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The Tomahawk Leader is a state and national prize-winning weekly newspaper serving the scenic Northwoods area in and around Tomahawk, WI.

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 Post subject: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:06 pm 
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A letter in the Aug. 4, 2009, Tomahawk Leader:

My wife and I moved our home and business to Tomahawk four years ago and have been trying to get high speed internet to our location, on the north end of Tannery Road, for all of those four years. After years of phone calls to various high speed internet providers, we were finally told by Charter Communications that they can service our location. We agreed to pre-paid for six months service, $179.94, and were told that we would receive installation on Monday, July 20.

On that Monday, the installation technician from Broadband, told us that Charter Communication was incorrect and they could not service our address. We have now exhausted our options with Verizon, Solarus and Charter, which all advertise service to the Tomahawk area. At the very least, this is deceptive advertising. Their high speed lines are approximately six blocks away and all of these providers are unwilling to extend it to our location.
We own and operate a high precision machining business, K F Honing LLC, that relies on email and internet transmission of blueprint, requests for quotes (RFQs) and similar large documents. Not having high speed internet has slowed the growth of our business, and since our customer base is nationwide, this lack of technology reflects on our Northwoods area in a very negative way. We know there are other businesses and professionals in our same position.

Perhaps everyone does not know, but simple things like online banking, tracking a UPS or FedEx package or accessing a TV stations web site are not obtainable with dial-up service because it takes too long to load. Global Positioning Systems, GPS, (Garmin or Tom-Tom), map updates, essential to obtain a business location, are also not able to be accessed with dial-up service.

It is time that we have this high speed internet technology available to all at a reasonable price. Wild Blue and other “satellite” based services, an alternative, is twice the per month over Charter, Solarus or Verizon, with up-front installation fees approaching $400. This is not economical and comes with NO guarantee that it is faster than dial-up.

Perhaps some of the Federal stimulus monies should be used for this project that will actually pay some of the investment with improved business communication and growing businesses, with building projects and additional jobs which will add to the tax base.
Thank you for allowing us this forum to discuss the lack of internet technology in the Northwoods.

Bob and Judy Mijolevic
Tomahawk


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 1:27 am 
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Last winter I couldn't put up with the lousy dial-up service from Newnorth any longer and put in a satellite system. The inital cost for the system installed was less than $200.00 and even though the monthly cost is a bit more, by the time I figured in the seperate phone line so my phone wasn't tied up all the time plus the payment to newnorth there isn't that much difference. As for the speed it is almost as fast as DSL and many times faster than dail-up. As far as I am concerned until we get something better in the area it is well worth the cost.


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 6:35 am 
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I put my parents on connections with Alltel. They use their cell phones and laptops to connect.

Faster than dial-up and they can use it when they travel to get internet almost anywhere.


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:31 am 
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Alltel wireless was my first choice but unfortunatly I didn't have a good enough signal where I live and when I tried it I kept loosing my signal and getting disconnected. That is why I ended up going with a satellite system. The only time I have a problem with that is when we get real heavy rain or wet heavy snow that sticks to the dish instead of sliding off as it usually does. That has only happened a couple of times so it has not been a significant problem.


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 4:15 pm 
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Kerry, I know of others in that same neighborhood as your parents using Alltel. They are very happy with the option. Downloading pictures, music, etc. works great for them. I'm thinking that would work on Tannery Road as well, unless of course that's a dead spot.

I'm glad that option is available, when we finally get back to the northwoods I really don't want to go back to dial-up. Does AT&T offer wireless? That's what I have, goes back to Cellular One days, I still have a Rhinelander number. YIKES!


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 5:56 pm 
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Based on my iPhone (AT&T) data rates in the Tomahawk area I'd be looking elsewhere. My connection is slower than dialup when I'm in Tomahawk so far. Speed tests have put it at maybe 1-2K per second. I actually send an email and then set the phone down to do something else until it finishes...


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 8:44 pm 
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I've done a little internet with my AT&T Razor, mostly weather when we're camping, you're right Kerry, it was as slow as dial-up. Thought it might be the area. Good to know. I do know that at one time I could access Facebook without a problem, now AT&T says I need to update my phone. If I would do that I would lose my purchased ringtones. I'm cheap, don't need to get onto Facebook that badly.


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 Post subject: Re: High speed Internet
PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 2:10 pm 
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Deb, in a lot of cases they can transfer the ringtones. If you switch to an iPhone you can just make your own too...


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