Archive for the ‘General’ Category
Carols, cards, gifts and parties: the holiday spirit is in full swing this week. So we’re offering up gift options for everyone on your list and sharing a few of our favourite festive apps. We’re also talking about the Wireless Code, which came into effect on Monday, and looking at how many people have embraced the new Apple operating system.
Read all about it in this week’s edition of the weekend reading!
We decorate our homes and sometimes even our desks – so why not extend the cheer to our smartphones? This week @RogersSarahM shares her favourite Android apps for the season, including a few picks, like Mint, that will help keep you organized year-round. Plus, Rogers customers can now have their Google Play purchases billed to their monthly Rogers statement. Find out how here.
What are your holiday app picks?
I’m still hunting down the perfect finishing touches for the loved ones on my shopping list, but we’ve compiled our list of everything you need for a very Merry Tech-mas! Whether you’re looking for a smartphone with a stellar camera for your favourite shutterbug or some wearable tech to help a family member reach their fitness goals, we’ve got you covered!
What do you hope to find under the tree this holiday?
Wireless Code 101
The CRTC’s Wireless Code came into effect on Dec. 2, 2013, applying to individuals and small business customers who sign up for a new contract or renew their existing contract on or after that date. The Code makes some changes to wireless services for Canadians, including two-year plans and a cap on certain fees. We also created this handy Q&A to help explain what it means for you.
Nearly three-quarters of Apple users have upgraded to iOS 7, according to Mashable. The new operating system was released in September, updating the notification bar and adding background updates and a Control Centre where you can turn on Wi-Fi settings and open the camera. (Check out our tips for getting the most out of your keyboard with iOS7.)
Are you using the newest operating system for your device?
With the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season upon us, this week we’re celebrating some Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. For those of you lucky enough to have crossed all the presents off your lists, read on in this week’s edition of the Weekend Reading for more on Rogers hockey broadcast deal, the office of the future and the latest Snapchat stats.
Snapchat is the latest buzz-worthy photo-sharing service. For the uninitiated, the app allows users to send self-destructing images to their friends. The appeal? No more photos of your boyfriend’s lunches clogging up your SMS inbox and the ability to instantly see whether your friend has viewed the photo of the frock that you’re waffling on. Plus the security of knowing that if you deem that dress unflattering, the photo won’t still be floating around in cyberspace.
How popular is this new app? According to a report from Mashable, Snapchat users send 400 million “snaps” each day – more than double the number sent in June. While CEO Evan Spiegel didn’t share the size of its total user base, he did reveal that 70 per cent of their users are women.
Have you downloaded Snapchat yet?
We all know technology is changing the office environment. Whether it’s answering emails on our commutes or video-conferencing with colleagues and clients, how, when and where we work is evolving. Looking forward, the new Rogers Connected Workplace report, commissioned by Harris Decima, predicts the workplace of the future will be less centralized, more mobile and more flexible. More than half, 52 per cent, of Canadians said they would embrace a Bring Your Own Device policy, and 40 per cent said they’d prefer to do more of their work on laptops (the current leading workplace device, with 45 per cent, is the desktop).
What would you like to see in the workplace of the future?
Hurrah for hockey
Starting next season, Rogers will be your go-to for all things hockey. Rogers has scored a landmark 12-year broadcast and multimedia agreement with the National Hockey League. The agreement starts with the 2014/15 season and continues through the 2025/26 season.
This deal includes national rights, in all languages, across TV broadcasts, internet and mobile streaming, as well as all linear and digital highlights including condensed games and video archives. On any given night, Rogers will provide multiple game coverage on up to nine TV channels (including City and Sportsnet) plus digital and radio.
The deal also includes a partnership with CBC for Hockey Night in Canada broadcasts and TVA for all national French-language coverage.
Who are you cheering on this hockey season?
Hot holiday deals
True confession: I was one of those people at the mall at 6 a.m. this morning seeking Black Friday deals. The early wakeup, freezing temps and gigantic coffee is an annual tradition with one of my girlfriends, and honestly, the savings are just the icing on the cake.
While my shopping energy for the day is certainly (probably?) spent, there are still bargains to be had. When you purchase and activate a Samsung smartphone on select two-year plans before Jan. 6, you can get a Galaxy Gear for $49.99 – check out the full details at www.rogers.com/gear.
Stay tuned this weekend for our pointers on how to take advantage of all the Cyber Monday deals!
What purchases will you make this weekend?
We’ve never been shy about our passion for sports at Rogers. And this morning we have cemented our sports leadership with a landmark 12-year broadcast and multimedia agreement with the National Hockey League that includes national rights on all platforms in all languages. The agreement begins with the 2014/15 season and continues through the 2025/26 season.
The deal is big news for hockey fans and for Rogers customers. It includes national rights across TV broadcasts, internet and mobile streaming, as well as all linear and digital highlights including condensed games and video archives. On any given night, Rogers will provide multiple game coverage on up to nine TV channels (including City and Sportsnet) plus digital and radio.
And we’re going to partner with CBC for English-language broadcasts of Hockey Night in Canada and with TVA for all national French-language multimedia rights.
Here’s what people are saying about the deal:
“Sports content is a key strategic asset and we’ve been investing significantly to strengthen our sports offering to Canadians. Canadians are passionate about hockey, and through this landmark partnership with the NHL we’ll be able to bring hockey fans more games and more content on their platform of choice. We are proud to select CBC as our partner to carry on the Hockey Night in Canada tradition for Canadians. We are also excited about our long-standing sports alliance with TVA Sports and Quebecor, which will use its many channels and platforms to deliver French-language NHL coverage.” — Rogers president and CEO Nadir Mohamed
“Our fans always want to explore deeper and more emotional connections to NHL hockey, and that is precisely what Rogers has promised to deliver over the next 12 years – channeling the reach of its platforms and the intensity of its passion for the game into an unparalleled viewing experience.” — NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman
“Our vision is to build on the NHL’s legacy in Canada with an emphasis on storytelling, innovation, and technology, weaving the NHL, its teams, and its stars even deeper into the fabric of Canadian culture.” — Keith Pelley, President, Rogers Media.
While more than 70 per cent of Canadians are happy with the number and range of channels they get in their cable packages, more than 86 per cent want more flexibility and choice in the channels they receive, according to new poll by Harris/Decima, on behalf of Rogers.
The poll also found:
- 78 per cent of respondents subscribe to a cable or satellite service;
- 60 per cent would pay extra per channel, but 64 per cent say they like having access to TV packages that offer multiple channels and programs in one bundle.
We know our customers want more choice. In 2011, Rogers rolled out a flexible TV packaging trial in London, Ont. More than 1,000 customers were offered the trial’s basic cable package, with the option to add individual channels of their choice in increments of 15, 20 and 30 from more than 100 options. The majority subscribed to these incremental packages, while 8 per cent of customers chose not to subscribe to additional channels beyond their basic package.
Sounds good right? So why haven’t we rolled this out more broadly? Chief Marketing Officer John Boynton told us there are structural barriers preventing us from giving customers what they want.
“The results from our London trial clearly show our TV customers embrace more choice when it comes to their TV packaging and we want to offer it,” said Boynton. “We’ve been advocating change for several years and believe a thorough review of the entire broadcasting system is necessary so we can deliver for our customers.”
While we continue to push for more flexible TV packages, we also want to hear from you. We’re continuing our dialogue with the public around the future of television on our Future of TV forum. To participate in the forum, log in with your My Rogers username and password. You don’t need to be a Rogers customer to get a My Rogers profile.
We asked people on the street what they would change about their cable TV experience. Watch the video to find out their answers:
What changes would you make to the current television landscape?
While Canadian retailers are starting to get in on the act with their own offers, many Canadians still travel south of the border to enjoy great deals and rock-bottom prices.
If you’re thinking of heading south this week, here are some tips to make the most out of your trip.
Canadian shoppers who stay in the U.S. for 48 hours are now allowed to bring back up to $800 worth of duty-free goods, so you might want to consider staying for a couple of nights.
You’ll also want to leave early in order to avoid delays at the border (you can also check on border crossing times via the Canadian Border Service Agency’s website).
Make a list and check it twice: Know which stores you want to hit. As well, prioritizing your list is important. The first store you visit should be the one that has your must-have item so you’re not disappointed by sold-out shelves.
Look for deals online
Do you ever watch Extreme Couponing in envy? Websites and Twitter accounts specific to Black Friday savings are a great resource for finding the best high-value coupons.
Be sure to check the fine print before you head to the store and stay on top of any early bird specials as these can offer the deepest discounts.
Your smartphone can be your Black Friday lifeline if you need directions, want to find exclusive online offers, or share the great deals you’ve found on Facebook or Twitter.
Rogers customers who are staying in the U.S. for a couple of days may want to consider getting one of our travel packs, which give a combination of talk, text and data when roaming in the U.S. We recently doubled the amount of data and minutes on select packs while cutting prices.
Just going for the day? Rogers customers can stay connected worry-free with the Rogers U.S. Roaming Internet Rate, which gives you 50 MB of data for up to 24 hours. You don’t need to add this to your account; just turn data roaming ON and it will automatically kick in once you cross the border. (Customers in Newfoundland and Quebec will need to opt-in one time only.)
Send a free text with the word “usage” to 3330 at any time to check how much data you have used. You’ll also get a text message to let you know if you’re approaching 50 MB. If you need more data, it’s only an additional $7.99 and you get another 50 MB to use during the 24 hour period.
To celebrate Black Friday, we’re giving away a Samsung Galaxy Note 3, a Moto X and a Nexus 5. To be entered to win one of these prizes, you just need to take a picture of your Black Friday purchase or what you would have liked to purchase and tweet the picture to @RogersBuzz with the hashtag #RogersRoamTrip.
Enter the contest here.
Contest starts at 10 a.m. on Nov. 25, 2013 and continues until 4 p.m. on Dec. 2, 2013. No purchase necessary. Read the full contest rules here.
Are you heading to the U.S. in search of Black Friday deals?
There’s nothing like those first few chilly winter nights to make you want to curl up in front of the TV. And this week, we were reflecting on our favourite childhood shows and traditions thanks to the launch of Rogers Kids Zone. So read on for this week’s special family-focussed edition of the Weekend Reading to learn more about safe TV viewing and how kids are embracing mobile technology.
Introducing Rogers Kids Zone
Kids Zone is a family-friendly entertainment destination where Rogers customers can enjoy children’s’ TV shows and movies at home or on the go. Families can access Rogers Kids Zone on TVs via Rogers On Demand channel 200, RogersAnyplaceTV.com/KidsZone on computers, and on the Rogers Anyplace TV application for smartphones, tablets, Xbox 360 gaming systems and LG Smart TVs.
What were your favourite childhood shows?
Parenting expert Kathy Buckworth joined us on Thursday for a tweet chat about family TV traditions, and her rules governing screen time. We learned that most parents ask their kids to finish their homework and chores before they’re allowed to watch any TV, that multiscreen use is becoming common, and that most parents try to keep the conversation flowing to monitor what their kids are watching. Also that, when it comes to family viewing nights, popcorn might be a food group all on its own!
What rules govern screen time at your home?
Sharing old favourites
As a mom, I love to revisit old TV favourites with my sons. Earlier this spring, Toronto blogger Emma Waverman explained how she uses TV time to bond with her children and share her childhood memories. My family has a tradition of watching old Disney movies from our childhood, such as Aladdin or Bambi, over the holidays. As my children grow, I can’t wait to watch scary Halloween movies with them, and see if they can endure some holiday season romcoms for their mom!
What are your family’s holiday movie traditions?
Kids toting cellphones are becoming an increasingly common sight. Last year, Canadian research showed almost half of kids older than 11 had their own cellphone. According to recent research from Common Sense Media, 17 per cent of American children under the age of 8 use a mobile device every single day, while 14 per cent use a computer.
As parents, we have tough decisions to make – when should I buy my child a phone? How do I teach my kids to use smartphones safely? Check our “tips for parents” section on Tech Essentials for some advice. The Boston Globe also has some great tips on talking about mobile use with your children. Among the tips: use the technology with your kids and pre-screen the content to make sure it’s age appropriate.
What devices are popular with the kids in your life?
Pew Research released a report this week that said nearly one-in-10 Americans get their news through Twitter. Of those who get their news on Twitter, the report notes that “the vast majority, 85%, get news (of any kind) at least sometimes on mobile devices.”
This week’s report found Twitter users who get their news via the microblogging site tend to be younger and more educated than those who get their news via Facebook. Last week, Pew issued a report on how many Americans get their news via Facebook.
Flying with your tablet just got better
Last week, the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA), announced the electronic devices, such as tablets, e-readers and phones no longer need to be turned off, or switched into flight modeduring takeoff and landing. Canadian airlines are not subject to the new rules, as they are governed by Transport Canada, not the FAA.
“It is our opinion that a change in regulation will be welcomed by travellers and airlines alike,” WestJet spokeswoman Brie Ogle told the Toronto Star earlier this week.
An important question comes from the change in regulations. Does this mean Airplane Mode on electronics (that turns off all cellular signals) will have to be renamed?
A year ago, we launched the first SIM-based mobile payment system in Canada. This week, we announced the next step to that: The suretap wallet.
The suretap wallet allows Rogers customers to make payments using their smartphone. The wallet will include a Rogers Prepaid MasterCard, and also has gift card functionality.
Additional cards will become available for download soon, including payment cards from various banks and payment networks and loyalty cards.
Twitter chat with Kathy Buckworth
Every kid has their favourite show. For me growing up it was My Pet Monster. I loved that show, and even had a doll from the show that I cuddled with for years after it ended. I can’t wait to share some of my favourite kids’ shows from when I was growing up with my kids.
We want to hear about your favourite kids shows, and how you and your kids watch TV. Have you shared with them your favourite show from when you were young? Join us for a Twitter chat with parenting expert Kathy Buckworth where she’ll share family TV viewing tips. Follow @RogersBuzz on Nov. 14 from 1-2 p.m. EST to share your tips with us and have a chance to win a new iPad Air.
Email goes mobile
Forty-eight per cent of emails are now opened on smartphones and tablets, according to new research from Litmus. This is a one percentage point gain from September, 2013, and an increase of 10 percentage points since last September.
When it comes to devices, the majority of mobile email opens comes from the iPhone and iPad (nearly 8-%), followed by Android (20%), with BlackBerry and Windows making up less than 1% of mobile opens.
Where do you open your email?
This week, we learned that English-speaking Canadians log more online hours than their Francophone peers, and that seniors are going online in increasing numbers. We also learned how to get the most out of your iOS 7 keyboard and introduced carrier billing on the Google Play store. Learn more in the latest edition of the Weekend Reading!
We all know that Canadians log a lot of online hours, but it turns out that screen time varies depending on your language preferences. According to a CRTC “Communications Monitoring Report”, English-speaking internet users spent more than 20 hours online per week in 2012 – seven hours more than their Francophone counterparts. That’s a difference of more than 54.6 per cent! This gap is also growing: in 2008, Anglophones spent 13.8 hours online, as compared to 11.2 hours for their French-speaking peers.
Why do you think English Canada’s internet use is growing faster than its French counterpart?
Last month, Apple released its new iOS 7 operating system – revamping the functionality and look from the lock screen right down to the keyboard. Whether you’re tapping away on an iPhone or iPad, this week we shared a few secret tips to help make typing even easier.
And, speaking of tablets, if you’re considering grabbing one of our newest devices this weekend, be sure to check out our latest offers. From now until Jan. 6, you can add a tablet to your Share Everything plan and share your data for $0 for 10 months. You can also save with Rogers Trade Up: bring in your old smartphone or tablet to a Rogers store to receive a credit towards a new one.
The over 65 set is becoming increasingly connected, with 48 per cent of Canadian seniors saying they went online last year. According to the Statistics Canada report, as shared by BetaKit, that’s eight per cent more than in 2010. Amongst the Canadian population as a whole, 83 per cent of Canadians over 16 were online last year, up from 80 per cent in 2010.
The research also saw mobile internet use rise amongst all ages, from 33 per cent in 2010 to 58 per cent in 2012.
How has your internet use changed since 2010?
This week, Rogers became the first Canadian carrier to start rolling out carrier billing to the Google Play store. That means customers can buy any of Google’s one million apps and additional offerings and then bill the charges directly to their Rogers account. Payments can be made through a secure, one-click payment system and the charges will appear on the customer’s monthly Rogers bill – no credit card details required. Rogers carrier billing is also available with BlackBerry App World and Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store.
The service should be available to all Rogers customers in the coming weeks.
What’s your favourite Android app?
Giving back to the community is an important part of our culture here at Rogers. So we’re incredibly proud that the United Nations Association in Canada (UNA-Canada) has recognized our CEO Nadir Mohamed as the Outstanding Global Citizen of the Year. Nadir was selected for his extensive efforts to help youth and young entrepreneurs succeed, including his efforts to strengthen the community through the launch of the Rogers Youth Fund, our Employee Volunteer Program and Connected for Success, our affordable broadband program.
Have a great weekend!
We were glued to our monitors on Tuesday for Apple’s latest announcement, which resulted in two new iPads and a new Mac operating system. As if that wasn’t enough excitement for the week, there was lots more going on for us at Rogers: We announced we would be carrying the HTC Desire and HTC One Mini, and Rogers was named one of the country’s top 100 employers! Plus, we’re gearing up for Halloween and the CRTC started its consultation into the future of cable TV. Learn more in this week’s edition of the weekend reading.
Introducing the iPad Air
At an event in San Francisco on Tuesday, Apple unveiled its new iPad Air and iPad mini. The new iPad Air is thinner, lighter and faster than the previous generation, while the new Mini has a faster microprocessor and high-def Retina display. Apple also announced the newest Mac OS – Mavericks – and revamped MacBook and Mac Pros. Will you upgrade your Apple gear?
#ComingSoon: Rogers will be carrying the iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display.
— RogersBuzz (@RogersBuzz) October 22, 2013
Our stable of super-fast LTE-enabled smartphones just keeps on growing! This week, we announced we’ll be offering the HTC Desire and HTC One Mini, starting Nov. 4. The HTC One Mini, available exclusively from Rogers, has a pocket-friendly 4.3” high-def screen but still packs in familiar HTC features, including HTC BlinkFeed updates, the HTC UltraPixel Camera and the video-creating HTC Zoe. Meanwhile, the HTC Desire, available in red and white, has LTE connectivity and dual, front-facing HTC BoomSound speakers for serious music lovers.
The future of cable
The CRTC started its consultation on the future of cable TV this week. This follows last week’s Speech from the Throne, where the federal government encouraged more flexible TV packages for Canadians. We’ve been advocating for this for years. Do you have thoughts on the future of broadcasting regulations? Weigh in on the CRTC website.
Rogers named one of Canada’s top employers
Rogers was recognized this week as a great place to work, making the Mediacorp list of Canada’s Top Employers for 2014. Employers are graded based on the workplace environment, benefits, training, community involvement and more. Rogers was recognized for office perks, like a room for meditation and religious observance, discounts on products and an employee bonus program. Even better? We celebrated the honour with cake at our Toronto campus.
I previously shared why I love my job – what do you love about your workplace?
Trick or Treat
Rogers Pumpkin Patrol, now in its 29th year, will be helping to keep the streets safe on Oct. 31. Since 1984, Rogers employees volunteer to patrol neighbourhoods to help keep young trick-or-treaters safe. Keep an eye out for the red Rogers vans, and check out pumpkinpatrol.ca for our top safety tips.
Ghosts, ghouls and goblins – Oh my! Halloween is right around the corner, and we’re ready to celebrate all things spooky with a live chat on Tuesday at noon EDT right here on RedBoard. Log on to share your favourite scary movies and answer trivia questions for your chance to win a movie prize pack!
What movies do you watch every All Hallow’s Eve?