Lake of the Woods problems Bell Cutover

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  • Updated 11 months ago
Hello I spend most weekends near Sioux Narrows in the Lake of the Woods area.  About 2 months ago MTS customers were taken off the TBayTel network and supposed to be connecting to the Bell Network as part of the MTS/Bell takeover.   I am within the advertised HSPA coverage area yet I am not getting service reliably.  Does anyone know whether this issue is actually being worked on and when things will improve.  I understand technical issues with a major cut over like this but I need some assurance that the problem will be solved soon.  It is a safety issues and not an convenience issue.  My research tells me that I am connecting to a Bell Cell Site from the tower in Sioux Narrows near the RCMP station. 
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lucas

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Posted 11 months ago

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Jeremy, Official Rep

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Hey lucas
This is something we are aware of occurring and are trying to build up as much information as possible regarding specific location and what networks are in range in areas like that.  I highly recommend speaking to our tech support crew either by phone or through webchat to have a ticket logged.  The more details and cases we can get the better idea we will have of the gaps, and a better chance of getting them all addressed and covered.  Contact information is available at bellmts.ca/contactus
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Dan, Champion

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Lucas, it looks like Bell and TbayTel both have antennas on the same tower in your area there. The area is also showing as future LTE coverage on the Bell tower map, so you should be getting full LTE service in future. I've been hearing from other MTS customers that their data speeds have been slow in that area too, assuming this is due to the increased traffic on the Bell network in that area, probably why they are upgrading it to LTE now. Hope things get better for you. Also you are correct MTS customer will no longer have access to the TbayTel/Rogers network.
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lucas

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Thanks for the replies, I appreciate the information.  i have been communicating with the MTS team but have been a bit frustrated by somewhat vague answers and work around suggestions.  To me it seems "workarounds" are not appropriate considering I am paying for service and within the advertised coverage area.  Of course I do understand that this is a major cut-over and there will be transition issues.  The fact is that It has not been working for 2 months.  Would it be realistic to think this is a priority and there will be a reliable solution for before the summer rush in the area?

Al;so would the LTE likely to have the same coverage as the 850HSPA does now?  Isn't LTE generally on a higher frequency with much lower penetration?  I know there is 700Mhz LTE but it doesn't seem like there is much 700Mhz being deployed.

I just hope that the MTS side of the Bell customers get the same service in this area as the local Bell customers soon.
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lucas

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Thanks Dan and Jeremy, that is all encouraging news I hope there are some updates soon.  Cottage country is full of Manitobans so I assume there will be lots of other feedback when they start showing up for their summer holidays.
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Dustin, Champion

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I think the main cause of the issue is the fact that there were so few customers that ran on the Bell network in MB and in that part of Ontario that there was no reason for them to build out their network in the area any more than it was. Now that Bell (inluding MTS) and Telus customers will be making up over 60% of the wireless users in MB... they don't have much of a choice but to step things up fast, or start losing customers en masse. 

On the other hand...Bell building out their own network in the area should result in better coverage for everyone, since 90+% of the wireless customers in the area won't all be using the same network. Less congestion = Better service. 
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lucas

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I just noticed that the Bell towers south of Sioux Narrows north of Crow lake is using  1900Mhz.  I hope they don't choose 1900 LTE for the Sioux Narrows upgrade because it won't give the range and penetration I don't think.  We are about 6kms NE of Sioux Narrows.   Does anyone know how the antenna orientation works and how those decisions are made?  I would think that they highway coverage is important? 
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lucas

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This is the tower in Sioux narrows - FYI
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Dan, Champion

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Hi, Bell is using 1900Mhz for HSPA in that area. They are using 700Mhz for LTE in that area so it would be safe to assume they would use 700Mhz for LTE too. It's hard to tell in the picture but I think I can see the LTE antennas up there. I guess their just not live yet.