SCUGOG: Communicate Freely has launched 'Fibre to the Home' service on Scugog Island! The new telecommunications service is capable of providing high speed Internet, digital telephone service, and digital TV service (coming soon) to local residents over an all fibre optic network. The first few homes on Highway 7a are now connected and have been enjoying faster Internet connectivity. One customer now connected, had not been able to receive reliable service from any other provider due to their location, near the bottom of the hill. The couple had resigned themselves to making limited use of the data plans on their cell phones, but now have the ability to stream high definition video on their smart TV, and surf the web at blazing speeds.
Witnesses participating in a "copper cutting" ceremony for the first customer, watched a speed test verify the 250 Mb/s available over the fibre network. These speeds will be available to all customers who choose the fastest package, without any reductions due to weather, trees, or distance from town. While some customers will demand the ultimate in speed, many customers opt for a modestly priced 20 Mb/s or 100 Mb/s package, perhaps combined with telephone and TV service.
Communicate Freely was awarded a grant, through the federal Connecting Canadians program, which covers 50% of the construction costs, up to $1.89m. The Federal funding will allow Communicate Freely to expand their fibre optic network to the rest of Scugog Island, over the course of the next year and a half. So far this year, the build has been completed as far as Hwy 7a, and the ground work has been laid on Spring Boulevard, Ambleside Drive, and the southern part of Island Road. Portview Road should also receive service some time this winter.
Throughout the winter months, crews will be busy splicing cable and completing the remaining work to bring these neighborhoods online. Underground work will resume in the spring, with service slowly expanding North and East. The majority of Island residents should have service by the end of 2017, with some remaining work carried over to 2018.
A locally owned and operated small business, Communicate Freely has their offices at 237 Queen St. in Port Perry. Residents of Scugog Island may pre-register, at www.communicatefreely.net/orders.php, and will be notified when service becomes available in their area. In addition to the Island, Communicate Freely provides business and residential service to downtown Port Perry.
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