What sets fiber apart from DSL, Satellite or Mobile broadband?
First, it’s important to note this is not a satellite or wireless service. This is a fiber optic network which offers a much higher, consistent speed than other forms of internet. This service will not be metered, so the amount of internet you have at the beginning of the month will be the same at the end of the month. The most compelling and interesting aspect of this internet service is the speed. As of now, local internet service providers advertise their highest speeds around 10 Mbps. Those who sign up for the freedom FIBER service will choose between two different speeds: 100 Mbps (up and down) or 1 Gig (up and down). These speeds present limitless opportunities.
Is this service good for online gaming and streaming?
Absolutely! Our upload and download speeds will be the same, so you should have no issues with buffering or lag in your gaming or streaming even if others are streaming/playing other games throughout your house.
Will you be offering email services?
No, we will not be offering an email service in order to keep costs down. There are several great free email providers (Google, Yahoo, etc.) which will work regardless of your internet provider. If you have an email address currently hosted by your current provider, we recommend you create a new email address now. If you've used your email to get notifications from different websites, it would be a good idea to go ahead and update these with your new email address because once you cancel your current internet subscription, you will likely lose access to this email and won't be able to recover.
Where can I find the different packages for residential and businesses?
Please check here to see our different packages.
Do I have to pay anything when I sign up for service? How does the billing work?
We don't require any type of payment upfront or at the time of installation. You are billed on the 15th of the month, and you are paying a month in advance. Your first bill will be more than just the package charge because you will be billed from the day you are connected until the 15th of the month, plus an additional month. After this first bill, your bill will just be the package charge (including tax if you have the phone service.)
Are there any taxes or fees on the internet service?
There will be no taxes on the internet service. If you choose to allow us to draft your payment and sign up to receive an electronic copy of your bill, you will pay the $49.95 or $79.95 depending on the speed you choose. In order to keep costs down, we're encouraging you to let us email you your bill. If you do choose to receive an paper copy of your bill, there will be an additional $2.00 charge per month.
Will this project affect Tombigbee Electric rates?
No. A new company, Tombigbee Communications, LLC., has been formed to operate the new internet business to protect the interest of Tombigbee Electric rate payers.
Why is Tombigbee committed to this project?
The simple answer is if not Tombigbee, then who? We are dedicated to improving our community. We want our members and others living in this area to have the same opportunities presented in the larger cities. We want our students to be as well prepared to enter college and the work force as those who have the opportunities brought on by a high speed connection. We want our younger generation to have a reason and a desire to return home after finishing their education to start their families. We want to make this area competitive and enticing for industry to want to locate here. We want to improve our healthcare systems by providing the internet connection to provide access to the expertise of physicals at larger hospitals for those in our communities. We want to improve the quality of life in our community.
There are several reasons Tombigbee has decided to embark on this project, but every one of them involve wanting to help our community flourish. This project has been in discussions for almost a year with several studies taking place. The time for the project is now. We have the right team, the right management and the right motivation. We certainly have the need. Although this might not be a magic fix for the lack of economic growth and the slight population decline, it is a good leap in the right direction.
Why is broadband internet so important?
There are many reasons a high speed and reliable connection is needed in this area.
For one, there are a lot companies offering the chance to work from anywhere. This means people could still choose to live in our communities and work from the comfort of their own homes. Without an internet connection which is both fast and reliable, this is not as viable of an option.
This high speed connection can greatly impact our schools and our hospitals. We have received letters and support from superintendents and hospital administrators stating how much this will impact their area of work. With our school systems, it will give them the chance to take on innovative tasks such as creating Virtual Classrooms and integrating more technology in the classroom. Because we are building this network throughout the entire area, students will have the opportunity to receive extra help in areas they may struggle in. For the hospitals and other medical facilities, telemedicine (transmitting video links, emails, files, etc. of medical information) becomes a reality due to a reliable high speed internet connection. This can benefit all areas of our community and bring us up to speed with those in larger cities..
When will you be able to provide the service to my house?
Can you use any type of phone with the VoIP phone service?
Can you port your current phone number to our system?
Will long distance be covered?
If the internet is out, does this mean the phone is out?
Yes. If the internet service is down, the phone would not work. HOWEVER, it is our goal to build our system to have the necessary backup to work 99.999% of the time.
Will there be taxes on the VoIP phone service?
Yes, there will be taxes and fees on the phone service. The state and federal government mandate such charges to be applied to phone services. These are caluclated based on a percent which could change. These are not fees placed on you by Tombigbee Communications, but by the government.
Other installation questions:
Will we be able to use existing cables in the house to connect to the port outside? Or will you have to run new cables?
Since this is a fiber optic service, the cable going from the outside of your home to the inside will have to be replaced. It may be possible to use the same hole, and the installer should be able to answer any such question while they are on site to connect your service.
Will there be cables inside my home?
When we get to the inside of your home, we will install a small box called an ONT which coverts the fiber to an Ethernet connection. Once this conversion is made, we will then connect to a Residential Gateway (resembling a modem) which will be provided by us. This Residential Gateway will have a very strong wi-fi radio in it to get the service wirelessly throughout your house.