Okay, so I’ve managed, through the process of trial and error, to figure out how much Rogers Wireless charges for data access with a “Pay As You Go” account.
There is an air of confusion over the entire issue because their rates page says only that they charge 2 cents per page for “Surfing on your mobile Internet browser.” They don’t list any rates for data that isn’t “surfing” and therefor doesn’t involve “pages.”
To deduce what they do charge, then, I did a test with my Nokia N70, which has a byte counter (look under Log \| Packet Data) and an IMAP client. I reset the counters, checked my account balance on the Rogers website, checked my email, noted the total of the “data sent” and “data received” counters, and then checked my account balance again.
Total data transferred during the IMAP mail check was 9.92kb, or 10158 bytes. Total charge was 50 cents. So it looks like the data charge is 5 cents per kilobyte.
This is tantamount to “so expensive as to be completely useless.” To give you an idea of how expensive: uploading this photo would have cost me $6.60 and downloading today’s episode of the Daily Source Code would cost $2856.
It turns out that, buried deep within their website Rogers does, indeed, reveal this rate:
Data usage with data devices or integrated phone and data devices on Pay As You Go service will be charged at 5 cents / kb. A minimum account balance of $5.00 is required to access the navigate mobile Internet. Balance is held for the duration of the navigate session and credited back to the Pay As You Go account at the end of the browsing session.
Things get somewhat cheaper if you’re not a “Pay As You Go” customer — Rogers’ consumer plans include one that provide 1MB of data transfer for $7/month, or 0.7 cents per kilobyte, with a 2 cents/kb rate over the 1MB amount. That would lower my Daily Source Code download to the $1000 range.
Obviously Rogers is positioning wireless data as a tool for millionaires and insane people.