The Boy Genius report has dropped a couple of juicy gems in the last day or so for Canadians. First came the news that Rogers would offer $7/month unlimited browsing and next that we'd soon be able to get our hands on the Sony Ericsson K850. Finally a high end consumer phone with a reasonably priced data plan!
There are a lot of gotchas here, though. First, on the $7/month data plan, no smartphones or non-certified Rogers devices are eligible. The data plan is IMEI locked, so forget about the idea of buying a SIM and simply popping it into an unlocked N95, for instance. Secondly, the $7/month plan is browsing only. Want to use the video calling feature on that shiny new K850? $.25/minute. Video on demand? That's a different and extra subscription.
For now, video on the phone is on hold in Canada. If the carriers really wanted to grow it, they'd work out an open and interoperable plan that allowed calls between them, provide it to all capable handsets, and data would be priced reasonably.
Canada is the most wired and connected country in the world. Not only that, for the better part of the 20th century, the global center of communications innovation was in this country. When it comes to wireless though, the current carrier monopolies consistently serve up third rate service, plans and handsets.
Don't we have a right to expect better?