Broadband service ready to roll in downtown Trail

Businesses and buildings in downtown Trail that signed on for broadband Internet will be hooked into the fibre network by Christmastime.

The City of Trail is now stepping into the future of Internet connection, after over a year of planning.

Businesses and buildings in downtown Trail that signed on for broadband Internet will be hooked into the fibre network by Christmastime.

Over 180 businesses signed up for the high speed connection, many more than were expected when the initiative was just starting out.

“We expected good uptake, but the number of connections requested was close to double what we had anticipated,” said Duane Birnie, information systems coordinator for the City of Trail in a press release.

When the program first got off the ground in January 2014, there was no Internet service provider contracted for the project, but the city, along with the Lower Columbia Initiatives Corporation and the Trail Broadband committee, has chosen Columbia     Networks.

Now that the connections are in place, individual businesses and building owners need to look at what they need from their Internet connection – email, download speed, bandwidth, etc. To get a quote or learn about the packages available for those already hooked up call 888-527-0540 or email sales@columbianetworks.ca.

The new connection is faster than dial-up or cable Internet by increasing the amount of information that can travel from one place to the next. The impact on Trail businesses will be significant.

“This is a big thing, for any sized business,” Ron Perepolkin, community economic development coordinator at Community Futures, told the Times in January.

“The fast upload speed really makes a difference, as well as the download. It allows for new technologies that can be used for transactions, monitoring sales or inventory.”

Perepolkin gave the example of a restaurant using the faster broadband connection to streamline customer service and operations.

“The waiter could take an order on an iPad or a tablet and it would show up instantly on a screen in the kitchen, without having to run back with it on a slip of paper,” he said. “When it comes time to pay, the waiter can swipe a credit card or debit card on the iPad’s card reader and the customer doesn’t have to go up to a till. It can really speed things up.”

The fibre broadband connection works in a way that allows more information to travel through a connection than previously seen in the area. The materials the cables are made of, durable glass and plastic, aren’t affected by electromagnetic signals and will carry a signal farther and faster without losing strength.

For example, if a big bucket of water, standing in for an Internet signal, has a small one-inch pipe draining from the bottom, the water would leave the bucket slowly. If the pipe was four inches wide, then the water would drain out much faster.

The one-inch pipe would represent Trail’s previous Internet connection, while the four-inch pipe represents the new broadband connection.

For more information on the broadband connection or the service provider, Columbia Networks, visit www.trailbroadband.ca.

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