Interventions Phase 2: Intervenor 500

Document Name: 2015-134.226861.2519108.Interventions Phase 2(1hzr801!).html

Poor service and choices in rural areas for internet and cellular coverage yet - costs and needs are generally the same as in urban areas. Unable to get anyone in Bell to care about poor cell coverage in parts of PEI. For example, St-Edward area in West Prince. Who can one complain too? **** of internet increasing yearly but without any clear improvement in service. The competition is even more expensive as an option in some cases. Cable internet cost is now sitting at $91 a month after the latest price increase for 20 Mbps. Adding options such as a MiFi with Bell Aliant for 2gigs of data has increased our total internet costs to about $150 per month. That doesn't include the cost for Bell Satellite TV (basic package), Vonage, and of course the usual cellular costs. All the services together end up costing in the neighbourhood of some $300 plus dollars a month. These services are becoming an every day reality in our lives as Canadians, rather than just a nice to have, especially when your consider that many Canadians do on-line banking, consult and access government websites and services on-line (e-post, Environment Canada weather pages, 511, pensions and benefits, self-help, etc, etc, - both provincially and Federally, including the notion of using internet and related technology to stay connected with friends, family and accessing information and interaction within our local communities, and to be aware of the local, provincial, and Canadian happenings - so we can collectively make informed decisions about our future and have a positive impact on our society moving forward. It is not just about limited one-on-one communication via social sharing websites on seemingly banal topics - or simple entertainment via Netflix, music streaming, gaming, etc. Poor service for reporting issues or concerns re: internet and cellular. Complicated websites and telephone call-in processes - and long wait times that often don't match the problem or issues ar hand. Always talking to a front line queue - and it is hard to get service or even question a technitian directly on issues that may be a physical fault in the lines outside, etc - especially when the issues are sporadic and the causes unknown. Makes one wonder how robust our systems are beyond our four walls. Outages are poorly explained as to why and there is often no follow-up. Often, there is no way to complain to anyone meaningful in these corporate organizations re: price increases, service issues or concerns, etc. Lots of door to door salespersons though - even though a person already has their services, etc. The right hand doesn't seem know what the left hand is doing by times and there is a general feeling of powerlessness as a customer for these important services - none or which come cheap. Also concerned about keeping folks connected - and that reasonable readiness posture is really in place and tested to ensure that we can all access internet, cell towers, etc during and after inclement weather or other natural events. We have some pretty powerful weather events here in PEI such as ice-storms and the like and while we have been fortunate over the years, there is a need to be prepared in terms of being resilient - particularly now that we have become increasingly dependent on these technologies. A case in point, is the use of this technology to generate my comment to you the CRTC.