Now more than ever, high-speed internet access is necessary for anyone working remotely, participating in virtual schooling, operating a home-based business or agricultural operation. The Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications (CRTC) regulator has deemed broadband internet access a basic service. The CRTC has estimated that approximately 12% of Ontarians lack access to broadband services that meet the CRTC's minimum service standards of 50 Mbps (megabits per second) for downloads and 10 Mbps for uploads. While most Canadians today have access to these minimum service levels, many rural and remote regions in Canada lack the infrastructure needed.
Broadband services are available in areas throughout Springwater; however, a large geographic portion of Springwater is considered rural in nature and as such, residents living in these areas may not have access to reliable, stable broadband service. This can be confirmed by reviewing the Improving Connectivity for Ontario Map.
As a result, a Springwater Community Broadband Advisory Committee has been formed to assist in fostering partnerships between interested Springwater residents and local internet services providers. The Committee was formed to facilitate community broadband expansion in Springwater and advocate to other levels of government for additional funding to support rural community broadband projects in the Township.
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|Internet service providers|
Below is a list of Internet Service Providers who service the Springwater area.
If you are an Internet Service Provider that services the Springwater area and would like to be added to the list, please email the Community Broadband Advisory Committee with your contact information.
|Types of Broadband|
A fast, reliable internet service using coaxial cable, which is also used for traditional television setups and generally found in urban areas. This type of connection is typically able to supply a home with enough bandwidth for most needs. Cable is typically not available in rural areas and is offered by Rogers, Bell, and third-party resellers such as TekSavvy. Bandwidth for cable can reach over 1 gigabit per second.
An extremely slow internet connection using telephone lines. Users of this service typically must have their phone lines free to use the internet. Dial-up bandwidth is often 56 kilobits per second.
Using telephone lines, DSL is a faster internet service than dial-up that operates on different frequencies, allowing phone service to be used simultaneously. DSL bandwidth up to 100 megabits per second can be served in certain areas, should the telephone infrastructure allow.
The fastest consumer internet service available today, using modern fibre optic cable. Typically, fibre optic internet is only offered in recently developed areas as it is newer and difficult to deploy in previously developed areas. Like cable, the bandwidth can reach over 1 gigabit per second, but is typically delivered faster than cable. Fibre optic internet is typically only available through cable providers.
Similar to a wireless connection, satellite can be accessed from almost anywhere, though a satellite dish needs to be installed on the premises. A new but popular satellite choice is Starlink which offers speeds of 150 megabits per second. However, traditional satellite speeds are much slower.
A common internet type in the rural areas of Springwater, mobile wireless can be deployed easily to consumers without expensive infrastructure projects. Typically, wireless modems or small adapters that plug into computers are used. Speeds and reliability can vary greatly depending on proximity to nearby towers and infrastructure, the environment, as well as the wireless frequencies used. There are many providers in the area offering wireless internet such as Point to Point, Xplornet, Bell, and Rogers.
|Accelerated High Speed Internet Program (AHSIP)|
On August 4, 2022, the Ontario government announced a new investment to bring high-speed internet to up to 266,000 unserved and underserved homes and businesses in as many as 339 municipalities across Ontario. The project areas are still being finalized, though Springwater has been identified as a municipality to benefit from the investment. This is a part of Ontario’s plan to connect every corner of the province by the end of 2025.
Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT)
In 2020, Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT) announced $41.1 million in funding to support six fibre-to-the-home projects across Simcoe County. Two of the approved projects will directly affect Springwater residents, with several neighbourhoods in Anten Mills, Phelpston and Hillsdale identified for broadband infrastructure improvements.
In 2021, the governments of Canada and Ontario announced a further investment of $252 million to bring high-speed internet to 60,000 households in southwestern Ontario. Springwater communities to benefit include Hillsdale, Anten Mills, Snow Valley, Midhurst and Phelpston. The investment is part of an initiative to provide high-speed internet access to all corners of the province by 2025. SWIFT has confirmed that all 97 contracts arising from this investment have been awarded, and implementation of the projects is underway.
Broadband Connectivity Project Tracking
On April 27, 2023, the Minister of Infrastructure, the Honourable Kinga Surma, announced a new interactive mapping tool to track the status of Ontario broadband and cellular projects. The government has committed up to $4 billion to connect all Ontarians to high-speed internet by the end of 2025. The new tool allows municipalities and residents to track the progress of initiatives to connect their communities.
Community Broadband Advisory Committee
A Community Broadband Advisory Committee has been formed to identify broadband initiatives in the Township, including exploring processes and best practices for facilitating community broadband expansion in the Township. The Committee includes three members of Council and supporting staff members.
|Agendas and Minutes|
|Community Broadband Advisory Committee Survey|
At the March 9, 2021 meeting, the Community Broadband Advisory Committee outlined its goal to create and release an online survey for public input on broadband service needs in Springwater. The Community Broadband Advisory Committee (CBAC) Survey was developed to facilitate the collection of valuable information and data regarding current service levels within the Township, as well as areas for potential improvement. Township staff circulated the CBAC Survey from May 11, 2021 through July 30, 2021.
Briefly, the survey results include the following highlights. Of the respondents:
View the full survey results in the information report below.