The Planetbeing Data Plan
If you live in Canada and you don't make phone calls or send text messages but you still want an iPhone to use as an always-on Internet communicator, this is the way to go:
- Buy an unlocked iPhone. The 16GB iPhone 4S is currently going for $649 on the Apple Online Store.
- Go to a Rogers store and pick up a Micro SIM ($10) and a $30 Pay As You Go voucher.
- Sign up for Pay As You Go on Rogers' website and choose the $0.40/minute plan. (Weeknights and weekends have a $0.01/minute rate.)
- Every week, get a Data Week Pass for $7. This gets you 125MB to use up for the next week. You will be prompted to buy one whenever you're accessing data without a data add-on.
- Don't forget to top up every month.
This means that for $28/month, you are getting 500MB of data. If you happen to cram most of your calls into weekends and weeknights, you also have a spare 200 minutes, which is more than enough if you don't hand out your phone number to a ton of people who will actually call you.
You are also saving quite a bit of money compared to someone signing up for the least expensive smartphone plan over the contract's duration, which is three years in Canada! If your needs are met by going prepaid, I suggest you go for it. Having an unlocked phone also means you can always switch carriers if someone else starts offering more advantageous prepaid data plans.
(This is called the Planetbeing Data Plan because planetbeing from the iPhone Dev Team is the one who told me about this setup before it was made public on Rogers' website.)
Rogers will be changing their prepaid data plans in February. I am currently paying $7 a week for 125MB; after the changes, the Data Week Pass will be $5 a week for 60MB. This is insane. I am contemplating switching to Telus.