Bad News: Rogers Pushes Back Hardware Upgrade Eligibility To 30 Months

Rogers really had me fooled for a while. For about the last 12 months, they have managed to stay out of the negative light and basically stopped changing their policies for the worse. Well, I guess they just couldn’t wait any longer to make some horrible changes.

Effective today, Rogers is changing their hardware upgrade (HUP) eligibility to 30 months. In other words, customers will be eligible for new device (promotional) pricing at month 30 since their initial activation or upgrade.

So now customers must wait until the 30th month in their 3-year contract to receive a new device at promotional pricing.

It is worth pointing out that Rogers used to have HUP eligibility at 12 months, where customers could get a discounted or promotional priced handset. About two years ago, the company bumped that up to 24 months and now even further to 30 months. It is only a matter of time before it is one device per 3 year contract.

For comparison, Fido has had their HUP eligibility at 30 months for many years, but Fido also has Fido Dollars, which many Fido customers can use to essentially get a free device (iPhone 4).

But fear not! Rogers has some answers to your most asked questions:

FAQ’s

Q: I’ve been waiting months to get the (recently launched device) and now I can’t because I’m not eligible. Why did the HUP policy change?

A: We’ve recently made some changes to the Hardware Upgrade program that reflect the higher cost and advanced functionality of today’s feature phones and smartphones. These changes ensure our customers can continue to upgrade to the newest devices. We constantly review our plans and policies so that we can continue to offer the best devices at the best value to all of our customers in a timely manner.

Q: Why are you doing this without any notice to customers?
A:
Device pricing, Hardware Upgrade policies and eligibility are promotional in nature. Therefore, like all promotions, the upgrade program is subject to change and may be cancelled at any time. Hardware upgrade pricing and policy cannot be guaranteed beyond the time of initial quotation..

Q: How will customers be notified of these HUP changes?
A:
Customers who want to determine their device eligibility should visit a Rogers retail location or go to Rogers.com

As a note, I was hardly impressed with the previous answers.

Now it is worth noting that the recent iPhone 4 promotional program is still around until the end of 2010. So if you are with Rogers or Fido, the chances are still very good that you will get an iPhone 4 at promotional pricing.

However, for everyone else (and for iPhone devices in January 2011), 30 months is your new hardware upgrade eligibility date.

Thoughts?

Reports on iPhone news, reviews apps and accessories. Also an armed ninja with an iPhone 4S.

  • YuriyVaskiv

    But we will still be able to get early upgrade eligibility in summer 2011 for a new iphone! (i hope as my iphone 4 got stolen)

  • Anonymous

    This is a stupid change. I would personally be fine paying a higher price for a smartphone every 2yrs. Even if the iPhone 4 was priced at $300 for a 3yr contract I would of still got it, and I am sure many others would of as well.

    They are already charging us at least $50/month to operate the thing anyways!

    With a fragile device like an iPhone 4, and technology changing so much this a terrible change.
    But one I saw coming since Fido changed their policy……

  • JD

    Fuck you Rogers.

  • Anybody know what the policies at Telus or Bell are?

  • Anonymous

    Are you fucking kidding?!?! I am so pissed I just resigned with those crooks. Once i can I’m done with them. My dad was smart and left to bell. Dammit

  • FragilityG4

    Are you really surprised? They have an oligopoly that the government protects with their outdated foreign policy act … I say screw it! These Canadian companies have done nothing but rip us off … We need foreign competition …

  • Anonymous

    Bell is pretty much the same hup policy, and don’t worry Retetention can get you a new phone ever year I upgraded from the 3G to the 3GS to the 4 every year at new pricing and admin fee waived

  • TK

    So in a odd way is Rogers promoting that buying the new iPhone at full price is a better choice all around for their customers?

    *

  • Sparky

    The promotional pricing ended on Sept 30. I called retention to get a better plan and said I had to resign so I said in that case I want the iPhone 4. They said no. I had to wait for the 24 months (now 30). So I said F them and bought one unlocked from Apple. I’m keeping my old plan until I can leave them or get a better plan than $20 off as they offered me. I’ve been a customer for over three years. I had two lines activated and my monthly bills were at least $250+. I even had some as high as $500 (don’t ask). That’s how they treat their customers. I wish Wind Mobile had gsm. 🙁

  • Munky

    This would mean something to us iPhone users if they didn’t offer early upgrades each year for iPhones. In all likelihood, that promotion will return for future releases as it has done for the past 2 years.

  • Sparky

    Oh and they said it had ended on Sept 30 so I had to buy the phone at full price (not even one dollar discount). Why pay full price for a locked phone???

  • Sparky

    Oh and they said it had ended on Sept 30 so I had to buy the phone at full price (not even one dollar discount). Why pay full price for a locked phone???

  • Ex

    The promo was extended until end of 2010

  • Ex

    Promo was extended

  • xxJDxx

    A big step in the wrong direction.

    I thought that the purpose of cancellation fees was to

  • Aloombox

    What a bunch of bastards!!

  • PLAC3B0

    Can this change be used as a cancellation motive ? Since I switched to Rogers, I don’t stop see these kind of things that make me wanna go back to Telus who, at least, got a better 3G coverage in my hometown area! (Abitibi, Quebec)..

  • Ex

    Unfortunately no.

  • Sparky

    Ah, thanks for clearing that up. Oh well, I’m better off in the long run having an unlocked iPhone.

  • Ex

    Agreed.

  • bagofbricks

    I know people are saying the promotion has been extended but I just went through the HUP process and I spent at least 4 hours being passed around on the phone from department to department and NO the promotion was not extended as of yesterday. I was told the promotion ended on Sept. 30 and now I have to pay full price. My argument was that the stock availability for the iphone 4 should have extended the program. Finally after many hours of phone calls I got the upgrade for the promotional price but only after speaking to a manager.

  • RockinR

    What a Bunch of Thieves! Rogers, the Evil Empire!!

  • pastaman44

    There’s no way Rogers pushes the HUP all the way to three years, as that would allow people to switch carriers when they are buying a new phone. The point of offering them a new phone before their contract is up is that they can only get a new phone if they stick with Rogers.

    That’s negated if they start having longer than 3 year contracts, but I don’t see that happening either.

  • I will never own a locked phone again. I bought my iPhone 4 unlocked from Apple.

  • Threetone

    You know, the only thing that bother’s me about these 3 year contracts, and now, Roger’s 30 month upgrade policy, is the fact that sometimes cell phones just don’t last that long. Now, if they would increase their warranty period to cover an entire 30 month period, I wouldn’t be so pissed off.

  • Dave

    Disgusting! F@#KING DISGUSTING!! people do something about this! this is really F@#KED UP! we are already being ripped off! nowhere in the world is like CANADA, this should be illegal!

    we SHOULD do something about it!!!!!!!!!!!!!! because the F@#KING government doesn’t do anything for us accept generously taking our tax money!

  • bagofbricks

    called again today and they say no the promo is NOT extended

  • Ray

    it sure didn’t happened for me or my friends! i’m not sure what you are talking about! unless you know someone or you work there. if not be kind and give me that phone# that you called. because i’ve being ripped off big time! and I hardly believe its possible since i’m in my second year in to my contract.

  • For all those who do not take part in the iPhone HUP every year now have an extra reason to hold out those extra months. Let your contract laps, then lay it on the line “give me one hell of a retention plan, or I’m switching carriers” with wind mobile now here in BC (one opening up in surrey place actually ^_~.) there will be a lot more healthy competition, make Rogers sweat it out a little. Don’t ask them for service, ask them if they want you as a supporter and if so how bad? Let it reflect on my new retention plan please.

  • Est

    This is pathetic! We already pay the highest price in the world for cell phone service. Never though it could get any worse. Also contracts are 2 years everywhere else, not 3 like in Canada. This really sucks. And noone says or does anything about it. I hope the skype and line2 improve their voice quality so I can send Rogers to hell.

  • Est

    The law has to change. We really need foreign competition here. They will keep on ripping us off for ever if nobody does anything about this monopoly.

  • Ex

    The telephone tag you experienced is pretty standard. The promo has been extended but you essentially have to make your way to loyalties/retentions.

  • Est

    On the phone now switching to Bell

  • Est

    Apple is working on an iPhone that uses the same technology as wind mobile. Can’t wait for that! i will switch for sure.

  • Anonymous

    *sigh*

  • ward09

    Just for comparison, I checked out Vodafone UK to see what they had going on with the iPhone 4. I’m not sure what their hardware upgrade policy is, but their 18 month contracts were nothing to get excited about. After conversion, the iPhone 4 ranged from about $353 for a 16 gb model on their basic plan at $48 per month, to a free phone for signing on to a plan for $105 per month (with only 1 gb of data included, by the way).

    Check their plans out here: “http://shop.vodafone.co.uk/iphone/pay-monthly.html”

  • Kevin

    Outstanding! I bought a 3GS a year before the iPhone 4 was released so I guess I’ll now have to wait and get an iPhone 5 instead!! You have to love Robbers and their customer friendly policies.

  • Jbohn

    How long until Bellus changes their policies to match (if they don’t already)? Seems like one of them makes a change for the worse and eventually the others follow…

  • Anonymous

    rogers retentention number is 1(866)604-4248 and i had no one working there i actually been a customer for 5 years and was with fido and been with them for 2 years so i been a 7 year customer and i bring that up, and i always say im gonna cancel and go over to bell,i got all in ret plan as well, 350 day,my5,6pm evenings,1000 cdn ld min,unlimited incoming,cid.vm.2500 text,and 6gb data for 35.75 plus taxes 40.40 a month taxes in,the most recent one was calling tech support filling a network problem and esclation and they said it was my phone so i went and said send me a new one and i got the 4 and before that i got the xperia x10 but didnt like it so sent it back

  • bagofbricks

    I did eventuly get mine, when I got through to retentions, but was told they were making an exception and that the program did expire on the 30. Now they may have been just paying me lip service as my monthly bill is substantial and they would like to keep it that way.

  • CA

    wonderful… just wonderful. My phone recently started dropping calls, losing texts and having no signal probably an hr a day, and instead of only waiting another 2 months before I can upgrade, its 8 total…

  • maybe the HUP will become 3 yrs and the contracts become 5 years “to ensure our commitment to service excellence”

  • How these Canadian companies get away changing policies like this whenever they feel is beyond me. This is a classic bait and switch, when I first signed up with Rogers I was clearly told that this was one of the advantages of signing up with Rogers. I didn’t quality for the 3GS promo because they extended it out to 24 months, and if I had banked on getting it now, I would be out an iPhone 4 by another 4 months. I hate you Rogers, your untrustworthy and constantly changing policies are exactly the reason I bought my iPhone unlocked. You can shove any contract you may offer me up your big fat righteous ass, because I don’t trust your company will honor any agreement we have.

  • bkman

    Wow… that is a great plan. 6GB data is already $30. How do I get a plan like that? I’ve been with Rogers for a long time…over 10 years.

  • Anonymous

    I bought mine locked to Rogers. Reeeeeeally starting to regret that decision…

  • Happy

    As a Rogers customer I am sad I have to wait an extra 6 months. But being an ex-Telus customer, I ALWAYS had to wait 30 months to upgrade. Always – no questions asked.

    Rogers recently let us hardware upgrade at 18 months (instead of 24) – and this is not un-common. 4 of my friend’s also recently upgraded with 18 months or less into their contracts.

    Yes it sucks, wah wah wah. But everyone company is like this – and at least from what I have seen Rogers has a better track record of letting people upgrade early.

    I am still a happy Rogers customer, even if I have to wait an extra 6 months.

  • Confused Rogers Customer

    I have a question regarding my 3 Yr smartphone contract with Rogers.

    I upgraded to the iPhone 4 on Aug 28th on the Rogers HUP at a retail outlet. We signed an agreement of which the retail agent gave me a true copy of.

    Now when I was going through the fineprint later it said that the Early Cancellation Fee for my data plan is max $ 100 + Tax. I think the DECF for rogers was changed to $ 200 + TAX about a year back but yet the contract I got stated $ 100. Could it be that the hardcopy contract I have is from an older lot of Rogers stationary?

    Will Rogers honor the written contract I have or the standard DECF policy for everyone else?

    BTW the contract was signed by me but the Rogers agent forgot to sign on this section.

    Please advise.

    Thanks!

  • Ex

    Data cancelation fee with Rogers:

    The greater of $100.00, minimum $25 at $5/month for months remaining in the term.

    Examples:

    Cancel with 2 months left: you pay $25

    Cancel with 35 months left: you pay $100

    Cancel with 8 months left: you pay $40 ($5*8 months)

  • j4k3n

    Yeah, it is very frustating and I regret my decision to not had bought an unlocked one beside of this crappy locked phone. But I am very satisfied with the iphone 4, of course. Looks like I’ll jailbroke it soon to have it unlock.

  • I had all kinds of issues with a jailbroken 3gs. Lots of dropped calls, and crashes. After one really bad crash, the phone would not recover, and I had to restore it from itunes. I really don’t want to go that route again…

  • I do a lot of travel to Europe. This summer, I was in Eastern Europe, and I was there with a Google Nexus One (unlocked – purchased from google directly). I bought a sim card, and for $12 (prepaid), I got 2 gig (sic) of data, and 200 local minutes. Last year, I had a Rogers locked down 3GS – when I was in Italy, I just turned on data roaming once to see google maps – I got dinged by Rogers for $12.83.

    I will NEVER be “owned” by these crooks again…

  • Jim

    This has solidified my plan to wait for the iPhone 5.

  • well….looks like my next iphone will be bought factory unlocked.

  • JumpinJim

    Typical Rogers. Screwing over their customers once again. Well they won’t get me anymore 😛

  • JumpinJim

    Typical Rogers. Screwing over their customers once again. Well they won’t get me anymore 😛

  • Zrizvi1

    f..k off you rogers. Scamming people for more money, Rogers is a true bloodsucking leetch

  • Shane-Michael

    A lot of people are ignorant. The cost of a phone has increased over 200% in the last 5 years alone, and yet people are surprised these changes are happening? People need to realize that they have an agreement with these companies for 3 years, and that these types of programs are offered as a benefit. Technically, and legally, Bell, Telus, or Rogers do not have to give any promotional pricing on a phone until a 3-year contract has been fulfilled completely (since that was a contractual agreement between the company and the consumer).

    If you don’t want to wait, then buy a phone at full price – I did. It means that you can have the phone whenever you want and not have to wait for these “companies” to offer you promotional price.

  • Anonymous

    And yet all over the world, where contracts exist, none are longer than 2 years… except for Canada. Why is that? What makes subsidizing the same smartphones in Canada more of a burden on Canadian carriers?

    The whole “low population density” argument doesn’t hold water either–Australia has an even smaller population density, and smartphone contracts still max out at 2 years.

  • Michael

    Can’t wait for their revenue department to find this. 🙂 I had a very similar plan – then had all discounts removed and was charged a chunk of them back. Then, I was flagged as “high Risk” and ineligible for any further discounts for as long as I was a Roger’s customer. So, I switched companies.

  • Shane-Michael

    I’m not disagreeing with you – save the hassle and buy the phone at full price. Voila – no contract. I don’t subject myself to contracts for that purpose – the math doesn’t add up and it’s strictly benefitial for a company to maintain a three-year term. People should start buying their phones out-right, or don’t complain. Bottom line.

  • xxJDxx

    I hope all the people talking about buying the phone outright know that that is EXACTLY what rogers wants to have happen.
    I get the feeling we are moving towards a ‘zero subsidy’ situation where the carriers dont subsidize phone cost, but still require a contract to get their service. Thus saving them the cost of the subsidy while still making their monthly fee off of you.
    Sure you can switch carriers, but they are all the same. Its no coincidence that their price plans are SO similar and that when one makes a change the others follow almost immediately. Go switch, they dont care. You’ll get screwed over equally elsewhere, and you NEED service.
    My guess, no more subsidy of ‘smartphones’ sometime down the road. They make more money, and it really doesn’t effect them as they know you still need to pay for service.
    Now that we are all dependent on cellular service they can start price gouging us. I wish someone would do something about the obvious collusion here though, some REAL competition might change things for us poor Canadians.

  • Anonymous

    What did you do that yougot flagged

  • Michael

    I didn’t do anything – the letter I received said, “After reviewing your account, it has been deemed to be overly discounted and therefore will no longer be eligible for any futher discounts for the remainder of your service with Rogers. All ineligible discounts have been removed, and any discounts that were added to your service(s) that have been a loss to the company have been charged to your account.”

    It then went on to say that they have to treat their customer’s fairly, and that since I was receiving discounts that I shouldn’t have, it was unfair for them to remain. So, they returned my term back to what it was before I negotiated this price, and they did as they said they were going to. The letter was from “Revenue Assurance.”

  • Anonymous

    I guess I gotta do a tor I don’t want that to happen

  • Sad, but not particularly surprising. Got my iPhone4 unlocked from Apple and replaced my old 3G which still has about 10 months of the 3 year contract left on it – I will just continue to buy a new unlocked iPhone with each annual hardware refresh and then sell the old one online. Only problem is we need to get Rogers and the others reflect that in their ridiculous 3 year contracts.

  • Mon_g23

    this is why im plaining on buying an iphone unlocked !!

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  • iP4Crazy

    @Dave, you can do something! Either buy out your contract or wait till it ends and go over to one of your local companies that don’t have contracts. Mine in Toronto are MibiliCiti, Public, and out in Saskatchewan I know they have Saskatel or something like that. Either way Rogers just did something stupid, they just sent ALOT of customers to these small local companies. That’s what the government gave grants to these little companies. If you won’t buy out of your contract just don’t renew it in three years. I think this is also part of the reason why Rogers did it now. For those people who do wait the there years might forget. And Rogers know that a huge % of contracts were renewed because almost everyone who had an iPhone 3G got a 4 as upgrade. Enjoy your next three years Rogers because it may be last time you have contract renewals seems more and more people are going to the competition because of your stupidity.

  • Roch

    I bought my iPhone 3G from Rogers in February of 2009, so 20 months ago. When iPhone4 came out, Rogers had this link on their web site that let you punch in your cell number to see how much the upgrade would cost – it said $399. I thought it was too steep, so I waited. But then the bug got me again this week, and I ordered an unlocked 16 GB model from Apple yesterday at $659.

    Then, I went to the local Rogers store to by a micro-sim, but low and behold they actually had iphone4’s in stock (I had checked this store 5-6 times before and they never had them). I debated waiting and paying $260 more for an unlocked phone, or getting one tied to Rogers right away. The salesclerk asked if I wanted to check my upgrade price, and he did… $159! Not sure why, but that made my decision easy and so I got the phone right away. I then cancelled my Apple Store order.

  • Calgary

    Bell is much worse, even after 36months, you receive NO hardware upgrade at promotional pricing. after 3 years as a loyal customer, they offered me $150 off the full price, which made the phone still $100-200 more expensive than a new customer. So F bell, and every cell phone company. Rogers is no better but they are alright

  • alex

    cool and relevant story…

  • Craig318

    I had talked to a rep today, When questioned about it he said that the change to the HUP program would only effect customers with low monthly bills of $20-$30 or less. His reasoning for it is because Rogers pays retail for all their hardware and only makes a couple bucks off of the people that pay between that baseline… Now I don’t believe that Rogers pays retail for anything that they sell cause that’s just bad business right there so it just boils down to them wanting a bigger profit margin per device and plan. Now He could have been lying about the whole thing but it doesn’t really matter if you cant get a HUP through the store just call retentions and they’ll most likely have no problems getting you the upgrade.

  • alex

    so theoretically you could buy a subsidized phone, then cancel after a month for only $100 and then you are left with no contract and just got a locked phone for much cheaper?

  • Anonymous

    No. Data contract is separate from your Voice contract. The $100 fee Ex describe above is for the Data contract only. You still have your voice contract to deal with which has a cancellation fee of up to $400.

    Unless you live in Quebec then the cancellation fees are much cheaper.

    Remember if you don’t use 500mb per month and instead use just a few hundred mb’s or even less then consider the cheaper data flex plan from retentions. Lots of posts on it on our forums =)

  • Sean

    Pretty sure when “iPhone 5” comes around there will be an early upgrade option. There always is with the iPhone. I decided to buy an unlocked iPhone 4 from apple on launch day because I was only 1 year into my contract. Next year I’ll be 2 years in and may consider upgrading or maybe I’ll go with the unlocked iPhone 5. But either way I’ll be getting the phone as many of us sheep and I doubt I’ll have any trouble upgrading

  • Ex

    Theoretically yes

  • Ddmak

    Rogers and all other canadian carriers are the same.
    I had a 3G with 20 months left in the 3 years contract when the iPhone 4 came out, Rogers told me the upgrade to iPhone 4 would be 400.00 plus signup for another 3 years contract. So I bought an unlocked iPhone 4 from Apple instead and use my existing contract.

  • Charles-cc

    REVOLUTION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Klewke

    because he is not telling the truth, his plan is not that low, rogers would be losing money keeping him.

  • Mike

    well that sucks! I paid more than I should have for my ip4 because I only had been with Rogers for less than a year.

  • ….

    A-fucking-men

  • Axe

    I got to say that this really shouldn’t surprise anyone. In fact, I’m surprised it wasn’t already 30 months, as that’s what Telus is (not sure about Bell).
    You sign a 3 year contract, and now you can re-sign a contract 6 months prior to the contract end instead of 12 months? That’s still a pretty good deal. Also, think about it this way, you’re so much closer to the end of your contract, that you could just wait it out and change providers if you’re so inclined. With the costs of mobile phones rising, these companies are just protecting their bottom line.

    At any rate, these companies could offer no upgrade until your contract is expired, end of story. They don’t, lets just be happy for that. Focus on the good, guys… focus on the good 🙂

  • Rookienot

    Changing back to 24 months effective October 28. Apparently Rogers received so much grief over this policy change that they’re changing it back. I tried to purchase an Iphone from the apple store today and found out I was no longer eligible for the upgrade. The fourth Rogers customer service rep I spoke to actually had the information about the change in HUP, no one else knew! What an exasperating company to deal with!

  • Ex

    There hasn’t been an indication that change is for phones. Only data devices such as the “Rocket Stick”