15.00 unlimited email plan. The unlimited plan only includes email. If you do any web surfing or use other applications (Google Calendar Sync for example) they charge you .05 per KB. There is a plan that is 30.00 monthly that covers 300 MB of email and data, although my guess is that this would not work with BES either.

Unfortunately there is really no difference between any of the Canadian Wireless companies at this time and they will continue to pull money out of your pocket.

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