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iPhone already on Rogers in Canada?

updated 12:50 pm EDT, Sat July 14, 2007

iPhone at Rogers

The iPhone is already being used with Rogers Wireless for support purposes in Canada, claims a source reportedly familiar with a manager at one of Apple's local call centers. The Peterborough, Ontario office is said to be extending its previous support of all North American portable computers to include the iPhone and has received a collection of iPhones last week to familiarize agents with using the device. Exposing all the functions, however, has required that the iPhones be activated on Canada's Rogers Wireless network -- a function impossible for current models available in stores, which can only be activated through iTunes and which only support AT&T SIM cards.

While the activation by itself is significant, it has become clear that Apple has made more than just token efforts to support the iPhone on Rogers' network, according to the manager. Handsets running on the network purportedly show both the "Rogers" text branding in the onscreen menu bar and are running on Rogers SIM cards rather than borrowed or generic AT&T versions. EDGE is also supported for the phones even if the capacity of the service is "still not entirely ready" for Apple's phone, the report says.

Certain features are also allegedly disabled or disallowed for the Canadian team, the contact claims. In addition to the potential network issues, YouTube videos were also said to be broken. Agents were also advised that they should refrain from making phone calls, but it was unclear at the time of writing whether or not this was to prevent abuse or for technical reasons.

If validated, the presence of iPhones on Canadian networks doesn't immediately point to a short-term introduction of the device but would suggest that Apple has taken early steps towards integrating the hardware with its first network outside of the US and is largely ready to go live with service once negotiations are completed. Rogers had previously reported that discussions with Apple were stalled due to the US release and may face difficulties given the disparity in price between American and Canadian cellular data plans.



By Electronista Staff
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  1. pieckm

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2007

    0

    iPhone on Rogers

    The iPhone absolutely works on Rogers. I vacationed in Montreal this past week with my US version/AT&T activated iPhone and all features worked very well. I received visual voicemail, surfed the web, and leveraged google maps via their EDGE network.

    As this article mentioned, the connection info in the upper left corner did indeed read "Rogers"

  1. jhollington

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2007

    0

    It's called Roaming

    This provides no evidence that the iPhone is running natively as a Rogers-activated phone with a Rogers phone number any more than any other AT&T activated phone that comes to Canada.

    The "Rogers" word in the banner is just the local carrier. Take any Rogers phone to the U.S. and it will say AT&T, and in fact Jeremy Horwitz of iLounge took his iPhone to Mexico and had "movistar" (a Mexican carrier) show up in the provider banner.

    The most likely reason they've been told to not make phone calls is due to the fact that they'd be incurring huge roaming usage charges with AT&T by doing so.

    After all, what's Apple more likely to do in order to provide call centre employees with sample units? Do some secret special activation with Rogers, or simply give them the same iPhone that is being sold in the U.S., activated with an AT&T account. The simplest answer is of course the correct one in this case.

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