Frequently Asked Questions
Why will this network be good for residents and businesses in Wilbraham?
The Town is confident it will be able to achieve all of its goals for this network. Those goals are outlined on the front page of this website and include the following -
Lowering the cost of internet access for residents and businesses.
Significantly increasing the speed and reliability of internet access.
Creating real competition to give residents multiple options in selecting a service provider - on demand and in real time to enable to choose what level of service they need and be charged accordingly.
Building a state-of-the-art network to stimulate economic development, foster innovation and increase property values.
Improving services provided to the Town by way of public safety, transportation, healthcare, education, emergency communications, and new services that will become available by leveraging this advanced network.
Will I incur any other fees beyond the infrastructure costs to connect my house to this network?
Those who commit early may incur a minimal charge or possibly none at all.
What happens when the fiber optic infrastructure is paid off?
Once the infrastructure is paid off, the total monthly infrastructure cost goes away lowering your monthly internet cost.
What happens if I move?
All infrastructure related costs and materials remain attached to the property because it's considered an improvement. If you sell your home, the new owner will assume responsibility for the balance of any remaining infrastructure debt.
How many options will I have for internet speeds?
Internet Service Providers will set their plan options, and plans will vary between service providers. However, the Town anticipates that subcribers will minimally have the following options:
Can I sign up later if I don't sign up now?
Yes - but the financing mechanism the Town is using to finance the fiber connection over 20 years early adopters will receive a significant discount for signing up in advance.
When will I know the exact cost of the infrastructure?
The Town is currently in process of assessing demand and interest on a neighborhood by neighborhood basis. Once our assessment is complete, we will be able to derive a total per premise cost, as well as a monthly cost for those who opt to finance the infrastructure over 20 years. Please click on the "Show Your Support" page to indicate your interest in this project.
What if I sign up and then decide I no longer want the service?
Infrastructure expenses cannot be suspended until the infrastructure debt is retired (which equates to a 20-year committment). The cost of monthly maintenance & operations and services can be suspended by subscribers at any point.
How many ISPs will I have access to?
The town expects to add 3–5 new Internet Service Providers (ISPs) at the launch of the network. Additionally, we will invite all existing ISPs to participate on the network.
What is the process for switching ISPs?
To switch your Internet Service Provider (ISP), you will simply access an online portal and unsubscribe from your current ISP, then subscribe to another available provider. Multiple ISPs encourages true competition and lower service pricing.
What does it mean that the network will be symmetrical?
This means your upload and download speeds will be identical and consistent. For comparison purposes, the majority of major Internet Service Providers severly limit a customer's upload speeds, which inevitably impedes online performance. Symmetrical throughput speeds ensures reliable, consistent results.
What does it mean that the network will not be shared?
Almost all current broadband service providers force customers to share bandwidth via shared networks. That means 32 or 64 homes have a shared connection and the demands put on the network by one home affect the performance of the network on neighboring homes. The model Wilbraham is planning to deploy is not a shared model, so your connection will be dedicated and far more consistent, reliable and fast.
Will the Town be competing with the private sector?
The Town seeks to increase competition among private sector service providers.
Will everyone in town have access to this network?
Yes. However, town residents need to demonstrate support.. Express interest via our heat map and see how your neighborhood feels.
Will I be required to disconnect my current cable TV subscription?
While you can expect drastic improvements in the quality of streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Roku, Disney+, etc., via our proposed fiber network, you will not be required to cancel or disconnect your current cable television subscription services.