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  1.    #1  
    I just got off the phone with the director of sales for North America at Handspring, and asked a few questions about the Canadian retail market. He was hard to figure--friendly at first, but when I asked a couple of questions too specific about retail dates in Canada he clammed right up. "Why do you want to know?" was the initial response to almost every question I had. I don't think Handspring is in the mood to spread information, or just generally chat with Joe Blow; he very well may have thought I was a reporter.

    Anyway, the situation is frustratingly grim considering the news of European and Asian markets opening up. He as much as said that opening the doors to Canada was a booboo because their infrastructure wasn't meant to take the orders or offer support. He said it was a mistake from the start to state service to "North America" (although his title has NA in it...), and the intention was never even there. Duh!

    So within hours of the mistake's discovery, he said, the ball was rolling to cut support for Canada.

    When asked how long it would be before the Visor is available, somehow, to Canadians (besides Ebay or a drive to Minneapolis), his response was, "Perhaps months."

    I don't know about anyone else, but that doesn't sit very well with me. I can't buy the modem, a proper case, or even an extra stylus, unless I buy second-hand! I have been behind HS from day one, and am still in love with the technology, but I have a feeling of utter abandonment. May as well have bought a Newton.

    Comments?

    -Doug
  2. #2  
    I ordered my visor on sept 14, and i got it 10 weeks later (Sheesh). I have a friend who ordered one a little while after, and he still hasn't received his.

    I have been waiting for them to start shipping to Canada again, as I would like to get another cradle for work, perhaps a springboard, but I guess i'm outta luck for a while.
  3. #3  
    try http://www.handheldinterfaces.com

    they are a Canadian company that is reselling Visors and accessories, they appear to be aboveboard and I have used them and been satisfied, they are however more expensive.

    KWL
  4.    #4  
    Thanks! I had a look at that site, and it may very well keep me satisfied for a while. Still, it is unfortunate that there was no warning, no recompense on behalf of Handspring for cutting Canadian channels. I had kept my fingers crossed that Q1 would be the target for full-blown support in NA; after today's phone conversation, I was very disheartened.

    As Wilkes put it, Canada would account for 10% of the orders at best. Even so, it's not a scenario that Canadians are used to and it feels rather odd to me; I can buy a Psion computer straight from England--although I'd have to send it back for repair--but Handspring isn't able to fulfill an order a few hundred kilometres away?
  5. #5  
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but won't we be able to get a visor from a staples or another retail chain that also sells them in the states?
  6. #6  
    Excuse me if I'm out of place but, why not just go to Toronto or get someone who lives near there and just go into the US and get one? There can't be a problem with that when at border patrol. I realize Canada is huge, and many may not even live in Ontario Province or near the US border but, can't you get someone you know who lives near Toronto or whatnot to get it? I know whenever I visit my friend who lives right on the border (you can walk to the river that separates the US and Canada) we can go to Canada as much as we want. Heck, we decided to just go to Toronto once to see American Pie (heheh I saw American Pie in a Canadian Theater) just because all the theaters in his area were mediocre, and it was super cheap and digital video and digital sound). I appear to be drifiting off-topic very quickly so I better sum this up. Can't you get someone in Toronto or near there or even on any other border province/US State lines to run over to Staples or CompUSA and get one?

    -Vinny

    [This message has been edited by Vinny (edited 04-03-2000).]
  7.    #7  
    Well...Canada doesn't have a HUGE population, but it's got a lot of area and there are enough people that not all of us have a friend in Toronto. Agreed, if I lived five minutes from an American metropols this might not be a problem. But the closest large American city to me (Winnipeg) is an eight-hour drive - Minneapolis. I love Handspring products, but not enough to spend the better part of a weekend driving to get a case or backup module.

    Now, that said, an alternative might be to phone a Staples in the States and see if they can mail something off the shelf to a Canadian address. Anyone know if they'd do something like that? I'd be afraid that I would receive the wrong product but it's an idea.

    I thought a saving grace would be the online stores, but as part of the deal, Handspring still holds exclusive web-sale priviledges.

    -Doug
  8. #8  
    i feel for you guys back home. it does suck that handspring is neglecting the 'true north strong and free'. However, do you think staples/compusa/bestbuy will eventually have alot of the Handspring stuff on their website? Then it would be a matter of just ordering it from there? OR, does the fact that Handspring will not be releasing the Visor,etc. to Internet retailers also include the brick and mortar retailer's websites??
  9.    #9  
    I'm figuring that Handspring's got exclusive rights at this point over any other internet site, including Staples/CompUSA/BestBuy.

    Oh well! Perhaps by the time we can go to a local store and buy one, they'll be colour!

    -Doug
  10. #10  
    Wow! I just checked out www.handheldinterfaces.com, and ordered the Backup module and a Serial cradle. Within minutes, I had a call from CS about the shipping I chose. I'm very impressed. I should have them by tomorrow.

    It looks like they will also be offering the Stowaway keyboard when it is released, too. Can't wait.
  11. #11  
    I could have sworn that I saw something on Handspring's web site a few weeks ago that says that Handspring would be available in Canada in the Spring. I just went to the site and can't seem to find it anymore. hmmm...
  12. Ian
    Ian is offline
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    #12  
    No, Yardie, it's still there. Taunting us from within their "Shipping and Ordering" page. Actually, after MUCH deliberation (and a considerable amount of jealous disgust after reading about their plans (non-plans) for Canada in Doug's posts) I have decided to go with a Palm Pilot instead. I guess it's unfortunate given that I was so excited about the Visor at first and have been visiting this site for about a month now, anxiously anticipating their introduction to Canada. However, I want a palm device and I am sufficiently convinced that I could make good use of a palm device right now, so, why torture myself further waiting for this specific palm device to grace Canada's shores.

    In a year or two, when I'm ready to upgrade my Palm, Handspring could actually have their act together and the store shelves could be overflowing with springborad modules.

    To the true diehards: Please accept my apologies for the treachery.
  13. #13  
    If any Canadians want to buy any of the Handspring stylus 5 pack, leave me email. I don't need all 5.

    Adam B
  14.    #14  
    Hey, this is great. I just received an e-mail from Donna D. about us Canucks! For the sake of privacy I'll just touch on some of the highlights:

    * She agrees that they need to make Canada a priority, particularly considering there is an existing, albeit somewhat orphaned, user base
    * This has been reiterated to her team as a priority
    * Possibly back on line with Canadian orders by end of this quarter (end of June) - she'd like to see it happen faster, and it may indeed be faster, but this is a 'worst case' scenario according to her
    * Retail arrangements may be a month sooner! At the worst, about the same time.

    This is what I had hoped to hear!

    -Doug
  15. #15  
    Just wanted to add that their customer support to Canada has been a pleasant surprise. When I had a problem, I followed the normal process for an RMA and waited. After a week, I followed up (okay it was with Donna) and got a quick reply. the replacement unit they sent also had problems but another call got me a brand new unit. What was unbelievable was that I got it in less than 24 hours from my call (all the way from Louisville Ky to Toronto).
  16.    #16  
    I should add that two days after the e-mails, a slipcase arrived at work for me, FedExed from Donna's assistant. Perhaps it doesn't take much to impress me, but that did the trick! Let's hope when I send back one of my Visors (it's got a crack, but I've been very aprehensive of the whole return process thus far), it'll be just as quick!

    -Doug

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