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    Amanda ONeill
    ATTN: WBBI users
    Topic posted August 10, 2012 by Amanda ONeillBronze, last edited August 22, 2012, tagged Internet 
    15834 Views, 79 Comments
    ATTN: WBBI users

    Did you know that WBBI (Wireless BroadBand Internet) is scheduled for shutdown ON or BEFORE Dec 2012?

    You will NOT receive any credits for your existing equipment costs

    Depending on your area you may find your only other option for Internet will be Xplornet

    Sasktel has no provisions in place or protocols in place to help current WBBI Internet users switch to a service of equal or greater speeds and quality.


    Let me start by saying I have been a loyal customer of Sasktel for over 5 years now. i pay over 200$ a month in cell,home phone,Internet and extras every month. Want to know how I learned about WBBI getting discontinued?I didn't receive a call, a notice, NOTHING. I noticed on sasktel's website WBBI was not offered anymore and called to ask why and was told it was not available to new customers anymore due to the planned phasing out of the service........WHAT? no communication to me about this? no 6 month warning? NOTHING from sasktel about this, its been all up to me to learn these things.

    So needless to say I was not pleased to learn this and today i called sasktel to clarify a few things.I learned today that my 250$ investment into the wbbi equipment will not be reimbursed. On top of that my ONLY other option that will be avail in my area will be the xplornet service....that is it! If you completely ignore ALL the bad publicity on xplornet that is all over the web and simple look at the cost of the system its really looking bad for me. To put me in the xplornet service the costs are as follows....

      Essential Advantage Performance
    Description Great for casual surfing and email Ideal for moderate surfing and online transactions Excellent for intense surfing and file sharing
    Monthly Service Fee (3-yr, 2-yr & No Contract)1 $54.99 $59.99 $89.99
    One-time Activation Fee
    (3-yr contract)
    (2-yr contract)
    (No contract)



    Basic Installation Fee1 FREE FREE FREE
    Download speed (up to)2 1.5 Mbps 3.0 Mbps 5.0 Mbps

    i pay 60$ a month for wbbi and that system runs flawlessly for me, its not the fastest at 2.0Mbps but its reliable, great latency for gaming and very few issues over the years. that means to put me in a comparable service with xplornet I need to get essential or advantage packages. on a per month its pretty close at 54.99 and 59.99 and the ADVERTISED speeds are close, i say advertised because xplornet is widely known to NOT give you those UP TO speeds often and that's not even considering the 1000+latency sat systems can have. OK now what about those contract charges? OH MY GOD, so to have no contract i need to shell out 549$?? even a 2year is still costing more then my WBBI equipment did by 100$.


    So the contract terms and cost got me thinking more so my next question for the sasktel rep I was talking to was this:

    So i decide to switch to xplornet, i fork out 349$ and sign a 2year contract since it gets my start up costs closest to my wbbi costs, 6 months later sasktel finishes some upgrades and a new Internet service hits my area from sasktel that's faster,better, and directly from sasktel not some well known to be a BAD company like xplornet. Can i switch? well not without a HUGE cost because I'm locked into a contract with xplornet so I end up having 2 Internet connections if i want to enjoy the new service.

    I put this to the sasktel rep and they had nothing to plan to help anyone if that situation arises, no protocols to allow us to get back with sasktel....NOTHING!

    ARRRRG i wanna pull my hair out after learning some of these things, how can they do this to customers? is the WBBI customer base so small they just don't care enough to look out for us? I feel like I'm getting screwed over and forced into xplornet because they don't want to invest the money or time to properly bring Internet to the rural customers like myself. Why are they even shutting down the WBBI if its not to improve the service available to those customers? answer? from the sasktel rep "only reason to stop providing a service is because its not profitable" Well you have only yourself to blame for that sasktel. In my town I know MANY people who cant get WBBI here because the tower is located 14km's away and is just slightly out of LOS due to the geography. If they would have invested and brought a repeater somewhere closer they could have pulled in MANY more customers for the service here but instead they did nothing and guess what! a small ISP from Alberta came into town and provided service to those people, locked them into contracts and you wont see those people come to you now because YOU didn't try to bring service here. OH and they have Voip too so I'm sure your losing local phone customers too with this. I guess it all boils down to greed, why provide service to a small town when you make millions more off the big 9 right? 

    OH and to put some salt in my wound as if it isn't a slap to the face enough. 1.5years ago FIBER line box was placed outside my home to run fiber to the local bank and that time they still have not offered it to the local residents and I still cant get an answer if/when/or ever will it be. *** they wouldn't even admit what it was till I told them I KNEW it was because i talked to the installers when it was getting done.



    SASKTEL......your really frustrating me right now, WBBI should not be shutdown till you have a replacement service ready to take over, all your doing is driving me away and I hope after others learn what I have, they will be frustrated with you too. Saskatchewan is not simply those large 9 communities its an entire province that YOU promised to bring service to.



    EDIT: adding some info to this post as i uncover it

    So aparently theres some offer going out to WBBI customers for xplornet, I havent seen the letter so if any WBBI customer who has could remove their personal info from the letter and post it here for me plz? would like to see what this offer is.


    New info from Induystry Canada, they are the ones who sell and distribute the freq sprectrums that WBBI used. Well according to Industry Canada regina office, sasktel has known of the lose of the spectrum for 3 years now and didnt do anything IMO to have options for WBBI customers available. 


    EDIT : For those who havent stumbled over why Xplornet is so bad here is ONE example of what they do to customers


    • Todd Ector

      I believe LittleLoon and Yourlink both received funding on a earlier program, the program mentioned in the post was from 2009. 

    • NineSuns
      Hi Terrel, I am sorry I am unable to bring up the article that I referenced regarding the winning bid. I checked my IE history this morning to find it, only to find that IE didn't retain the history (a known issue with IE that I discovered this morning ... when I needed the history ;)).
      The idea of funds for SaskTel has been mentioned a time or two in this thread. Perhaps it's time for SaskTel to collaborate with other providers (including Rogers, now that HSPA is here) to provide the cellular coverage needed - which could then provide rural Internet services via cell towers.
      Just a thought.

      "I understand that there was federal funds given to ensure rural and remote services across Canada back in 2009; those projects are ending about now. . With that, I have to assume that the federal government has an interest and funding behind rural and remote Internet. And, I understand that SaskTel won a bid to supply those services. What happened? Did we pick the wrong hardware?"

      On this  link there is a list of projects to date.  I do not see any successful ones from Saskatchewan.  These projects are competative.




      View original


    • Terrel Hill

      With the creation of, we found there was a positive busniness case. It's focus is on rural customers. The littleloon project completed March 2007.  It delivers a broadband connection.  Tower placements were engineered. Some existing structures and towers were utilized. has expanded it's coverage area since it's creation.  It will most likely do so further when and if under served areas present themselves.  

    • NineSuns

      With the creation of, we found there was a positive busniness case. It's focus is on rural customers. The littleloon project completed March 2007.  It delivers a broadband connection.  Tower placements were engineered. Some existing structures and towers were utilized. has expanded it's coverage area since it's creation.  It will most likely do so further when and if under served areas present themselves.  

      View original

      Unfortunately, Little Loon does not cover the area where the farm is, so still on the hunt for a solution. I have emailed a fellow who was supplying wireless networking equipment to individuals who needed connections in more than one building (say, on a farm). I thought he may have heard of another solution. If he has any ideas, I will post.