Rogers Roam Like Home expanding to more countries on January 27

Daniel Bader

January 25, 2016 8:05pm

Rogers is set to expand its popular Roam Like Home service to an undisclosed number of additional countries starting on Wednesday, January 27th.

The company will announce the expansion to accompany its Q4 earnings results, which are expected to be in line with analysts’ estimates. Rogers, as did Bell and Telus, heavily discounted handsets and offered promotional plans during the quarter to net as many new customers as possible. The quarter, which ended December 31st, saw the expansion of its gigabit internet service, along with the announcement that Rogers would be partnering with Vice on a terrestrial television channel called Viceland.

According to documents obtained by MobileSyrup, Rogers plans to “cover over 100 destinations” starting on January 27th. Roam Like Home, despite having a prodigious presence in certain parts of the world, does not yet have any coverage in popular tourist spots like Japan or South Korea, nor in backpacker-friendly Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. There are other major holes in Roam Like Home’s coverage, including Australia, New Zealand, Russia, India, Pakistan and many others.

Rogers recently raised prices on its Share Everything plans by $5 each, but it is unclear whether it plans to hike rates for Roam Like Home, which the company admitted has eaten into total roaming revenue, on Wednesday. Roaming costs for carriers, especially in the U.S., have risen markedly in recent months as the Canadian Dollar has weakened against the Greenback.

  • Mike Scott

    wait.. backup there.. there were sales in Q4? this some sick april fools joke? I didi’t see any “sale”

    • CoryB

      Nexus 6P went for $0 a couple times down from the usual $200. There were other sales too.

    • fruvous

      I guess if being shackled to a 2 year contract at exorbitant prices can be called a “sale”, then a sale it was.

    • CoryB

      Try to make yourself informed. It costs you more out of pocket if you do NOT take a device on a two year contract but that’s all good.

    • Ridge

      To be fair, that’s not ALWAYS the case, but it most certainly is the case very often.

    • CoryB

      Rogers has a $0 on a 2 year contract phone and has no discount for BYOD compared to that. Can you explain how buying your device outright and not taking some device from the carrier is financial better for the customer?

    • Ridge

      Rogers is one of many carriers available in Canada. The whole point of the distinction between Rogers and Fido (as an example) is to offer different services for different clientele.

      Just because Rogers’ prices start at 70-80$ month doesn’t mean that the rest of the carriers’ prices do. when bringing your own phone, you can benefit from a significantly cheaper plan with Fido, Koodo, or Virgin Mobile.

      Now, if you’re looking for an iPhone and you need 6GB of data, Rogers actually does cut the price of the phone slightly (around 20$) for consumers who take a 2 year agreement.

      Hence, there are different cases that offer different deals for different consumers.

      Not everything is black and white, friend.

    • MassDeduction

      Your comment is based upon a bunch of assumptions. BYOD hasn’t been taken away from people who already have it. Some plans, such as Rogers’ Small Business plans, still offer BYOD too, your comments appear to only be accurate for their consumer plans. I have a $20/month BYOD discount that I would lose if I took a device subsidy, triggering a $480 + tax cost over the length of the contract.

      Your “try to make yourself informed” comment can be sent right back to you. It’s not always cheaper to take a two year contract. Some people want a device not offered by their carrier, or have an opportunity to get that device cheaper through another channel (a friend who’s switching, buying one used, etc.).

      Consider also, if you’re one of the millions of Canadians on grandparented plans who either are already BYOD, or will revert to a BYOD discount the moment your contract ends, and you’re perfectly happy with your current device, how is it not a money saver to do so? Who says every Canadian wants a new device when their carrier wants them to get it?

      Adding on to that last point, what if the device you *really* want is only coming available after your contract renewal? Accepting a BYOD discount (again, most people can still get it simply by not renewing their contract or changing their plan) rather than getting saddled with a device you don’t want, perhaps only to buy the device you do want a little bit later, could be a money saver.

      Finally, there are prepaid options that can cheaper than the big-3, but use big-3 coverage. Public Mobile comes to mind. So that’s another situation where buying a device outright is cheaper.

      The last time my carrier happened to both have the device I wanted, and happened to offer it to me *at the time I wanted it*, was about twelve years ago. I’ve been buying my devices outright for over a decade due to not wanting to limit myself to the devices my carrier provides and when they want to provide them to me. YMMV, but I submit to you that your comment was built upon several assumptions, not all of which are universally correct.

    • fruvous

      It can be argued either way. With the “premium tab” fee, you are paying more. Also, if you’re on a grandfathered plan, you could end up paying upwards of $50 more a month.

  • N00bicals

    It’s hardly like being at home when you have to spend $10 a day extra. How about offering it for free like Three?

    • fruvous

      It will never happen. Three isn’t a Canadian carrier so you can’t use them as a frame of reference.

    • disqus_vPnVddwEMi

      Because they are a business with quarterly/annual growth targets they need to meet, giving away a big chunk of your business for free when customers are paying for it today is a bad idea.

  • disqus_WT

    I used roam like home in the caribbean a few weeks ago. it was not that great. had way better service going to the hotel lobby and using the free wifi. for phone calls its good, for internet use it was very slow – similar to dial up speeds

    • Dee

      When you use Roam Like home, understand that you are no longer using the Rogers Network but using the local carrier of the country you’re in. Therefore you can’t blame Rogers for the network speed and coverage.

    • disqus_WT

      umm .., I believe that the product is called “Roam Like Home”. If can’t get the same service that I have at home then perhaps a name change is in order?

    • MassDeduction

      It’s Roam Like Home in that you have the same minutes/texts as you have in Canada, can call/text Canada without long-distance surcharges, and have the same data bucket as you have in Canada. Canada has some of the fastest internet speeds in the world, and it’s beyond the technical ability of many global networks to match ours. That’s like complaining that you’re driving your Canadian car on a road and observing a lower speed limit in another country, and complaining about how slow your car is going there. I think “Roam Like Home”‘s branding is very clear, it’s priced (aside from the RLH charge itself) like you’re in Canada, but speeds vary in these other countries just like they vary in Canada.

      It’s worth noting that there are still 2G/EDGE fringe areas in Canada where you might drop to dial-up speeds. So getting those speeds when roaming don’t make the claim inaccurate.

      That said, it’s possible that to get a wholesale price that made sense for Rogers that they accepted a throttled rate from their roaming partner where you were visiting. If that’s the case, then I’d actually agree with you that the branding is arguably inaccurate (since Rogers customers don’t get throttled speeds in Canada).

    • disqus_WT

      great point re the throttled rate in exchange for better pricing. that’s probably exactly what happened.