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:
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.