Just for the record, I think the Rogers data plans for the new Canadian version of the iPhone are crap, and I’ve said so a number of times. I’m not here to apologize for the company, or anything like that, and I would love it if someone could wave a magic wand and produce a better plan. But at the same time, I think the idea that Apple cares enough to step in and threaten Rogers by promising to delay shipments of iPhones or send them elsewhere is… well, ridiculous. Do I know for sure whether the report at Smithereens is true or not? No. But I just find it hard to believe that Apple cares much what Rogers charges for the iPhone at this point.
Does Apple care what providers charge for the Jesus phone? Sure it does, because it wants to generate as much demand for the handsets as possible. That’s why it negotiated so hard with AT&T before the launch in the U.S., and no doubt negotiated pretty firmly with Rogers as well, in advance of the Canadian launch. But don’t you think the two companies would have come to an agreement about what Rogers would charge? The two sides have reportedly been negotiating for months. (Update: A Rogers spokesperson says inventory levels haven’t changed).
For Apple to start yanking shipments at this point would be a bizarre move for the company to make, and would likely open the company up to legal claims by Rogers, depending on the terms of their agreement. I know that the popular mythos about Apple is that Steve Jobs gets to do whatever he wants, and strides around the globe dispensing goodies — or lumps of coal — at his whim, like Santa Claus in a black turtleneck, but I just don’t think that’s how things really work. At this point, I think that would-be Canadian iPhone users are on their own.