We’re excited to be part of the Bragg Creek community and even more excited to bring great Internet to the area! You may have seen us around the community, testing the network or perhaps here online (we’re on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) busy answering questions.
For your convenience, we’ve compiled the questions we’ve been asked so far, right here. But please keep them coming – we’ll be updating the page regularly as we progress with the network.
What is the timeline for the Bragg Creek network deployment?
Phase 1: Complete
Phase 2: In Progress
Who is Mage Networks?
Mage Networks is the company that developed MagiNet™, a solution to a world problem – unreliable or inaccessible Internet.
What does Mage Networks do?
MagiNet™ can go through trees, over hills and travel long distances to deliver high-speed Internet anywhere. Plus, we’re the only ISP with Guaranteed Streaming Bandwidth™
Is your technology as good as you say it is?
Our network is a new breed of mesh networks. Unlike cellular towers, we use a series of interconnected nodes, instead of all units having to connect to one access point. We place as many nodes as needed wherever they are needed to bring Internet access directly to a specific area and guarantee no data rate loss. That means that even obstacles like trees or buildings – even the weather – do not impact the signal strength and you’ll have, reliable high-speed Internet. In effect the connection is made where it’s needed and not where it’s not needed (such as cows in a pasture getting great service from a nearby tower).
Where is Mage Networks deployed?
Mage has deployed networks in Alberta, Grand Cayman, Accra, Ghana, and Monrovia, Liberia. We are currently deploying in Powhatan, and Warrenton, Virginia. We’re currently rolling out service to areas in and around Bragg Creek, Alberta, including Redwood Meadows and Millarville.
How are you planning on delivering power to the nodes in West Bragg?
Units on power poles will get their power from the poles. There are a couple of areas in West Bragg that have buried cables. However, there are above-ground connection boxes that we will use. We will be working with the residents/homeowners/homeowners associations and/or whomever else we need, to come up with elegant solutions to mount and power our equipment.
What kind of experience can we expect with Mage Internet?
Our technology, MagiNet™ provides symmetrical speed. This means that the upload and download speeds have the same maximum limit. Mage doesn’t cut corners on bandwidth and we’re the only ISP that has implemented Guaranteed Streaming Bandwidth™ (we cover that below.)
What is Guaranteed Streaming Bandwidth™, GSB™?
We don’t cut corners on our bandwidth and that’s why we’re the only ISP to offer Guaranteed Streaming Bandwidth™ (GSB™) This refers to the minimum speed of an Internet connection. Minimum speeds matter if you’re using services that require constant streaming. For example, Netflix requires that you have a speed of 5 Mbps to ensure you have a good experience with high definition quality (no buffering or spinny icons.) The design of our network allows us to guarantee that our minimum speed will never go below 7 Mbps.
Which tower does Mage Networks get a signal from?
Our Internet service isn’t based on a tower or cellular service; we use mesh technology. Our technology MagiNet™ directly connects any home and business in an area that wants our Internet service and does not get a signal from a tower. Mesh technology uses a series of small interconnected antennas. For example, in the community of Bragg Creek the Internet feed (backhaul) we connect to, comes from the Alberta SuperNet Fibre Network (there’s a Point of Presence (POP) in Bragg Creek.)
How challenging is it to support your technology in a rural setting? (e.g.: servicing active nodes and potential lack of power at some sites.)
Our network is built using existing infrastructure, such as street lamps, power poles and even homes. As such, an important part of our preparation is calculating the power required to cover the area. This includes surveying and identifying the sources – which include power poles.
In terms of maintenance, the Bragg Creek area uses 66 power poles. This translates to approximately 200 units. At a failure rate of 2% per year (which is relatively high), we expect to replace four units per year. We estimate a two hour response time, including travel to the pole and replacing the unit. However, what’s key is the distribution nature of our network. The only people who are serviced by a specific data pipeline would be affected by the outage (on average, 30 residences out of 300 are affected at a time.) Our estimate is approximately eight hours per year of down time on a 10% of the network or 99.99% uptime on the whole network.
Does your technology rely on fiber or satellite?
Our network is a combination of fiber and our own technology, MagiNet™. MagiNet™ is formed by hardware and firmware designed by our team and seamlessly uses wireless and wired connections to create wireless coverage over, under, and around any sized area without degradation in speed or consistency. The Internet feed (backhaul) we connect to comes from the Alberta SuperNet Fibre Network.
Are networks built by Mage Networks 5G?
Our networks are not 5G.
5G is a cellular phone standard, we‘re using Wi-Fi as the basis but modifying the devices to be part of MagiNet™.
Our frequencies are the Wi-Fi frequencies: 2.4 GHz, 5.x GHz, and 60 GHz.
Our Data Pipelines are constructed by placing our special relays in
locations such that we get high data rates, overcome obstacles and trees, while being able to reach long distances. Calling them Data Pipelines was to indicate that they carry the data with no loss for very long distances, as opposed to a lot of other wireless (and some wired) technologies.
What equipment and cables have to be installed?
MagiNet™ works by bringing the Internet to your home wirelessly. We install a small antenna (not much bigger than a smartphone) on the exterior of your home. This connects to our wireless network in the community. From the antenna installed on your home, we run an ethernet cable to the inside of your house. From that cable, you can connect to a Wi-Fi router.
Can we use our own router?
There are two (2) options:
- Use no router, and directly connect your computer to the ethernet cable we provide. (This limits the number of devices you connect.)
- Use your own router both wired and wireless.
How long does installation take?
The actual installation time can vary based on the type of residence. However, average installation time once our installer is on-site is approximately two hours.
How much do your Internet service packages cost?
We currently offer Residential Internet Service and Business Internet Service. To learn more about our packages, you can find more information here: https://www.mage-networks.com/internet/
What are the Terms and Conditions?
We’ve done our best to simplify our Terms and Conditions so that you don’t need a law degree to understand them. You can find them here: https://www.mage-networks.com/conditions/
Is Mage Networks regulated by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)?
We are regulated and licensed by the CRTC. Additionally, we meet the internet code which was applied to the Big 10 back in January (however, we do so voluntarily.) Here’s more information about the Internet Code and its applications: https://crtc.gc.ca/eng/internet/code.htm
How Secure is the network?
The Mage Networks ISP infrastructure encompasses the network components between the customer premise and the Internet Service Provider(s). Mage Networks is responsible for the security of the Mage ISP infrastructure. Mage Networks uses the most current wireless encryption protocols, stringent password controls, and internal best practices which generally exceed industry standards. Mage Networks has controls in place to monitor, review, and adjust security practices on an ongoing basis to ensure policies and standards are followed and regularly updated.
As a user, you have an integral role in making your communications secure:
- Implement a secure Wi-Fi password on your router,
- Use the latest routers and the best encryption,
- Ensure that your computers and devices are updated regularly (companies are constantly identifying and fixing weaknesses in their operating system.)
- Practice general safe and standard security practices.
What does high latency mean? You can’t game, use Facetime or Zoom
What does slow speed mean? You can’t watch Netflix.
What do ISPs mean when they use the term “up to”?
They don’t guarantee anything because there are too many factors out of their control. They don’t guarantee it if you are their only customer. With high usage they don’t have a minimum performance no matter how bad it gets.
What is Mage’s Maximum Download Speed?
Mage’s definition of performance you will actually be connected to a network that is actually able to deliver this performance. Certain other methods such as DSL and wireless simply can’t deliver the stated performance everywhere service is offered because distance and obstacles affect their performance. MagiNet™ achieves its maximum performance most of the time. It is only dependent on how much sharing is occurring at a given time. Our Guaranteed Streaming Bandwidth™ (GSB™) is described next as it sets our absolute minimum performance.
What is Mage’s Upload Speed?
When you’re sending data to the Internet (such as videos, photographs or participating in a video conference call) your upload speed is important. Our upload and download speed are both the same (Maximum 100 Mbps)
What are stepped Down Data Rates?
Other service providers say: “if you are a big user we’ll choke your speed to nothing to get you to stop using our network so much.” Mage doesn’t do that.
Unlimited Data Rate: use our network as much as you want, the worst you’ll ever get is our GSB™ (7 Mbps)
How and when will you be addressing the Bragg Creek to Priddis corridor?
Our mission is to connect everyone, everywhere to reliable Internet – this includes the corridor between Bragg Creek and Priddis. The priority and order of regions we deploy our network in is determined by the number of homes, severity of connection and the difficulty of reaching them (*trees and hills are difficult to go through.)
The regions we’ve zeroed in on were expedited as a result of mobilized residents. Homeowners and business owners who were looking for better Internet, helped bring awareness of our technology to their neighbours and key decision makers. The result is enough interest to make a region viable from a network and business perspective. From there, we design the network from the nearest POP. Our network is engineered to reach every single home within an area, connecting them to reliable Internet.
We encourage residents who are experiencing poor or unreliable Internet connection to speak with their respective MPs, MLAs, County Councilors, county and municipal administrators, as well as their homeowners association.
What are the known health effects of MagiNet™? Learn More Here
Does Mage use satellites?
Our network (MagiNet™) doesn’t rely on towers or satellites. Unlike other service providers, we can go through and around trees, valleys, and difficult terrain to deliver high-speed broadband anywhere. We use data pipelines in a series of small hops where the locations are strategically selected to distribute the data from central locations. Those data pipelines carry multiple signals in multiple directions, intelligently choosing whichever routes will avoid obstacles and interference with other data pipelines. The data automatically zips on and off wired and wireless connections to maximize efficiency.