High-speed Internet rolling out to 70,000 locations by the end of 2020 and to a total of 200,000 over the next 2 years
Enhanced 50/10 access speeds available to 70% of WHI homes at launch
HALIFAX, NS, Oct. 19, 2020 /CNW/ - Bell today announced the expansion of its innovative high-speed Wireless Home Internet (WHI) service to rural Atlantic Canada, with access planned for approximately 70,000 households by the end of 2020 and a total of 200,000 locations over the next 2 years.
"Bell Wireless Home Internet has made a positive difference for many Canadians living in rural and other underserved communities, and we're proud to bring this unique service to the Atlantic provinces," said Glen LeBlanc, Bell's Vice Chair, Atlantic. "Over the next 2 months, approximately 70,000 residences in hundreds of Atlantic Canada communities will get access to fast and reliable broadband service, building on Bell's goal to advance how Canadians connect with each other and the world."
Bell will bring WHI service to approximately 200,000 rural residences in Atlantic Canada over the next 2 years: about 68,000 will be in New Brunswick, 86,000 in Nova Scotia, 27,000 in Prince Edward Island and 15,000 in Newfoundland and Labrador.
"Access to high-speed Internet is no longer a luxury, it's a necessity – one that's become increasingly important due to the COVID-19 pandemic," said the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry. "The expansion of Bell's Wireless Home Internet service will help Canadians in rural Atlantic communities get connected faster, better and easier to run their businesses, pursue educational opportunities and participate in the digital economy."
WHI has also recently been enhanced to deliver 50/10 access speeds (50 Megabits per second download/10 Mbps upload), which will be available to about 70% of connected homes. All WHI customers also receive the advanced Bell Home Hub modem to provide the fastest Wi-Fi throughout the home.
Fast broadband Internet for rural customers
"With Wireless Home Internet we are able to stay in touch with our family and friends in other parts of Canada by video chat without any lag. This has been especially important to us since we're unable to travel due to COVID-19. Streaming our shows and movies is a whole lot better now too," said Glenn Lock, who participated in Bell's WHI technology trials in Newburne, Nova Scotia.
Delivered over Bell's advanced LTE wireless network, WHI is 5G-capable technology specifically designed to extend broadband Internet access to previously unserved or underserved communities. WHI operates on a dedicated fixed wireless LTE channel separate from the mobile LTE channel, ensuring consistent capacity and speed for both fixed and mobile customers.
"Wireless Home Internet leverages Bell's fibre and wireless networks to efficiently deliver broadband Internet access to smaller towns, rural communities and other hard-to-reach locations," said Stephen Howe, Bell's Chief Technology Officer. "Enhanced 50/10 speeds will be available to the majority of locations as will upgrades to 5G service in future once necessary wireless spectrum is made available by the federal government in 2021."
The Wireless Home Internet program is fully funded by Bell as part of our $4 billion capital investment in advanced networks and services each year. It's currently available to more than 400,000 households in Ontario, Québec and Atlantic Canada, and is expected to reach 1 million homes in smaller towns and rural communities across Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Québec, Ontario and Manitoba.
To see if your home is eligible and to learn more about Wireless Home Internet, please visit Bell.ca/FastInternet.
New WHI communities in Atlantic Canada
Wireless Home Internet is now available (marked with *) or coming soon to eligible homes in these following Atlantic communities:
Tobique First Nation
Newfoundland and Labrador
Isle aux Morts
Head of Jeddore
Jeddore Oyster Ponds
Ste. Anne du Ruisseau Stewiacke Tatamagouche Tusket Upper Rawdon* Waterville Wedgeport* Wentworth West Arichat Westville Windsor Wolfville
Ste. Anne du Ruisseau
Prince Edward Island
St. Peters Harbour
West St. Peters
Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing advanced broadband wireless, TV, Internet and business communication services from Bell Canada, Bell Aliant and Bell MTS. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio, out of home, and digital media. Founded in Montréal in 1880, Bell is wholly owned by BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). To learn more, please visit Bell.ca or BCE.ca.
The Bell Let's Talk initiative promotes Canadian mental health with national awareness and anti-stigma campaigns like Bell Let's Talk Day and significant Bell funding of community care and access, research and workplace leadership initiatives throughout the country. To learn more, please visit Bell.ca/LetsTalk.
Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
Certain statements made in this news release are forward-looking statements, including statements relating to our network deployment and capital investment plans, our business outlook, objectives, plans and strategic priorities, and other statements that are not historical facts. All such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the "safe harbor" provisions of applicable Canadian securities laws and of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties and are based on several assumptions which give rise to the possibility that actual results or events could differ materially from our expectations. These statements are not guarantees of future performance or events, and we caution you against relying on any of these forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release describe our expectations at the date of this news release and, accordingly, are subject to change after such date. Except as may be required by applicable securities laws, we do not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained in this news release, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Our network deployment and capital investment plans and the benefits expected to result therefrom are subject to risks and, accordingly, there can be no assurance that our network deployment plans will be completed or that the benefits expected to result therefrom will be realized. The value of the planned investment assumes our ability to access or generate the necessary sources of capital. However, there can be no certainty that the required sources of capital will be available with the result that the actual investment made by us could materially differ from current expectations. For additional information on assumptions and risks underlying certain of our forward-looking statements made in this news release, please consult BCE's 2020 Second Quarter MD&A dated August 5, 2020, filed by BCE with the Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities (available at Sedar.com) and with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (available at SEC.gov). This document is also available at BCE.ca.
SOURCE Bell Canada
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