Rogers to launch new wireless brand called “Chatr”?

Ian Hardy

June 25, 2010 4:46pm

A rumour has been flying around over the past year of Rogers creating a new wireless company called “Chatr”. It turns out that this new company is being created to directly compete with new entrants Wind Mobile and Mobilicity.

Chatr is looking to launch mid-July and offer Unlimited plans in Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Toronto, and Ottawa. As for handsets… here are a few rumours: Nokia 1661, Nokia 2680 Slide, LG Sapphire, Samsung Gravity. We’ve also been informed that the launch party is happening on July 5th.

Ironically, at the 2010 Telecom Summit Rogers President Rob Bruce stated that “what does Unlimited really mean… not much!”

Oh yes… the website will be http://www.chatrwireless.com/
What do you think of this idea and new brand?

Thanks to BGR an update has surfaced. Check out the inventory screenshot clearly showing that the Samsung Gravity is headed to “Chatr” Wireless. More info soon!

Via: BGR & CIPO

  • Randy – 1

    Rogers et al make me laugh. They tried everything in their power to block the new entrants saying Canada couldn’t support more than the 3 entrenched incumbents.

    Now they’re adding a second flanker brand; three brands, one company.

    ….only in Canada. :(

  • Craig

    Honestly, I don’t get it. They already have Fido. How many brands do they need? Wouldn’t it be more efficient to just offer budget plans instead of creating a whole new “company?”

  • Gussy

    The proof will be in the pudding. If they can do that nationally. I could see it working. I know i would be interested if it is NATIONAL. Otherwise its no use to me, i’m stuck with what was around before the changes started.

  • Hub

    Pocket pricing? That’s just how it rings. It should be illegal as it is a monopoly abuse.

  • Baslam

    Really? Another way to fool the Canadian Crowd? but the sad part is people will fall for it! Again!

  • malingerer

    tit for tat.. you get what you pay for I guess.. fido dealers gonna be pisssssssed off though… they were the budget brand.. now they’re just another b*tch in the kennel..

  • Chris Kraemer

    Another cell provider owned by Rogers. Ummm I’ll pass.

  • Hub

    @Gussy: that the whole interest for them. They have no reason to discount where there is not competition. It is called Pocket Pricing: pricing specific to a geographic market where there is a competitor.

    It is a bit like Bell TV offering “a la carte” only in Quebec because the cable monopoly, Videotron, offer it. But in Ontario, Rogers does not, so no need. And Bell TV is is a satellite that is 36,000 km above our head. Same signal nationwide.

  • Eric Hau

    Unlimited… Okay.

    I bet the LCA is a tiny box…

  • A. Noid

    what’s the point if they have Fido?

  • Rob Brown

    @Hub Bell IPTV is offering me ala cart in Ontario.But still rogers has Fido so this is all another bullcrap ploy

  • Eternalplayer

    I hate to break it to the people who are hating on Rogers for this. Rogers isn’t the first. Bell has been at it for quite some time. Bell Mobility –> Solo –> Virgin Mobile. All the same company. This happens all over the world in the wireless industry and other industries. All major companies do this from car companies to electronics companies. This is business.

  • draz

    Doubt Rogers would do that. They got Fido already

    Unless they plan on rebranding Fido? No… Just no…

  • colin

    …. could they not just relaunch fido or something?

  • robeLlus

    This market is offically saturated! As a consumer this rocks, as an employee of the big 3, this sucks . …. Time to jump ship

  • Guy Fawkes

    To position themselves for the more aware customer, while the older blackberry businessman will want to stay with “rogers” because he can trust them. ^^ its about competing without gouging their own “high value” customers

  • Larry

    Dumb Dumb dumb idea,Rogers already has Fido this is a BIG WAST of money.Spend it on HSPA deployment.Rogers started HSPA years ago but are slower than the second coming.Wrong direction Rogers has seamed to have lost there way.

  • Pearl

    I think I’ll stick with Wind, thank you very much. I’ve got my wireless bill down to $25/month now even WITH 3G data. Sorry, Rogers, you gouged me for too long.

  • Jim R

    This is funny. Taking bets on whether Rogers will mysteriously find no need for a bogus GRRF (Government Regulatory Recovery Fee) for chatr.

    Now if Rogers is really smart, they’ll make sure their smart phones work on chatr and sell them at a decent price.

  • Robbie

    Screw that! Why not just give fido better plans?!

  • Cadet

    they just need unlimited plans in fido and the company will soar through the roof
    no need to make another bogus company to scam

    you know… i don’t like rogers but i still prefer fido (if though it’s own by rogers)

    and as a matter a fact
    if they gonna make a new company to compete
    might as well call it ‘Rob-inc’

  • Mertin

    Don’t hate on fido! I pay $85 a month for 100 minutes, free incoming, evening/weekends, unlimited text, and 6 gigs data on my iPhone (free tethering). Can friggin telus beat that? Don’t think so! My mother in law pays over $120 and only has 500 megs data usage. I don’t care if their owned by Rogers, my bill is exactly the same every month, and they have an app to check usage. Fido FTW! (no I don’t work for them, just really like them. Never had to call customer service for anything ever)

  • User

    This is likely to be a 2G only network

  • MCCANS

    Chatr is launching because they need something fresh like Koodo.

    Most people probably will think they are a new cell phone company.

  • Braden K.

    Ummm…. let me see…. I’m about to cancel my Rogers account and switch to Wind with my T-Mo Nexus One in hand. Sooo… why the f**k would I even WANT anything to do with another Rogers (b**ch) brand?
    Rogers… the public has had enough of your bullshit to last at least a couple of decades!

  • Don

    I can’t wait to hear the undoubtedly hilarious pricing.

  • Scott S

    They could just decrease their prices to begin with, wouldn’t that make more sense than coming up a with a completely new image and marketing that image to the public?

  • A. Smith

    K, Rogers, seriously- just drop your prices to international standards. We aren’t asking for something insane- we’re just asking for price plans on par with the US, UK, France, etc. Bring us into the western world, PLEASE.

  • Greg

    I think this is a joke. A real joke. It would be easier for them to improve the prices of their entry brand Fido rather than create a new company.

    What will they classify Fido as when Chat-R goes live?

  • Joe

    What’s the point? Brand confusion. More fake competition.

  • Max

    what the *&%$#$%$&^ with Rogers!!!!

  • Josh

    Wow. Everyone keeps on wanting more and more competition, but just because a company decides to come out with another brand, you guys b***h and moan. I guess two way streets don’t work for anybody here just cause of the name.

  • Jim

    We all know how money grubbing Rogers is. It’s no secret! The new carriers have only forced the slightest bit of change and this is Rogers attempt to stop them from going further.

    I wouldn’t touch chatr with a 10 foot pole for one simple reason. Once Rogers has done away with Wind and the like they’ll hike prices through the stratosphere.

    Anyone who believes otherwise is fooling themselves.

  • theninjasquad

    @mertin Is it really worth it to you to pay Fido that much for the iPhone? You could get unlimited calling and data from Wind for $80 instead. What you’re paying for only 100 minutes is horrendous.

  • Hub

    People, do you think they are building a network? They are not. There is no license available for that, and it would be a useless expense. They just become a VMO like Petro-Canada Mobile, PC Mobile or 7-11.

    Do you think opening in “select cities” that are the exact same where the is Mobilicity and WIND is a pure coincidence? I don’t think so. Also using a separate brand to proxy the offer make sense. Look at how hard it is to switch carriers when you are on a contract? If the were offering these deals on Fido or Rogers, don’t you think customer wouldn’t ask for it?

    It all make sense.

  • Plazmic Flame

    If the rumors continue to be true, “they” say that it’s going to be a 2G (or better known as EDGE) network which is a no go for me and doesn’t compare to what WIND and MOBI offer.

  • Breezee

    NO. I think Rogers is really really smart and shrewd instead.

    The 5 cities where it is launching its services are actually the bread-and-butter source of revenue for the new entrants. If the new guys can’t get enough revenue out there, they are dead. But rogers still owns anywhere outside of the 5 cities; it can charge whatever they want out there and subsidize the price war in the 5 cities.

    Once the new guys get driven out of business, Rogers will charge whatever they want again. To rogers, it is just an investment and it will yield return later. So I think Rogers is extremely smart, and way too smart!

  • Guy Fawkes

    @Mertin well you should call L&R because my bro just got cityfido unlimited texts,and 6gigs for 75$ for his iphone with the threat he was leaving to wind, this for the duration of his contract which is now down to about 7 months, and can keep these terms if he wants to renew and get an iphone4

  • Justin Credible

    Honestly, I hope this means they can restore FIDO back to its original glory and get rid of the yellow. Fido used to be the true innovative carrier, cutting edge plans and newest technologies. Rogers never should have tried to make Fido the “budget brand” a couple years ago. They should have left it the way it was and come up with the Chatr idea way back then.

  • Josh

    imagine if they undercut wind and mobilicity by 10$ per month compared to what they have. I wonder how many haters would jump on board. Saving money is saving money, or am I the only one who actually likes this concept(saving money) Of course, wait and see…..wait and see

  • rob

    Bla Bla Bla… I think this was a good move by rogers… this will then block all the new entrants… rogers already has their coverage built and proven to compete and focusing more on their customer service… as the new entrants “WIND” have by far the worst network coverage Ive ever seen not to mention no discounted smartphone

  • Mike

    Okay fido rocks I already have unlimited data calling and texting for 100 a month to all of Canada! Also chatr?! How Fu**ing ugly is that?!?! Honestly!? Aren’t any of them worried about appearance?! Fido is a nice name and works in french and English!!!! Chatr is nasty! Also, why not just offer unlimited through fido or Rogers?! Why create a whole new brand?! I’m so glad fido is mostly separate from rogers because they are so dumb!!!! (fido still has own headquarters, network and call centers)

    God Rogers is dumb.

  • copolii

    The REAL interesting thing is that the COST for the phone is $91, their SELLING price is $499. Ripoff much?

  • Dustin

    the CRTC approved this? wtf THEY NEED TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE OUTRAGEOUS PRICE GOUGING THESE @SSHOLES ARE DOING.

  • Gere

    @Mertin: Your $85 plan with Fido is terrible…that’s nothing to be proud of. Without data, you’re paying $55 for 100 minutes. Unfortunately, that means your mother in law is being ripped off even more…both of you need to call the Fido and Telus retentions departments immediately.

  • Don

    You all know Bell is gonna start promoting Solo Mobile more aggressively.

    As far as I see it this is how the market will look:

    top brands: Rogers, Bell, Telus

    middle brands: Virgin, Fido

    bottom brands: Solo, Koodo, Chatr, Wind, Public, etc.

    People keep wondering why Rogers is doing this. Well right now they’re the biggest carrier, and they don’t want to lose their current clientele.

  • donald

    if/when doesn’t so matter as what the price-point(s) will be and what limitations can be put on the service. Obviously, it wouldn’t be good business if one could slip a low-priced Chatr sim into an iPhone4 and be on one’s way.

    Voice w/o data doesn’t make much sense in this era, but maybe if the idea is to take aim at Public Mobile. Adding roaming fees when outside one’s home city would be too much like CityFido, but maybe there is another twist on this.

    Mid-July? Well I suppose it makes sense, if they’re going to do it, to be out in time for back-to-school.

  • Randy -1

    If Rogers does indeed launch only in the Wind and Mobilicty cities, at prices significantly lower than their main Rogers brand, how is that not running afoul of Canada’s predatory pricing laws?

    It’s clear the intent; to eliminate competition. How delicious would it be for Rogers to launch this brand and be found guilty of predatory pricing?

  • arber b

    The only reason why they’re releasing a new company is because ppl that are on contracts at Rogers would complain that there’s cheaper unlimited plan and they’re paying 100$ and they don’t really wanna switch them down and look like bad ppl if they wont

  • Mateo

    good to have more competition and probably some new entrants which did not confirm may shut down their doors ssoner or later. If the incumbents will drop more the prices for few months the new entrants will wash out one after the other. welcome chatr

  • Jon

    I think people is mistaken if they think WIND is the bottom. Rung brand. They are after middle to high end market. They will eventually offer Corp plans and their pricing is really aim at the $35+ market, while mobilicity and pm hits with 24/25 unlimited plans.

    There used to be a rumor that WIND would tackle the low end with it’s YAK brand. That may eventually happen.

  • Keith

    From the comments on here it seems nobody gets it.

    They can’t just lower Fido prices. They would cannibalize their own revenue. High revenue Rogers customers and Fido’s own customers would move to the new plans and revenue would go down.

    And if they launched plans for specific cities where Wind is operating, the rest of Fido’s clientele would be up in arms.

    But if they launch a new brand it’s far less obvious. And by using the 2G network, they won’t be congesting the 3G network. So they’ll be able to offer unlimited calling, texting and data plans.

    This could do some real damage to all the new entrants. At least Wind is somewhat established now. But this could make the road even bumpier for Mobilicity and Public Mobile.

  • thep

    To all the ppl complaining isn’t this what you wanted?

  • Jim R

    If chatr is just 2G, then it’s a no-go. Even Koodo is supposed to be going HSPA next month (yes, I know we’ve heard that before).

    2G chatr would be going up against Public Mobile. 3G chatr would be going up against Wind and Mobilicity.

  • SC

    Bring it Rogers… another EPic Fail!!

  • Mack

    I agree! BRING BACK THE OLD FIDO LOGO! The new one makes me feel like a ghetto person! What was wrong with the old one?! It was stylish and nice! In my opinion Fido was the most stylish mobile brand in Canada, now they are just ghetto.

  • Nadeem Khan

    Whatever Rogers does is generally a good idea at start but ends up screwing it up. Let’s see if Rogers really delivers. If they offer same plan as Wind/Mobilicity, I’m sure existing Rogers and Fido customers can do the same by calling customer relations. Cause when I leave Rogers I’m not going to one of their spawns. The biggest advantage of Wind like plans on Rogers network is the coverage and quality of coverage. Wind’s coverage is choppy at best.

  • 173

    As much as I don’t support Rogers with their countless shady business practices, this IS the competition you’ve been wanting the whole, right?