Rogers has expanded their HSPA+ coverage to Regina, Saskatoon and Winnipeg, following up on their announcement last summer. Since then, 21 Mbps mobile broadband has been made available in most of the major cities across Canada, including Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Kingston, Halifax, Edmonton, Quebec City, and lots more. The expansion competes with Bell and Telus who have been doing their dangedest to push out their own HSPA networks as fast as possible, but Rogers already has a pretty significant head start.
Now, having this infrastructure in place is absolutely great, but I’m worried that few cell phone manufacturers will adopt HSPA+ and skip right to LTE. The longevity of 3G tech is being stretched to a surprising extent – RIM’s even toying with Evolved EDGE, showing that even 2G has some fightin’ juice left in it, but Stefan also has doubts that anyone else will do anything with the technology. If nothing else, HSPA+ will provide some respectable speeds for the wireless modems that are available today, if not any future mobile handsets.s
Another bit of news out of Rogers today are some new voice/data plans geared towards social networkers, something we had heard rumblings about last week. The plan is only available on a variety of Android phones: the LG Eve, HTC Magic+, Sony Ericsson Xperia X10, and the upcoming Motorola Quench. Basically, you get 200 minutes, unlimited social networking (presumably through the preloaded, official apps), unlimited messaging (including SMS, MMS, e-mail, and IM), 500 MB of data, and a few other odds and ends for $50/month. Plans with 250 and 500 minutes are available for $60 and $70/month, respectively. That sounds like a pretty sweet deal overall and should handle the needs of most users, it’s just a shame that it’s limited to a particular subset of phones.