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Chatr Reviews

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Quick Links: Network & Coverage | Plans | Roaming | Phones | Frequently Asked Questions

If you don’t want to read the details, skip straight to our Recommendation
Once your done reading this, be sure to check out our comparison: Lucky Mobile vs Public Mobile vs Chatr Mobile

 

Chatr Mobile Overview

While Chatr’s beginnings date back to 2010, it’s important to understand the role Mobilicity played in the brand developing itself.

While there were many bidders for Mobilicity’s assets, Rogers ultimately won and purchased them in 2015.

Within less then a year, Rogers rolled out their plans to shut down Mobilicity which involved moving subscribers to comparable brands at their discount carrier, Chatr, as well as rebranding many of Mobilicity’s retail locations to Chatr branded stores.

Chatr Mobile, originally known as Chatr Wireless, is Rogers Communications’ foray into the discount carrier segment.

Started in 2010, Chatr offers plans based on the zone concept.

While available nationally, they do not offer data service unless you are in one of the ‘zones’. So their approach is slightly different than their competitors which we’ll continue to explore below.

As of late 2018, Chatr Mobile has removed the ‘zones’ concept along with Lucky Mobile and now offers regular plans that are not confined by zones along with brand new nationwide plans.

 

Chatr Mobile Coverage & Network

Since Chatr essentially operates on the Rogers network, you can count on getting good reception nationwide, thanks to the strength of the Rogers network.

Chatr only offers 3G data service, so the bands that work on Chatr are noted below.

Keep in mind that if you’re going to bring your own device, it must work on one of these frequencies.

  • HSPA: 850 MHz and 1900 MHz frequencies

Chatr Mobile Coverage

Below is a map of Chatr’s nationwide coverage.

An interactive map is on the Chatr site here which gives you a clear depiction of the different coverage zones.

Previously Chatr offered Zone plans hence the legend still noting ‘In-Zone Plans’ however Chatr is now moving forward with a more generic approach to their plans, focusing on different tiers in terms of talk, text and data.

This essentially is the broad, basic nationwide coverage as seen in purple of the map.

It covers cities and rural areas, probably includes where most people will ever go.

 

Chatr Mobile Coverage Map

Chatr Mobile Provides National Coverage

 

Chatr Mobile Plans

Please note the below plan prices may vary in Quebec, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

Chatr offers these budget friendly plans:

 

Call display, call forwarding and group calling are included in all plans.

Price Talk Text Data Voicemail Auto Pay Bonus
$15 per month 100 Canada Wide Minutes & Unlimited Incoming Unlimited International Text None $0.40 per minute to retrieve 250 MB per month
$25 per month Unlimited Canada Wide Unlimited International Text None Included 500 MB per month
$25 per month Unlimited Incoming Canada Wide Unlimited Text 500 MB at 3G speed $0.40 per minute to retrieve 500 MB per month

 

Chatr also has the following Unlimited Canada-Wide Plans:

Voicemail, International talk saver, call display, call forwarding and group calling are included in all plans.

Price Talk Text Data Auto Pay Bonus
$35 per month Unlimited Canada Wide Unlimited International Text 1 GB at 3G speed 500 MB per month
$40 per month Unlimited Canada Wide Unlimited International Text 4 GB at 3G speed 500 MB per month
$50 per month Unlimited Canada & US Unlimited International Text 8 GB at 3G speed 500 MB per month

Data Overage: If you hit your monthly data allotment, you can continue to use your data on these plans however Chatr does throttle down bandwidth to as low as 64 kilobits per second vs 3G which is 3 Mbps so you’ll want to try to stay within your allotment.

 

International Talk Saver

Chatr Mobile has preferred International calling rates for plans as noted above.

While a full list of rates by country can be found on their website, a couple of examples:

  1. China: $0.02 per minute
  2. Greece: $0.01 per minute to landline & $0.03 per minute to mobile
  3. India: $0.03 per minute
  4. Philippines: $0.13 per minute to landline & $0.17 per minute to mobile

 

Chatr Mobile Roaming

Chatr does not extend it’s parent Rogers’ Roam Like Home feature to customers and instead charges on pay per use.

You’ll want to be extremely careful if roaming with your Chatr device as rates are extremely high.

Full rate’s are available on the Chatr website but as an example, if you were travelling to Italy, rates are:

  • $2.50 per minute for talk
  • Incoming text messages are free
  • Outgoing text messages are $0.40 each
  • Data is $30 per MB

Yeah, quite steep!

 

Chatr Mobile Phones

Chatr does not have term contracts nor do they have any type of tab system.

They have a variety of reasonably priced devices available to you in addition to having the option of bringing your own device.

A Chatr sim card can be purchased for $10 and majority of the popular devices such as iPhones, Samsung Galaxy/Note series, Google Pixel and Huawei devices will work.

You can purchase a used smartphone and bring it along with you to use on Chatr from various retailers and marketplaces.

You can also check out Kijiji, Amazon, eBay and Facebook Marketplace.

 

Recommendation

  1. If you don’t need a lot of data, they’re $35 per month provides unlimited Canada wide talk, unlimited International text and 1 GB of data with an auto pay bonus of 500 MB, so good value overall
  2. Decent International calling rates if you have a $25 per month plan or higher, again depends on where Internationally you would be calling
  3. No contracts, no credit checks

Be sure to set up Auto-Pay to get your data bonus if you select a Talk, Text & Data plan.
Any downsides?

  1. 3G Data Speed – Be sure you understand how you’ll be using your data as 3G is not great for streaming video or anything that requires intensive download/upload speed

 

Chatr Mobile FAQs

Does Chatr have retail stores I can visit?

Yes, Chatr has it’s own retail stores in addition to phone support (some requests will incur fees) and online self-service options.

If I have a Talk, Text & Data Plan (in-zone), my usual zone being Vancouver, so the striped orange area on their coverage map, does that mean I have unlimited talk and text everywhere?

NO! You’re unlimited talk and text is only when you are in a zone, anywhere in the country. However, once you are out of a zone, per minute and per message rates will apply.

What happens after my finish my allotment of data in my plan?

The allotment of data in your plan is provided at 3G which is decent for email, light web surfing and a few other things. However, if you add a data top up, your speeds will be throttled down to 2G like speeds which is super slow to accomplish anything these days.

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Shawn Gant

Shawn is a passionate techie particularly interested in the fintech space. He loves to dig into the ever evolving number of apps and SaaS platforms available to Canadians. In his free time, catch him on the mountains shredding snow.