Archive for Rogers

PSA: Redeem Your Rogers Rewards Points Before They Expire In June

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 25, 2016 by itnerd

If you’re a Rogers customer, chances are you’ve been collecting Rogers Rewards points by spending money with the Canadian telco. In case you weren’t aware, Rogers announced last April that they were deep sixing the program two years after they started the program. By the way, you stopped getting points in December and you’ll lose any points the you’ve earned in June of 2016. Thus, what you need to do to before June of 2016:

  1. Log into your Rogers account online at Rogers.com
  2. Pick and choose the rewards that you want.

The process is dead simple and points can be used for content, such as movie rentals from Rogers on Demand, or discounts on things like smartphone upgrades. Thus you should be able to find something that you can use. In the case of my wife and I, we redeemed the 7100 points that we had for $70 in gift certificates for The Shopping Channel, and 50 minutes of North American calling on our home phone that we’ll use to phone a friend who lives in the DC area and is likely snowed in.

Make sure you act soon to score the rewards that you’ve earned.

Rogers Responds To My Story About Injecting “Friendly Reminder” About Their Modems [UPDATED]

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 19, 2016 by itnerd

You might recall that I wrote about Rogers using JavaScript injections into the browsers of users to give “friendly reminders” about changing the passwords on their Rogers supplied modem+router. Not only that, the configurations of some users (myself included) combined with the fact that the messages sort of implied that Rogers somehow kept track of passwords rubbed some the wrong way. I got a response from Rogers on this yesterday and I have reprinted the relevant parts below:

We thought the New Year was a great time for people to set a resolution to create new, strong passwords that will help boost their online security. As you know, regularly changing your passwords for everything you do online, from banking to social media to your home WiFi network can help protect against vulnerabilities.

We’ve been posting messages on social media since the New Year began, and we’re also reaching out to customers directly to ask people to set strong passwords, including those who are relying on the original default passwords that came with their modem.

And to answer your question specifically – no, we don’t keep track of people’s modem names or passwords.

That statement answered one of my questions, but I still had two questions which I posed to Rogers:

  1. Why use a JavaScript injection to deliver this message? For someone like me who makes a living stopping JavaScript injections from infecting corporate networks, that’s a MAJOR no-no?
  2. Many of the people who aren’t thrilled about this (myself included) have your modems in bridge mode which makes this a non-factor. I am guessing that you can’t tell what mode the modem is, or is this just a blanket message sent out to all users?

I sent those questions yesterday and I have not received a response. After sitting on this for most of today, I decided to go ahead with this update and if Rogers responds to my questions, I’ll post another update as these are the questions that based on the comments to the original story and e-mails that I’ve received, people want answered.

UPDATE: Rogers just provided this response:

We sent direct messages to customers via email and via a pop-up in an effort to reach as many people as possible. The campaign was designed around reaching a broad range of customers to boost online security.  

Note that the question about why they used a JavaScript injection to do this wasn’t answered. But the rest of this statement allows you to fill in the blanks.

Rogers Injecting “Friendly Reminders” Into Web Pages I Surf To…WTF?

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 13, 2016 by itnerd

Rogers has been off my radar screen for a while now and I even suggested in my year end review that they might have changed their ways.

I spoke too soon.

Tonight I got home and wanted to surf to a few websites to unwind. That’s when I got a browser Javascript injection from Rogers in my web browser alerting me that my modem+router combo from them is using the default wireless password and that I should change it. Here’s a picture of the message that I got. Click the image to see it in full size:

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Here’s the stupid part of this whole thing. Actually two of them:

  1. My modem is actually in bridge mode, so the WiFi router part is not even being used. If you want to know how I did that, click here.
  2. Each of the Rogers modems has a unique WiFi password (printed on a label on the modem). So it’s not that insecure as you would need physical access to the modem to get the password.

Thus there’s no reason for me to get this message.

WTF?

Another thing that really bothers me is this line from the message that I received:

“Our installation records show that you did not change the default settings for the Wi-Fi network name and password for your Rogers Internet modem.”

So does that mean that Rogers is keeping track of the changes that I make to the modem from a WiFi name and password perspective? That’s very Big Brother like if that’s the case and does little to give me the warm fuzzies. I know that Rogers does have the ability to access the remotely, as I had a reader of this blog reach out to me in regards to his modem+router being accessed by a Rogers employee in a way that made him feel uncomfortable (though to be fair, Rogers did look into it when I posted the story…. though the reader still wasn’t thrilled with the results of that investigation). Thus Rogers keeping track of if I change the modem+router settings may not be a stretch.

Back to the method of injecting this message into my browser via Javascript. That smells of their attempts to alter web page content back in 2008. It was distasteful then, and it is distasteful now, not to mention that it really paints Rogers in a negative light. Not to mention that this is a popular attack vector for hackers.

Now I get why Rogers might want to do this as they’re trying to help their users. But this message, the way that it is worded, and how this message is being delivered to me does little to make me think that Rogers is trying to do the right thing. Now I know that Rogers will read this post and send me some sort of statement to put some spin on this as that’s what tends to happen whenever I write something negative about Rogers. I can’t wait to see how they explain this and when they do, I’ll tell you about it.

 

Rogers Launches Device Aid.

Posted in Commentary with tags on December 3, 2015 by itnerd

Rogers announced today that they have launched Device Aid. Device Aid is a self-serve feature that is similar to having a personal smartphone expert at your fingertips. It allows customers to quickly and easily diagnose problems with their smart phones and maximize the performance of their device. Rogers is the first in North America to offer a product like this. It’s available to Rogers customers as part of the MyRogers app.

DeviceAid 1.jpg

 

What is DeviceAid?

  • It will save customers time and address their questions on their schedule, at their convenience
  • Offers personalized support to help customers maximize mobile device performance
  • Customers can ask questions and get answers about their smartphones and their services
  • Self-diagnoses and issue resolution of technical issues
  • Connect with a live chat agent directly from the app

Key Facts:

  • 90% of customers have been able to address their issue through self-serve using Device Aid (only 10% of customers need to go to a live chat session for more information)
  • Average time spent on the app is 6 minutes vs an 8 min average handle time of a wireless tech support call
  • Device Aid has been visited nearly 210,000 times
  • Smart Tips’ is the most popular feature with over 150,000 views
  • Over 17,000 questions have been asked and answered
  • Over 6,000 chats with technical support reps have been completed

I’ll be trying it shortly. When I do, I’ll post a follow up with my thoughts.

Rogers Now Supports Net Neutrality…… After Doing The Opposite For So Long

Posted in Commentary with tags , , on October 15, 2015 by itnerd

Here’s the deal. Rogers hasn’t exactly been the best ISP in Canada from a net neutrality standpoint. They have been nailed numerous times for doing things that they shouldn’t be on that front. Now it seems they’ve become the champion of net neutrality.

Seriously.

Rogers filed a complaint with Canadian regulators because competitor Videotron has unveiled the Unlimited Music program. This program exempts the biggest and most popular music services from Videotron’s usage caps. And to nobody’s surprise, Rogers who owns a ton of radio stations that have streaming options are not part of Videotron’s program. Thus Videotron is appearing to favor one service over another. Something that’s kind of a no-no in this part of the world. Rogers had this to say:

“The Unlimited Music service offered by Videotron is fundamentally at odds with the objective of ensuring that there is an open and non-discriminatory marketplace for mobile audio services,” the company’s CRTC filing says.“Videotron is, in effect, picking winners and losers by adopting a business model that would require an online audio service provider (including Canadian radio stations that stream content online) to accept Videotron’s contractual requirements in order to receive the benefit of having its content zero-rated.”

So, what does Videotron think of Rogers complaint” Not much based on this statement:

Videotron said in its filing that a range of “ulterior motives” have been ascribed to what it insists is simply an effort to “make its services more attractive to customers.”

“In the present case, Videotron is being accused of everything from blocking competition in the music streaming business, to trying to control access to music content, to creating a two-tiered Internet, to trying to marginalize a part of its own customer base,” the company said, adding, “The truth is much less conspiratorial.

“Videotron has observed that the appeal of its wireless services to the key 14-to-34-year-old demographic could be better than it is and the company has found an attractive and innovative way to broaden that appeal.”

Other groups are joining Rogers party on both sides of the argument. So this will get sorted by the CRTC at some point. But you have to note the irony. A Canadian ISP known for not exactly playing nice with the concept of net neutrality has radically changed its tune when they are suddenly the victim.

Wow. I should check the temperature of hell as it might have frozen over.

Rogers Announces 4K TV, Netflix 4K Partnership & Gigabit Internet

Posted in Commentary with tags on October 6, 2015 by itnerd

Rogers had some news yesterday that turned some heads. Here’s the list of things that were announced:

  • Rogers plans to roll out  a new 4K set top box. To give you something to watch, Rogers will serve up over 100 live sporting events streamed in 4K including all 2016 Blue Jays home games and 20 NHL games.
  • From the “did hell freeze over” department comes the news that they have a partnership with Netflix for “premium” 4K streaming by connecting to the Open Connect content delivery network. Seeing as Rogers is part of the partnership with Shaw to serve up Shomi, I didn’t see that one coming.
  • Rogers has also announced Rogers Ignite Gigabit internet. It will show up in the following GTA areas shortly: Harbourfront, Cabbagetown, Riverdale, King Street West, Queen Street West, the Financial District, Discovery District, Yonge and Bloor, Vaughan, Markham, Richmond Hill, Pickering, Ajax, and Whitby and some more that I haven’t listed here. More areas will come by the end of 2016.

Clearly what Rogers is trying to do is to give you a reason not to run out to Bell and their services as they were first to the table with Gigabit Internet. My question is, will it succeed in retaining existing customers and attracting new customers?

We’ll see.

WiFi Calling On Rogers…. It Works As Advertised

Posted in Commentary with tags , on September 24, 2015 by itnerd

Last week, I wrote about the difficulties that my wife and I had setting up WiFil calling on my wife’s iPhone 6 that is on the Rogers network. But we’ve overcome them and she has had a chance to try it out in her workplace which despite being in downtown Toronto, it’s a cellular dead zone where she is lucky to get one dot on her iPhone. As a result she misses calls frequently as they all go to voicemail. Thus having WiFi calling available to her will fix that issue. Here’s a screenshot of my wife’s iPhone 6 (click to enlarge):

IMG_1651

You’ll notice on the top left of the screenshot that she is getting 1 dot of LTE signal strength. But you’ll also notice that it says “WiFi Rogers.” That means that the iPhone is now using her corporate WiFi network to make and receive calls. The iPhone will automatically use WiFi when her LTE signal strength is low. That means that as long as she has WiFi access, she is reachable and she doesn’t have to do a thing to enable it. In terms of call quality, my wife reported to me that it is very good. People could hear her clearly and she could hear them clearly. She’s only been using it for a few days, but she has no complaints thus far.

The bottom line is that if you’re on the Rogers network and you’ve updated to iOS 9, you should enable WiFi calling. It will allow you to keep in touch anywhere there’s a WiFi signal and it pretty much works as advertised without a drop in call quality. If you’re still not sure if you should make the jump, Rogers has a FAQ that should be able to answer all your questions.

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