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iPhone may not come to Canada

updated 03:25 pm EDT, Wed April 4, 2007

iPhone May Not Hit Canada

Suggestions that the iPhone will release on Rogers Wireless in Canada are only speculative, the cell provider said today. Contradicting an earlier e-mail the company reportedly sent early this year, Rogers corporate communications head Odette Coleman told journalists that no announcements had been made, and that most of what had been heard was conjecture.

"Everything in the media has been speculations to this point," Colemain said. "The only fact is that we are the only GSM carrier in Canada. That's the only fact."

Apple Canada has so far been unavailable for comment.

Unlike Europe or the US, where Apple had the choice of siding with multiple GSM cellphone providers such as T-Mobile or its eventual choice AT&T, Canada's industry is mostly composed of incompatible CDMA networks from Bell Canada and Telus. Rogers and its sub-brand Fido would represent Apple's only choice should it decide to sell the iPhone in the country.

Even so, Frost & Sullivan research analyst Ronald Gruia has warned that Rogers may not have the incentive to carry the device and may have its own reasons to delay the launch. The provider already has existing contracts to sell large volumes of music phones from Motorola and Sony-Ericsson that would likely be hurt by the introduction of the iPhone as another choice.

The Canadian firm may also choose to wait until it feels the time is right, Gruia said. Rogers just this week introduced its VISION 3G wireless network for video messaging and may decide to postpone launching Apple's handset on its services until the device can support the faster HSDPA mobile Internet access standard, which is set to eventually replace the legacy "2.5G" EDGE standard which dominates Rogers today and is currently the only choice for cellular Internet using the iPhone. Such a phone may not be ready until as many as two years from now, the analyst said.

Rogers may also wait to see if the cellphone's popularity in the US offsets its $499 minimum price. "Rogers may wait to see how well it does in the U.S.," Gruia noted. "If this thing really takes off and has tremendous uptake in the U.S., maybe we'll see it here in time for Christmas."

Despite these potential delays, he adds, the carrier has most likely tested the iPhone in Canada and may see the phone available unofficially for those who sign up for US accounts or successfully unlock the handset to use it natively on Rogers' network.

"You definitely will see the iPhone in Canada, but not necessarily being supported by Rogers -- that's definite," Gruia said.

by MacNN Staff




  1. bleee

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Canada Cell providers SUK

    Bottom line is Canadian cellular providers suck, they provide absoutly horrible service and charge outragous prices for data and voice plans. The only reason they get away with it is that there isn't any competition. We have 3 carriers here used to be 4 until one got bought out WHY on earth the CRTC allows that is beyond me. Of course both the carriers all use different technology 2 are CDMA and the other is GSM.

  1. Eug

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Rogers told me they would

    Back in January I specifically asked Rogers this question, and they confirmed they ARE getting the iPhone.

    I wonder if Rogers is changing it's mind now.

  1. Warrenpeace

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Rogers is making sht up

    I heard through someone at Apple Canada that Rogers never had any agreement, but just assumed and said they'd be getting the iPhone 'cause they want to get it. And they're the only GSM company. I think they pissed off Apple by opening their big mouths.

    I'm still hoping that somehow an unlocked unit gets sold online or through some store and I can get one. Or get a friend in the U.S. to get one for me and use a hack or something. I don't necessarily need the data plan and would be happy to use it as a phone and PDA.

    And I agree the CRTC sucks. They never do anything and when they do make a decision, it's after they've waited for the U.S. to come to a decision and then they go along. Really though, it's no different than any other part of government and it's staff are no less self-serving.

  1. Ben Lawson

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Can't... breathe...

    Can't... breathe... Room... spinning... Vision... fading... Need.... iPhone...

    Seriously, No iPhone in Canada would suck. But then Rogers sucks, so it would not be a surprise.

  1. ice_cold_irony

    Joined: Dec 1969



    That about sums it up. I hate everything...

  1. jasonh1234

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Ok! That's it.

  1. Sprocket

    Joined: Dec 1969


    On the other hand . . .

    if jerk-wad Rogers has too many music & TV phones as they pander to the college set, they could introduce the iPhone through their 'sub' company, Fido, who has a more enlightened and mature audience (or so the research says) who would love this sort of thing and have the finances to afford it (again with the research).

    I agree with the above posters: In general, Canadian cellular providers suck AND blow as does the CRTC.

  1. Visnaut

    Joined: Dec 1969


    No surprise here

    I saw this coming. First of all, the only source "confirmation" of Rogers carrying the iPhone I ever found was some dude's blog, hardly a solid source.

    Secondly, I think international adoption of the iPhone is going to follow the same progression as the iTunes store:

    First it was available exclusively in the U.S. for over a year, and where did it go next? Not its closest neighbour to the north, no, it went to UK/Europe. Only six months after was it introduced in Canada.

    Let's face it, Apple will take the iPhone where it stands the most to gain. And clearly after the U.S. market, it's Europe again.

    I doubt we'll even see the iPhone officially sold in Canada until late 2008.

  1. hayesk

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: no surprise here

    The iTMS has nothing to do with a phone as far as available is concerned. It took a long time because of negotiations with Canadian music distributors, not because Apple was being mean to Canadians.

    Rogers is saying there's no agreement because they don't want it to cannibalize sales of their current phones. They don't want people to stop buying phones to wait for the iPhone.

    I predict we'll see the iPhone in Canada before the end of the year.

  1. Tofino

    Joined: Dec 1969


    took a while

    >"Everything in the media has been speculations to this point," Colemain said.

    i'm surprised it took that long for somebody to finally point out that there was NO agreement. i seem to recall it was rogers itself that opened that can of worms. i predicted at the time that they'd get 'steved', just for being presumptious.

    then again i think everything's a conspiracy...

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