Submitted by Merri Ann Simonson
Rock Island has been busy for the last 5 years installing the base structure for our fiber and other internet connection options throughout the County.
As a REALTOR, I can state that internet reliability is discussed as part of every real estate transaction. Now more than ever, Islanders, as well as newcomers need to be connected and they desire their families to visit and, of course, the children and grandkids must have their devices.
As I understand, there are several avenues for consumers to obtain Internet service in our County and they include the following:
- Dialup – Internet through the Century Tel telephone lines, which is very slow service. Basically obsolete.
- DSL – Internet through Century Tel telephone lines and the level of service depends on your distance from the central office; 0.5 to 2 megabits per second is typical, but they will sell you 10 which a few people on San Juan do receive. The service is inconsistent and dependent on well-maintained copper lines and the most unfortunate event is you must work with Century Tel. Either Rock Island or The Computer Place can also provide the DSL service using the Century Tel telephone line which is what I recommend, if DSL is your only option.
- Satellite Service – Internet through a satellite connection. The level of service can be up to 12 megabits but the delays in signal are significant and high data costs are an issue.
- LTE from Rock Island. Rock Island partnered with T-Mobile to build 40 cell sites in the County with 13 on San Juan. Service speed is 10-25 megabits for $75 per month. They have a seasonal rate for this service for $49 if you don’t live here full time. T-Mobile really stepped up as compared to Verizon and AT&T who only have 2-4 towers in the County.
- Further, Rock has been addressing the slowdowns that were occurring by updating the 4G network and increasing the capacity. Now more than ever, with the majority of us working out of the home, these upgrades were very timely.
- Fiber Optic from Rock Island – Internet service with 30-1,000 megabits per second; the gold standard. Reliable and scalable. $80-$180 per month based on the speed you select. They have seasonal rates for this service starting at $55.
Read the full article at http://sanjuanislandslifestyle.com/blog/.
Merri Ann Simonson
Coldwell Banker San Juan Islands Inc